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Old 02-25-09, 06:28 PM   #1
djnzlab1
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Daily mileage increase for improvement

HI,
I was wondering at what distance do most new riders really start to see improvement,
I had been ridding in a group about 21 miles a day with a day off now and then.
My new goal is to try and ride around 31 miles a day, I am finding it easier now to roll alittle faster I can now hold 19.6-20 for a couple miles and then coast down to 18.5 and back up again I find it easier to ride intervals alone so that also means I am pulling my own weight without drafting.
I went about 7 miles at 20mph today very little wind but it was very easy my pulse was resonable around 135 versus 152 on previous weeks.
I guess Iam getting better slowly. my age is 58Y/o and I have been ridding since July 2008.
Doug
My ride has a 11 mile loop in the ride so if i complete 2 laps its 22 miles plus the return and departure.
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Old 02-25-09, 08:23 PM   #2
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Hi Doug,

I am 58 as well, going on 59 in a month or so . . . and from what you've written, it seems like you're off to a good start for cycling in general. To get more specific with recommendations, however, we need to have some idea of your goals.

It's a different route if you want to be (for some examples) a Masters 55+ racer, a Long Distance rider, or even a triathlete. Of course, since you're just starting, you may not know, but do you have any idea(s) in what main direction (event wise) your cycling may be taking you?

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Old 02-25-09, 08:36 PM   #3
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Thanks for the repsonse

HI,
I guess my goal is to achieve a higher level of fitness, and any benafits that occur. not much improvement at the lower mileage but things started to happen over 30 miles per day.
I used to train alot for road racing, running at a very slow level, but with biking and my advanced age it
seems to weed out the competers thru attrition..hehe there not showing or RIP>>
Not sure if there's any race for the over 50 in the area, but hey give me another year and I hope to be A speed bound without the slowing to recover.
The quality of my equipement has been constantly improving thru that learning curve , better bike, better pedals and shoes ,comfort fit on bike and so on.
Where the power is slower to come, I ve noticed when its windy I can't seem to keep up with the more experinced riders yet today I passed them and ran into to them on my second loop.
We don't have a lot of hills locally my guess is I would poop-out on hill in about 10 mins.
DOug
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Old 02-26-09, 06:40 AM   #4
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Your training sounds somewhat similar to mine a couple years ago. I am one year ahead of you in age. I thought I was improving very well until I rode a few times in groups. That is when I found I needed to push myself harder than I could ridng alone.
Riding in a group that is just a little faster than you will make you improve quickly.

After finally getting my speed and endurance to a better level I have found that group rides are still fun, but I have now strayed off into tour riding.

There are many different types of bicycles and cycling events. All of them are enjoyable.
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Old 02-26-09, 11:41 AM   #5
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It sounds like you're doing fine.

Do weekend group rides and if different distance options are offered, choose one that is longer than you've been riding. For example, if you routinely ride 21 miles daily, then adding a 40 miler once a week should be no problemo.

You can immediately add another 11 mile loop to your daily ride. You should ride the first 22 at your regular speed. Stop and take an energy snack and hydration break. Ride the third loop at a relaxed warm-down speed, maintaining your HR at 115-125. Or if this proves too tiring, start with a 6 mile tack- on for two to threee weeks (27% distance increase), then add 5. Then, gradually work on increasing your third loop speed to your current two-loop speed.

Then add another loop (or half loop), starting with a slower speed and working it up. Once you do 44 miles several times a week, you'll be capable of completing a century, if you're interested, and assuming you have a good-fitting saddle. I bet you could achieve this by July 4th.

Another option would be to go back to the daily group 21 mile ride, and also do a solo ride. If the group ride is at your max speed ability, do the solo ride slower afterwards. If the group ride is slow for you, take the lead, and also do a fast ride alone before or afterwards.
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Old 02-26-09, 11:52 AM   #6
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Instead of riding 21 miles a day- ride every other day and either increase the milage or increase the speed on the days you do ride. You want to increase milage- so do it- but gradually. 25 miles- day off- 30 miles -day off. Initially you may feel it- but if a longer ride hurts- then don't increase milage till you are comfortable at that milage.

