Training hours per week?

For Roadies

How many hours a week do you train?

5 hours or less if I am lucky
5
14%
5 - 10 hours
16
46%
10 - 15 hours
9
26%
15 - 20 hours
4
11%
20 hours plus
1
3%
30 hours plus
0
No votes
 
Total votes : 35

Training hours per week?

Postby Hebden » Sat Oct 11, 2008 5:09 pm

Hi All,

I know some guys on here train a lot (just look at mikebytes training log!), there may even be some Pro/Elite athletes using this forum. So the results would be varied. I am curious as to how many hours the average BNA forum user trains per week.

I know it may change throughout the year and that most of us would be in our base period leading up to the spring/summer race season.

Personally, I have a wife and three kids (school age), but get to work from home in a flexible job so I get a fair amount of time to train. I averaged 14 hours per week for last month. That’s a mix of cycling, running, strength training and a little swimming. They are mostly aerobic workouts of relatively easy intensity at the moment (base training).

Would be great to hear what others manage to squeeze in and how? I know commuting is a great way to fit training into your day. I like to get up at the crack of dawn and get a 2-2.5 hour session in before the family wakes up.

Cheers!
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by BNA » Sat Oct 11, 2008 5:46 pm

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Postby chris641 » Sat Oct 11, 2008 5:46 pm

Between 10 and 15 hours a week. That consists of long aerobic rides, interval training, hill repeats and recovery rides. Also I do core strength workouts a few times a week.
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Postby Deanj » Sat Oct 11, 2008 6:03 pm

I'm anywhere between 8-20 hours a week, though for an average I'd say 12-15. Thats cycling plus 3 x weight sessions.
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Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sat Oct 11, 2008 8:14 pm

At present between 5-10 hours as I am not physically ready yet to do longer hours.

Well, what I mean is, I could probably do longer hours but I'm talking quality training, not tooling around.

Normally though I'd be 10-15 hours/week on the bike.

Time is for on bike only. Nothing else really counts for bike fitness anyway.
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Postby toolonglegs » Sun Oct 12, 2008 9:17 am

I agree Alex that nothing but time on the bike improves time on the bike...road bike that is.Sure gym etc is important for some track work / core / mtb.But I am seriously thinking of starting other stuff to combat my tendon/archilies problem...gets a bit silly when you can fly up a 15k climb like today but be puffing climbing the steps! :roll: :lol: .
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Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 12, 2008 12:27 pm

Time is so old school anyway..... :wink:
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Postby Kalgrm » Sun Oct 12, 2008 12:45 pm

Time is all relative ... Einstein said so. ;)
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Postby Pax » Sun Oct 12, 2008 1:40 pm

10 -15 for me. Commuting 2 hrs per day try to do 4 days per week, don't always succeed then a long ride on the weekends.

So a bit of core strengh work too, (15mins per morning on the same mornings that I commute)
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Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 12, 2008 2:57 pm

Kalgrm wrote:Time is all relative ... Einstein said so. ;)
You're not wrong. Anyone who's ridden a kilo or a pursuit would know time appears to slow down as you approach the final lap but from the perspective of the coach, the clock seems to speed up.
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Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 12, 2008 2:59 pm

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:Time is so old school anyway..... :wink:
What I meant by that is measuring training in hours is really not much use unless you are also taking into account the relative intensity of riding during those hours.
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Postby Hebden » Sun Oct 12, 2008 3:18 pm

toolonglegs wrote:I agree Alex that nothing but time on the bike improves time on the bike...road bike that is. Sure gym etc is important for some track work / core / mtb. But I am seriously thinking of starting other stuff to combat my tendon/archilies problem...gets a bit silly when you can fly up a 15k climb like today but be puffing climbing the steps! :roll: :lol: .


So toolonglegs and Alex, abs, core work and general functional strength training would not be recommended to improve road cycling fitness? Or maybe just in the off season?

I suspect people coming back from injury or flat out beginners would still benefit from strength training. But for people that have a few years of regular cycling under their belt you think just more cycling is the best way to improve? And cross training could be used for injury prevention/management? Of and climbing stairs… :wink:
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Postby sogood » Sun Oct 12, 2008 3:28 pm

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:You're not wrong. Anyone who's ridden a kilo or a pursuit would know time appears to slow down as you approach the final lap but from the perspective of the coach, the clock seems to speed up.

