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Training to power -- suggestions?

Old 06-26-19, 09:21 AM
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Training to power -- suggestions?

Greetings all,
I am back at it full bore, but regret I took so many months off over the winter (and spring). Now I can't keep up with the rest of the group ride! since it seems most everyone rode a Kickr during the off season. Anyway, a couple weeks ago I got a Lactate Threshold test and less than a week ago I installed my first power meter, (Assioma DUO pedals). So now I am trying to figure out how to get the most out of these data points so that I might hang with the group!

Intervals I'm interested in doing are sprints, hill repeats and maybe 20' threshold ones, too (or whatever else peeps want to recommend!). But I don't really know how much wattage I should be putting out for different lengths of time and types of intervals. I do know that 4 hour endurance rides once a week are highly recommended but I haven't yet incorporated this into my routine (but probably will soon). Mostly I do about two hard rides a week, some sprints as "leg openers" on Monday so that I might hang with the Tuesday night group ride, and one full on recovery ride and one other ride based on how I feel. I work weekends so I generally don't ride on Sat and Sun. I've also started using rollers to improve my efficiency and smoothness in the group.

I've attached my recent LT test result sheet (you'll see the numbers are really sad) but that's what I have to work with and I want to see just how fast I can be! I assume the 177 number is my Functional Threshold Power wattage? I've done two hard rides with the new power meters so far and both rides I averaged 145 watts. The Sunday ride was 2hours 50 min (52.5 miles) and the Tuesday ride was 2 and a half hours (41 miles). Both rides I got dropped by the group. Thanks for any tips anyone can give to help me hold the wheels in front of me!

Areas I know I need to work on: not surging when I'm suffering and trying to hold the wheel. I tend to surge and struggle to put out an even amount of power to keep the wheel in front (so I'll surge/coast break/surge) I don't do this when I'm not suffering, only when I am dying to hang on. I'm also trying to figure out how many watts I should start putting down on a 5 minute climb, 12 min climb and 20 min climb, for examples. To give an idea of where I'm at, on a 9 min 15 second climb last night, about the middle of the ride after having already done some hard efforts, I averaged exactly 200 watts (though I let off the gas a bit before I finished the segment) and was going full gas, with a max wattage of 408 (hit at the very end of the climb). My tendency on a short climb is to want to go near max at the start of a climb; recover a little and then kill myself on the last bit of the climb (which usually means ~320 watts for about 20 seconds). The power meter is helping me to be a bit more measured. I also tend to surge in power intentionally over short steep sections to keep my cadence up since I prefer higher cadence. I've started to incorporate some lower cadence into my riding.

Other things to note is I'm losing weight pretty rapidly the last week despite eating a lot of protein powder, but not enough pasta (the one food that seems to fuel my legs the best of anything I've tried). It is hella hard to eat enough when riding 5 days a week! Eating enough is hard.
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Old 06-26-19, 01:01 PM
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Your provided info is more tech than I can handle, but before a century ride a few years ago I realized my friends would leave me riding with strangers if I didn't buck up. I spent a week getting used to bigger gears. Problem solved (at the time)!
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Old 06-26-19, 01:22 PM
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Get thee to a coach, or at least a good coaching app. There are a number of good books and websites out there to give you a structured approach to training with power, and a good structured approach will do you far more good than a couple of suggestions from strangers on a forum.
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Old 06-26-19, 01:33 PM
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Ah, my very favorite type of posts. First, I don't see any attachments, but that's alright because you've already provided some good numbers. Second, weight, weight is wildly important, please add that along with the power you are generating. Third, your goal appears simply to be able to keep up with your buddies in 40-50 mile group bike rides, so if you told us what speed they averaged, that would also be quite useful.

With that out of the way, the meat of your question appears to be "how do I train with power", which, truthfully, can be answered in many, maaaaannny, different ways. The types of intervals and targets and such that you want to aim for are drastically different depending on if your targeting surgey races like crits, gran fondos, time trials, or building general fitness. In this case, it appears you're leaning toward the "building fitness" box, but you also want to work on your hill climbing and surging ability.

