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Winter Training Ideas

Old 02-01-23, 09:03 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Yeah, he probably doesnít have a clue what heís talking about.

https://apexcoachingco.com/gym_trainer/neal-henderson/
The problem with that article is the lack of definition of terms. Every college dorm discussion always begins with the mandatory definition of terms. He should know better, or alternatively, is purposely not defining his terms in order to push a point which may not stand up under scrutiny.

The bit at the end of the article about neuromuscular conditioning and strength training are things I've been pushing on the forum for years. I might agree with the rest of it if I knew what he was talking about. What's a "steady mellow pace?" Whatever that is, I never do it, and I do a lot of Z2 riding. I'm one of those people who's forever pushing the pace. had my fastest time since 2016 on my neighborhood walk today, three 16' miles, 100'/mile. I'm so out of shape my legs got tired.

Yesterday I rode my rollers, VT1. Day before yesterday my wife and I hiked up to a local lookout, Z1 HR, 1000'/hour. Tomorrow we'll strength train at the gym for an hour, and then I'll do 1:20 of VT1 on my rollers. This'll be an 11 hour week, with more of the same. Believe it or not, this'll get me in shape for the intervals which will follow. IME, it's better to do intervals after one has gotten some leg strength and endurance.
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Old 02-02-23, 04:01 AM
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
That Wahoo post is absolute garbage and lies. You do not need 20-25 hours, who rides those kind of hours. Almost nobody.

To switch from cycling, Ed Whitlock ran a sub 3 hour marathon at age 73. His regular training was three 3 hour easy "shuffle" jogs per week and short runs on other days with a rest day. Probably around 12-14 hours per week max based on my reading his old forum posts. That is for the top of top AG marathoner of all time.

Almost nobody does 20+ hours per week unless they are trying to qualify for Kona in which case 1,000 hours per year is about the sweetspot for total yearly training hours in all three disciplines.

Inigo San Millan has said on innumerable podcasts that 5 rides of 90 minute duration in zone 2 is ideal. 7-8 hours per week. He then says he goes like "Hell" once in a while at the end of the end up the hill to his house. He has maintained his VO2 max and FTP for well over 10 years.

OTOH, if someone only has 3-4 hours to exercise per week, I wonder how they can spend 10+ hours per week on BF.

Rather than miles or hours, it is far more important to know how to monitor one's recovery and whether one is getting fitter. FTP is not important to me for endurance, it is nowhere near as relevant as power at VT1, not even close. FTP is the wrong metric for a tourist or randonneur and training that emphasises FTP will suboptimize your enjoyment and under develop the correct energy pathways.

Going hard in the winter with HIIT and easing up with increasing volume as the season progresses is the absolute worst thing an endurance athlete can do. Here is some data from Couzens and a quote



https://alancouzens.com/blog/optimal_periodization.html
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Old 02-02-23, 08:17 AM
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I can and generally do put in 10-14 hrs a week on the bike and after a year of trying to adhere to an 80/20 schedule and getting my blood lactate curve measured to anchor my zones, it hasn't worked out very for me. All my numbers were worse except for very short duration power, which gains I attribute to resistance training and I'm also just slow. I don't know if it's my age (66), my "crunched" time, or the fact that I'm just a guy who needs more stimulus to develop fitness. This season, I'm still trying for long, LT1-ish rides on the trainer (per my post above) and keep it polarized, but I am going to mix in more intervals and have more fun on group rides this spring. Yes, I know Couzens (a bit of a polemicist, IMO) and San-Millan (a legit scientist, but a bit obsessed with lactate metabolism and whose opinions are colored by his own considerable athletic talents and world tour experience) would say I need to give it another five years, but that's not altogether helpful advice for those whose years are limited. I am also influenced by authorities, such as Coggan, who say that stimulus is pretty much just stimulus, viz. that just because you use the aerobic energy system a lot below LT1 doesn't mean it gets any more efficient, and that the reason to load up on the low intensities is to limit fatigue.

