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  1. #1
    Don't mince words Red Rider's Avatar
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    Picking the Great Minds of the 50+ Crowd

    So the other day Hermes, Velodiva, Cgallagh and I are tootling along on our tandems, and Velodiva announces that she's riding a time trial in a couple of weeks and would I do it with her?

    My first reaction is -- because I've only done one time trial, and that on our tank of a tandem. My second reaction is curiosity -- just how fast can an almost-53 yr.old woman ride over 10 miles? Ultimately I agreed, because I can't resist a challenge.

    Now that I've committed, I need some information -- any advice out there from you former racers? Should I be sprinting my insides out over the next 10 days, or will longer rides do it? Should I even try to drop 5 lbs.? I have no aero gear and don't plan to buy any for this event. A book or article to read? Dare I post this on the road forum for their entertainment?

    I'm sure there will be pie after the event.
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  2. #2
    Happy Rider
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    5 lbs worth of pie for the 5 lbs you are losing

    You will deserve it after a time trial.
    Bike to live, live to eat!!

  3. #3
    Senior Member ?? Beverly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Rider View Post
    Should I even try to drop 5 lbs.?
    Good luck with the training and ride. I'm not sure this would be a good time to try to drop some weight....you'll need all your strength for the ride.
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  4. #4
    Elite Rider Hermes's Avatar
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    I suggest posting this pic in the racing forum and ask which color shoes will be faster in a TT. FYI...Velodiva is training in the Dolomites.

    "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Einstein

  5. #5
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    I have a simple six-step process that never fails:

    1. Realize I haven't trained enough for the event.
    2. Realize I have limited training time.
    3. Hammer as hard as I can for 45 minutes four times a week for two weeks.
    4. The day before the event, notice that knee is starting to ache.
    5. Ride hell-for-leather in the time trial anyway
    6. Nurse injured knee for three months.
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  6. #6
    OM boy cyclezen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Rider View Post
    ...
    Now that I've committed, I need some information -- any advice out there from you former racers? Should I be sprinting my insides out over the next 10 days, or will longer rides do it? Should I even try to drop 5 lbs.? I have no aero gear and don't plan to buy any for this event. A book or article to read? Dare I post this on the road forum for their entertainment?
    I'm sure there will be pie after the event.
    If it wuz moi, and assumin you don't normally ride your 'single' bike in a TT position, I'd rig the bike as per your expected position, hopefully aero, and then spend the days riding in that position until the expected length TT can be done without 'wanting' or 'needing' to get out of that aero position. Fine tune it and feel like you can finish the TT as strong as you start.
    A good aero position can save you 20 - 25% time from a normal road position, something no one can accomplish in 'fitness' in 10 days of any kinda trainin.
    If you know your AT, I'd also 'tune' my effort, based on a HRM, to know when I'm hittin the 'wall' and anerobic. The problem with HR monitoring is that the heart always lags behind and by the time you 'see' a rate that says 'ease off' the effort already has the body anerobic. Don;t know about you, but once I go over AT it takes radical slowing to get me back to where I can plow along again. Better to ease a little early, than to detonate and throw out the anchor...

    BTW, based on Hermes pic post above - You're a Total Babe!

    me? mcp, natch...

  7. #7
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    It is important to remember that time trialing is all about enduring pain. Deep, abiding, inescapable, SOUL QUENCHING pain. To prepare for the race, try to suffer a lot in the next two weeks.

    Have fun!

  8. #8
    Left OZ now in Malaysia jibi's Avatar
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    Just remember that a time trial is just you and a clock. Forget everyone else!!!!
    Don't go out too hard and enjoy the adrenalin rush.

    what time should you do??

    the time that you achieve , but then you have a personal best to try and beat the next time, because there will be a next time.

    Time Trialing is addictive.

    Good luck

    george
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  9. #9
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    George is right, TT is addictive.

    I prefer TTT riding. . . .Tavern To Tavern.

  10. #10
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hermes View Post
    I suggest posting this pic in the racing forum and ask which color shoes will be faster in a TT. FYI...Velodiva is training in the Dolomites.


    Why not really upset everyone and do it on the "New" Tandem. You both realise the weak points on a T and you should both by now realise the strong points. Now that would really upset TT riders. Beaten by a Tandem and "TWO" women at that.

    Now as to that weight loss- Where can either of you lose it? Don't bother.

    I am not a speed merchant but 8 years ago I got roped into a 100mile TT- to represent a local club in the over 50 group. I just rode my ride on a borrowed bike and Surprised myself- and the 30 year old that got me into it when I posted a better time than him. I would suggest getting some "Fast" rides in but taking in some interval training within that fast ride. You did not say how long the TT But 10 miles and it will be flat out from the off. 25 miles will be flat out from the off and hope you can keep going till the end. Try the distance a few times but do not overtrain before the event.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  11. #11
    Senior Member
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    Wow, I'm impressed, that competitive streak can sure rear it's head up now and then.
    The organizer of a local time trial here, has offered to open another class for 50+ women, it has been on my mind to say yes, and your enthusiasm might be the thing to make me go for it! Good luck on yours, and have fun!