So, first thing I want you to be prepared for in your research is a deluge of training ideas such as HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), 80/20 rule (80% ez, 20% hard), then individual workouts like tabata, and gauges of fitness like ramp tests.

My advice, is ignore most of this for now, realistically, if your ftp is around 170 watts, and you just want to be able to hang with your buddies on the local B/C ride, you need to get out more. Try to ramp up the amount of miles you are getting weekly, perhaps try adding another hour each week until you're averaging around 10 hours, 200ish miles. Go hard when you feel like going hard, go easy when you feel like going easy, after about 4 weeks, take it easy for a week, then repeat. Give yourself 2 or 3 months of this and you can use your power meter to simply watch your numbers rise.
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Old 06-26-19, 01:43 PM
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Originally Posted by bbbean View Post
Get thee to a coach, or at least a good coaching app. There are a number of good books and websites out there to give you a structured approach to training with power, and a good structured approach will do you far more good than a couple of suggestions from strangers on a forum.
I think sourcing opinions from forms filled with cycling enthusiasts on particular books or other resources to use are a bit better then arbitrarily deciding to spend $300ish a month for a coach, or recommending using "the internet"/app store to find some canned plan. Clearly you have some some experience, can you offer the OP any specific resources that you may have used which you can vouch for?
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Old 06-26-19, 03:42 PM
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Zwift races = quick gains.
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Old 06-26-19, 03:42 PM
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I'm actually about to head out for another ride so this post will be short. Last night's ride (it's actually our group's A ride--age range is 28 to 58 but they are strong guys). We average 19.5 miles an hour (or they do, not me) on a 40 mile route with 3000 feet of climbing. My weight is dropping (from 148lb 2.5 weeks ago to current weight of 142lb). I average 145 watts for 2.5 hours. Not sure what my watt average is for the first hour; would be curious to know that. GCN has some good youtube videos, but I think the one I saw was too aggressive too soon for the amount of hard workouts it was recommending to cram into one week. Thanks guys for the replies! Be back in a few hours
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Old 06-26-19, 03:55 PM
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Based on what I'm reading here, I think you're talking Space Shuttle when a bottle rocket will do. I would just work on developing general fitness and worry less about very specific, power meter-based training regimens. Ride more, put yourself in pain more. Also, temper your pulls and absolutely refuse to get dropped. Getting dropped usually ends the workout or allows you to plateau, staying with the group will push you and make you sharper. Often the difference between getting dropped and sticking with the group is bearing with the pain for a few crucial seconds. The trick is recognizing that everyone else is also likely in pain, that the pain will likely end soon, dealing with your own pain and doggedly refusing to lose the wheel. Breaking through and staying on that wheel is enormously gratifying and will make you stronger.
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Old 06-26-19, 07:44 PM
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Hiro11 I appreciate your post. I do temper my pulls now (though I used to be over-eager and pull too long).

As the efforts to hold the wheel become unbearable I have the ungainly habit of grunting and shrieking as I desperately try to hold on. It's a strange experience to continue to mash the pedals when the legs are screaming to let up. One of the guys in the group said "don't show all your cards...". I suppose he was being tongue in cheek, but it felt like it was a serious comment. Amusing at best. It's not a bike race. It's not like they are trying to shell guys off the back (though of course it damn well feels that way). So when someone said that I just scoffed to myself as if that mattered at all in this scenario. If anything they might take the desperate cries for mercy from the poor bloke blowing up at the back to heart. Maybe I'm mentally weak. One thing I notice is that I go hard, feel good and quite quickly go from feeling good to feeling like I gotta pull back on the power output. I find that when things suddenly get difficult I find I am crying uncle pretty quickly. I have very often been the first guy to drop from the top riders in the group. Part of the problem is that I know if I keep fighting for the wheel I will remain in this state of deep suffering and oxygen deficit. As soon as I stop, then the suffering ends and I can go back to my regularly scheduled program of choosing how much I want to suffer instead of having a wheel in front of me determine it, which is very difficult for me mentally when I am struggling. It has to be the worst (and best?) thing about group rides: best, when you can just hold on; worse when you simply can't. On the other hand, it's very hard to imagine I could have kept going at that wattage much longer. If I knew there'd be a reprieve maybe I could have given it another 10 seconds or so, but since I know the pace isn't going to temper any time soon, the motivation to keep killing myself is simply not there.

