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Old 06-29-08, 10:09 AM   #1
Smallguy
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making sure your pushing yourself when riding solo

Hi

I'm in the process of starting to train for riding and 8 hour mountain bike event with a partner. My partner is already in pretty good shape but I wanna make sure I do my part.

any one have some tips or tools (I use a hear rate monitor on the road) for making sure your not slacking off too much when you ride alone and are still putting the hammer down. I'll have to do at least half of the 4 hours and most of my current rides with people are 2 hours at a casual pace. so I wanna get out and really push my bodies limits a few times a week to ensure I'm ready come mid august
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Old 06-29-08, 05:04 PM   #2
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Find someone else to ride with?

I think it is a real challenge to train like that by yourself.

Use a stop watch or some other device and continuously try to improve.

Good luck.
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Old 06-29-08, 05:38 PM   #3
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That's one thing I don't have any trouble with. I tend to gauge my effort based on the distance and ride. I usually end up struggling the last mile as I've pushed a little too hard.
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Old 06-29-08, 06:15 PM   #4
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Get some riders a little faster than you to chase you. Nothing more embarrassing than being caught. Or, what I do all the time is find some guys hammering and try to follow them as long as you can. You don't have to draft them but maybe stay about 25 feet behind.

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Old 06-29-08, 06:26 PM   #5
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you already have a heart rate monitor, so that's a huge benefit. just keep in your range and you're golden.

other than that, riding a lot of hills and embracing headwinds will help.
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Old 06-30-08, 08:03 AM   #6
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Well, you with your heart monitor, you have a good tool for measuring the intensity and duration of your workouts. That is merely a matter to figuring out what kind of ride you need and how to check the feedback from the heartrate monitor adequately. The other major element is motivation. Most people find it easier to push hard when they have a training partner. That is a subjective thing.
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Old 06-30-08, 09:05 AM   #7
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I ride time trials, so maybe I can help you out a little.

First, its very much a mental thing, the going fast while riding alone. Try to find something that will motivate you, and thank God you are only training for 6 weeks.

But something I do to help me get fast is "jumps". It's an old fashioned thing where you are going to go "x" mph for a short period, but not as short as a sprint. More like a mile or so or maybe 5 or 10 minutes. You want to go faster than your race pace and shut it down when your speed drops below a certain level. At that point you aren't geting faster, just more tired. then you roll along and take in the scenery for a while until you recover and then do it again.

Since you aren't being as strict as you would be with actual interval training, doing "jumps" lends itself to more variety of terrain, but basically you are doing longer intervals at your threashold and you pay more attention to your speedometer than your HRM.

Since "jumps" aren't really very structured, I find that doing them can be kinda fun and refreshing. I try and hold my speed and it becomes a sort of game to see how long I can keep it together.

so I guess that's the real advice. Try and find some way to compete against yourself or to make some sort of game out of it

and good luck, it really is a lonely road
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Old 06-30-08, 09:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallguy View Post
Hi

I'm in the process of starting to train for riding and 8 hour mountain bike event with a partner. My partner is already in pretty good shape but I wanna make sure I do my part.

any one have some tips or tools (I use a hear rate monitor on the road) for making sure your not slacking off too much when you ride alone and are still putting the hammer down. I'll have to do at least half of the 4 hours and most of my current rides with people are 2 hours at a casual pace. so I wanna get out and really push my bodies limits a few times a week to ensure I'm ready come mid august
Pushing yourself to go a little faster isn't a great way to improve. Friel and Carmichael both have good books on this.

Essentially, your body gets used to riding at a specific pace, and it's hard to put extra training stress on yourself just by riding a little bit faster. To get faster, you need specific training. I like the following:

1) Long rides in your aerobic range. You are probably getting that fine on your current rides.
2) Intervals, both on the flats and on hills.
3) Tempo rides, where you ride for perhaps 15 (at the start) up to 45 minutes (after a couple of months) right at your lactate threshold.

You can do intervals without a heart rate monitor, but make sure that you are well rested and warmed up before you do them. You are then doing all out efforts - something like 5 x 1 minute efforts, 2 minute recovery.

Tempo rides require a heart rate monitor for the best results, but you can approximate that point when your legs start to hurt on an ongoing basis.
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