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will this be possible

Old 05-05-08, 07:54 PM
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grafsk8er
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will this be possible

i'm going to be doing alot of riding and racing within the next 2 years. do you think it will be possible to move up to cat 2 by say summer of 2010? granted there's way toooo many variables, but i'm 18 and an endurance athlete, coming off of 6 years of state ranked track and cross country running.
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Old 05-05-08, 07:57 PM
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Yes.
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Old 05-05-08, 07:57 PM
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until you actually race, who knows.
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Old 05-05-08, 08:11 PM
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well i've done 3 local crits, and the first 2 crits were learning experiences and placed 6th and 3rd, the last crit i just raced i won.
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Old 05-05-08, 08:17 PM
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Originally Posted by grafsk8er View Post
well i've done 3 local crits, and the first 2 crits were learning experiences and placed 6th and 3rd, the last crit i just raced i won.
What cat?
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Old 05-05-08, 08:22 PM
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You can do it. Perhaps in less than a year depending on how much racing is available to you.
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Old 05-05-08, 08:23 PM
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5. i'll be a 4 in the beginning of the summer. i race for the lbs in my town
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Old 05-05-08, 08:29 PM
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As long as you do 3 things:

1. Find a coach
2. Find a coach
3. Find a good coach
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Old 05-05-08, 08:51 PM
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i mean having a coach definitely would be great, but would it be possible if i coached myself? i did buy a training book, and want to begin really reading through it and figuring out what's the best way to go about things
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Old 05-05-08, 09:21 PM
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you don't need a coach.
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Old 05-05-08, 09:28 PM
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joecool, i'm guessing you got up into cat 2 w/o a coach? if so, what kind of training did you do?
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Old 05-05-08, 09:32 PM
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Originally Posted by joecool2727 View Post
you don't need a coach.
+1.

It might help, but you certainly don't need one.

Especially if you're already familiar with endurance training as a CC/track kid. In general, you could take your mileage and multiply it by 4 or 5, in all phases. Your tempo, recovery, intervals, etc. You'd be amazed at the similarities of the two, when you boil it all down.
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Old 05-05-08, 09:32 PM
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Originally Posted by grafsk8er View Post
i mean having a coach definitely would be great, but would it be possible if i coached myself? i did buy a training book, and want to begin really reading through it and figuring out what's the best way to go about things
You come from a sports background and you want to coach yourself? Show a little respect for the sport. Get a coach or, at the very least, find a mentor. If you are serious about your goals this is a must.

There are a thousand things a good coach could teach you (including tactics) in a weekend that would take you years to learn otherwise.

Also moving from 4 to 3 and then from 3 to 2 will be exponentially harder than moving from 5 to 4. Things are NOT going to get easier.

Years ago, when I was still living in NA, there were several Elite MTB racers and Tri guys who decided to start road racing for various reasons. These guys were fit and strong. I loved it when they showed up. I would use them and use them until they were spent and then leave them for dead. They were strong but had no idea how to race. I wasn't the only one who did this. It was a common practise for the local Cat P/1/2 guys.

You need to learn a lot more than just sport specific fitness to move up.
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Old 05-05-08, 09:42 PM
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My teammate just moved up to the 4's three weeks ago. He's now one win away from making it to the 3's. Had he concentrated on the road instead of MTB he'd be a this year.
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Old 05-05-08, 09:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Bob Dopolina View Post
You come from a sports background and you want to coach yourself? Show a little respect for the sport. Get a coach or, at the very least, find a mentor. If you are serious about your goals this is a must.

There are a thousand things a good coach could teach you (including tactics) in a weekend that would take you years to learn otherwise.

Also moving from 4 to 3 and then from 3 to 2 will be exponentially harder than moving from 5 to 4. Things are NOT going to get easier.

Years ago, when I was still living in NA, there were several Elite MTB racers and Tri guys who decided to start road racing for various reasons. These guys were fit and strong. I loved it when they showed up. I would use them and use them until they were spent and then leave them for dead. They were strong but had no idea how to race. I wasn't the only one who did this. It was a common practise for the local Cat P/1/2 guys.

You need to learn a lot more than just sport specific fitness to move up.
Oops. I left that part out.

As the good Bob Dopolina pointed out, there is more to bike racing that fitness. You don't need a coach, but you definitely need someone to talk to you about what you did right and wrong in races or hard group training rides. An individual that is genuinely interested in seeing you succeed is something you really do need. I had several; an older teammate at my school (a grad student) and the father of another teammate. I absorbed everything they said, and slowly, put it together.