The thing about last night's ride is that the ride leader gave very clear instructions (due to there being some racers in the group): Once we reach Mitchell St. (a rolling section 11.5 miles in) you can free the reins. Up to that point it was still a solid pace but nothing crazy. So, in my typical non-paying-attention fashion, I didn't realize that when the ride leader went to the front and told the racer guys they could go hog wild that was my queue to sharpen my focus (not having any caffeine before the ride didn't help either) and the surge in pace caught me off guard. I definitely was being inefficient as I was attacking, catching the wheel, hitting the breaks, trying to recover on the flat/downslope and still losing the wheel as the pace did not slacken. I surged four or five times and then just didn't have it to keep fighting at that level. The other thing that makes fighting on very difficult is that as I am fatiguing and clawing to stay connected too many times the guy in front of me stands up and throws his wheel back; I don't mind that when I'm merely suffering, but when I'm suffering it's a bit of a tricky thing! I guess what I'm saying is that when I'm really going deep into the red it's hard to stay calm and and even.

I think the above anecdote is probably the biggest draw of cycling. How much can I suffer? I know I could suffer more, and I know I could suffer smarter.

Firebird: I'm 142lbs. and I average 145 watts on a hard ride. Recently I did 15" sprints where I maxed out at 800-900 watts per sprint (not sure what the average power was for each of those sprints, maybe 650watts or so?)

EDIT: Including Sunday, I'm already 160 miles for this week and 10 hours.
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Old 06-26-19, 08:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Grotug View Post
I'm actually about to head out for another ride so this post will be short. Last night's ride (it's actually our group's A ride--age range is 28 to 58 but they are strong guys). We average 19.5 miles an hour (or they do, not me) on a 40 mile route with 3000 feet of climbing. My weight is dropping (from 148lb 2.5 weeks ago to current weight of 142lb). I average 145 watts for 2.5 hours. Not sure what my watt average is for the first hour; would be curious to know that. GCN has some good youtube videos, but I think the one I saw was too aggressive too soon for the amount of hard workouts it was recommending to cram into one week. Thanks guys for the replies! Be back in a few hours
Setup your computer to automatically do laps at your desired interval (miles) or manually press lap after a designated time and your computer will tell you what your power is for the lap.
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Old 06-26-19, 08:40 PM
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Strategies that can be helpful for managing your reserves during group rides with stronger riders:

Take short pulls (if any) on flats and downhills.

Be at the front when the climbs start. You'll be able to set a pace that's good for you while showing that you're willing to work when the going is toughest.

Then, when they inevitably begin sweeping past you, drift back slowly through the group.

Repeat.
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Old 06-26-19, 10:35 PM
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​​​​​CCNS Aerobic Assessment Fact Sheet

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Old 06-27-19, 12:00 AM
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While your report doesn't list exactly what your FTP is your raw numbers look too low to keep up on non-climbs. My FTP is about 260 (though I weigh 200 lbs so your W/kg is about the same as mine).

If you are getting back into shape then doing almost anything can help. Endurance rides (at AeT wattage) would boost your mitochondria. VO2 max sprints or some 40/20 workouts would help. I do these a lot as I'm in the Navy and our bike cardio fitness test is a mere 12 minutes on a stationary bike so short-term power output is really important. Right now I'm focusing on doing 1 hour rides at about 85% of my FTP and in only three weeks I've noticed some gains (at least visually in my legs).
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Old 06-27-19, 08:23 AM
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We moved this thread to Training and Nutrition where we think it fits better and will get more responses.
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Old 06-27-19, 10:17 AM
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Unless your pm and mine differ wildly, I have a much, much higher FTP and am lighter but wouldn't expect to keep up with that A group. So I agree with the comment about bottle rocket vs space shuttle, just ride and gain fitness.