They guided their pupil to too hard of a start and left nothing in reserve for the final. :P
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Postby toolonglegs » Sun Oct 12, 2008 3:36 pm

Hebden wrote:
toolonglegs wrote:I agree Alex that nothing but time on the bike improves time on the bike...road bike that is. Sure gym etc is important for some track work / core / mtb. But I am seriously thinking of starting other stuff to combat my tendon/archilies problem...gets a bit silly when you can fly up a 15k climb like today but be puffing climbing the steps! :roll: :lol: .


So toolonglegs and Alex, abs, core work and general functional strength training would not be recommended to improve road cycling fitness? Or maybe just in the off season?

I suspect people coming back from injury or flat out beginners would still benefit from strength training. But for people that have a few years of regular cycling under their belt you think just more cycling is the best way to improve? And cross training could be used for injury prevention/management? Of and climbing stairs… :wink:


not exactly what I mean...personally I think core and flexibility are very important.But I think if you are good on both these counts then only riding will improve your riding...and if I had a powermeter I would be talking to Alex (maybee next year :wink: ) as I know that riding by HRM isn't the most effecient for training but it is all I have for now!.
But for the first time in my cycling career :lol: ...I am having time off racing and living somewhere where they have proper seasons.Not like in Sydney where you race every week of the year.So it will be good to dry different things this year,plus there are so many options here that my priorites will probably change abit...
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Postby Deanj » Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:24 pm

I can't say weights has been any benefit for road (apart from core work) but its been a great benefit for MTB racing. Throwing a bike round a track when your going hard in a race takes a lot out of you in the upper body. Start tiring up top and it doesn't matter how good the legs are, your going to lose time fast. I try to get longer MTB rides in for upper body fitness but its hard time wise.

I also do weights for 'life' benefits, such as work, I do a lot of carrying and my weight workouts have again been a noticeable benefit. Only takes about 3 x 45mins, and you look better naked too :wink: :roll:
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Postby Deanj » Sun Oct 12, 2008 5:09 pm

toolonglegs wrote:But I am seriously thinking of starting other stuff to combat my tendon/archilies problem...


Not sure if you read this the other day from the guy who cycled round the world.

which included a lot of cross training –cycling, fell running and circuits, for example,” he says. “It was vital to get all the small muscle balances instead of doing long hours on the bike, which would promote tendonitis and other repetitive strain injuries that I’ve had before.
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Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 12, 2008 6:52 pm

Hebden wrote:So toolonglegs and Alex, abs, core work and general functional strength training would not be recommended to improve road cycling fitness? Or maybe just in the off season?

Off season? What's that? :lol:

As work for your own peace of mind and general body fitness, perhaps for dealing with structural imbalances or for vanity then sure. For road racing, not really. The core doesn't do an awful lot on the bike. If you are wonky and/or inflexible, then sure, sort it out.

For sprint work, or riding which requires a lot of upper body work, then it might be an aid, but really, what could be more specific than the core/upper body workout you get from riding the bike in the way you intend to race?

Certainly not if it takes time away that you might otherwise productively spend on a bike.

But if you have the time and inclination, then it won't hurt.

Hebden wrote:I suspect people coming back from injury or flat out beginners would still benefit from strength training. But for people that have a few years of regular cycling under their belt you think just more cycling is the best way to improve? And cross training could be used for injury prevention/management? Of and climbing stairs… :wink:

For the untrained, just about any form of training will improve fitness.

But nothing improves cycling fitness better than riding a bike. So for the untrained, newbie or someone returning from injury, if you want to get better at riding a bike (and if you can ride a bike), then ride a bike. That would rank #1, #2, #3 and #4 in the list of things to do well before anything else.

I'm coming back from what might be called a serious injury (a trans-tibial amputation last year). My left leg struggles when walking up stairs as it is quite weak but I could bang out 355 watts in my Maxmial Aerobic Power test the other week and did a TT test at 250+ watts.

Strength in not a limiter for riding a bike. The forces involved are far too low for that to be the case. (Sprinting is different). It's aerobic power production that matters. Indeed, training to increase maximal strength is most likely to be detrimental to cycling performance (unless you are very frail).

Nevertheless, doing alternative training as a change up is sometimes a good thing, and sometimes what people believe is good for them, is good for them, despite what actually happens.
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Postby Hebden » Sun Oct 12, 2008 7:14 pm

Thanks for the info guys. I have found I have been missing more and more strength sessions lately and increasing my cycling, it seems to be helping. I think I may reduce them even more as long as I am improving.