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Old 02-02-23, 08:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
The problem with that article is the lack of definition of terms. Every college dorm discussion always begins with the mandatory definition of terms. He should know better, or alternatively, is purposely not defining his terms in order to push a point which may not stand up under scrutiny.
I think you may be trying to read too much into it. He's talking about riders who typically back off on all their intensity during the winter months and only do LSD rides, typically long, steady weekend rides. I know loads of club guys who take this kind of approach, so maybe I found it easy to relate to. Henderson is just saying that if you take that approach then you need a lot more volume than you might think to gain an advantage over someone following a lower volume plan with some degree of intensity. He was saying that around 16 hours per week of LSD is the minimum required to gain a significant advantage over someone following a structured interval plan. He also alludes to the fact that you can't do everything i.e. high volume and lots of intensity.

The only reason I even brought this up was in response to ThermionicScott talking about working easy trainer sessions into his winter schedule, as a reminder that if you go down that route you really need to commit to a high volume to reap the benefit. The link to Couzens is interesting and the training volume discussed in that article appears huge. The graph of Cardiac Volume vs Training Volume scales from 13.6-20 hours. Then the athlete who went from 50-70+ V02 max had a training volume of 20+ hours biased heavily toward "Easy" and "Aerobic" riding i.e. 15 hours of those alone. So it's actually consistent with the "garbage" in the Wahoo article.

In Couzens summary: "In fact, when I model the average response to training across the entire group that I have VO2 and long-term training data for, I see an average shift from 54 to 67 ml/kg/min (a change of 24%) when a long-term, high-volume training plan is undertaken." The key words here are long-term and high-volume.

He then goes on to say: "Conversely, when a short-term, high-intensity training plan is undertaken, the model shows a maximal increase (in 4-6 weeks) to only 63 ml/kg/min (16%)." Actually sounds like quite a good deal to me?

The whole point of Couzens article is to demonstrate that VO2 max is more trainable than we thought IF we are prepared to put in some serious training volume over a long period of time. Henderson is merely pointing out that you are better off with a lower volume, higher intensity plan if you are time-crunched or, for any other reason, not prepared to commit to 15 hours/week of mostly base riding volume.

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Old 02-02-23, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
The whole point of Couzens article is to demonstrate that VO2 max is more trainable than we thought IF we are prepared to put in some serious training volume over a long period of time.
Could the "secret sauce" of training simply be volume, unrelated to the intensity?

That's a possible conclusion from that Couzens article on how focusing on increased easier training substantially increased VO2max.

Look at that training graph for a single athlete, year 0 (VO2max 53.1) and year 3 (VO2max 74.6).




Something that jumps out immediately: the red (year 3, high VO2max) bars are a lot longer than the yellow (year 0, low VO2max) bars, implying the athlete was simply training longer.

I summed up the heights of the yellow and red bars, and the red bar total is 86% more. Implying that Year 3 had whopping 86% more training time. Quite the increase.

Given that amount of training volume, is it such a surprise that the athlete's VO2max increased?

Athlete: I'm not happy with my performance, what can I do?
Coach: Can you double your total training time next year?
Athlete: Yeah, I guess so.
Coach: Okay, then do that.
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Old 02-02-23, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
I think you may be trying to read too much into it. He's talking about riders who typically back off on all their intensity during the winter months and only do LSD rides, typically long, steady weekend rides. I know loads of club guys who take this kind of approach, so maybe I found it easy to relate to. Henderson is just saying that if you take that approach then you need a lot more volume than you might think to gain an advantage over someone following a lower volume plan with some degree of intensity. He was saying that around 16 hours per week of LSD is the minimum required to gain a significant advantage over someone following a structured interval plan. He also alludes to the fact that you can't do everything i.e. high volume and lots of intensity.
I agree with that. A couple years ago or so, I tried to go Polarized in October/November, did nothing but sit on my rollers just below VT1, put is as many hours of that as I could stomach. Didn't work as well as my usual plan. No energy for strength training, no hiking. The percentage of Z5 that worked out to wasn't enough to do anything.

