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Two a days? Worth doing?

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Two a days? Worth doing?

Old 02-26-15, 12:08 AM
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rideBjj
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Two a days? Worth doing?

Well, time for my first thread start here I guess.

In 5 weeks I am going to ride in the Vegas Ultimate Fondo. 100 miles, 8000 feet of climbing, yada yada.

I've been riding again (after years away) since 6 months ago. I'm up to about 100 miles / 4 days a week.

I started specifically training for the Fondo a couple of weeks ago and have a schedule planned out that increases saddle time, distance, etc etc over the next week's time.

2 days a week I work from home and ideally on those days, I would be out for 2 to 2.5 hours during the day. But, depending on what's going on at work, I may only be able to manage an hour at lunch time.

Is it worth it to get on the trainer (or night ride) again for another hour around 8pm?

If my goal is to increase my endurance, and the amount of power I can generate for a longer period of time, would it not be better to be doing that with longer actual rides instead of splitting them up?

My goal is to finish the ride in a sub 6 hour time.

I just started using a Garmin with HR monitor last week:

The other day I rode half the course solo and finished in 3:07 while maintaining an average HR of 136, which is high Zone2, I think - I was purposely trying to stay slow and steady. I have a tendency to ride only 30 - 40 miles at a very hard pace, which I could never keep up beyond 50.

My perceived effort seemed about a 4 out of 10. I felt like I could have gone another 20 miles no problem, and most of the ride I felt pretty bored, except the last 10 miles when I picked up the pace to "finish strong".

That may or may not have any bearing with what happens on the day of the event, I suppose. But it is encouraging. Maybe it shouldn't be...

Thoughts?

Last edited by rideBjj; 02-26-15 at 12:12 AM. Reason: more detail
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Old 02-26-15, 01:07 AM
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All else being equal, the more time you spend riding before the ride, the less it will take out of you and the faster you will do it.

It's a relatively small portion of the riding population that has to worry about overtraining. Most people go into these things significantly undertrained.

Also, if you're going to continue training and riding with performance (of whatever type) as your goal, then get a power meter.
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Old 02-26-15, 06:51 AM
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Originally Posted by reggieray View Post
It's a relatively small portion of the riding population that has to worry about overtraining. Most people go into these things significantly undertrained.
Mind if we expand the discussion a bit?
Not two-a-days, but I have been wondering about how effective it might be to train hard on two consecutive days - both Saturdays AND Sundays the next few weeks. Except in winter weather like we've had lately, I would typically ride about every other day, pretty much "training" on a casual basis. But I've signed up for a dedicated training program on Saturdays, and the Gran Fondo New York has group training rides on Sundays that I've enjoyed and would like to also participate in. The Saturday program, they make a big deal of NOT riding on Friday, and following up with a recovery ride and training through the week. Well, Sundays would decidedly NOT be recovery days. Is this merely a difficult challenge, or is it a bad idea, and should I just chose one of the two days for hardest training, and keep things spread out more through the week?
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Old 02-26-15, 07:04 AM
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If you signed up for a dedicated training program, my question back to you would by why are you planning to disregard the program? If you signed up for it, it is likely because you felt they knew best how to prepare you. Then listen to them. If you had other reasons for signing up (i.e. access to a group ride) then I gues you csn choose to do your own thing.

Lastly - do you have and use a foam roller? If not, get one. It will do wonder for helping you prepare for (and recover from) your race.
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Old 02-26-15, 07:10 AM
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Use the first session to work extremely hard doing intervals of various kinds. Treat sessions two as endurance or active recovery depending on the difficulty of your earlier session
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Old 02-26-15, 08:29 AM
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OP. So it sounds like your perspective roller workouts - the second session of the day - would just be to increase saddle time and to heartrate time. This sounds reasonable enough to me. Of course, you should be aware of any joints or potential strains, but I think if your second workout is just to work some endurance and not a matter of sprints or high-power hammering, your chances of injury aren't significant and it probably wouldn't be bad.

When I swam competitively, our team would commonly do power workouts in the AM and then do distance in the afternoons. It can certainly be done.

I'm not convinced that you need it, necessarily. You've already blown my pre-century training regiment out of the water, and I finished in about 5:25. Though I didn't have that level of climbing. Anyways, I think the rollers are reasonable.
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Old 02-26-15, 10:14 AM
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Originally Posted by jrossbeck View Post
If you signed up for a dedicated training program, my question back to you would by why are you planning to disregard the program? If you signed up for it, it is likely because you felt they knew best how to prepare you. Then listen to them. If you had other reasons for signing up (i.e. access to a group ride) then I gues you csn choose to do your own thing.

Lastly - do you have and use a foam roller? If not, get one. It will do wonder for helping you prepare for (and recover from) your race.