To summarize:

To get fit, you don't need a coach.

To learn how to race quickly and effectively, you need a mentor.
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Old 05-05-08, 10:17 PM
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Originally Posted by grafsk8er View Post
joecool, i'm guessing you got up into cat 2 w/o a coach? if so, what kind of training did you do?
No, not quite a Cat2 yet, but i am half way there and i have only been racing bicycles for less than 6 months without a coach. I ran track and cross country in high school like yourself and i beleive that has helped A LOT. Running has taught me what pain really is and i dont know if i have ever felt as much pain on a bike as i have in a 5k or a 1600m, or at least they are two very different types of pain to me.

I have had a Powertap for a few months and it is a neat tool but again i dont think it is a necessity to get to Cat2. My advice would pretty much be just to ride a lot and DO INTERVALS, that is short intense bursts of speed that simulate a race or an attack, or do lots of steep climbing. You can put in huge amounts of miles but they wont mean squat without being able to keep up a fast pace and recover.

And also, like others have said, it is good to know people with more experience. I dont think you need a coach in the purest sense, but it will help a lot to do lots of group rides with more experienced riders and to make friends with them and be open to advice.
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Old 05-05-08, 10:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Duke of Kent View Post

... You don't need a coach, but you definitely need someone to talk to you about what you did right and wrong in races or hard group training rides. An individual that is genuinely interested in seeing you succeed is something you really do need. I had several; an older teammate at my school (a grad student) and the father of another teammate. I absorbed everything they said, and slowly, put it together...

.

A coach by any other name is still a coach.

You dont need a coach to get fit. But if you want to learn how to race a bike, save yourself a lot of time and get one.

edit: for some reason in our sport the term coach has taken on the meaning of someone who draws up training plans. Dont know why. Does a Football coach teach you how to run? Does a Basketball coach teach you how to make squeaky noses on the floor? Nope, they teach you how to play the game.
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Old 05-05-08, 10:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Voodoo76 View Post
As long as you do 3 things:

1. Find a coach
2. Find a coach
3. Find a good coach
How can you tell the difference?
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Old 05-05-08, 10:40 PM
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One of my teammates has gone from a beginning 4 to a 2 in 3 months. No coach.
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Old 05-05-08, 11:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Chucklehead View Post
One of my teammates has gone from a beginning 4 to a 2 in 3 months. No coach.
Great! And I can think of any number of guys who were strong, fast, and never figured out how to get it done. Not saying its impossible, and for the rare exception its probably inevitable.
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Old 05-06-08, 06:20 AM
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i've got mentors in the sport that help me along, and they tell me all about racing, tactics, teams, positions on the teams, your role as a team member etc. so i'm definitely not left out to dry when it comes to road biking. i've got people to look up to
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Old 05-06-08, 06:28 AM
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It's possible. Not typical but I wouldnt even consider it all that rare to go from 5--->2 in 1 season. Just ride lots, race lots, be receptive to the criticism and experience of others, do your hard rides hard and your easy rides easy (dont forget the easy part - that's what almost everyone ignores).
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Old 05-06-08, 06:58 AM
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a lot of us ohio guys are familiar with abe and the "danimal" both who went from 5-->2 in one season after running competitively. i don't know much about abe, but dan is a serious monster who also ran track and cross country. i think his best 5k in college was 14:50 or thereabouts. anyway, he had a lot of general bike handling skills from having done bmx stuff earlier, is a great race tactician, and majored in exercise science, so yeah, he did pretty well. i also think that it helped him to do mostly road races early in the season and then make the jumps to crits later in the year.

here are your advantages as a former endurance athlete:
1. great engine
2. mentally prepared for workload
3. have at LEAST a preliminary understanding of the different systems that are taxed during efforts and can perceive exertion accurately
4. know how to suffer
5. know that you have to have recovery days
6. not too much, if any, weight to shed (i have intentionally gained weight since i ran in college)

try to be open and friendly at races, listen to what other people are telling you, and see what works for you. a lot of the guys on your team will probably be impressed with your talent and try to help you as much as they can. good luck.
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Old 05-06-08, 07:20 AM
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Distance runners already have the mindset to suffer and the aerobic engine for cycling. I think you will do good. Why the cat2 in 2 years?

2 other examples
Teammate went from a 5 to a 1 this season.
PizzaMan went from a 5 to 2 in just over a season. Both ex-runners.
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Old 05-06-08, 08:08 AM
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You could be pro 1 right now if you could find someone with a contract for you to sign.
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