I recommend that you start paying attention to your critical power curve. It will give you insight into how much sustained power you can average over a period of time. The CP shows your best power -- you can use the values as a guide to avoid blowing past on a segment (e.g., a 20-min climb) that you would otherwise put too much power into while feeling great up until the point that you don't. Of course you wouldn't use it as a hard limit since you'll still be improving, but if you find yourself starting off 50 watts above what you've ever done before, expect to blow up.

Over the winter you can trial training apps like TrainerRoad and the Sufferfest. In season, you can look at something like a British Cycling build plan, available for free on TrainingPeaks if you do a web search, for reasonable training regime ideas. Use them as a resource to make sure you're training right, not as a strict plan to squeeze out maximum performance when you should still be rapidly improving.
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Old 06-27-19, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by firebird854 View Post
I think sourcing opinions from forms filled with cycling enthusiasts on particular books or other resources to use are a bit better then arbitrarily deciding to spend $300ish a month for a coach, or recommending using "the internet"/app store to find some canned plan. Clearly you have some some experience, can you offer the OP any specific resources that you may have used which you can vouch for?
I don't recall specifying a fee for coaching or for selecting a coach arbitrarily. I do know I have seen some monumentally bad advice offered on forums, so until he has the experience and tools to distinguish between good advice and poor/misguided advice, talking to someone local or using a widely respected software package seems more likely to get him off to a good start. Naturally, YMMV.

My advice to the OP is to find coaching, hang out at the local races and get to know people there, talk to his LBS, and do enough reading to set up a good training plan in one of the half dozen software packages that are widely accepted. Telling him what worked for me only works if he's me, and I doubt he is.
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Old 06-27-19, 02:34 PM
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I want to be clear, I'm not a coach, I only race occasionally at the cat 4 level, and have only been biking for about 2 and a half-ish years. I have however, absolutely gone through the trials and tribulations that you are experiencing (I believe we all have...). I went from a beginner randomly buying a trek 1.1 in spring of 2017 (and was too confused about how the gears and everything worked to even try the bike in the parking lot before putting down the $$$) to nearly having an addition to training and buying bike related paraphernalia.

I've tried Xert, Trainerroad, Zwift, Today's Plan, multiple canned plans through Training Peaks, and multiple books (time crunched cyclist, HIIT books, etc.). I weigh around 135 lbs and have increased my ftp from 180 watts to 290, I do A rides constantly, and race occasionally.

From what I've researched I'll break down a few fundamental things:

Average power: this does not tell the whole story, especially on hilly terrain. Due to the physiological response your body has to aerobic and anaerobic work the same "average power" you have on rolling terrain, sprinty group rides, etc. will cause you to be more or less fatigued for a same "average power" you might exhibit on flat terrain in a time trial. To try to remedy this, a system called "Average Normalized Power" was developed and is often displayed in apps, especially for the types of rides you are talking about, this would produce a far better figure to calculate efforts off of.
NOTE: Average normalized power can be somewhat "gamed" specifically by doing like lots of sprints in a small succession, when it comes down to it, nothing is perfect.
Here's a good blog post by Training Peaks on Normalized Power Most apps like Garmin Connect or Strava with the elevate chrome extension/pay for the analysis option, or Training Peaks will show you this stat.

Next, do a guided 20 minute max power FTP test. I'm personally guilty of not doing enough FTP tests, but seriously, Garmins and Wahoos these days even have this built in, I highly, Highly recommend at least figuring a good starting point.

After you really have your FTP, then you can calculate your training zones. Once you're there, you have a ton of options, what really boosted me personally was Trainerroad's sweet spot plans, however, some other ideas floating around are riding 80% of the time ez and 20% basically threshold and above. There's also HIIT which is essentially doing intervals that are all a minute or less of nearly as much power as you can muster with 1:1 rest ratio so something like 1 minute of extremely hard, 40 seconds of extremely easy.

I recommend looking into these and having fun, but just be aware that nothing in endurance truly comes easily, it will be farr more about the actual time you put in (as well as giving yourself proper rest time) then an structured plan.

