||07-22-13 08:51 AM
Originally Posted by sstang13
When I do recovery rides I usually do aim for 100rpm. Also, I could do the spikes when I notice my pace dropping and after corners etc. It'll really help the jumps made during hard efforts in races. Thanks.
This is exactly what I was thinking. What I like to believe my best race this year was 1 of 2 races. Either one which was 94km, 1500 meters of climbing in terrible weather and I only finished 30min behind. Pretty good for going about it half with one other person, and half alone. Plus I loved the course. The other was my race in Ottawa which suited me quite well but after eating a cliff bar, my muscles didn't react to well to it. The problem is that they're 3 and 6 hours away from home, and I am not a climber. But I believe it is too early in my cycling life to even have a sense of what my 'specialty' is. I used to think I was a climber before I raced. Yesterday's TT time shows maybe not the best TT in me, which is basically the same as breakaway as well. One thing I have noticed though is that I can push really hard for one minute, then I'm done, recover a bit, then I can go at it for another minute hard. I like to think I could be could for the final lead out... provided I actually make it that far. That's also why I would like to explore different types of cycling. 1 minute could be helpful in track cycling or maybe even cross, who knows? Point is though, I am really going to have to decide what I want to work towards this year as you say, yearly, monthly, weekly etc.
I've saved money my whole life, I just never really spent any of it on anything. I am looking around right now at bikes I could get that would suit RR and are less than, preferably, $2500. I could also buy a more expensive bike and look to sell the wheels as I have wheels of my own. There are also options on SRM on slowtwitch for 650-750 used. I would prefer a crank based one as I switch wheels a lot, especially when I get flats. I was also looking if the Stages PM made any updates but I'm not sure how reliable that would really be.
Cadence - when I did a couple 120 rpm rides suddenly 105 rpm seemed slow. I'm okay at spinning but the rides at 120 rpm were a step above what I'd normally do. 120 rpm avg on a computer means that you're riding at 125-130 rpm most of the time. I ended up doing flat routes using my lowest gears. Back then I used short cranks (167.5mm). With longer cranks you need to drop your cadence. I found that going from 170->175 dropped my "comfy cadence" from about 105 to 87-88. After some work I got it back up to 95-ish. In the early part of races I might be at 100-105 but I rarely break 90 rpm avg on 175s.
Specificity - when I made my goals list I didn't know what I could or couldn't do, I just knew that on group rides I was okay hanging on when the Cat 2 would put the hurt down. Since he was a perpetual state RR favorite I figured I could be like that.
I'm okay making relatively large efforts followed by a recovery. It works great on crit courses with a short steep hill. I can go really hard on the hill, recover on the easier sections, repeat. This is why I do well at Bethel - I coast or soft pedal about 30 seconds a lap, zero watts. If I'm fit I can do 80+ efforts (80+ laps - enough to finish both the 3-4 and P123 races and I've even placed in the money in the P123 race). If I'm not I've gotten shelled in 2-3 laps. More fitness = quicker recovery. At that point you can try racing using that knowledge - surge, recover, surge, recover. If it's a flat crit you may be able to make only one effort every two corners or something, maybe one every lap. This means you need to figure out a tactic so that you aren't going into effort deficit. At Bethel the hill is about 20 seconds effort, about a 120 second lap (so about 100 seconds of less work). If I can recover in 95 seconds then I'm golden - I'm sort of recovered when I hit the hill again. If it takes me 105 seconds to recover I'm going into an effort deficit every lap and I'll get shelled. If I recover in 30 seconds then I'm super fresh for the hill next lap - that's ideal, to be way ahead of the curve.
Bikes - any "race" bike will do well in virtually any race. Depending on size you should aim for a 73 deg HT angle, 43mm rake. This gives you an agile bike that's stable enough to 55+ mph but will still dive into turns. Shorter stays will make the bike more responsive - 40.5 cm is about right for most sizes. I spec'ed out a 39 cm chainstay and it's much more responsive - my bike feels like it has a 95 cm wheelbase when in fact it's closer to 102 cm.
Powermeters - I'd stay away from unproven or new PMs. I have two wired SRMs - they take some maintenance, I need to replace the wiring harness every year, but they're pretty solid otherwise. If you get one with interchangeable crank arms (I know the Cannondale SI is one, I know the "SRM" SRM is another, not sure of others) you can get extra crankarms and try different lengths. The SI is BB30 only (and arms are a bit pricey), the SRM one is usually Campy taper or Shimano Octalink (and arms are under $200 full retail).