My trad plan gradually introduces Z3, until by April every ride will have Z3 in it, then it goes to Z4 but there's still a lot of VT1 in it. The gradual introduction of intensity works for me. So I think we agree.
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Old 02-02-23, 11:29 AM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse View Post
Could the "secret sauce" of training simply be volume, unrelated to the intensity?
I guess that's his conclusion. Maximum volume, which also implies low intensity. The rub is that most people simply don't have the time and/or inclination to do that much volume long term. That single athlete (who was a freak outlier anyway) was training with World Tour Pro volume for 3 years.
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Old 02-02-23, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
The only reason I even brought this up was in response to ThermionicScott talking about working easy trainer sessions into his winter schedule, as a reminder that if you go down that route you really need to commit to a high volume to reap the benefit. The link to Couzens is interesting and the training volume discussed in that article appears huge. The graph of Cardiac Volume vs Training Volume scales from 13.6-20 hours. Then the athlete who went from 50-70+ V02 max had a training volume of 20+ hours biased heavily toward "Easy" and "Aerobic" riding i.e. 15 hours of those alone. So it's actually consistent with the "garbage" in the Wahoo article.
I may have muddled the discussion with that, because my baseline for winter training is essentially zip some years, so practically *anything* I can do would be an improvement.

What I really need is a computer desk at my trainer, so I can ride all day while I work.
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Old 02-02-23, 08:28 PM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse View Post
Could the "secret sauce" of training simply be volume, unrelated to the intensity?
The featured athlete was training at very particular intensities. IME if one wants to do effective "low intensity" (ha-ha) training, it should be just below VT1. That's usually around 75% FTP or 80% HRmax I think one gets the most aerobic power increase right there. And remember, this is all HR data. As one becomes more aerobically fit, one's ;power at VT1 goes up and HR drift goes down, so more sustainable power. I think the term "low-intensity" is misleading. Yes, intensity on some numeric scale is lower, but the perceived intensity isn't all that low. On a long ride, say 9+ saddle hours, going as hard as I can, my average in-saddle HR will be below my VT1. I think that's quite normal. That would obviously not be the case in a crit, but the Couzens example is from an Ironman. That changes everything.
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Old 02-03-23, 06:56 AM
  #35  
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What I found after years of low intensity riding - mostly Z2 with limited work in the other extremes.

Gains are slow, very slow. I can ride longer at the same level of effort, but not harder.
Any time spent in upper zones - like a quick sprint or a spirited short climb - ends my day.
Any time spent in the middle zones is a crapshoot on duration and recovery ability.
I could ride at say 185w+/- all day. I could easily ride at 175w for an hour. But riding at 210+/-w for an hour was very difficult.
And reached a plateau.

After just one 3 week block of intensity, VO2 and threshold intervals, my Z2 numbers increased slightly, but my tolerance for harder efforts increased significantly. I can better recover from sprints climbs, and I just did 1.5 hours at 225w & felt much better after.

Z2 has its place, but without the crazy pro levels of volume, it also has its limits.
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Old 02-04-23, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
The featured athlete was training at very particular intensities. IME if one wants to do effective "low intensity" (ha-ha) training, it should be just below VT1. That's usually around 75% FTP or 80% HRmax I think one gets the most aerobic power increase right there. And remember, this is all HR data. As one becomes more aerobically fit, one's ;power at VT1 goes up and HR drift goes down, so more sustainable power. I think the term "low-intensity" is misleading. Yes, intensity on some numeric scale is lower, but the perceived intensity isn't all that low. On a long ride, say 9+ saddle hours, going as hard as I can, my average in-saddle HR will be below my VT1. I think that's quite normal. That would obviously not be the case in a crit, but the Couzens example is from an Ironman. That changes everything.
I agree that is not an easy pace to maintain. In the Couzens case study, I presume that is the "Aerobic" category on the chart, where his volume was just over 6 hours per week. I would imagine the "Easy" 9 hours per week were at a lower level e.g. 60-65% FTP. Otherwise it's not really "easy".
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Old 02-04-23, 02:03 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
In the Couzens case study, I presume that is the "Aerobic" category on the chart, where his volume was just over 6 hours per week. I would imagine the "Easy" 9 hours per week were at a lower level e.g. 60-65% FTP. Otherwise it's not really "easy".
That 6-zone Couzens chart is a bit unusual. It looks like Couzens usually defines 5 heart rate zones:
  1. Recovery (Sub AeT)
  2. Aerobic base (AeT - VT1)
  3. "Specific endurance conditioning for event" (what's wrong with calling it "tempo"?)
  4. Threshold (sub OBLA/VT2)
  5. VO2/Speed (VT2+)
His chart (shown up-thread) included another zone called "Easy", which is what exactly? Perhaps Couzens was embarrassed by how much time his athlete was spending in zone 2, so he invented a new zone to split up the zone 2 time and make the graph look less wacky.
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Old 02-04-23, 06:22 PM
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I wanted to make a better contribution than I did previously but a lot of what I do with my training group is pretty specific for me and what events I want to do. My coach suggested watching this video on zone 2 training.
It is a GCN video and it quite long. It discusses riding slower to go faster and is by Tadej Pogača's coach. What is not to like?

