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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 11-03-08, 05:31 PM   #1
MajorT
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Cyclocross race ready in 3 weeks!!!

In 4 weeks time iv'e got a cyclocross race. My fitness is moderate 3 to 4 miles running 3 times a week and 2 hour endurance road miles undulating course twice a week. I go off road once a week, single track. I know its only 4 weeks away. But does anyone have any advise on how i could get race ready in 4 weeks time. Any tips would be appreciated.
cheers

Last edited by MajorT; 11-03-08 at 06:21 PM. Reason: Spelling mistake
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Old 11-03-08, 05:39 PM   #2
flargle
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M Rest
T 4 x 8 min near lactate threshold w/ 3 minute recoveries (road or trainer)
W Moderate run
T Tabata sprints on bike (road or trainer)
F Moderate run
S Mountain bike trails on cross bike
S Cross-specific workout on cross bike, including runups, barriers, etc, at times at high intensity

Practice dismounts and remounts for ten minutes a day. The week of the race, take it easy from Thursday on.
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Old 11-03-08, 06:27 PM   #3
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whats tabata?
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Old 11-03-08, 06:34 PM   #4
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My schedule

M - 20 mile ride. Work on single leg and big ring hills - then chase two year old around the house
T - Interval on trainer. then 2 mile run. spend evening chasing two year old
W - rest day from cardio. cross skills and core workout/stretch - chase two year old around the house
T - 30 mile ride. sustained 8 minute effort, 2 off. cross skills afterward. Chase two year old
F - Morning run. intervals when you get home..99% effort. Chase two year old.
S - watch college football. Carb load(aka beer). chase two year old. Regret not jogging or riding...
S - race poorly, but dont need to chase two year old for 40 minutes...so that is a plus
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Old 11-03-08, 06:56 PM   #5
flargle
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whats tabata?
Someone should invent a way of looking up stuff like that.
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Old 11-03-08, 07:02 PM   #6
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like the internet?
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Old 11-03-08, 09:12 PM   #7
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Wikipedia - Tabata is an administrative ward in the Ilala district of the Dar es Salaam Region of Tanzania. According to the 2002 census, the ward has a total population of 46,228
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Old 11-04-08, 02:37 AM   #8
MajorT
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Tabata training

Thanks for your replys. I found some information on Tabata for anyone who's interested.

Tabata Sprints are a high intensity interval training procotol designed by famous speed skating coach Dr. Izumi Tabata at the National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Japan.
Tabata's can be done use almost any equipment ie bike sprints,running sprints,rowing machine etc using the following formula
1) warm up
2) 20 seconds work
3) 10 seconds rest
4) repeat 7 more times
There's plenty more info out there on this training technique.

Last edited by MajorT; 11-04-08 at 03:09 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old 11-04-08, 09:08 AM   #9
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I've got my first race this Sunday--I've been (road)biking and running in versions of the above workouts and am in good shape from the tri season. I have an old Hard Rock I've "converted" and have been riding on some mixed terrain. As someone said, it's clearly important--as I'm finding out--to specifically practice cross skills. The trickiest for me so far is picking the bike up and running with it. I'd say, along with practicing dismount and remount, practice picking up and carrying the bike around--run up hills, through sand, etc.

It's gotta be important to get used to running in mtb shoes too, which are really stiff. Make sure you get a sense of how your shoes work for you even for short sprints. Also, from doing triathlons, I know the feeling of the bike/run transition, but cyclocross's bike/run changes are more frequent and rougher. It surprised me how hard it is to try to get this down smoothly.

Other than that, I'm counting on some adrenaline. Good luck!
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Old 11-04-08, 10:21 AM   #10
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Other than that, I'm counting on some adrenaline.
Adrenaline is great for the first lap, but then it lets you down bigtime. Don't fall for that trick. Go hard out of the blocks and into the first technical sections, so as to avoid pileups, but then try to get into your 40 minute time-trial mode as soon as possible. Yes there will be peaks and valleys in your output due to the course, but try to smooth them out by getting through features as smoothly and efficiently as possible (not as fast as possible), and maintaining power during the "easy" parts of the course.
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Old 11-04-08, 10:49 AM   #11
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Your ready, more tips here:
Tips for Newbies
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Old 11-04-08, 11:07 AM   #12
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M = 40 minute zone two ride
Tu = 1.5 hour interval work in zone 3, and 4, four mile run, and core work (maybe surfing).
w = Rest
Thurs = Repeat Tuesday
Fri = 1 hour in zone 3
Sat = Race, or three hour ride in zone three
Sun = Race

(edit) I also commute by bike every day but Wednesday.
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Old 11-04-08, 12:31 PM   #13
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Adrenaline is great for the first lap, but then it lets you down bigtime. Don't fall for that trick.
I know--I wasn't really serious. I do think your advice is right on though--adrenaline can be problematic if it means you freak out and burn through too much energy. It's like my first open water swim--I went out like Michael Phelps (well I felt like Michael Phelps anyway) and after about 6-7 minutes I lost all form and was scrambling and sucking wind like a drowned rat. I like the idea of settling in at a reasonable (sustainable) pace that allows you to take advantage of different parts of the course.

As far as sprinting out of the blocks to avoid congestion off the bat--this may be less of an issue for me. I think as part of my inaugural 'cross appearance, I may take a more conservative starting approach; I'm gonna hang back initially. Well, I say that now, but of course there's always that adrenaline...
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Old 11-04-08, 01:00 PM   #14
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It's like my first open water swim--I went out like Michael Phelps (well I felt like Michael Phelps anyway) and after about 6-7 minutes I lost all form and was scrambling and sucking wind like a drowned rat.
Even open water swimming doesn't prepare you for the aquatic kung fu of a mass-start tri (or swim). The start of your first cross race might be a similar sort of shock (depends on where you race), unless you race crits. When pre-riding, pay special attention to the first few sections.
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Old 11-04-08, 01:45 PM   #15
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aquatic kung fu

Great description and advice--I've definitely started tris in the midst of mass flailing elbows and feet. Can't take a few clunks or kicks (or chops) to the head personally. If my first cyclocross race is anything like that, then like you said, I'll just keep my eye on the first "buoy," pedal, and wait for people to space out a little bit.
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Old 11-04-08, 02:11 PM   #16
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sprinting out of the blocks to avoid congestion sounds good unless you're "that guy" that starts the pileup on the first technical section.

</speaking from experience>
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