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Why does everybody pass me, and what can I do to improve my speed ?

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Why does everybody pass me, and what can I do to improve my speed ?

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Old 11-03-05, 12:55 AM
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poolhouse
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Why does everybody pass me, and what can I do to improve my speed ?

Why does everybody pass me, and what can I do to improve my speed ?

I ride my roadbike for 3 hours every Saturday, 45 minutes of that time is up a mountain. I usually get passed by 3 or 4 people and pass maybe 1 person at most.

My VO2 max last year was 54.4.
This year it was 61. 8.
My 1/2 marathon (13.1 miles) time last year was 9 1/2 minutes/mile
I am 46 years old. 6'2", 188 pounds.
I run 2 times during the week for 1 hour; 4 minutes of that hour are sprints of 25 seconds followed by 10 seconds of jogging.

What is most depressing is getting passed by mountain bikes with knobby tires.

Is this an endurance problem or a strength problem ?
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Old 11-03-05, 02:05 AM
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Do you only ride on Saturdays? If so, you'd want to put in a little more training... You need to increase your strength and aerobic capacity. Do sprints and intervals.
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Old 11-03-05, 02:19 AM
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Powerful Pete
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Only riding once a week will pretty much ensure that most riders will pass you. You need more time on the bike (try adding two additional rides a week - Sunday should be easy and maybe a mid-week). No need to have them all last for three hours - if you can plan one shorter, more intense ride. You will see your capacity for speed work improve significantly over time.
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Old 11-03-05, 03:12 AM
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One ride a week ain't gonna do it. Up it to three, preferably four times a week for shorter periods, and work on intensity levels. As above, throw in an interval day to really start pushing your thresholds up. When your body gets used to short, HARD workouts, it can sustain moderate workouts longer.
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Old 11-03-05, 06:20 AM
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lws
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Lose 10 pounds and 15 years.
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Old 11-03-05, 07:21 AM
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Originally Posted by lws
Lose 10 pounds and 15 years.
hGH?
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Old 11-03-05, 07:29 AM
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NoRacer
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Visit here:

http://home.hia.no/~stephens/

Read the entire section on exercise physiology, especially taking in the information about specificity of training.
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Old 11-03-05, 07:57 AM
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Ride more.
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Old 11-03-05, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by poolhouse
Why does everybody pass me, and what can I do to improve my speed ?
I ride on similar weekend rides.
But I also ride to work every day. Its only 18mi RT, but since I do it, it meant that the first time I went out with the group for a 50mi ride I had not problem keeping up with the lead.

I am absolutely certain that if I only rode on weekends I would start to slow down.

Al
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Old 11-03-05, 11:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Bikepacker67
Originally Posted by lws
Lose 10 pounds and 15 years.

hGH?
lws waxes ironical, I'm sure, but it is possible to "lose" years. Forget the numbers. Age is (largely) mental. I'm down to about 17.

"I was so much older then / I'm younger than that now"

Last edited by budster; 11-03-05 at 11:10 AM. Reason: word flow
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Old 11-03-05, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by huhenio
Ride more.
Best. Advice. Ever.
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Old 11-03-05, 11:12 AM
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lws
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Originally Posted by Bikepacker67
hGH?
Yeah, the latter part is the toughest. I'm down to 40 now, but I've still got another ten years to go.
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Old 11-03-05, 12:31 PM
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MichaelW
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Why does everybody pass me
Because they are riding faster than you

There are a few ways to ride faster:
1. Develop more power. Train harder, smarter and use better drugs but dont expect a huge increase in power output. Mainly, you develope an improvement in endurance.
2. Use your power more efficienty: Look at your pedalling technique and your pedal system (platform/toe clip/clipless).
2. Reduce drag. This is the biggie. With the same power, if you use a more aerodynamic riding position, you will go faster. You can also make smaller, but still useful reduction in drag with changes to your bike, esp using aerobars and racing wheels and tyres.
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Old 11-03-05, 01:24 PM
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You have received some good advise. If you are happy riding "only" 3hree hours or don't have the time to ride more I wouldn't worry about it. No matter how hard you try someone will always pass you. As the weeks and months go by you will get better. I am in a situation where I just don't have the time to ride more than 25-30 miles which takes about 2wo hours. I figure I'm still getting a great workout. As I said if you really feel the need to get much better you have received some good suggestions.
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Old 11-03-05, 01:31 PM
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poolhouse
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My first reaction to the ride more often suggestion was "but I run 2-3 times during the week and do sprints during those runs...(and core strength training) " So my next question is "isn't running kinda/sorta like riding, especially since I am doing interval training during the runs ? Isn't it all related to VO2 max and METS and Max HR and if it is, then isn't running hard just as good (or better) as biking hard?

(I am reading the http://home.hia.no/~stephens/ now)

My gut feeling is that it must be different somehow or else I would not be so slow.

The other question I have is, does anybody use an HRM as part of their bike training ?
I have tried using an HRM during running and during biking, and it works ok during running because I can control the energy expenditure ok and increase/decrease BPM at will. On the bike, it appears that the terrain controls my BPM. Hills make my BPM skyrocket and flats make it slow. So I don't use the HRM during rides anymore. Maybe the polar S720 with the altimeter would take into consideration the hills and make the BPM reading more meaningful. However it is $280.

As far as the Hgh, I do take Soy protein 2x daily which causes increased HGH production and allows me to eat less and lose weight while keeping muscle.