Signed up? I havnt signed up for any program. This is all on my own time and research.
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Old 02-26-15, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by reggieray View Post
All else being equal, the more time you spend riding before the ride, the less it will take out of you and the faster you will do it.

It's a relatively small portion of the riding population that has to worry about overtraining. Most people go into these things significantly undertrained.

Also, if you're going to continue training and riding with performance (of whatever type) as your goal, then get a power meter.

A PM is in the cards at some point, but I won't be able to buy, install (I would buy a naked powertap hub and lace it to a rim myself), tinker with and learn to train effectively with it before event day this time around.
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Old 02-26-15, 10:27 AM
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Originally Posted by PiLigand View Post
OP. So it sounds like your perspective roller workouts - the second session of the day - would just be to increase saddle time and to heartrate time. This sounds reasonable enough to me. Of course, you should be aware of any joints or potential strains, but I think if your second workout is just to work some endurance and not a matter of sprints or high-power hammering, your chances of injury aren't significant and it probably wouldn't be bad.

When I swam competitively, our team would commonly do power workouts in the AM and then do distance in the afternoons. It can certainly be done.

I'm not convinced that you need it, necessarily. You've already blown my pre-century training regiment out of the water, and I finished in about 5:25. Though I didn't have that level of climbing. Anyways, I think the rollers are reasonable.
It is the climbing that's going to be the challenge. I'm pretty fast on the flats (who isn't), but while I can certainly get up long / steep climbs with a decent speed usually, my HR skyrockets and they wear me and my legs out. The way the event course is laid out, I can forsee having my legs smoked by the time mile 70 rolls around and the last 30 miles taking nearly as long as the first 70.

Maybe I need to simulate climbing on the trainer? Elevate the front wheel and push bigger gears?
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Old 02-26-15, 10:30 AM
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Sorry for the confusion - a different poster "kbarch" tried to expand upon your original request and I thought it was the same person (i.e. you) asking both questions. My bad.

As far as my experience with two a days - I know a number of people who employ them for marathon training and they seem to work well in not pounding your knees for elongated periods of time (and may also help with hydration and nutrition needs). I assume they translate the same to bike riding.
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Old 02-26-15, 10:33 AM
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Originally Posted by rideBjj View Post
It is the climbing that's going to be the challenge. I'm pretty fast on the flats (who isn't), but while I can certainly get up long / steep climbs with a decent speed usually, my HR skyrockets and they wear me and my legs out. The way the event course is laid out, I can forsee having my legs smoked by the time mile 70 rolls around and the last 30 miles taking nearly as long as the first 70.

Maybe I need to simulate climbing on the trainer? Elevate the front wheel and push bigger gears?
You could elevate the wheel to simulate the position, but since you're not actually gaining elevation, it won't do anything for resistance. Pushing bigger gears is your best shot there if you're going for resistance unless you can increase the resistance on your trainer.

More importantly, I wouldn't put a lot of power behind the second workout of the day. That's where you run the risk of injury. Your muscles will already be in a 'recovery mode' so they'll do motions but won't fare well for high intensity.
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Old 02-26-15, 10:50 AM
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I just took a look at the course and it isnt that bad. There are two major tough areas the Red Rock loop (Mile 8 to 16) and then climb up from mile 30 to 43. I would suggest if you live near the area to ride those two portions asap so you know how difficult they are. I have ridden this route before and it is not that bad.

I think you could do two-a-days for three weeks but you need to taper before the event for roughly two weeks. That will give your legs the best rest and make them super fresh for the event.

PM me if you have any specific questions about the route.

Last edited by Sufferage; 02-26-15 at 10:54 AM.
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Old 02-26-15, 10:56 AM
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BTW, the 50 or so miles of the course I rode the other day only contained about 1800 feet of climbing. It was the mostly flat portion.
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Old 02-26-15, 10:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Sufferage View Post
I just took a look at the course and it isnt that bad. There are two major tough areas the Red Rock loop (Mile 8 to 16) and then climb up from mile 30 to 43. I would suggest if you live near the area to ride those two portions asap so you know how difficult they are. I have ridden this route before and it is not that bad.

I think you could do two-a-days for three weeks but you need to taper before the event for roughly two weeks. That will give your legs the best rest and make them super fresh for the event.

PM me if you have any specific questions about the route.
I ride the loop pretty much once a week. But, I usually ride to it from my house, then do it as fast as I can and then go home. That totals just under 40 miles and I'm usually pretty done in by the time I get back. I usually need a nap right away and sometimes my legs cramp. Like I said previously, I usually ride short but intense rides.

The second climbing section I have not ridden before. I'm planning on going out there pretty soon to check it out. Maybe drive my bike closer to where it starts and try and do 50 miles total including that bit.