  12. #12
    Senior Member Road Fan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezen View Post
    If it wuz moi, and assumin you don't normally ride your 'single' bike in a TT position, I'd rig the bike as per your expected position, hopefully aero, and then spend the days riding in that position until the expected length TT can be done without 'wanting' or 'needing' to get out of that aero position. Fine tune it and feel like you can finish the TT as strong as you start.
    A good aero position can save you 20 - 25% time from a normal road position, something no one can accomplish in 'fitness' in 10 days of any kinda trainin.
    If you know your AT, I'd also 'tune' my effort, based on a HRM, to know when I'm hittin the 'wall' and anerobic. The problem with HR monitoring is that the heart always lags behind and by the time you 'see' a rate that says 'ease off' the effort already has the body anerobic. Don;t know about you, but once I go over AT it takes radical slowing to get me back to where I can plow along again. Better to ease a little early, than to detonate and throw out the anchor...

    BTW, based on Hermes pic post above - You're a Total Babe!

    me? mcp, natch...
    not sure which is which, but I see a pair of total babes, wow!

    Re the TT training, I am no expert, but I would think adding some intervals into your routine, getting your fit checked, and reinforcing your stress/recovery routine would all be beneficial.

    Plus thinking about pie, beer, and fun afterwards!

    G'luck, ladies!!

    Road Fan

  13. #13
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
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    The Senior Games (>50) were held in Louisville last month. The times they were putting up for the TT's were totally insane.

    Just sayin'.

  14. #14
    Small Member maddmaxx's Avatar
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    From the title of this thread, I didn't expect to go this long.

    Eat well the night before the race. Drink a lot before the race, your not going to have much time to drink during.

  15. #15
    OM boy cyclezen's Avatar
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    Ok, now I'm confoosed (more than usual...)
    my read on your post was that you and friend were each doing the TT, but based on some other responses their assumption is that you're doin it together on a tandem. I assumed a single...
    rereading your OP, it could be read either way - just a matter of which space the reader's head is in... mine tends to fold it like a the spacing guild...

  16. #16
    Senior Member OH306's Avatar
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    Schedule your colonoscopy for that day. Either way your butt's gonna hurt and you will only lose your dignity ... but not your pride.

  17. #17
    Elite Rider Hermes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezen View Post
    Ok, now I'm confoosed (more than usual...)
    my read on your post was that you and friend were each doing the TT, but based on some other responses their assumption is that you're doin it together on a tandem. I assumed a single...
    rereading your OP, it could be read either way - just a matter of which space the reader's head is in... mine tends to fold it like a the spacing guild...
    This is the Esparto Time Trial which is a licensed USCF race. They will be competing against other women Cat 4 racers as individuals riding their road bikes without aerobars. This race does not break down the women by age group so they are competing against ALL the Cat 4 women who show up. The distance is 18 miles. I think Stapfam thought it would be cool if they could compete on the tandem. The race does not have a tandem catagory or else we would be riding ours in the race.
    "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." Einstein

  18. #18
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Wow.....18 miles.

    My advice would be do start out at a "comfortable" pace and pace yourself throughout. I would not attempt to change too many things from your normal riding or setup at this point.

    If you have an area where you can ride hard for 20+ miles I'd probably go out and get in one good practice run.

    We have a lot of females at our Time Trials in Charlotte-and they do really well. We're adding a Team Time Trial this Thursday night and we have several female teams signed up. You will do just fine!

  19. #19
    Senior Member Dchiefransom's Avatar
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    How much can you affect your muscles in 10 days? Maybe a little cardio work between now and then, but I'd take a couple of days off before the ride and just do my best the day of the ride. Make this your baseline, 'cause you KNOW you're going to be hooked after this.
    Silver Eagle Pilot

  20. #20
    Don't mince words Red Rider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezen View Post
    Ok, now I'm confoosed (more than usual...)
    my read on your post was that you and friend were each doing the TT, but based on some other responses their assumption is that you're doin it together on a tandem. I assumed a single...
    rereading your OP, it could be read either way - just a matter of which space the reader's head is in... mine tends to fold it like a the spacing guild...
    Singles it is. There is no tandem category, dagnabbit, or we'd enlist our respective captains to join in the fun.

    And thanks for the advice and compliment, by the way! Very nice of you to say. --->blushes
    When my feet hit the floor in the morning, Satan shudders and says, "Oh, *****, she's awake!"

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  21. #21
    OnTheRoad or AtTheBeach stonecrd's Avatar
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    Figure out what your best sustained pace is over the distance. Take a couple days off or do easy rides prior, make sure you are eating well and hydrate before the ride. Do some easy spinning before the start to warm up, take a gel right before you start and then stick to your target pace while riding. If you feel good as you get to the last few miles pick it up if you think you can sustain. The key to TT is pacing and sustained power.
    The problem with the gene pool is that there is no lifeguard and the shallow end is much too large

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  22. #22
    aspiring Old Wart Sluggo's Avatar
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    Ten days? I thought this was the 50+ forum. I haven't been able to respond to a change in training routine that quickly in a decade or two. And intervals make me tired, not fast.