First, my zone 2 is pretty hard. I mean one might think it is zone 3. Second, Tadej's coach talks about how hard Tadej rides in zone 2. Here is what I think. The pro/elite coaches are thinking lactate in the blood - not heart rate or power. My coach suggested breathing as a marker but the break point is where conversation is just starting to be affected. For me, that is a pretty high HR / power. It is not much later that I am at threshold. So a Coggan zone 3 for me would get compressed.

So I think to follow this video advice, one needs a lactate meter or a testing lab and find the point where lactate begins to accumulate in the blood and that is the level of effort that Tadej trains at for his ride slow to go fast. Yeah right.

Here is the coach back for another ahem "clarification" of zone 2 training. I thought the first video was okay but this one, IMO, he comes across a little goofy with his stick shift car analogy. Everyone is having the same problem...what exactly is zone 2 compared to other methods such as Coggan and others. It is about as clear as mud to me.

And I burst out laughing when the GCN guy tried it in prep for cyclocross and it did not turn out great. The coach then says well yeah you have to include some threshold and VO2. Also, the coach talks about absolutely not going hard during a zone 2 ride and explains why. If one wants to add higher power, add it at the end. Watch these videos at your own risk and reward. They are long and may or may not be what most people need. Zone 2 Schmone 2


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Old 02-06-23, 10:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Hermes View Post
I wanted to make a better contribution than I did previously but a lot of what I do with my training group is pretty specific for me and what events I want to do. My coach suggested watching this video on zone 2 training. It is a GCN video and it quite long. It discusses riding slower to go faster and is by Tadej Pogača's coach. What is not to like?

First, my zone 2 is pretty hard. I mean one might think it is zone 3. Second, Tadej's coach talks about how hard Tadej rides in zone 2. Here is what I think. The pro/elite coaches are thinking lactate in the blood - not heart rate or power. My coach suggested breathing as a marker but the break point is where conversation is just starting to be affected. For me, that is a pretty high HR / power. It is not much later that I am at threshold. So a Coggan zone 3 for me would get compressed.

So I think to follow this video advice, one needs a lactate meter or a testing lab and find the point where lactate begins to accumulate in the blood and that is the level of effort that Tadej trains at for his ride slow to go fast. Yeah right.

Here is the coach back for another ahem "clarification" of zone 2 training. I thought the first video was okay but this one, IMO, he comes across a little goofy with his stick shift car analogy. Everyone is having the same problem...what exactly is zone 2 compared to other methods such as Coggan and others. It is about as clear as mud to me.

And I burst out laughing when the GCN guy tried it in prep for cyclocross and it did not turn out great. The coach then says well yeah you have to include some threshold and VO2. Also, the coach talks about absolutely not going hard during a zone 2 ride and explains why. If one wants to add higher power, add it at the end. Watch these videos at your own risk and reward. They are long and may or may not be what most people need. Zone 2 Schmone 2
I only watched the second video, which I though was very good. A few things I found especially interesting:

1) I didn't realize that lactate was preferentially used by the mitochondria.

2) When he talked about HR drift at steady power, he didn't mention breathing rate drift. I go by breathing rate and ride, like he says he does, as close to VT1 as I can. I figure that's really the top of what he's calling Z2. If I hold power steady in my current terrible state of conditioning, I see HR drift w/r to power, but I don't notice much breathing rate drift. I think if I held it long enough, I'd start to see that too. I wish he'd discussed breathing rate drift and it's relation to lactate. I don't back it off to hold HR steady, which he seems to agree with.

3) When doing Z2 outdoors, I used to like to go hard on a little hill maybe every 30', real hard. I did it because it felt good after the hill. But I guess that was because I started burning sugar.. No, no, no. Got it.

4) I'm going to revise all my indoor intervals to put the last interval at the end of the ride with 5' of recovery after.

5) The good doctor is just a kid. He hasn't seen the future yet.
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Old 02-07-23, 05:51 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by Hermes View Post
I wanted to make a better contribution than I did previously but a lot of what I do with my training group is pretty specific for me and what events I want to do. My coach suggested watching this video on zone 2 training. It is a GCN video and it quite long. It discusses riding slower to go faster and is by Tadej Pogača's coach. What is not to like?