I am getting faster, just not as fast as I would like.
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Old 11-03-05, 02:30 PM
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self-perceived exertion level is as accurate as an HRM.
Running is "sort of like" biking, but not entirely.
A lot of the effect of training is sport-specific. It's not just VO2max and METs and maxHR - it's also about efficiency, and training your muscle-memory to make those perfect little circls. It's about developing certain little muscles that limit your ability to use the big ones that running and cycling both develop.

Anyway. You don't have any need to be fast, just do whatever sport you enjoy and stay fit.
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Old 11-03-05, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by poolhouse
My first reaction to the ride more often suggestion was "but I run 2-3 times during the week and do sprints during those runs...(and core strength training) " So my next question is "isn't running kinda/sorta like riding, especially since I am doing interval training during the runs ? Isn't it all related to VO2 max and METS and Max HR and if it is, then isn't running hard just as good (or better) as biking hard?
Running is more a "pure fitness" sport than biking. That is, the speed of the runner is primarily due to this fitness. However, biking has more mental and equipment factors involved. Picking the right gear for the terrain, spinning smoothly and efficiently in a circle, positioning your body on the bike aerodynamically plays a major role in your speed aside from just pure fitness. Couple more questions on your running:

1. how long of runs are you doing? 2-3 hours at a time?
2. running sprints? Are they really sprints? All out 100% efforts as fast and as far as you can?
3. what's your HR at the end of these sprints?
4. what percentage of this max-HR are your running intervals? for how long?

Also running uses higher peak-forces on fewer muscle groups than cycling. There are about 10 main leg muscles used in cycling, running only works 2-4 of them. What you will want to do is practice the mental techniques of spinning in circles to make the neural connections to recruit those dormant muscles into your pedal stroke. You'll go faster, generate more power without having to exert your quad muscles any harder than they are working now.

Gearing comes into play here as well, are you spinning fast 90-100rpms? If you match your pedaling speed with the guys that are passing you, that'd be a good start.
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Old 11-03-05, 06:06 PM
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Let some air out of the other's tires. That should slow them down.
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Old 11-03-05, 09:07 PM
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I agree with geraldatwork, I have received some good advice. I am only riding once a week but will try to move it up to 2 times per week. It is not that I worry about it but...I am putting ALOT of effort into my riding/training and I would like to be sure it is the most efficient effort it can be.

I think DANNOXYZ is getting to the point. The intervals I am doing are based on this article where a study showed a 14% increase in VO2 max in 6 weeks: http://www.cs.unm.edu/~wneumann/file...lla_cardio.pdf

1) My runs are usually 6 miles in 1 hour, but once every 2 weeks I do 2.5 hours.
2) I am going at 95-100% of my ability when I sprint for 20 seconds followed by 10 seconds of jogging repeated 8 times =4 minutes of sprints. Like the article says, these are killers. They normally leave me so exhausted that I cannot imagine finishing the run but somehow I always do. That is one reason I am surprised so many people pass me on my rides.

3) My heart rate goes to 165-180 BPM when I do these.Also on my rides up the 45 minute mountain, my heart rate goes up to 165-170 range for 2 or 3 minute intervals about 6 times up the mountain.
4) 4 minutes of sprinting during a 1 hour run calculates to sprinting 6.67 percent of the time in sprints.

My reps when climbing are around 70. I will try and pick it up a bit... but I am usually so tired and winded it will require some determination.

As lws says, perceived effort is as accurate as an HRM but there is no memory and I am not sure how to record it. It is easier for me to remember/write down BPM. Graphs tend to make me work harder anyway.

Anyway, I have been road biking for 2 year now as an adult. (when I was 10-15 doesn't count does it?) It adds a new dimension to workouts and is quite interesting. It is one of the benefits of moving to California. It is alot easier on the knee joints than running. It is one of the reasons my VO2 max has increased 12% over the past year and I have lost alot of fat around the abs.
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Old 11-03-05, 09:15 PM
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Anecdotal data: When the Air Force switched from a 1.5 mile run fitness test to an ergonometric bicycle test, a lot of dedicated runners had trouble passing the new test. Running just doesn't seem to help one's cycling that much. On the other hand, I've found that cycling helps my running. Go figure.

YMMV.

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Old 11-03-05, 09:54 PM
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TO Bike Faster:
One day a week ride at a low cadence (70 or below) in a high gear. This will build power and muscle.
ONe day a week do intervals - find a flat stretch and ride at 85-90% of Max HR for 3 minutes. Recover ride for 10 minutes. Repeat a few more times.
ONe day a week do sprint intervals - get out of the saddle - go as fast as you possibly can - kick in to a high cadence. Do the sprint for about 30 seconds. Do a few minute recovery. Repeat.
One day a week do a nice easy ride averaging a relatively low HR - 120 or so.
Do a long ride one day a week.
Maybe substitute the sprint day every once in awhile for sprint intervals.

To get faster - ride faster.
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Old 11-03-05, 10:01 PM
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Run less, ride more.

If you want to get better at climbing, climb more. You sound like you're dedicated to getting better. I was like you 12 months ago, being a 220lb clydesdale I was regularly dropped up hills by the same riders that struggled to stay on my wheel on the flats. All I did was to find a longer hillier route to/from work and twice a week I throw a 10lb weight in my trunk bag, put on my HRM and ride that hilly route out of the saddle at my LT the entire way. It's a 2 hour painfest. The more pain you can take the better you'll climb.

I still weigh 220lb but have lost over 3 inches off my waist, my legs are significantly bigger, and I very rarely get dropped on any hill any more. I still do the climbing training and I intend to get better.
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