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  1. #1
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Just starting interval training, do I have it right?

    Hi,

    I've been riding 500+ miles a month. A normal ride for me is 30 to 55 miles. I ride solo at about 19 to 21 mph on a steel framed road bike.

    Living in Chicago, the ride is flat and not the same challenge as before.

    This week I began interval training. I'm using a 1 mile length of MUP that has very little traffic. After a 2 mile warm-up, I sprint the 1 mile section in ~2.5 minutes. I then slowly return to the beginning of the section, taking about 5 minutes.

    I'll repeat this 3 to 5 times. My total miles equal 12 to 15 over about 45 minutes.

    Is this an effective interval training session?

    Michael
    2014 Trek DS.1: "Viaggiatore" A do-it-all bike that is waiting in Italy
    2012 Pedal Force CG2: "Secolo Bicicletta" the modern carbon fiber road bike
    2012 Pedal Force CX2: "Carbone CX" the carbon fiber CX bike
    2010 Origin 8 CX 700: "Servizio Grave" Monstercross/29er bike
    1997 Simoncini Special Cyclocross: "Little Simon" lugged Columbus steel CX bike
    1987 Serotta Nova Special X: "Azzurri" The retro Columbus SPX steel road bike

  2. #2
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    You tell me:

    how do you feel after your intervals?

    The goal of an interval is to tax your muscles differently from a steady rate of movement. The theory behind this is that you use more energy to accelerate from a dead stop, or a slow speed than it does to maintain a high speed. This means that the most effective intervals are the ones you're going to feel after you're done. If you find your intervals easy, you need to kick it up a bit. If they're difficult, perfect. if they're so hard you feel light headed and pass out, dial it back some.
    My Dad: "203 when I stepped on your scale this morning. -Cyldesdad"

  3. #3
    OM boy cyclezen's Avatar
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    intervals are like beer, there are a gazillion flavors out there, and might have different purposes.

    best is to do some reading from qualified sources, referenced to what you'd like to achieve. As a generalization (which don;t always woik) longer term intervals work more towards endurance and shorter- higher frequency work more towards shortterm power.

    here's a URL for a good one page basic - http://www.trifuel.com/triathlon/bik...way-000885.php

    otherwise, a couple of comments
    semantics - although it may be a HARD effort, anything over 100 yards is not really a 'sprint'.

    after riding 500+ miles a month, 24mph for a mile is prolly not even 80% for you? Intervals of that length or shorter are really meant to be done near 100% effort, not 80 or 85%. You'll get slower as the interval session continues, but it should always be near 100% effort (thats where the suffering part comes in...)

    2miles warmup is no where near enough unless its uphill at 9% or more, steady. You should be solidly warmed up. I prefer a good sweat. This is especially true with age, anything over 25. I prefer 6-7 miles on flats, with an easy 3 then gradual build up to a few short bursts which bring the HR near AT (LT). Then .5 mile of recomposure. Then interval session. Then 20 minutes light spinning to finish cool-down.
    Once a week at most.
    Real intervals truly suck!
    climbing some solid vertical is way more fun and you usually get a good view and a great descent as rewards.
    Intervals have no immediate reward, they just suck
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  4. #4
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezen View Post
    intervals are like beer, there are a gazillion flavors out there, and might have different purposes.

    best is to do some reading from qualified sources, referenced to what you'd like to achieve. As a generalization (which don;t always woik) longer term intervals work more towards endurance and shorter- higher frequency work more towards shortterm power.

    here's a URL for a good one page basic - http://www.trifuel.com/triathlon/bik...way-000885.php

    otherwise, a couple of comments
    semantics - although it may be a HARD effort, anything over 100 yards is not really a 'sprint'.

    after riding 500+ miles a month, 24mph for a mile is prolly not even 80% for you? Intervals of that length or shorter are really meant to be done near 100% effort, not 80 or 85%. You'll get slower as the interval session continues, but it should always be near 100% effort (thats where the suffering part comes in...)

    2miles warmup is no where near enough unless its uphill at 9% or more, steady. You should be solidly warmed up. I prefer a good sweat. This is especially true with age, anything over 25. I prefer 6-7 miles on flats, with an easy 3 then gradual build up to a few short bursts which bring the HR near AT (LT). Then .5 mile of recomposure. Then interval session. Then 20 minutes light spinning to finish cool-down.
    Once a week at most.
    Real intervals truly suck!
    climbing some solid vertical is way more fun and you usually get a good view and a great descent as rewards.
    Intervals have no immediate reward, they just suck
    Thanks, I was wondering if my 1 mile interval was too long, now I know.