Thanks for the insight.
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Old 02-26-15, 11:24 AM
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If you ride the loop often then you are set for that section but the Potosi climb, I would advise doing that climb as soon as possible because it is pretty tough. That way you know what you are in for.

I made that mistake once of doing a race without knowing the course well enough which caused me to push my legs well beyond my lactic threshold at that time. A great training program and knowledge of the course are two pivotal elements to a successful race.
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Old 02-26-15, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Sufferage View Post
If you ride the loop often then you are set for that section but the Potosi climb, I would advise doing that climb as soon as possible because it is pretty tough. That way you know what you are in for.

I made that mistake once of doing a race without knowing the course well enough which caused me to push my legs well beyond my lactic threshold at that time. A great training program and knowledge of the course are two pivotal elements to a successful race.
But the event information specifically says "This is not a race!".

I can't imagine people treating a casual group challenge ride as a competitive event. Does that really happen?
















;-)
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Old 02-26-15, 11:52 AM
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Do you want to do a sub 6, including or not including stops?

If you're not use to doing that type of mileage I recommend doing it all in one go instead of 2 a day. 6 hours is a good amount of time in the saddle and you need to get your backside use to it.

How good are you riding in groups? It helps to find other sub 6 hour riders on fondo day and get some pacelines going. It'll save a lot of work on the flats.

My only other recommendation is to focus on climbing and not on the mileage. When I train for climbing rides I'd prefer matching the elevation of the ride and not the mileage. I can do 17-20 mph on the flats all day long but grinding up an extra 1,000' sometimes puts me over the edge.
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Old 02-26-15, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by wallrat View Post
Do you want to do a sub 6, including or not including stops?

If you're not use to doing that type of mileage I recommend doing it all in one go instead of 2 a day. 6 hours is a good amount of time in the saddle and you need to get your backside use to it.

How good are you riding in groups? It helps to find other sub 6 hour riders on fondo day and get some pacelines going. It'll save a lot of work on the flats.

My only other recommendation is to focus on climbing and not on the mileage. When I train for climbing rides I'd prefer matching the elevation of the ride and not the mileage. I can do 17-20 mph on the flats all day long but grinding up an extra 1,000' sometimes puts me over the edge.
Sub 6 hours, with as little stopping as possible. If the day grinds on and I'm becoming very uncomfortable, then I will probably stop as needed. Otherwise, just going to keep on.

I always ride solo. I have ridden in groups a few times, long ago. I'm not a **** or anything, and I know what you're *supposed* to be doing.

All in one go long days are not possible every time I ride. That was sort of the point of the thread. If I can't carve out the time to do 2.5 - 3+ hours in the saddle, is it worth it to break up that time into 2 sessions on a given day?

Wallrat? Climb much?
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Old 02-26-15, 12:01 PM
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^^^ That's funny. The forum changed the word S P A Z (as in spastic) to ****

That word is verboten!
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Old 02-26-15, 12:20 PM
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Originally Posted by rideBjj View Post
^^^ That's funny. The forum changed the word S P A Z (as in spastic) to ****

That word is verboten!
I rock climbed for 20 years but didn't have time to do it anymore because of kids. Cycling, although it takes a lot of time, still allows me to do it in town and is less committing. I use to climb in Red Rocks every year and was thinking about heading there again to ride and climb.

I also work from home and I was limited to 1-1.5 hours of riding during the work week. I found the biggest hills I could and hammered them. I'd take the evening off to heal. When I have longer ride times available I'd focus on the mileage. Be comfortable riding 60 miles and 5-6,000'. Be sure you can do that the next couple of weekends and take a 6 hour ride 2 weeks before the event that matches approximately the fondo. What you do those last two weeks before the ride really won't help your performance. Taper down your rides leading up to the event, you don't want to be burned out. That's how I approached the death ride in Markleeville last year and that was 130 miles and 15,000'.
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Old 02-26-15, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by wallrat View Post
I rock climbed for 20 years but didn't have time to do it anymore because of kids. Cycling, although it takes a lot of time, still allows me to do it in town and is less committing. I use to climb in Red Rocks every year and was thinking about heading there again to ride and climb.

I also work from home and I was limited to 1-1.5 hours of riding during the work week. I found the biggest hills I could and hammered them. I'd take the evening off to heal. When I have longer ride times available I'd focus on the mileage. Be comfortable riding 60 miles and 5-6,000'. Be sure you can do that the next couple of weekends and take a 6 hour ride 2 weeks before the event that matches approximately the fondo. What you do those last two weeks before the ride really won't help your performance. Taper down your rides leading up to the event, you don't want to be burned out. That's how I approached the death ride in Markleeville last year and that was 130 miles and 15,000'.
Hmmm... I was a climbing bum for many years too. I wonder if we ever met.