I also recommend understanding TSS (which can be read about more here) it's essentially a number that quantifies the effort of an activity. Essentially, you get 1.66 points of TSS for every minute spent at FTP power, and the amount per minute will go up as you go harder or lower as you go easier. This is VERY useful in understanding your daily, weekly, and monthly load.

A note on that, if you're using Strava, Training Peaks, etc. and you have graphs with things like CTL and ATL and "Fatigue" and "Form" and "Fitness", let me break this down nice and easily.


This is a snapshot from my Strava, but it's a similar and actually quite useful graph that a number of services offer. CTL or "fitness" is the same thing as a rolling average of your TSS each day for 30 days (aka rolling 30 day average). ATL or "Fatigue" is your rolling 7 day average of TSS. If you find their difference, you get "form", if it's a little positive, you're probably pretty fresh, if it's a little negative, you're probably a bit tired, if you go for months with it really negative you might sucumb to over training.

So, you asked for some training tips that use power, for what you're trying to achieve, and the fact that it is summer not winter, I personally wouldn't recommend a structured training plan of any kind, I would recommend getting familiar with your FTP and TSS, and then plan on accumulating specific amounts of TSS each week like 500 or 600 or 700, as this is a far better expression of effort than miles or hours. One other common thing I've found when researching is only tackle super hard efforts when you're feeling fresh, if you're fatigued it can more often hurt then help.

Last edited by firebird854; 06-28-19 at 07:23 AM.
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Old 06-27-19, 03:54 PM
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Originally Posted by firebird854 View Post
I also recommend understanding TSS (which can be read about more here) it's essentially a number that quantifies the effort of an activity. Essentially, you get 1 point of TSS for every minute spent at FTP power, ...
I agree understanding TSS is important. One minute at FTP does not equate to 1 point of TSS. One hour (60 minutes) at FTP yields 100 TSS. As for 20 minute FTP tests, there's a reason it's not included in the 7 deadly sins. https://wattmatters.blog/home/2008/0...adly-sins.html.
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Old 06-27-19, 04:14 PM
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My advice is to just keep at it. Keep practicing with this group. Yes, these folks are racing and yes, they are trying to drop you off the back. Not just you but anyone they can. This is called a competitive group ride. I used to lead one of these things. We'd have maybe 18 at the start and as few as 3 at the finish.You're doing it right. Hold that wheel until the blood starts from your eye sockets. Learn to move efficiently in the group. Learn to pace your efforts. Learn how to survive. Learn where to be in the pack when. Learn each rider's predilections. Riders talk with their bikes. Learn that language. This all takes time. Don't give up, just keep at it. And oh yeah, don't make a sound. Not a sound.

What helped me the most was learning my personal recovery signs and recording them. Morning resting and morning standing heart rates, weight, stuff like that. Once you know your signs, you can see where the knife edge is between training hard enough and too hard. Just adding random intervals and so forth or even following a canned plan isn't the way to go. You need to learn how much you can push yourself during the week without overdoing it. That will mean actually pushing yourself over the edge. It's the only way to find that edge. I've found a heart rate monitor to be a very valuable tool for seeing if your physiology is ready to take the abuse you're giving it.

