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Winter Training Ideas

Old 02-09-23, 09:26 PM
  #51  
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Originally Posted by Hermes
VT1 is interesting but what about lactate? And what if you do not accumulate lactate in your blood. Then what?
I don't have a meter and I'm NOT getting paid to ride . . . but my understanding is that the start of lactate accumulation, like ~1 mmol/L, is located just below VT1. I don't have the research at hand, but that's my memory. As we see in the above videos, if we have low lactate levels that biases our mitochondria toward burning fatty acids and they get better at what they do. Sort of the basis of long endurance. Of course there's some lactate, but not enough to slow the mitochondria's acid burning by much.
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Old 02-10-23, 04:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Hermes
Here are some ideas for you and questions for you to think about but not required to answer.



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.

Training is an art form.

Great post - thanks. Like I said, I am just learning and there is a bunch to absorb, especially without a coach or being able to fuel properly (limited carbs).

And I can get OCD/single focus about things. As a pure recreational old guy, I probably need to scale back the OCD a bit & just do my workouts, ride for fun...

Max power for an hour - I'm not crazy enough to actually try that. That 255w is based off 20 min power/Garmin calculations of my interval efforts. I use 245w conservatively to set my zones. I've done an hour at 227w with 142HR, so I figure 245 isn't out of reach if I wanted...

Learning as I go - did 2x15 threshold intervals at @245w this week - spot on effort with no ill effects. Completed the workout and felt great. Attempted 4x4 VO2 intervals at 310w+ and failed after the second interval - power and HR zone was too high for the session. I've reduced overall volume for this training block vs the last one and I feel much better after week two - I may attempt week three if my legs feel it.
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Old 02-10-23, 05:15 AM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy
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.
It's been interesting. I actually feel less overall fatigue than I did with higher volume and longish sweetspot intervals etc. I'm careful to take the recommended recovery days (I never do V02 sessions on consecutive days) and whole recovery weeks. I also limit my Zwift racing to no more than 2 events per week (and those would normally be in lieu of a structured VO2 max session).

This week I've started a 4 week base block, which has greatly reduced VO2 intervals and a couple of consecutive 3 hour Z2 rides (which are prescribed at 64% and 68% intensity, so comfortable but not super easy). Just one session of 20/40s per week with about 6 mins total in Z5 or above. I will inevitably end up doing more Z5 with Zwift racing, but I will be very careful to limit those - probably just 1 event per week and I may drop the 20/40 session to compensate. It's easy to get sucked into Zwift racing as it can be quite addictive and there are so many events to aim for. But I don't take it seriously or join any of the regular race events.
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Old 02-10-23, 05:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Jughed
Attempted 4x4 VO2 intervals at 310w+ and failed after the second interval - power and HR zone was too high for the session.
If you are relatively new to VO2 max intervals, I would start with shorter intervals. 4 x 4 mins at true V02 max is really hard, especially if recovery is short. You will probably find it more productive to start with sub 1 min intervals and do more of them. I do a lot of 20/40s, 30/30s and 60/60s. I rarely do V02 max intervals above 1 min unless I'm racing or preparing for a specific event where I know I will need to do them. They just hurt too much and take a lot of recovery. For me at least, I find the shorter intervals less fatiguing for the same total volume. Also if I do say a block of 60/60s and my HR isn't recovering fast enough on the rest intervals I just extend them to 60/90s i.e. keep the intensity, but extend the recovery.
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Old 02-10-23, 05:45 AM
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All you ever wanted to know about thresholds and their history is in the following link.

I suppose it goes without saying that the lactate vs VO2 curves of a couch potato and a fit endurance athletes are very different. The fit rider's curve is shifted to the right and down. In practice, it means the top of their zone 2 will be much closer to CP/FTP/MLSS levels than an unfit individual. Interestingly to me, older marathon racers can do an entire marathon at 90-95% of VO2 max (not a typo).

https://physoc.onlinelibrary.wiley.c....1113/JP279963
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Old 02-10-23, 08:24 AM
  #56  
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62
All you ever wanted to know about thresholds and their history is in the following link.