First, my zone 2 is pretty hard. I mean one might think it is zone 3. Second, Tadej's coach talks about how hard Tadej rides in zone 2. Here is what I think. The pro/elite coaches are thinking lactate in the blood - not heart rate or power. My coach suggested breathing as a marker but the break point is where conversation is just starting to be affected. For me, that is a pretty high HR / power. It is not much later that I am at threshold. So a Coggan zone 3 for me would get compressed.

So I think to follow this video advice, one needs a lactate meter or a testing lab and find the point where lactate begins to accumulate in the blood and that is the level of effort that Tadej trains at for his ride slow to go fast. Yeah right.

Here is the coach back for another ahem "clarification" of zone 2 training. I thought the first video was okay but this one, IMO, he comes across a little goofy with his stick shift car analogy. Everyone is having the same problem...what exactly is zone 2 compared to other methods such as Coggan and others. It is about as clear as mud to me.

And I burst out laughing when the GCN guy tried it in prep for cyclocross and it did not turn out great. The coach then says well yeah you have to include some threshold and VO2. Also, the coach talks about absolutely not going hard during a zone 2 ride and explains why. If one wants to add higher power, add it at the end. Watch these videos at your own risk and reward. They are long and may or may not be what most people need. Zone 2 Schmone 2
There are better videos with Inigo and Dr Attia - they really deep dive into Zone 2 and explore the benefits beyond the bike.

Inigo is clear that high intensity is required. That training blocks are required - but most of the foundation is simple Z2 base training.

The problem for many of us regular Joe's - staying in Z2 on the road can be nearly impossible. The older you get, the lower your max HR, the tighter your power zones - the easier it becomes to creep out of Z2.

My Z2 tops out at 130bpm and about 185w. This is based off the conversation pace/breathing method, the % of my threshold BPM as listed on my Garmen, a % of my FTP - numbers not from a lab, but they all line up to a point.

Just leaving my neighborhood for a basic ride, no matter what direction = going up short climbs of 12-16%. Bam, out of Z2 right out of the gate - even 1x11 gearing on my cross bike, at 4mph I am at 300w+. My local bike path also has short 10% grades mixed in over the length of the trail. I can keep my HR right at the edge of Z2, but not the power.

Where some of these pros may have a Z2 range of 150-250w, capping out at 300w+++. They can climb Ventoux in Z2. They can ride any terrain, any headwind - all day long in Z2.

I can only really do Z2 properly on the trainer. And I'm not riding the recommended 10-12+ hour a week min on the flipping trainer. My head would explode!
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Old 02-07-23, 09:56 AM
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I'm in the same situation as Jughed - I can't get far from anywhere in this area without encountering a hill and Z2 is gone. So I ride my rollers a lot, even in summer. I do put a 2 hour cap on it. Just how it is. There are flat roads, but they of course run in valley bottoms, have heavy traffic and mostly no shoulder. I used to ride them 20 years ago, but this area keeps building up and I don't ride them anymore.
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Old 02-07-23, 06:23 PM
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If you talk to good coaches or ask Dr. San Millŗn directly, I think they will agree that end-to-end Z2 (or sub-LT1) is the intention, not necessarily the result, for endurance rides outdoors by regular shmoes. They will also tell you that the most important number is the RPE and not to get too hung up on power zones. I have heard San Millŗn say he rides without power or HR because his RPE is so well calibrated. I am trying to get there too.
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Old 02-08-23, 04:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Hermes View Post

And I burst out laughing when the GCN guy tried it in prep for cyclocross and it did not turn out great. The coach then says well yeah you have to include some threshold and VO2. Also, the coach talks about absolutely not going hard during a zone 2 ride and explains why. If one wants to add higher power, add it at the end. Watch these videos at your own risk and reward. They are long and may or may not be what most people need. Zone 2 Schmone 2
I watched the second video and found it a bit confusing to be honest. My current plan consists mainly of short VO2 max doses and Z2 rides in the 2-3 hour range. Total weekly volume averaging only 5-7 hours. It has been very effective for me this winter. I've done a few hard Zwift races up to 2 hour duration and set PRs everywhere. I've gone from a mid-high cat C at to a strong cat B over the last 3 months. FTP and VO2 max power has increased significantly - actually the highest I've seen in the last 3 years. It will be interesting to see how longer rides go in spring, but I think it will be good. I usually start doing longer Z2 outdoor rides (3-5 hours) and continue with higher intensity intervals and the occasional Zwift race to keep sharp and punchy.