In fact, cycling is really 3rd on the list of the sports I'd like to be doing, right behind climbing and then Jiu Jitsu. But, an arthritic hip makes doing either of those impossible to any worthwhile degree. Cycling I can still do with intensity, so, here I am. One day I'll get my hip replaced and go back to climbing.

What you're advising in paragraph two is pretty much what I was planning. Except I have read it isn't really necesarry to ride the same distance as the planned event until it happens. I was thinking of making my longest pre-event ride 75 - 80 miles. I get so sooooo bored riding alone for more than a few hours. I guess we'll see.

I'm actually out the door here in about 20 minutes. Today it's slow so I can actually do 2 hours. Thanks!
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Old 02-26-15, 12:56 PM
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Originally Posted by rideBjj View Post
Well, time for my first thread start here I guess.

2 days a week I work from home and ideally on those days, I would be out for 2 to 2.5 hours during the day. But, depending on what's going on at work, I may only be able to manage an hour at lunch time.

Is it worth it to get on the trainer (or night ride) again for another hour around 8pm?
Absolutely.

If my goal is to increase my endurance, and the amount of power I can generate for a longer period of time, would it not be better to be doing that with longer actual rides instead of splitting them up?
You'll do better increasing your power with shorter rides because lower intensities like "endurance" are relative to what you can manage at higher intensities.

For instance, with a 185W FTP 120W is a comfortable endurance pace for me. At 235W it's 150W.

You increase endurance with more training load via time and/or intensity, where training load is approximately proportional to the square of intensity. 3x20 minute threshold intervals at 95% will do as much for you riding 2.5 hours at a 60% endurance pace.

Shorter rides at higher intensities fit peoples' schedules better.


The other day I rode half the course solo and finished in 3:07 while maintaining an average HR of 136, which is high Zone2, I think - I was purposely trying to stay slow and steady.
If you don't have comfort, eating, or hydration issues you should be able to go twice that far when you're fresh.

Also note that there's too much variation in actual heart rates to base zones of an age based maximum. Calibrated accurately off your lactate threshold you might be able to sustain more.

Ride as hard as you can for 30 minutes, take your average over the last 20, and that's close to your lactate heart rate. Joel Friel puts zone 2 endurance at 81-90% of that, tempo up to 94%, and threshold up to 100%.

Last edited by Drew Eckhardt; 02-26-15 at 12:59 PM.
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Old 02-26-15, 02:38 PM
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i'm registerred to ride GF las Vegas as well...

I'm shooting for 6 hours of riding time, probably around 8 hours total. personally.

Though I dont live in the area, so I don't have the leisure of riding parts of the course before hand.
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Old 02-26-15, 02:59 PM
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Originally Posted by cderalow View Post
i'm registerred to ride GF las Vegas as well...

I'm shooting for 6 hours of riding time, probably around 8 hours total. personally.

Though I dont live in the area, so I don't have the leisure of riding parts of the course before hand.
Yea, I think it was a post of yours a while back that made me aware there even was such a ride going on here. I'm not really big in the riding scene here. I don't know any other riders, don't go on organized group rides, etc etc. I havn't even had any real cycling goals since I started back aside from "ride more, get faster". I figured something like this is worthy objective. I wished I known about it sooner. 6 weeks isn't a huge amount of time to prepare for someone like me who never rides more than 50 miles at a time. Guess I'll see ya out there.
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Old 02-26-15, 04:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Drew Eckhardt View Post
Absolutely.



You'll do better increasing your power with shorter rides because lower intensities like "endurance" are relative to what you can manage at higher intensities.

For instance, with a 185W FTP 120W is a comfortable endurance pace for me. At 235W it's 150W.

You increase endurance with more training load via time and/or intensity, where training load is approximately proportional to the square of intensity. 3x20 minute threshold intervals at 95% will do as much for you riding 2.5 hours at a 60% endurance pace.

Shorter rides at higher intensities fit peoples' schedules better.




If you don't have comfort, eating, or hydration issues you should be able to go twice that far when you're fresh.

Also note that there's too much variation in actual heart rates to base zones of an age based maximum. Calibrated accurately off your lactate threshold you might be able to sustain more.

Ride as hard as you can for 30 minutes, take your average over the last 20, and that's close to your lactate heart rate. Joel Friel puts zone 2 endurance at 81-90% of that, tempo up to 94%, and threshold up to 100%.

Hmmm.. I mostly you with except with the intensity! There is value in riding in Zone 2 for an hour or longer.

Periodization is the term I think

I usually spend a couple rides per week keeping my heart rate low and cadence high. Every ride shouldn't be a hammer fest or pain cave session
Darth Steele is offline  

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