I suppose it goes without saying that the lactate vs VO2 curves of a couch potato and a fit endurance athletes are very different. The fit rider's curve is shifted to the right and down. In practice, it means the top of their zone 2 will be much closer to CP/FTP/MLSS levels than an unfit individual. Interestingly to me, older marathon racers can do an entire marathon at 90-95% of VO2 max (not a typo).

https://physoc.onlinelibrary.wiley.c....1113/JP279963
Looks like a great review. I have seen those data on old athletes too and the point was made that their VO2max was relatively low due to age, but that their aerobic capacity remained high. This is certainly welcome news for us crumbling dotards.
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Old 02-10-23, 08:52 AM
  #57  
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PeteHski I like your workouts a lot. I would not change a thing and keep doing what you are doing. However, a proviso...there is the 6 month cycle where one can achieve a peak and then there needs to be some kind of break. And at some point in time the VO2 stops working (at least for me). I am not sure why but Vo2 seems to act like some drugs. The drug is working and the patient is better and then boom, it stops working. Why? Sometimes one has to change it up. A fun way to do that is a training camp. Go for 4 ridiculously hard days of training someway in Europe. I like Mallorca.
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Old 02-10-23, 11:59 AM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by MoAlpha
I have seen those data on old athletes too and the point was made that their VO2max was relatively low due to age, but that their aerobic capacity remained high. This is certainly welcome news for us crumbling dotards.
Let's hear it for the crumbling dotards!

As one myself, I have noticed an increasing ability to go longer at a higher intensity. I'm guessing that's due to the reported boost in old guy endurance/shift upwards in lactate threshold. I'll take it.

I've also noticed that doing zone 2 rides this year (yes, I've fallen for the "zone 2" hype) is really quite easy, so maybe my top of zone 2 has also shifted upwards. Garmin says my respiration rate at upper zone 2 is ~30 bpm. Seems pretty low. The lower half of zone 3 feels pretty easy, too.

I can't tell if these zone 2 rides are having an effect. Does it make sense to raise the top end of my zone 2?

Yesterday's ride (shorter than I wanted because trainingpeaks said to dial back the volume):

Time: 1:13:00
Heart rate: 82% of LT (zone 2.7)
Respiration rate: 30 brpm
Power: 2.26 W/kg (low zone 3??)
RPE: Easy
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Old 02-10-23, 01:41 PM
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^Yes, IMO and practice.
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Old 02-10-23, 04:41 PM
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Originally Posted by terrymorse
As one myself, I have noticed an increasing ability to go longer at a higher intensity. I'm guessing that's due to the reported boost in old guy endurance/shift upwards in lactate threshold. I'll take it.
I dont think theres any old guy boost unless youre talking about the effect of additional years of training on aerobic metabolism. As I understand it, old athletes can go at a higher percentage of VO2max simply because their aerobic capacity doesnt deteriorate at the same rate as their VO2max, i.e., there is a lower denominator in the fraction. My guess is youre just training better.

Personally, Im feeling awfully slow these days.
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Old 02-11-23, 06:56 AM
  #61  
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62
Interestingly to me, older marathon racers can do an entire marathon at 90-95% of VO2 max (not a typo).
For me that would be 358W for 3+ hours! So that's about 15W higher than the Paris Roubaix winner's average power. Obviously not going to happen.
The only way I'm going to get to 95% of my VO2 max is to have a really low VO2 max power and therefore a seriously limited power band width.
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Old 02-11-23, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski
For me that would be 358W for 3+ hours! So that's about 15W higher than the Paris Roubaix winner's average power. Obviously not going to happen.
The only way I'm going to get to 95% of my VO2 max is to have a really low VO2 max power and therefore a seriously limited power band width.
I doubt you have a VO2 max of 400 watts, I doubt you have ever had it tested.

Are you arguing that there are not older (60+) marathon runners with a functional capacity of 90-95% of VO2 max? It doesn't take much research to show that is true.

But you are correct, it won't happen on your HIIT diet or as my mama used to say, can't ain't never done nothin
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Old 02-11-23, 08:42 AM
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Tommy Hughes at 91% of VO2 max for 2:27 at 60+
Ed Whitlock at 95% of VO2 max for 2:52 ish at 70+

Similar data are not well available for older cyclist, I hope to get closer to those figures
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Old 02-11-23, 09:14 AM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski
If you are relatively new to VO2 max intervals, I would start with shorter intervals. 4 x 4 mins at true V02 max is really hard, especially if recovery is short. You will probably find it more productive to start with sub 1 min intervals and do more of them. I do a lot of 20/40s, 30/30s and 60/60s. I rarely do V02 max intervals above 1 min unless I'm racing or preparing for a specific event where I know I will need to do them. They just hurt too much and take a lot of recovery. For me at least, I find the shorter intervals less fatiguing for the same total volume. Also if I do say a block of 60/60s and my HR isn't recovering fast enough on the rest intervals I just extend them to 60/90s i.e. keep the intensity, but extend the recovery.

