Just got a time trial bike, some advice needed

looseleftie
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Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2014 1:11 pm

Just got a time trial bike, some advice needed

Postby looseleftie » Thu Aug 13, 2015 12:21 pm

Hi all,
Have just come into possession of a time trial bike.. The bloke that I got it from is very similar in height and weight/build type.. I haven't as yet had a proper fit, that is something that I think I might have to do in the foreseeable future..

I guess I am looking at some advice on how to improve my posture (whether its more km's, and/or some stretching/yoga), being able to push without discomfort.. Have looked on internet for some basic guidelines in terms of reaching/lines from certain parts of body on the bike/angles and whatnot...How much might u suggest for the first week to month, then after that.. I have a solid level of fitness, so putting in the hard work is not an issue, nor making the time..

I just don't want to overdo and hurt myself as I am learning how to ride this bike.. I have had it just a week, and at present doing nothing more than an 3/4 hour to an hour and a half ride (anywhere between 20-40km) every second day, not pushing it , but trying to get comfortable, and use to the posture, even the balance is somewhat trickier!! Aiming to hit and hold 34km on flats and hold (without wind) to begin with.

I cycled 25km this morning, and felt that I couldn't really hold the aero position for longer than a few km's at a time without breaks.. I am hoping that is all part of the learning process.. Where should the power be coming from also? Where should I be feeling the effort, as this is very different to my road bike.

Last question, is it me, or is riding a time trial bike utterly exhausting?!?! :) I feel so out of breathe at times!!

Any suggestions/advice on any aspect of improving posture, and/or strength , or any info regarding building a base level of time trial bike fitness would be sincerely appreciated.
Cheers guys.

Sorry to ask so many questions, I'm sure I have squeezed in several here.

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toolonglegs
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Re: Just got a time trial bike, some advice needed

Postby toolonglegs » Thu Aug 13, 2015 4:55 pm

It is a balance... you need to be able to hold the position ( not necessarily too comfortably ) for the length of your TT while still making good power. Not as much power as you would make on the road bike, but as close as you can get to it.
I would start with the saddle position at basically the same measurement you have on the road bike, but rotated forwards a bit. Then drop the bars to an OK position and ride like that till you feel you can drop the bars further. Basically you want your head out of the way ... spending plenty of time on the home trainer with camera and video till you find a position getting your head and back as in line as poss. Thats part of the fun.
Takes a while to get used to the handling, pressure on the forearms, wrist position, holding the neck, relaxing the shoulders etc. I think Alex mentions one threshold and one recovery / and or endurance level ride per week.
"whether its more km's, and/or some stretching/yoga" ... everything if you have time. I find hamstrings get a big workout in the TT position. Don't over do it at the start as you may injure yourself... I had a psoas muscle that kept cramping in the TT position and I ignored it and payed the price.
Personally I wouldn't be jumping into a full professional "fit" straight away till you have rough idea what is working and what is not. I tried a very extreme ( for me ) position for a year or so... really low and rotated forwarded as far as legal and while it was fast I lost a huge amount of power. Like 15% or so and it didn't come up with time in the saddle.

looseleftie
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Re: Just got a time trial bike, some advice needed

Postby looseleftie » Fri Aug 14, 2015 4:11 pm

Cheers toolonglegs, appreciate your time in answering...

Mm, yes u are correct, in holding that position.. Rode 40km this morning, and couldn't hold that position for more than 3 km (on and off) before the legs, my breathing and arms started aching.. Early days, I really do need to get out like u said and at least get some still images of various positions whilst riding. At this stage it is almost a relief when getting hit with traffic lights, as it gives me a rest, and some time out of the aero position....

Think I will just have to be patient, and do my ride 3-4 times a week with it for a few weeks, and let my body get used to it.

Gunlock
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Re: Just got a time trial bike, some advice needed

Postby Gunlock » Fri Aug 14, 2015 5:13 pm

I did 2 sessions a week when I first got mine, both short sessions mid week. I moved one to a Saturday ride after a while to get practice holding the position for longer at a slower pace and did the shorter session during the week at a higher intensity.





Did the above for ~10 weeks before doing the ride leg of a half ironman and got through it without any real issues position wise.
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g-boaf
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Re: Just got a time trial bike, some advice needed

Postby g-boaf » Thu Aug 27, 2015 10:04 pm

looseleftie wrote:Hi all,
Have just come into possession of a time trial bike.. The bloke that I got it from is very similar in height and weight/build type.. I haven't as yet had a proper fit, that is something that I think I might have to do in the foreseeable future..

I guess I am looking at some advice on how to improve my posture (whether its more km's, and/or some stretching/yoga), being able to push without discomfort.. Have looked on internet for some basic guidelines in terms of reaching/lines from certain parts of body on the bike/angles and whatnot...How much might u suggest for the first week to month, then after that.. I have a solid level of fitness, so putting in the hard work is not an issue, nor making the time..

I just don't want to overdo and hurt myself as I am learning how to ride this bike.. I have had it just a week, and at present doing nothing more than an 3/4 hour to an hour and a half ride (anywhere between 20-40km) every second day, not pushing it , but trying to get comfortable, and use to the posture, even the balance is somewhat trickier!! Aiming to hit and hold 34km on flats and hold (without wind) to begin with.

I cycled 25km this morning, and felt that I couldn't really hold the aero position for longer than a few km's at a time without breaks.. I am hoping that is all part of the learning process.. Where should the power be coming from also? Where should I be feeling the effort, as this is very different to my road bike.

Last question, is it me, or is riding a time trial bike utterly exhausting?!?! :) I feel so out of breathe at times!!

Any suggestions/advice on any aspect of improving posture, and/or strength , or any info regarding building a base level of time trial bike fitness would be sincerely appreciated.
Cheers guys.

Sorry to ask so many questions, I'm sure I have squeezed in several here.



Alison Westfahl and Tom Danielson authored a book "Core Advantage" that has a lot of very practical advice on stretching and off bike exercises that might help you adjust to the TT bike (or rather adjust back when you are off it). The book is probably about 80% his physio's writings - but it is common-sense stuff.

It takes a while to get used to a TT bike, and the pain in the arms/shoulders I was warned about too, eventually you will adjust to it. I never felt out of breath on mine, but maybe my fit was a bit different to yours (perhaps mine was less extreme).

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nickobec
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Re: Just got a time trial bike, some advice needed

Postby nickobec » Thu Aug 27, 2015 11:16 pm

I purchased a TT bike, after riding the 1st series on 8 16km races on my road bike. I rode the 2nd series of 8 on my TT bike, after a couple of weeks of practise between the two series of 10 races. As well as commuting on the TT bike once a week. (40km one way). Though in the early days it was only short periods, a few minutes in TT position, then sitting up on the base bars.

Other than crashing out of the 2nd race after over correcting for crosswind on a straight section of road.

It was not until the 4th race, (ie at least 5 weeks and 10 rides) before could I hold my position for the whole race. That week I equalled my best road bike time. The following weeks I beat it convincingly and after that I was bettering my time each week.

A couple of years later, no issues riding 40km to a race, with at least 30km in TT position, race 20km in TT position, ride few kms to work and them 8 hours later ride 40km home, (again with at least 30km in TT position).

I am 50+, not the most flexible person around and did no special training yoga. It was getting the bike set up correctly (a friend helped make minor changes after race 4) and just spending time riding in that position that did it for me.

purplepeat
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Re: Just got a time trial bike, some advice needed

Postby purplepeat » Tue Sep 01, 2015 10:10 pm

My coach's rule of thumb was 10hrs tt training for every hour of racing.

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