For now, I'd say just get your weekly mileage up. My guess is that the other players are getting at least 150 miles/week. Gradually work up to that. Do a lot of moderate paced work, holding a steady moderate power, enough so that a couple hours of that will make your legs hurt, then hold it for another hour. When you can do that no problem, add a day of hill repeats, maybe Friday. A fave workout of mine is to do a couple of 30' intervals in slightly rolling terrain, 5 minutes rest between them, holding a steady high cadence,100 or so, and shifting to keep a steady power or as steady as you can, enough power that your legs are starting to tire after the first one, same power for both. That'll get you used to holding it steady.
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Old 06-27-19, 04:25 PM
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Anyone that has taken a 20 min FTP test and has never done an hour test, try it sometime. You might be surprised.
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Old 06-27-19, 04:33 PM
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And yes, looking at the advice of others, get a TrainingPeaks Premium account. I've had one for years. Invaluable.
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Old 06-28-19, 07:22 AM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
I agree understanding TSS is important. One minute at FTP does not equate to 1 point of TSS. One hour (60 minutes) at FTP yields 100 TSS. As for 20 minute FTP tests, there's a reason it's not included in the 7 deadly sins. https://wattmatters.blog/home/2008/0...adly-sins.html.
Ah you're right, math... it's technically 1.66 a minute at FTP. I personally like to think of it this way, but conventionally your example is the typical one used, I'll update my response.
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Old 06-28-19, 09:39 PM
  #23  
Grotug
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These replies have been a pure pleasure to read; very encouraging! Thanks everyone! One thing I've started to realize about myself which some of you have wisely picked up on is that I'd rather train imperfectly and enjoy myself than train like Ineos and feel like a robot (especially with these gorgeous days and the hilly region I live in), so I think I will continue to do the workouts I feel like doing based on the terrain and where my legs are at, rather then a regimented program, while working in some specific drills here and there based on the many resources available to me (I am getting some coaching from some of the racers from the Tuesday A ride). Definitely planning on getting in some hill repeats real soon (maybe next week). The short, high intensity drills also appeal to me.

One thing I discovered (for cycling) last year and have heard others also say is helpful is yoga (which I did fairly regularly last season and found it helped a lot, but been lazy about it this season). I did yoga for the first time this season this morning because I decided to do a 100km ride with a big climb at the center of the ride after I got word of a group ride going out this morning. The ride started with an A type group (their ride was 92 miles with doing both sides of the mountain; the highest mountain in Massachusetts) and it was super fun riding with them; basically they were a lead out train to the start of the climb (a little over an hour into the ride). Of course I came into the start of the climb a bit burnt seeing as they were all stronger riders than me, and so I ended up just kinda taking it 'easy' up it (a bit harder than tempo) and I watched them go up the road without the bother of trying to keep up with them (which would have been futile). It took me just over an hour and I averaged 164 watts (the fastest time on the day was one of the racers from the 'lead out train' who did it in 39 minutes). On the first leg of the climb (which I think was the steepest) I averaged 184 watts over a duration of 19:37. Note that this ride was intended as an endurance pace, not a full on workout. Anyway, even though I did a relatively mellow ride last night (punctuated with some hard efforts; I could feel my legs pretty good after the ride from the build up of consecutive rides this week) this evening my legs didn't even burn running up the stairs. I dunno if it's the yoga or just from the relatively mellow rest of my day, but it was pretty cool to know I'm not over training despite getting in 244 miles in since Sunday (today is Friday so 244 miles over 6 days is pretty good!) I still have to figure out the TSS stuff on Strava (not finding it presently in the Strava or Wahoo Elemnt app).


I want to ride to work tomorrow (only 10 miles) but I work till 9pm Sat (and all day Sunday) so it's a bit impractical. I guess I could use the two days off and then do leg openers on Monday (or maybe full on sprints if I'm feeling spritely) and after this good week of riding I'll be much more confident to hang next Tuesday!

@guachi I think my FTP is 178 watts.
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Old 07-08-19, 07:42 PM
  #24  
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An update on my progress:

I got a bike fit right before last Tuesday's group ride and I think it helped. And I think my FTP is going up. I had a very good ride last Tuesday. Held onto the A group passed the halfway point in the 50 mile ride. Got dropped at the bottom of the last climb about 32 miles in because I forgot about it and went to the front leading up to it, because I was feeling good. My average power was 171 Watts (and weighted avg power was 192 watts) according to strava (riding with assioma DUO power meter pedals). Compare that to the previous Tuesday ride (41 miles) where I averaged 145 watts (weighted avg 177). Interestingly my legs were feeling pretty sludgy and my heart rate was so reluctant to go up for the first 10+ miles of the ride and I was figuring I was not gonna have a good ride, but they really warmed up on the first big climb where I really tempo'd myself and watched my watts, keeping them below 240, and then kicking at the end of the climb. I think that paid off big time. My heart rate eventually started going up, too, as I started to put down more watts (hence the higher average wattage). After that my legs were feeling so good and the rest of the ride was a dream ride. Just felt super great.