Are you doing the short intervals at or around 4-5 min VO2 max power, or all out power?
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Old 02-11-23, 09:24 AM
  #65  
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Originally Posted by Jughed
Are you doing the short intervals at or around 4-5 min VO2 max power, or all out power?
vo2 is a maximal effort for the duration you choose. Personally I start with 6x3min efforts and work up to 4x5min efforts. If youre doing pure vo2 development I wouldnt even waste my time with the on offs, Id save that sort of thing for a race prep.
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Old 02-11-23, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62
I doubt you have a VO2 max of 400 watts, I doubt you have ever had it tested.

Are you arguing that there are not older (60+) marathon runners with a functional capacity of 90-95% of VO2 max? It doesn't take much research to show that is true.

But you are correct, it won't happen on your HIIT diet or as my mama used to say, can't ain't never done nothin
377W actually, but why would you doubt that? It's good, but not exceptional. 95% of that figure for endurance power isn't going to happen for me on any "diet". If my endurance power was 95% of FTP I would be killing it and even that is an unrealistic goal. That would be 282W, which I can only hold for sub 2 hours. 95% of VO2 max would be a joke for pretty much all pro cyclists.

I'm not arguing about what those older elite marathon runners are doing. Just commenting that they must have a very narrow power band, which makes sense for marathon running.
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Old 02-11-23, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Jughed
Are you doing the short intervals at or around 4-5 min VO2 max power, or all out power?
Yes 4-5 min power, not flat out
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Old 02-11-23, 09:34 AM
  #68  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski
377W actually, but why would you doubt that? It's good, but not exceptional. 95% of that figure for endurance power isn't going to happen for me on any "diet". If my endurance power was 95% of FTP I would be killing it and even that is an unrealistic goal. That would be 282W, which I can only hold for sub 2 hours. 95% of VO2 max would be a joke for pretty much all pro cyclists.

I'm not arguing about what those older elite marathon runners are doing. Just commenting that they must have a very narrow power band, which makes sense for marathon running.

Probably this. I have a big power band and relatively low V02/threshold power.

see it all the time on the Utube - people will have 1.5x the FTP and 60% of my peak power.

Everyone is different, and you can assume that top athletes in their respective fields, like marathon racers, are genetic freaks.
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Old 02-11-23, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62
Tommy Hughes at 91% of VO2 max for 2:27 at 60+
Ed Whitlock at 95% of VO2 max for 2:52 ish at 70+

Similar data are not well available for older cyclist, I hope to get closer to those figures
So out of interest what is your VO2 max power? Do you think you could get your 3 hour endurance power anywhere near 90-95% of it? My endurance power is at about 60% of my VO2 max power. So I have some way to go unless I reduce my VO2 max power without losing endurance power. Not sure why I would want to do that. Would my endurance power be higher at a higher percentage of a lower VO2 max power?

A quick bit of research suggests that runners have an FTP much closer to their VO2 max than cyclists. Some info here

https://www.trainingpeaks.com/blog/t...cycling-power/

It suggests elite runners have an FTP of 90+% of their VO2 max. While cyclists are down in the 80-85% range. My own FTP is at 79% of VO2 max, so I don't appear to have much headroom there.

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Old 02-11-23, 10:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Hermes
PeteHski I like your workouts a lot. I would not change a thing and keep doing what you are doing. However, a proviso...there is the 6 month cycle where one can achieve a peak and then there needs to be some kind of break. And at some point in time the VO2 stops working (at least for me). I am not sure why but Vo2 seems to act like some drugs. The drug is working and the patient is better and then boom, it stops working. Why? Sometimes one has to change it up. A fun way to do that is a training camp. Go for 4 ridiculously hard days of training someway in Europe. I like Mallorca.
This has been my experience too. At some point you hit a peak and then something has to give. Then it's very hard to push that ceiling upward in ever smaller increments. 3 steps back and 3.05 steps forward, lol.