    The other comments are helpful too.

    I have a pair of climbs that are about 8 miles from home. Each is about 15 yard climb over a 200 yards duration. I'll use try to use this for my intervals using the warm-up, cool-down and intervals suggested.

    Michael
    Last edited by Barrettscv; 07-08-09 at 04:08 PM.
    2014 Trek DS.1: "Viaggiatore" A do-it-all bike that is waiting in Italy
    2012 Pedal Force CG2: "Secolo Bicicletta" the modern carbon fiber road bike
    2012 Pedal Force CX2: "Carbone CX" the carbon fiber CX bike
    2010 Origin 8 CX 700: "Servizio Grave" Monstercross/29er bike
    1997 Simoncini Special Cyclocross: "Little Simon" lugged Columbus steel CX bike
    1987 Serotta Nova Special X: "Azzurri" The retro Columbus SPX steel road bike

  5. #5
    umd
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    2.5 minutes is too long for AWC and too short for VO2 max. 1 minute intervals are good, as are 4-5 minutes. Or even shorter like 15 seconds on/off or Tabatas. Lots of suffering can be had.

  6. #6
    Have bike, will travel Barrettscv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by umd View Post
    2.5 minutes is too long for AWC and too short for VO2 max. 1 minute intervals are good, as are 4-5 minutes. Or even shorter like 15 seconds on/off or Tabatas. Lots of suffering can be had.
    Thanks, I'll plan 1 minute intervals for now. Noob question, what is AWC?

    What interval length is better for increasing speed on longer rides; The 1 minute or 4 minute interval?

    Michael
    2014 Trek DS.1: "Viaggiatore" A do-it-all bike that is waiting in Italy
    2012 Pedal Force CG2: "Secolo Bicicletta" the modern carbon fiber road bike
    2012 Pedal Force CX2: "Carbone CX" the carbon fiber CX bike
    2010 Origin 8 CX 700: "Servizio Grave" Monstercross/29er bike
    1997 Simoncini Special Cyclocross: "Little Simon" lugged Columbus steel CX bike
    1987 Serotta Nova Special X: "Azzurri" The retro Columbus SPX steel road bike

  7. #7
    umd
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    AWC is anaerobic work capacity. You need to improving your threshold to improve your speed on longer rides but you can do that by pushing it from below with longer near/at threshold intervals, or by pulling it up from above with shorter high intensity intervals.

  8. #8
    Senior Member buddy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezen View Post
    intervals are like beer, there are a gazillion flavors out there, and might have different purposes.

    best is to do some reading from qualified sources, referenced to what you'd like to achieve. As a generalization (which don;t always woik) longer term intervals work more towards endurance and shorter- higher frequency work more towards shortterm power.

    here's a URL for a good one page basic - http://www.trifuel.com/triathlon/bik...way-000885.php

    otherwise, a couple of comments
    semantics - although it may be a HARD effort, anything over 100 yards is not really a 'sprint'.

    after riding 500+ miles a month, 24mph for a mile is prolly not even 80% for you? Intervals of that length or shorter are really meant to be done near 100% effort, not 80 or 85%. You'll get slower as the interval session continues, but it should always be near 100% effort (thats where the suffering part comes in...)

    2miles warmup is no where near enough unless its uphill at 9% or more, steady. You should be solidly warmed up. I prefer a good sweat. This is especially true with age, anything over 25. I prefer 6-7 miles on flats, with an easy 3 then gradual build up to a few short bursts which bring the HR near AT (LT). Then .5 mile of recomposure. Then interval session. Then 20 minutes light spinning to finish cool-down.
    Once a week at most.
    Real intervals truly suck!
    climbing some solid vertical is way more fun and you usually get a good view and a great descent as rewards.
    Intervals have no immediate reward, they just suck
    Great article, it a must read!

    buddy

  9. #9
    Senior Member iamsomeguy's Avatar
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    ive just started my interval routine 3 weeks ago , doing 3 or 4 1 minute high intensity low gear on tuesdays then higher gear threshold hill repeats on fridays ,
    dunno but it seems to be helping ?

    this thread has given me some ideas !
    Yep, it's sad. Local cycling around here does deserve better. But there's always that "not invented here in Texas" inbreed attitude to deal with as well which stops progress.

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