    The only tip I can give is to ride hard and have fun.

  23. #23
    Dharma Dog lhbernhardt's Avatar
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    I've been racing bikes for over 35 years and I just HATE time trials. The only time trials I will ride are pursuits on the track because they are only 2 or 3 kilometers long.

    But as for advice, here goes:

    It is too late to train for this. What you will achieve is a good idea of your level of fitness relative to the other competitors on the day. So just treat it as a test of your fitness. However, there are some things you need to know to optimize your performance on the day:

    Three days before the event, take a rest day. Don't do anything strenuous.
    Two days before the event, go for an easy ride, about an hour or hour-and-a-half.
    The day before the event, go for another easy ride, about an hour and a half, but at some point during this ride, do a hard effort lasting about three minutes or so. Make sure you keep riding after you've done this to "cool down" and get your muscles and breathing back to normal. If it felt good, you can do it again, but make it a shorter effort. Don't do any more than this.

    On the day of the event, get there at least two hours before the scheduled start. If the schedule says: "Time Trial, 10 am," this means that the first rider goes off at 10 am, with subsequent riders going off every 30 seconds or one minute after. This means you want to be there at 8 am. This will give you time to set up your bike, pump up your tires, go over and register, find out what time you are starting, pin the number on the back of your jersey, and - most important - warm up. Because you got there before the start, you will be able to warm up on the actual course. This will allow you to get valuable information about most of the course, and if it's out-and-back, like most time trials, you will get to study the finish.

    Assuming it's an out-and-back course, you want to allow about 40 minutes to warm up, longer if you are really fit (I don't want you to tire yourself out during the warmup). So, you're going to ride out on the course for about 20 minutes, then you will turn around and come back. Allow enough time so that you'll be back with enough time to relax, slowly remove leg warmers, long sleeve jersey, and change t-shirts (you will be warmly dressed for the warmup, of course), have a drink, get into your race jersey with the number on it, and allow enough time in case you puncture a tire during the warmup to replace the tube and come back. The warmup will start very slowly and gradually get faster. Eventually, after 20 or 30 minutes, you'll move into your race gear and do a couple of sprints. If there are hills, go up them in a big gear DURING THE WARMUP. This is a good way to speed up the warmup.

    If you have rollers or mag trainer, you can take them to the race and ride them until about five minutes before your start. Show up about four or five minutes before the start so you can see how the riders are started, how the start is counted down, etc. If it's a held start (somebody holds you up on your bike so you can start with both feet clipped in), just remember that the bike will stay up perfectly well as long as you keep it aimed straight ahead. Resist the temptation to try to steer the bike if it feels like it's falling to one side. I've seen more novices crash at the start because of this... Just hold the handlebars dead straight. With 10 seconds to go, take deep breaths, close your eyes, and visualize the ground whirring underneath you at 40 kmh. The start is usually, "5-4-3-2-1-Go." Don't waste energy by getting out of the saddle at 5, like most novices. If you watch timed track events, you'll notice that nobody gets out of the saddle until they say Go. You have about 7 seconds where your body is running on the "creatine" system. This means you can go flat out for 7 seconds, and it's free. After that, if you keep going hard, you start to go anaerobic and it's no longer free. So after 7 seconds, just wind it up gradually. Start slow and let the speed come up. Most novices try to go flat out from the start and then they blow up. It's a long race, start slow, and you can actually go faster when it really counts. Once you start to feel comfortable, notch up the speed until it starts to feel uncomfortable, and try to keep it there. A time trial should not feel good (that's why I don't like riding them).

    Gears? The fashion used to be to use the biggest gear you can handle. My best road time trial was done in 53x14. Today, the trend is to spin it up. Depends on what results in a faster speed for you; everybody's different.

    Good luck. - Luis

  24. #24
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    Get in all the practice rides in TWOgether that you can on the tandem you'll be using. Get comfortable with each other and do some 20 mile all-out sprints. Reconnoiter the course.
    Then go out and hammer!

  25. #25
    Don't mince words Red Rider's Avatar
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    So much knowledge, so little time -- thanks for your contributions (both serious and humorous). There's some seriously valuable information here that I'll process.

    Tonight I went out to a local race teams bi-weekly TT practice. Ten miles, flat course, slight breeze. I fluffed my start (missed clipping in other foot, fell forward onto the pointy part of my seat, OUCH! ) but recovered and revved up to 160 bpm. As often happens in our age group, my close vision has taken a hit, and I couldn't read the Garmin to see what my speed was. Boo. So I kept my HR at 75-80% and let that be my guide. I finished in 26:54. I'm okay with that. It's a baseline.

    Thanks again for all your help. This feels like more a group effort than an individual one. I'll be sure to post the results.

    It takes a virtual village to train a time-trialer.
    When my feet hit the floor in the morning, Satan shudders and says, "Oh, *****, she's awake!"

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