I thought it was interesting what the GDN guy said about feeling a bit flat going into his Cross race. I find those VO2 max intervals very effective in the right dosage.

I don't know if this is a good idea or not, but if I'm short of time I might decide to sub a 3 hour Z2 ride for a slightly harder 1 hour Z3 effort. Intuitively it feels like a more effective use of an hour, but maybe it isn't. I guess the question is what is the minimum single dose of Z2 to see a benefit? Is it an hour, 90 mins or longer? For me 90 mins seems like the tipping point where I feel like a Z2 ride was worth it. Below that I feel like I might be better off going a bit harder. I've done this quite a lot this winter due to a busy family life and I feel good for it.
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Old 02-08-23, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
I watched the second video and found it a bit confusing to be honest. My current plan consists mainly of short VO2 max doses and Z2 rides in the 2-3 hour range. Total weekly volume averaging only 5-7 hours. It has been very effective for me this winter. I've done a few hard Zwift races up to 2 hour duration and set PRs everywhere. I've gone from a mid-high cat C at to a strong cat B over the last 3 months. FTP and VO2 max power has increased significantly - actually the highest I've seen in the last 3 years. It will be interesting to see how longer rides go in spring, but I think it will be good. I usually start doing longer Z2 outdoor rides (3-5 hours) and continue with higher intensity intervals and the occasional Zwift race to keep sharp and punchy.

I thought it was interesting what the GDN guy said about feeling a bit flat going into his Cross race. I find those VO2 max intervals very effective in the right dosage.

I don't know if this is a good idea or not, but if I'm short of time I might decide to sub a 3 hour Z2 ride for a slightly harder 1 hour Z3 effort. Intuitively it feels like a more effective use of an hour, but maybe it isn't. I guess the question is what is the minimum single dose of Z2 to see a benefit? Is it an hour, 90 mins or longer? For me 90 mins seems like the tipping point where I feel like a Z2 ride was worth it. Below that I feel like I might be better off going a bit harder. I've done this quite a lot this winter due to a busy family life and I feel good for it.
Those VO2max doses - how many minutes in power zone 5 per week do you think you've been doing? Years ago a rider from my weekly group started doing crits. He got fast, fast. He said it was because his racing was all about repeats of Z5. I searched YT for "Inigo and Dr Attia". Wow, there's hours of that which I could be watching instead of riding.
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Old 02-09-23, 11:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
Those VO2max doses - how many minutes in power zone 5 per week do you think you've been doing? Years ago a rider from my weekly group started doing crits. He got fast, fast. He said it was because his racing was all about repeats of Z5. I searched YT for "Inigo and Dr Attia". Wow, there's hours of that which I could be watching instead of riding.
Good question. Over the last month Iíve averaged about 40 mins per week in Z5. As a percentage of my total monthly time Z5 was just over 13%. Looking back to last year it was typically under 5%. So quite a lot more focus on Z5 now.

Both my FTP and VO2 power metrics are trending significantly upward after sitting on a plateau for about 18 months. Itís too early to say what effect this will have on my endurance as Iím not doing any really long, hard rides yet. But Iím certainly at the top of my game on sub-2 hour rides.
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Old 02-09-23, 01:52 PM
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Another question - Coggan Zones.

My power and HR numbers in no way line up with that chart. My threshold HR per Garmin is 147 BPM @ 255W.

Zone 2 Watts should be 142-191, Max Z2 HR should be 122. I can ride at a conversation pace, nose breathing @ 175W, 130BPM. Well inside of Z2 power wise, well outside of Z2 HR wise.

My Z1 HR should be less than 100BPM according to that chart - I'm barely pedaling along at 100BPM.

My max HR has always been low, highest I've seen in my 50's 166, highest in my 20's was under 180. A very tight HR range.

The zones do not match up at all for me, so now I am even more confused. Follow power or HR? I've been following power for the past 1.5 years.
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Old 02-09-23, 02:36 PM
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Here are some ideas for you and questions for you to think about but not required to answer.

