I've been a runner for 5 years and regularly do marathons, but I injured my foot recently and so cycling is going to be my only workout for a while. Not that it's second class or anything, but running was always my workout and cycling was my commute method. Because of this, I'd really like to improve my cycling fitness, and I'm taking my running layoff as an opportunity to get better at my second sport. At the moment, I commute 15 miles R/T to my workplace, two days a week (which is on top of a hill, and a fair climb for a good 2 miles), and 22 miles R/T to school two days a week (also involving hilliness). Sunday I am trying to ride longer, though "long" for me last weekend was 30 miles (with significant hills, or significant to me anyway: if you're familiar with Portland, I followed Terwilliger from Duniway park to Hwy 43 in Lake Oswego, going past OHSU, and came home via Oregon City to Gladstone). I'd like to increase that distance and get fitter, but I don't want to hurt myself, and sometimes my left knee protests just slightly - I'd like to keep that protest slight/nonexistent. In running we have the 10% rule: don't increase distance or intensity greater than 10% a week. Is there a similar guideline in cycling? Could anybody suggest a training plan?
Yep, same rule, though you may get in trouble around here for even suggesting that there may be "rules."
Same reply to all of these posts: buy the Book: Cyclist's Training Bible by Friel.
To keep knee pain away, spin faster. Have a computer with a cadence function and keep the cadence in the 90-100 area on the flats, and no less than about 75 on the climbs, 80 or so is better. Also saddle height. Rule is pain in front of knee, raise saddle - pain in back of knee, lower saddle. But only move it about 1/8" at a time.