If you were to do 4 rides a week and increase milage by only 5 miles a week--In 8 weeks time you will be entering your first metric century.
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Old 02-26-09, 12:31 PM   #7
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Thanks for the replies

HI,
I ve tried the group rides they are constantly speeding up and slowing down to long at the c group and I have trouble pulling the B group on windy days, I ve been mostly trying to maintain a good heart rate for me if its over 130 but less than 160 i am in a comfort zone but on a windy day my heart rate is lower but my legs are aching from the extra work, so I am working on endurance and adding little burst of speed for a mile or so, and trying to constantly push a little harder. Its seems to work for me after passing the 31 mile per day ride.
We 'll see , Hey I ve come along way since last july...
Doug
thanks for the replies.
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Old 02-26-09, 01:47 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stapfam View Post
Instead of riding 21 miles a day- ride every other day and either increase the milage or increase the speed on the days you do ride. You want to increase milage- so do it- but gradually. 25 miles- day off- 30 miles -day off. Initially you may feel it- but if a longer ride hurts- then don't increase milage till you are comfortable at that milage.

If you were to do 4 rides a week and increase milage by only 5 miles a week--In 8 weeks time you will be entering your first metric century.
Good advice. Note well the phrase "either increase the mileage or increase the speed." I found that trying to do both at the same time can lead to costly visits to your local health care provider.
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Old 02-26-09, 02:01 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by djnzlab1 View Post
HI,
I ve tried the group rides they are constantly speeding up and slowing down to long at the c group and I have trouble pulling the B group on windy days, I ve been mostly trying to maintain a good heart rate for me if its over 130 but less than 160 i am in a comfort zone but on a windy day my heart rate is lower but my legs are aching from the extra work, so I am working on endurance and adding little burst of speed for a mile or so, and trying to constantly push a little harder. Its seems to work for me after passing the 31 mile per day ride.
We 'll see , Hey I ve come along way since last july...
Doug
thanks for the replies.
It's in your head bro. The heart doesn't lie about how much work it's doing. You may feel the increased wind on your body and hear a louder sound as it moves over you, then thru the helmet, and equate those senses to riding harder. lastly, on a windy day, the group's biggest rider is your best friend (right up on his butt).
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Old 02-26-09, 06:40 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djnzlab1 View Post
I was wondering at what distance do most new riders really start to see improvement...
I started seeing big improvements when I started adding hills to my rides. Before adding the hills I was riding 20-25 miles a day and it seemed like I was at a plateau. I gradually added hills, 5 miles, then 10 miles, then 15, and finally 20 miles of hills to the 20-25 mile relatively flat route. After ~4 months I had dropped 20 pounds (an unexpected benefit ) and was riding with the big boys.

Probably kind of hard to find hills in Va Beach.
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Old 02-26-09, 07:23 PM   #11
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31.587 miles per day.
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Old 02-27-09, 12:54 PM   #12
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In his book "Cycling Past 50" Joe Friel has a century training plan. He has you do one long ride per week (long steady distance, not long slow distance), and increase ride duration (not distance or speed) 30 minutes per week. Every 4th week you ride half the duration of the previous week, and on the fifth ride go for 30 minutes less than the thrd week, then resume 30 minute weekly increases. There are other exercises in the plan for strength improvement, so distance and speed should naturally increase as this program develops.
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Old 02-27-09, 02:22 PM   #13
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Surprise Surprise

HI,
Stepped on a scale today as I was going to the shower and I am now under 245, that was a surprise I was not dropping weight at the lower mileage now , it seems I am dropping at least 2 lbs a week since the milleage increase.
I am not dieting, I know as I reach my goals it will become much harder to drop weight.
I started at 265, I am 6 2" rather large framed . When I was in the service my best weight was 195 when i was running with the dive team.
Doug
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Old 02-28-09, 12:14 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Rick@OCRR View Post
Hi Doug,
To get more specific with recommendations, however, we need to have some idea of your goals. ..
It's a different route if you want to be (for some examples) a Masters 55+ racer, a Long Distance rider, or even a triathlete.
Rick / OCRR
This is certainly true if you HAVE goals, and you may want some, but you don't have to be that serious--there's nothing wrong with riding for the sake of riding, or riding for fitness without a specific aim.
Having said that, though, if you DO have a goal, you probably won't achieve it without specific training. All the distance riding in the world, for instance, won't make you a good sprinter. I enjoy distance riding, and I've done many centuries in relative comfort (key word is "relative"--they always hurt). But I'm a terrible sprinter, because I don't like to suffer and don't put in the time to get better.
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