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Old 01-24-06, 10:27 PM   #1
NomadVW 
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So, I started working with heart rate monitor in December and am kinda just floundering around a little. Want to hear opinions from other folks to see what they think.

I did a max HR test on the rollers, ramping up slowly until I was pumping as hard as I could (prolly not great for the resistance unit, but... well that's replaceable ). I determined max HR to be 185. Once a week or so, I do an all out 63km ride, out and back. During one of these, I followed the "instructions" in all the books I've read and believe my LTH to be around 168.

I picked up Sally Edwards "The Heart Rate Monitor Book for Cyclists" and have been flipping through the routines in there to find some that would fit me. I'm primarily a medium distance rider. I do around 250km per week with one century a month, and on a normal day my "all out" 63k ride avgs between 32-34kph. (that's ride time, as there are no significant stops that would impact overall speed). I normally do that distance/speed right at the 166bpm mark (last 4 of those avged, 167, 161, 165, and 166 - in that order) - just below LTH (start to finish, includes warmup time of about 1-2 minutes, but not cool down time.)

I find that I cycle primarily in low zone 4 range almost ALL the time. But the lower end of zone 4 for me I can sustain almost indefinitely I think. I really have to force myself to not go into zone 4 on any given ride. My training goal is to get to around the 35-38kph avg speed on my 63k ride. I have additional distance goals each month/quarter/year, but I could do those just by getting on the bike, and not really working for it.

I'm looking at most of these routines in the book I got and other HR training routines, and they primarily work zone 3. Very few go into zone 4, and if they do, they rarely stay there any length of time. Am I just under the wrong paradigm that I have to "feel" worked, to "be" worked? I've seen folks talk about LTH training more than the typical "sport zones" training, but haven't seen any books that focus on that. Is there a way to make these routines I have fit that?

I grew up as a runner, and only picked up serious road cycling last summer - though I've "road biked" commuted for about 5 years on my old Giant mountain bike prior to that. I just want to get some focus to my training that breaks up the monotony on the rides.

Thoughts?
VW

PS - My ride (won't necessarily call it a training calendar) calendar can be seen here: http://biking.nomadvw.org
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Old 01-25-06, 10:26 AM   #2
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I do like that WebCalendar. Open Source too wooohooo!
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Old 01-25-06, 10:50 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NomadVW
So, I started working with heart rate monitor in December and am kinda just floundering around a little. Want to hear opinions from other folks to see what they think.

I did a max HR test on the rollers, ramping up slowly until I was pumping as hard as I could (prolly not great for the resistance unit, but... well that's replaceable ). I determined max HR to be 185. Once a week or so, I do an all out 63km ride, out and back. During one of these, I followed the "instructions" in all the books I've read and believe my LTH to be around 168.

I picked up Sally Edwards "The Heart Rate Monitor Book for Cyclists" and have been flipping through the routines in there to find some that would fit me. I'm primarily a medium distance rider. I do around 250km per week with one century a month, and on a normal day my "all out" 63k ride avgs between 32-34kph. (that's ride time, as there are no significant stops that would impact overall speed). I normally do that distance/speed right at the 166bpm mark (last 4 of those avged, 167, 161, 165, and 166 - in that order) - just below LTH (start to finish, includes warmup time of about 1-2 minutes, but not cool down time.)
Nearly two hours straight a few beats below your LTHR? Not likely unless you're a really good bike racer. Keep in mind your LTHR (by many definitions) is about what you can maintain for 40-60 minutes. Your LTHR is probably closer to 10 to 12bpm above the HR you can do for two hours. I think you need to re-adjust your zones.

Understand that the main problem with basing your training on MHR is that we all have different HR's that will occur at our own LT. Your LTHR might occur at 78% of MHR, and mine would be close to 87% of MHR. Some people will find it at 90% of MHR. The % is no indication of fitness-it's pretty much all genetic. The good news is that once you've been training for 2-3 months _and then_ find your actual LTHR, the HR at your LT doesn't change by more than a few beats throughout the season. Your "zones" will stay pretty much where they were at the time of your first test.

I suggest you pick up some of the Chris Carmichael or Lance Armstrong books about training, to start with. Have a look at the "Cycling Peaks" website and hunt around there for their training zones. Joe Friel's book would help too.
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Old 01-25-06, 11:20 AM   #4
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I tend to agree with WarrenG.

If you want to find out what -your- LTHR is, make sure that you're well rested and do the following:

1 - warm up easily for about an hour making sure that you don't deplete any of your resources during the warm-up.
2 - start a stopwatch or program a countdown timer for 40 minutes
3 - start your heart rate monitor
4 - ride at a 'comfortably hard' pace for 40 minutes. The route should be uninterrupted for the 40 minutes (i.e., no traffic lights, nothing to stop you)
5 - stop your HRM
6 - warm-down until you feel finished
7 - check your average BPM for the 40 minutes
8 - base your training zones on percentages of LTHR

My 2 cents.
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Old 01-26-06, 03:34 AM   #5
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I hopped on the rollers today and did the Friel workout out of "Training Bible." 175 was my average for the inner 20 minutes.

Either way, if I adjust the HR zone workouts I see in Sally Edwards workout to make LTH the 100% mark, I'd never work above that. I guess the question is, are there books that focus directly on LTH training? I like the detailed workout info in Sally Edwards book. Anything out there like that for LTH training?

Plus, I need to convince the CycliStats folks to give me the option of entering LTH zones instead of the sportzones style HR zones.

Edited to say: Yep, Cyclistats already supports better adjustable HR zones, just needed to create a new rider so I didn't skew my old data.

VW
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Old 01-26-06, 06:40 AM   #6
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I used to use a heart rate monitor but it ran out of batteries. I just like to be tuned into the way I'm feeling. I ride hard so I'm definatly getting some bennefit out of it. I don't know if I'm doing it scientifcally enough but it works for me. Since I started strength training again my riding has improved hugely. Weighted squats and Romanian Dead lifts (a hamstring exercise) kick my legs up a notch. I just train at home with dumbells but I use heavy dumbells and good whole body exercises so I probably get a better and more functional workout than most jym rats. I'm all about the dumbells because they force your different sides to get the same strength rather than one arm helping the other which maintians and even exacerbates strength differences.
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