Originally Posted by Jughed View Post
Another question - Coggan Zones.

My power and HR numbers in no way line up with that chart. My threshold HR per Garmin is 147 BPM @ 255W.

I have a Garmin 830. It provides me with many numbers and summaries of my rides that I consider totally bogus. YMMV. Have you actually ridden one hour at 255 watts average power and noted your HR? The one hour standard is a difficult one and usually requires cyclists to practice the one hour interval to get it right. I am suspicious that you FTP power is not 255 watts.

Zone 2 Watts should be 142-191, Max Z2 HR should be 122. I can ride at a conversation pace, nose breathing @ 175W, 130BPM. Well inside of Z2 power wise, well outside of Z2 HR wise.

Not surprising. I am similar in power and HR when I am peaking. I use the 130 hr as a benchmark.

My Z1 HR should be less than 100BPM according to that chart - I'm barely pedaling along at 100BPM.

My HR is very seldom under 100 and if I put in any force it goes up. I see a big disconnect between HR and power zones at lower power. I ignore them.

My max HR has always been low, highest I've seen in my 50's 166, highest in my 20's was under 180. A very tight HR range.

My HR during an individual pursuit at the velodrome spinning 110 rpm is 172. My max HR at the end of 500 meter all out sprint from a standing start spinning 135 rpm at the finish will be 185. Those metrics are not of much value when I am riding time trials on the road at 85 rpm and relying heavily on my slow twitch muscle fibers. (I have 3 slow twitch fibers and 10 million fast twitch)

The zones do not match up at all for me, so now I am even more confused. Follow power or HR? I've been following power for the past 1.5 years.
My coach is a perceived effort fan and always reminds me that it is NOT about the performance during training. It is doing the complete workout at a perceived effort that allows one to compete the workout. Looking at HR and Power daily and trying to set PRs and better FTP and etc is a fools errand.

I am a power junkie but I have learned not to chase power numbers during training. When my coach prescribes a max effort I know what that feels like in my legs. If it is an endurance ride, I know that that feels like. The same is true for a time trial or VO2 work.

This week I have to get in 3 to 4 interval session and 2 endurance rides with a 15 to 30 minute threshold effort. Part of the work in doing this type of prescription is laying out the course, which bike to ride and then when will I do it. I am only going for 2 interval sessions not 3 to 4.

Interval sessions are like taking a drug. How big is the dose and what is the frequency. I took the correct dose on Tuesday and Thursday. If I do another one tomorrow, I may not do very well over the weekend on the threshold effort. And next week, I will be at the track with him which will be even harder. So I know how I feel and how I respond to stimulus and recovery.

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Old 02-09-23, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Good question. Over the last month Iíve averaged about 40 mins per week in Z5. As a percentage of my total monthly time Z5 was just over 13%. Looking back to last year it was typically under 5%. So quite a lot more focus on Z5 now.

Both my FTP and VO2 power metrics are trending significantly upward after sitting on a plateau for about 18 months. Itís too early to say what effect this will have on my endurance as Iím not doing any really long, hard rides yet. But Iím certainly at the top of my game on sub-2 hour rides.
OMG. IME it won't hurt your endurance, but it sure can bite hard if you go over. Though if you keep this up, it will cut into it. I see why you do so well on so few hours. I only do that sort of thing to peak before a taper but I'm more delicate.
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Old 02-09-23, 07:40 PM
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Riffing on Hermes' 47:
Only for zone 2 . . .I know where my VT1 is just by breathing. Watts and HR may vary day by day, but IMO breathing is the physiological point, which of course numbers are not. Once I'm warmed up I go out and look for VT1. Then I look at power and HR just below that. As the workout continues, I hold that power and ignore how my legs feel and what my HR does, within reason. Breathing and power seem to be closely linked. If HR seems to go way out of zone, I might back it off. Leg discomfort I put down to lack of conditioning, probably never experienced by Hermes.

That seems to work very well for me. My VT1 watts keep going up and HR goes down. The most valuable time is that last 15' that I really, really don't want to do. Eventually, I reach a stasis point, good time to add more intensity. Z2 results are particularly noticeable to me right now, as I'm recovering from 4 months of almost no training.
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Old 02-09-23, 08:22 PM
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VT1 is interesting but what about lactate? And what if you do not accumulate lactate in your blood. Then what?
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