Since I wasn't the only one who got dropped I had someone to share pulls with on the way back to the bike shop. And since I stayed with the group so long, my average speed was 20.8mph with 2,710 ft of climbing. It was nice seeing PRs and Trophies again (I was doing quite well hanging with the A group last season, too, especially the latter half). Comparing last Tuesday's ride to a Tuesday ride last year (July 10th, 2018, nine days later than last Tuesday's ride) that was 43 miles and 2475ft of climbing I averaged 18.8mph (2mph slower); so, it's reassuring to see I'm doing quite a bit better than a slightly later date from last year. I'm really hoping I can hang tough the whole ride tomorrow. I'm getting so stoked for these Tuesday night rides, now. I love the challenge of trying to hang! Last week I was super pumped, as I am now just thinking about tomorrow. I had one less ride last week (I decided to not ride on July 4th since it was so hot) so that should help with having fresher legs tomorrow. One thing that I think helped with my performance on the Tuesday ride is finally getting in that endurance ride on June 28th. I tried to do another endurance ride on Friday but my wahoo died (forgot to charge it) and I misguaged the ride (ended up only riding 3 hours/45 miles solo). For some reason my ham strings were super sore the first hour of the ride, but finally warmed up. This happens every once in awhile; haven't really figured out why. Sometimes I can do a climb at the start of a ride without warming up without any issues, and other times I can warm up super easy and and then do a moderate effort up a short climb 10 min into the ride and my legs will be sore for 40 minutes afterwards (that was the case this passed July 5th). I would love to understand the physiology behind why only sometimes my legs are sore at start of a ride. Maybe they were still sore from the hammerfest on Tuesday or unhappy I skipped riding the day before (the 4th)? I had a super easy spin on Wednesday, but it was longer than I intended it to be (32 miles).

My 15" sprints are getting slightly better, too, but only slightly. Max power on my first sprints with power meter was 946 watts (two weeks ago). Tonight max power was 971. But the sprints are mostly as a tune up for the Tuesday group ride; not so much about building strength (though I do ride completely full gas on at least one of those sprints and about 96% to 99% on the rest).

I have a question/complaint about my Wahoo Elemnt. Something that I find very puzzling, given all the data the Elmnt gives you, it fails to provide one key piece of data that you'd think riders would be most keen to have, and that is a graph of the power output for each lap. Why isn't this included? It's pretty much the most important piece of data I need. I get a graph of my power output for the entire ride, squished together on a tiny graph, but it doesn't allow me to zoom in on any section to see any useful detail of that power, so it's pretty much completely useless. So basically I have no idea if I'm going too strong at the beginning of the 15" sprint and falling off as the sprint goes on, or what (the bike and I are bobbing too much to read the head unit while sprinting full gas). Anyway, it's a real head scratcher and disappointment for me that the Elemnt isn't able to display the data in a useful way. Anyone else bugged by this?

Thanks in advance if you managed to read this entire post!
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Old 07-09-19, 11:14 AM
  #25  
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For every job a tool.

And for every goal on the bike, a plan.

Various places have plans based on the goal. Trainerroad, TrainingPeaks, British Cycling's website has plans. Etc... You pick the goal, they provide some workouts with zones as a % of your tested power.

If you can ride that far comfortably, I'd focus on a plan that adds intensity.

If I had to give a local group rider (non racer) a simple plan to follow, I'd say do this each week for a couple months:

-group ride one week night and maybe the weekend group ride (one short, one long......shorter one harder, longer one easier). Weeknight group rides are usually spicier.
-one workout of 3 reps longer sets (8min, 10min, whatever) at 95 to 105%
-one workout of shorter sets (2 sets 3x3min at 120%, 2 sets of 5min of 1:1 at 140%, tabatas, whatever)
-one z1/z2 fart around with some core/strength exercise (not gym rat, just so your bones done turn to dust). Or God forbid, run for 20min.

If you're brand new....cut the percent on those sets by 5 to 10%.
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