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  1. #1
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    Use of Joe Friel's 'The Cyclist's Training Bible' for track racing

    Hi all,
    I'm looking to take training more seriously this year, and picked up a very cheap old copy of The Cyclist's Training Bible as a way to structure my time best, get ideas for exercises etc. As I'm sure anyone who has read the book will know, it only alludes to track racing a few times, and often in regards to match sprinters in reference to maximum short term power outputs. So I'm wondering if anyone can give their input on how to using the book for track racing. More specifically, for instance:

    - Which of Friel's ability regions would you consider the longer track races to fit into (scratch, points etc), and therefore which of his listed areas are most important for a track racer (speed endurance, muscular endurance, strength, power etc)
    - Endurance training is obviously a key factor in the book - how much do you consider this to be the case for track cycling training, since the book covers racing over much longer distances?
    - Are there any aspects of the training plan that are dictated that you would change - perhaps weight training should have a greater importance, for example?

    Any other points are more than welcome for making the contents of the book more applicable, or confirmation that it's all good stuff for those that have used the book for track training!

    Thanks a lot in advance.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Velocirapture's Avatar
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    I'm only part way through the book, but what stands out pretty clearly for me is that for an enduro track rider, you need to work on Lactate Threshold as a big focus. Also, the type of training that is good for a crit rider, is useful for an enduro trackie. I can't remember where that sat on the triangle.
    hmm.. i must finish reading that. best training book i've ever come accross, and ive tried a few!

  3. #3
    aka mattio queerpunk's Avatar
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    The thing about Friel is that it provides a lot of the information foundation for how to train, like identifying your limiters, periodizing, the importance of rest. You can use the info Friel provides even if he doesn't offer you a chapter on track enduro.
    the hipster myth.

    i practice vagabondery.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the input both.

    queerpunk, this is definitely the case, although I suppose my point was that I would like to take the information being given, and make it more relevant by addressing the points I included, and anything else relevant. Friel includes endurance training in every week of his plan - I wonder how crucial this is for the relatively shorter track races. In terms of limiting factors, similarly, perhaps some of these factors you might identify are of less concern when you consider your end goal of competing over comparably shorter timespans and higher intensities.

  5. #5
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    I haven't read that book in particular, but generally speaking, a Road racing "Sprinter" is very much aligned with a Track racing "Enduro". Does the book mention Road sprinting?

    I've found that Track & Field (Athletics) Sprinters are more aligned with Track racing Sprinters in terms of gym and sport-specific training.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Quinn8it's Avatar
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    CTB is an excellent resource for self coached athletes!

    In fact my program from my first track coach was very much aligned with the annual calendar in that book.. That program got me my first sub-1:10 kilo and sub 12" 200m... So the blueprint of friels program can be used quite well on the track..

    Where the book falls short is in the specific demands and workouts of track racers.. I agree that the Crit program in the book will serve an enduro Omnium racer quite well, but Crits are only barely mentioned in the book... With some input from track cyclist to modify the book it can be quite useful..
    Also- ignore everything in the book regarding weight training. The recommended volume of weight work relative to the block you are in is probably fine- but the actually exercises need to be changed..

    Just the charts on planning your year are with the cost of the book.. And if you use Training Peaks everything lines up really. Well in an online calendar...

    -Q

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    Carleton, one of the regions that is identified is riders racing long flat or rolling courses of over 100 miles that come down to a bunch sprint, so I suppose this matches your comment. However, this identifies the three most important abilities as endurance, muscular endurance and strength. Strength I'm sure, but the other two don't seem to match well - these top three leave a bottom three of speed endurance, speed and power... Am I wrong in thinking this? Thanks for the input.

    Quinn8it, thanks for the comments. I had initially gone with the crit racer as a template, but questioned the abilities order again. Maybe I'm concentrating on something very small, but to me it makes sense that these abilities, and therefore the personal lack thereof if that be the case, dictate a good chunk of the training plan.

    Thoughts of lots of base miles for track on rolling hills? Hill sprints I understand, but long rides...?

  8. #8
    aka mattio queerpunk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flip.flop View Post
    Thoughts of lots of base miles for track on rolling hills? Hill sprints I understand, but long rides...?
    "Meh."
    Some long rides are going to be helpful, but I think it's entirely possible to train for track enduo racing via 90-120min rides.
    I find Sweet Spot Training, motorpacing, and a steady diet of targeted intervals (What do I feel like I suck at this week? I'm gonna go work on that...) to be pretty useful.
    the hipster myth.

    i practice vagabondery.

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    OK, that makes sense - thanks queerpunk.
    Any other comments on making the book more relevant are welcome.

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    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flip.flop View Post
    Carleton, one of the regions that is identified is riders racing long flat or rolling courses of over 100 miles that come down to a bunch sprint, so I suppose this matches your comment. However, this identifies the three most important abilities as endurance, muscular endurance and strength. Strength I'm sure, but the other two don't seem to match well - these top three leave a bottom three of speed endurance, speed and power... Am I wrong in thinking this? Thanks for the input.

    Quinn8it, thanks for the comments. I had initially gone with the crit racer as a template, but questioned the abilities order again. Maybe I'm concentrating on something very small, but to me it makes sense that these abilities, and therefore the personal lack thereof if that be the case, dictate a good chunk of the training plan.

    Thoughts of lots of base miles for track on rolling hills? Hill sprints I understand, but long rides...?

    Actually, crit racing is much more like track endurance racing (long scratch, points, etc) than 100 mile races. Crits have mid race sprints for Premes and almost always have a bunch sprint at the end. That is the same for points and scratch races.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Quinn8it's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flip.flop View Post
    Thoughts of lots of base miles for track on rolling hills? Hill sprints I understand, but long rides...?
    if you follow the Friel program- you are developing a big base of fitness and then losing some of that fitness as you get specific and up your speed work..
    the intensity of your "Build Phase" relies on the foundation you build in base...

    Track cyclist do not need the long rides to convert themselves to super efficient endurance machines- but you still need aerobic fitness.. to me that means you can do shorter and harder road work.. and as Queerpunk says 90-120minutes is plenty..

    i helped a buddy last year with a Friel style program..
    in base he did: lots of zone 2/3 rides
    lots of roller cadence work (form)
    lots of weight work (3days)

    near the end of base he:
    dropped a weight day for a Standing Start day (kilo rider)
    added "power endurance" low cadence seated hill work to adapt gym strength to bike

    during build:
    added in 2 track specific days (ie: a long interval day and a short sprint day)

  12. #12
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    Thanks Quinn8it, will take all of that on board - very useful stuff.

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    I'm just developing a training plan for track racing for 2015.

    Basic outline is first to build a good level of base fitness in the fall, get in the gym over winter to build muscle & strength and then build up that big cardio engine in the spring with more enduro race specific drills. 20 min hard efforts I think will be a good way to train that final system

    might throw in a few crit style races in the early season too to see how I get along

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