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:...but I could bang out 355 watts in my Maxmial Aerobic Power test the other week and did a TT test at 250+ watts


I would love to get a Power tap one day... If I could get those figures with my two legs I would be happy. I think it's safe to say you have made a remarkable recovery! Well done!
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Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 12, 2008 8:01 pm

Hebden wrote:
Alex Simmons/RST wrote:...but I could bang out 355 watts in my Maxmial Aerobic Power test the other week and did a TT test at 250+ watts


I would love to get a Power tap one day... If I could get those figures with my two legs I would be happy. I think it's safe to say you have made a remarkable recovery! Well done!

Thanks. I ain't done yet. Not quite 4-months in. I have a 3 year plan in mind and aim to produce more power than before.

Wired PTs can be had for quite reasonable $ if you look. Although the Aussie$ tanking this week hasn't helped!

But it really helps to know what the heck it all means though, and to know what to do with the data, so it's worthwhile doing some reading up first. There are quite a number of guys I've seen buy power meters but really don't know what it all means and end up selling them.
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Re: Training hours per week?

Postby zoom bean » Tue Oct 14, 2008 12:47 pm

Normally 14 hours a week, a bit more if I am feeling good.

8 hours riding
4 x 45 min weights
4 x 45 min rowing

Hebden wrote:Would be great to hear what others manage to squeeze in and how?

In my opinion you can squeeze more hours in two ways, either by making sacrifices or by integrating it into your life more.

If you want to train more you will need to give something up, whether that means less time on the couch, or on the internet, or sleeping (don't cut back on too much sleep though as you need your rest) or wherever you can see wasted time.

Otherwise try and intergrate it into your life, commuting as you mentioned is a good example. If you don't want give up time with friends/family try to find something you can all do together. Sure it probably won't be as intense a work out but it will be just as enjoyable, if not more so. Also you might be able to wear them out and go for a little training session later while they are resting.
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Postby Anthonyv » Wed Oct 15, 2008 1:06 pm

Ideally, how many days a week should I be riding to maximise my fitness?

I am about 50.... and find that I get tired legs... it is taking longer to recover as I am getting older.

How many hours should I ride, and how many days should I take off the bike?
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Postby Hebden » Wed Oct 15, 2008 3:05 pm

Anthonyv wrote:Ideally, how many days a week should I be riding to maximise my fitness?

I am about 50.... and find that I get tired legs... it is taking longer to recover as I am getting older.

How many hours should I ride, and how many days should I take off the bike?


Hi Anthony,

There are defiantly more qualified/experienced people on here than I, but I will offer my suggestions anyway. :D

I would think that despite your age you should be able to train at least 10 hours per week. Although it is very important to gradually build your training volume to avoid injury. A recovery week (hours reduced by 30%) every third week would probably be recommended too. Also if you are just getting into it or are coming back from a long break. Lots of easy riding would be a good plan to help prepare the body for harder/longer stuff later.

As far as recovery goes a few things have helped me a great deal in this area.

One is food, recovery food within 30min of completing a work out has done wonders for me. You can get swish recovery bars and drinks or you can make your own. Ideally something high in both protein and carbohydrates would be good. Around a 3:1 ratio of carbs to protein is a good blend.

Second is tights :shock: , yep compression. If you can read past the hype from the various brands out there I found real value in them. I always make sure my tights are ready to put on after any heavy or long workouts. I am not 100% on the reason they work but I assume it’s a similar principle to burns victims using compression bandages? Somehow it improves blood flow?

Anyway I hope it helps, cycling is great fun so the more you can fit in the better :D
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Postby Aushiker » Wed Oct 15, 2008 3:25 pm

G'day

I ticked 15-20 hours a week which is around what I ride an average week. Not sure if that counts as training because I don't race, but I ride for fitness and to get faster and better at long distance riding.

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Postby JV911 » Wed Oct 15, 2008 3:42 pm

does bedroom gynastics count towards traing hours? :P

excluding that i do 3 x 1 hour weights after work and 2 x 2 hours on the bike on wekends. would love to do more but struggling for time lately
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Postby sogood » Wed Oct 15, 2008 3:56 pm

Anthonyv wrote:Ideally, how many days a week should I be riding to maximise my fitness?

It's hard to specify the number of days as intensity within each of those days wasn't specified.

For most semi-serious riders, 1-3 days of rest is probably the norm to allow the body to achieve adequate rest and recover from those training days. There are also measures that takes into account of the intensity and time of training to give a better indication of the training load. I am sure Alex would be able to give a far more detailed explanation on this.
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Postby Hebden » Thu Oct 16, 2008 8:22 am

Aushiker wrote:...I ride for fitness and to get faster and better at long distance riding.


Sounds like training to me :wink:
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