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  1. #1
    Senior Member Vlaam4ever's Avatar
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    Is Joe Friel's Traning Bible still respected.

    Just currious if this was still a valuable item in my library. I never fully achieved the real training level I wanted with it but did use this as a guide to compile work outs for conditioning and building base for several years.

    My riding has been on hiatus for 2.5 years and I'm in the process of dusting off my old gear and replacing the parts that need it. Not sure if this is still a respected training guide or if I should leave it on the shelf and grab onto group rides for the next few months to get my legs back under me.

  2. #2
    Senior Member ericm979's Avatar
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    It's still valid. But it's for riders who have a few years of training under their chamois. If you're coming back and are starting at zero then you'll need to build a base first.

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    Senior Member Vlaam4ever's Avatar
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    I guess I'll just log miles and get my legs back and check back in next year or so.

    Any 101 training literature I should look at. Last time I did this I spend 3 year in group ride before getting into Joe's book, not sure I really benefited from it as my "base" was rather unstructured out side of keeping up with they guy in front of me...
    Last edited by Vlaam4ever; 04-12-12 at 09:42 PM.

  4. #4
    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    The technical explanations and so forth in the Bible are very good. I think the training suggestions move the less-talented, newer, or older rider along too fast and with too much intensity. I always overtrained trying to follow his guidelines. So I think it's an individual matter. You might look at just slowing it all down and spending a lot more time on the base phase, maybe all year, but adding some fun stuff, long rides, centuries, whatever, to make it all fun. Then you use the base stuff to recover from the more fun bits. Working up to 10 hours/week total seems doable for most folks.

    You can also do the group ride thing in combination with the Bible. It's kind of late to get going with that now. October/November is when you want to start. By now group rides are getting a bit faster and longer. If you overcook it on the group rides, you won't have the energy to put in the base hours that would really benefit you. That's what I've found, anyway. Discipline is tough.

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    How old is the bible if I may ask?

  6. #6
    Senior Member Vlaam4ever's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by amandadun View Post
    How old is the bible if I may ask?
    I purchased my copy in in 2003-4. When I started training for the first time. I think it has 1996 Copyright date.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Road Fan's Avatar
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    There's a recent edition, I think just this year, or maybe 2011.

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    2009.

    I don't know about previous editions, but the 2009 edition puts a lot of emphasis on training with a power meter. Sections with training schedules (the middle half of the book) are heavily slanted towards training for sub 1 hour time trials and short road races. If you don't want to invest $1000 into a power meter and you're not interested in TT, most of the book will be useless to you.

  9. #9
    Retired dabbler hobkirk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eugenek View Post
    2009.

    I don't know about previous editions, but the 2009 edition puts a lot of emphasis on training with a power meter. Sections with training schedules (the middle half of the book) are heavily slanted towards training for sub 1 hour time trials and short road races. If you don't want to invest $1000 into a power meter and you're not interested in TT, most of the book will be useless to you.
    I thought his info seemed reasonable and consistent with everything else I've read. He talks about heart rate zones as well as power meters, but clearly power meters are more useful if you are a professional (or VERY serious amateur) cyclist and/or coach. Friel is certainly a pro-level coach and his clients are pro-level riders, and his book reflects that. He also has some bits of useful info on his web site, but he doesn't post much. But it's like several others noted, the book is really focused on someone who has already been training for a while.

    Bah, I shouldn't have written this, I don't really know that much. But his "bible" impressed me as exceptionally authoritative.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by hobkirk View Post
    I thought his info seemed reasonable and consistent with everything else I've read. He talks about heart rate zones as well as power meters, but clearly power meters are more useful if you are a professional (or VERY serious amateur) cyclist and/or coach. Friel is certainly a pro-level coach and his clients are pro-level riders, and his book reflects that. He also has some bits of useful info on his web site, but he doesn't post much. But it's like several others noted, the book is really focused on someone who has already been training for a while.

    Bah, I shouldn't have written this, I don't really know that much. But his "bible" impressed me as exceptionally authoritative.
    Yes, it is reasonable, and it is authoritative, all I'm saying is that it has a rather specific focus.

    I did a quick scan through Chapter 8 "Training Year". By my count, it uses the phrase "Time Trial" 7 times, "Criterium" 3 times, and "Century" is not used at all. That right there shows where the priorities are.

  11. #11
    Senior Member ericm979's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eugenek View Post
    "Century" is not used at all.
    It's for training for racing, not centuries. I don't think that race training is correct or needed for century riding.

    I focus on longer road races (some of which take longer than centuries) and I found the book useful. The sections on figuring out your strengths and weaknesses, and planning your season, are worth the price of the book in themselves. I don't follow the training plans but use many ideas from them for forming my own.

  12. #12
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    As for base building, I thought was this book was good...
    Base Building for Cyclists: A New Foundation for Endurance and Performancehttp://www.amazon.com/Base-Building-...7181757&sr=8-1
    Quite frankely, I think I read too many books at this point for my own good and gotta agree that Friel's book probably is more geared toward people that has gotten most of bases covered. (not saying that you can't use Friel's book as bases for it... it does cover it but not as high priority item).

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