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  1. #1
    Senior Member Fastfwd's Avatar
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    How did you find the right training intensity for you?

    I'm currently training with the program that was made for me by http://www.polarcyclingcoach.com

    It's a great training for my butt to get used to the saddle but I never feel like I'm really working my legs or my heart.

    I also bought some bike magazine that had a training schedule on it. It's all 90 minutes+ trainings!

    It seems that for me the most rewarding training would be a 45 minutes very intense training. But nowhere I have seen suggests this. Would it be bad for me? I'm only 30 and in average shape. Slighty overweight according to my BMI. I'm 170lbs and should be 160lbs max.

  2. #2
    Senior Member rule's Avatar
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    Next time you are by a book store, check out The Lance Armstrong Performance Program: Seven Weeks To The Perfect Ride. I used it as my beginner training guide when I was in the same place as you. It gives a lot of great information about cycling, nutrition, cycling training and specifically answers your question about how to properly target your cycling training. From there, it recommends beginner and intermediate training plans built around the seven week time frame. Most of the beginner workouts end up being right at the time and intensity that you are looking for.

    The book details a 'field test' using a couple of 3 mile maximum effort (I think I'm going to puke when I finish this) rides with a recovery period in between, to identify your maximum effort average heart rate value. From there, you use this heart rate value to dial in the rest of your training intensities. If you don't have a heart rate monitor, you can kind of end up being able to target your training using perceived exersion levels, but it won't be nearly as effective as working with heart rate data each training ride. So if you don't have a heart rate monitor, you may want to think about getting one. They start at about $25.

    I was really really really suprised at how much benefit I got out of following this training approach compared to what I had been getting from riding on my own. I still use this same approach in my training now and am stilling getting great results.

    Hope this helps. Good luck!
    Last edited by rule; 01-25-06 at 07:59 AM.

  3. #3
    Oldbie bike racer
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    Quote Originally Posted by rule
    Next time you are by a book store, check out The Lance Armstrong Performance Program: Seven Weeks To The Perfect Ride. I used it as my beginner training guide when I was in the same place as you. It gives a lot of great information about cycling, nutrition, cycling training and specifically answers your question about how to properly target your cycling training. From there, it recommends beginner and intermediate training plans built around the seven week time frame. Most of the beginner workouts end up being right at the time and intensity that you are looking for.

    The book details a 'field test' using a couple of 3 mile maximum effort (I think I'm going to puke when I finish this) rides with a recovery period in between, to identify your maximum effort average heart rate value. From there, you use this heart rate value to dial in the rest of your training intensities. If you don't have a heart rate monitor, you can kind of end up being able to target your training using perceived exersion levels, but it won't be nearly as effective as working with heart rate data each training ride. So if you don't have a heart rate monitor, you may want to think about getting one. They start at about $25.

    I was really really really suprised at how much benefit I got out of following this training approach compared to what I had been getting from riding on my own. I still use this same approach in my training now and am stilling getting great results.

    Hope this helps. Good luck!
    Lots of good stuff there so not much to add for now. The reason you can't just go ride hard for 45 minutes and call it good is that doing so only trains some aspects of your fitness, and not as well as some other approaches. Get the book suggested, read about training online and experiment a little.

  4. #4
    Isaias NoRacer's Avatar
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    IMO, you can guesstimate 4 zones very easily:

    1 - Recovery - breathing is very, very comfortable.
    2 - Steady State - breathing is at a level that you can talk in full sentences.
    3 - LT - your breathing shifts to higher level; sentences are choppy; perceived effort is "comfortably hard". Riding just over this level for longer than about 40 minutes results in premature muscle fatigue and performance degradation from a drop in muscle ph (so the theory goes).
    4 - Anaerobic - breathing is very hard/labored. This level can not be sustained very long without muscle ph levels dropping too far causing performance degradation.

    Anyway, these are some of the 'flags' I use for endurance training, whether it's cycling or running.
    2009 mileage = 14,738 miles; 2010 mileage = 15,234 miles; 2011 mileage = 17,344 miles; 2012 mileage = 11,414 miles; 2013 = 12,169

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