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  1. #1
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    Advice on training

    Firstly, great forum!

    Ok so I am planning to ride from London to Paris at the end of september (8 weeks away) (60 miles, then a 4 hour rest on the ferry, then another 100miles to Paris so a total of 160 miles with a 4 hour stop in the middle). Here are my vitals:

    Age: 29
    Height: 5'8" (1.72m)
    Weight: 160 punds (72kg)

    I've only been riding (semi seriously) for a couple of months after buying an entry level road bike (trek 1000). I'm reasonable fit - i play soccer regularly, did a marathon in April and hit the gym at least a couple of times a week.

    My longest ride to date was 60 miles (3hrs 25mins in the saddle, about 4hrs 15mins in total including stops). There were some rolling hills which were pretty nasty (probably due to my lack of climbing skills!) but nowhere near mountains! In fact it was similar terrain to the 1st stage of the Tour De France which they say surprised many riders in terms of hilliness! By the end i was pretty knackered however I was happy with the time and felt my hydration/feeding was spot on, so no issues there.

    Most of my other rides to date have been in the region of 1/1.5 hours, covering a distance of between 16-25 miles. (see attached)

    Having done a fair bit of reading on HRM training zones I am a bit worried I am training too hard as I often find it hard to ride in zone 3, let alone 1 or 2. Using the ( i know it is unreliable) age minus formula my MHR is 190. I t seems most of my rides are at in the 80-85% of MHR zones which I have read in a few places is 'no-mans land'.

    Due to work etc I can only really get long rides in at the weekends. During the week I am limited to shortish rides in the evening or more usually the gym at work during the day, which I am keen to utilise the odd hour/hour and a half I can spend in there each day. I am thinking about doing a few spin classes and maybe spending some time on the indoor ergo trainer things to maybe do some intervals / hill workouts.

    Has anyone got any advice about specific workouts I could use or can see anything I am doing wrong with my training as a whole? Any advice re my training intensity would be appreciated!
    Thank you!
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  2. #2
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    if it's not a race, then you've got no worries. you can take as long as you like so the LT training is not really relevant.

    I suggest 2-3 6 hour rides a week to prepare you for the long hours you'll spend in the saddle more than anything.

    Oh....and forget the gym work. That time is better spent out on the road if you're gonna ride a 160 miler and want to be able to walk the next day.

  3. #3
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    do you think the gym work is a complete waste of time?

    i'd like to be able to do it at a quickish pace - i don't want to be rolling into Paris hours after anyone else!

  4. #4
    Senior Member classic1's Avatar
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    Gym work is a complete waste of time for what you are proposing to do and won't improve your cycling unless you are planning on racing as a track sprinter. 20 minutes of specific stretching & exercises at home a few days a week for your lower back is all you would need max.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by chill123 View Post
    do you think the gym work is a complete waste of time?

    yes.

  6. #6
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    i do fairly lght weight/high rep training twice to three times a week - just half an hour in the gym. i get in about 300 - 450 kms on the bike a week too, and i don't see the gym training as a waste of time - i think it helps psychologically to feel strong all round, and of course there's other benefits for your general health too. so if you want to do it, do it! hust be aware that you don't put on too much unnecessary muscle...

  7. #7
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    Yeah, if you are going to continue gym work keep it to a max of 3 days a week (2 days advisable if you really want to pound out some days around 6 hours in the saddle) and keep the weight low and the reps high. I go to the gym occasionally now just to supplement my riding and running and it seems to have helped. I have always been from the school of using your own weight more than anything though. I.E - pushups, crunches, wall sits, handstands, handstand pushups, etc. Plus...people think it's ridiculous when you can bust out handstand pushups

  8. #8
    Don't Believe the Hype RiPHRaPH's Avatar
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    tuesday: intervals
    wednesday: tempo riding
    thursday: flat out fat
    friday: recovery ride
    saturday: longer and harder efforts
    sunday: longer and harder efforts
    monday: recover

    all you are doing is tempo riding. if you lift weights, this is like doing the same routine day after day. all you do is increase the chance for injury, mentally burnout and stop shocking yourself into gains. The body adapts and no real gains are made anymore.
    I have enough words to get me into trouble, but not enough to get me out of trouble.

  9. #9
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    sorry when i said gymwork i meant spinning classes not weights.

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