So I do try to mix up my training quite a bit and take proper breaks after key events. I've been pretty consistent over the last 3 years and gradually getting stronger all-round. I'm only 55, so haven't hit the downward curve yet. I train more consistently now than I did in my 20's, 30's or 40's so I'm still gaining PRs along the way, even though my potential must have dropped away from those younger days.
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Old 02-11-23, 10:35 AM
  #71  
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Originally Posted by MoAlpha
I don’t think there’s any old guy boost unless you’re talking about the effect of additional years of training on aerobic metabolism. As I understand it, old athletes can go at a higher percentage of VO2max simply because their aerobic capacity doesn’t deteriorate at the same rate as their VO2max, i.e., there is a lower denominator in the fraction. My guess is you’re just training better.
I thought the "old guy boost" was both the increase of lactate threshold relative to VO2max (as MoAlpha writes above), and increased exercise economy.

So even though VO2max is declining, the two "old guy boost" features can keep your performance from declining.

I read a study somewhere that found that VO2max losses can be reduced if you maintain your training intensity & volume. Found it:

VO2max Changes of Masters Athletes in Continuing Training

Whereas higher physical activity levels were associated with higher VO2max values across all ages and in both sexes, physical activity (quartiles) did not change the slope of the VO2max drop. However, this may not hold true for (at least male) masters endurance athletes, who are able to maintain high training volumes (and likely intensity) until old age...





Figure 1: Relationship between VO2max decline and the reduction in training volume with aging of masters athletes. Circles indicate males, and triangles indicate females. Changes in the training volume explain 54% and 39% of the variance in VO2max changes in male and female masters athletes, respectively.
So that's encouraging.

On a personal note, my threshold climbs last year were quite close to my PRs, which I had set 12-15 years ago. Maybe because I have more time to ride/rest/sleep now. Or, maybe as MoAlpha suggests, I'm just training better.

This whole aging thing is mysterious, but I'm not giving up without a fight.
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Old 02-11-23, 10:38 AM
  #72  
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Originally Posted by Jughed
Probably this. I have a big power band and relatively low V02/threshold power.

see it all the time on the Utube - people will have 1.5x the FTP and 60% of my peak power.

Everyone is different, and you can assume that top athletes in their respective fields, like marathon racers, are genetic freaks.
My power curve is not that dissimilar to a pro cyclist. Unfortunately, it is all scaled down in proportion So my FTP is about 66% of a top pro at my weight. Their endurance power is no doubt at a higher percentage of their FTP, but not surprising with the amount of Z2 volume they do. But endurance power at 90-95% of their VO2 max power? I think not!
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Old 02-11-23, 04:33 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski
This has been my experience too. At some point you hit a peak and then something has to give. Then it's very hard to push that ceiling upward in ever smaller increments. 3 steps back and 3.05 steps forward, lol.

So I do try to mix up my training quite a bit and take proper breaks after key events. I've been pretty consistent over the last 3 years and gradually getting stronger all-round. I'm only 55, so haven't hit the downward curve yet. I train more consistently now than I did in my 20's, 30's or 40's so I'm still gaining PRs along the way, even though my potential must have dropped away from those younger days.
That's about when I was strongest, maybe a couple years later. I started getting dropped when I was maybe 60, so I took up rando for a few years. I was still good at that. I trained (and train if possible) from October 1 to July 30, then I take a couple months off and do random fun stuff - backpacking, boating, a few group rides, nothing serious. Well, the 10-day backpack is sorta serious even though I take it easy. Knocks me right back. When I was your age, my wife and I would joke that we should go home, shower, resupply, and go back out because we were in good shape, finally. Not anymore!
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Old 02-12-23, 11:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy
That's about when I was strongest, maybe a couple years later. I started getting dropped when I was maybe 60, so I took up rando for a few years. I was still good at that. I trained (and train if possible) from October 1 to July 30, then I take a couple months off and do random fun stuff - backpacking, boating, a few group rides, nothing serious. Well, the 10-day backpack is sorta serious even though I take it easy. Knocks me right back. When I was your age, my wife and I would joke that we should go home, shower, resupply, and go back out because we were in good shape, finally. Not anymore!
I will be more than happy if I can maintain my current fitness through to my early 60s. Im still hopeful I can continue to improve over the next few years at least. I dont worry about competition, for me its more about maintaining quality of life and I enjoy the personal challenge.

I have a small peer group who enjoy challenging Sportives/Fondos, so those are my focus. I also love mountain biking and the road fitness really makes a difference there too. Away from the bike, skiing is my other main sporting interest, although the pandemic put a temporary stop to that. Normally I would ski up to 6 weeks every winter, but totally missed the last 3 seasons. Thats what really put my focus back on to winter bike training actually.
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