Intervals for a noob

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Intervals for a noob

Postby philip » Sat Aug 29, 2009 3:28 pm

So I've never actually done any proper "training" of any sort, though a fair bit of my riding is what I'd consider high intensity, but probably nothing like what I'd imagine doing spew worthy intervals would be like.

From what I've read on the net about interval training, it's supposed to be high intensity for the whole time, right? So for example if you're doing 2x20s, you go as hard as you can for 20mins, then a few minutes to recover, then 20 minutes hard again? Except I've been reading other threads here and a) it has been pointed out 20 minutes is actually quite a long time and b) people with power meters often post very similar power outputs for both 20mins. Does this mean you're supposed to pace yourself quite a bit in the first 20mins, as opposed to going as hard as you can, so as to still be able to sustain the same power in the 2nd (not that I have a power meter, I will just go by perceived effort). If this is the case, I'd imagine it just takes a few goes at it to get used to what you're capable of sustaining for those periods. Or should you really just go hard for the whole time with the possible effect of less power as you go?
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by BNA » Sat Aug 29, 2009 4:17 pm

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Re: Intervals for a noob

Postby snedden9485 » Sat Aug 29, 2009 4:17 pm

a HRM can be a decent guide that wont cost a fortune. The intensity you work at depends on you goals. I like to mix it up really, sometimes i may do 3 x 10 min intervals (AT) 85% max HR, or 3 x 3 (AT) 90 - 95% max. Also short sharp intervals alll out are good for recovery and race fitness.

I have started doing some sprint interals where i ride along a long road with telegraph poles and sprint for 1, roll / spin for 2, then sprint etc. This is intense and i try go for a few minutes. Great for working on the jumps for sprints and is intense.
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Re: Intervals for a noob

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sat Aug 29, 2009 9:09 pm

Intervals are basically a way of enabling you to ride a longer total time at a higher intensity than you would be able to do if you attempted to do so in one go.

The intensity, number, duration and the rest period are primarily dictated by the physiological adaptations you are seeking to elicit.

For example, hard intervals of around 10 to 40 minutes duration are commonly used to raise your time trial power / ability to ride at threshold. with the well-known two x 20 work out is an example of this.

However there isn't a need to ride either of those 20 minute intervals at the maximum intensity at which you can ride 20 minutes. Indeed it may well be counter-productive to do so, since you would more than likely be forced to ride the second effort at a significantly lower level, you would probably find it difficult to train effectively on subsequent days and it is often quite difficult to attempt to ride maximally week in week out. I would normally recommend you consider riding such intervals act more like 90 to 95% of your maximal 20 minute power. in that way you will get more total time at a level that will improve your threshold.

There are however some interval types for which you need to ride maximally. For example when doing neuromuscular power development work, there really is no substitute for maximal all-out effort.

Intervals at levels in between those two examples can be done in many and varied ways. There are many considerations when deciding upon the type of intervals one should use in their training
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Re: Intervals for a noob

Postby philip » Sun Aug 30, 2009 5:45 pm

Thanks for all the info. Sounds like if I want to get more serious about training I should find a decent book on the subject.
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Re: Intervals for a noob

Postby sogood » Sun Aug 30, 2009 6:02 pm

philip wrote:Thanks for all the info. Sounds like if I want to get more serious about training I should find a decent book on the subject.

There's plenty of information on the net too. Do a Google on the subject and you'll find plenty and that's how I got started into the subject.
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Re: Intervals for a noob

Postby wombatK » Sun Aug 30, 2009 6:31 pm

sogood wrote:
philip wrote:Thanks for all the info. Sounds like if I want to get more serious about training I should find a decent book on the subject.

There's plenty of information on the net too. Do a Google on the subject and you'll find plenty and that's how I got started into the subject.

Books and the internet are only part of the learning, and are generally a one way communication. While they can get you started, neither books nor the internet have an experienced eye. That's where coaches come in.
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Re: Intervals for a noob

Postby philip » Mon Aug 31, 2009 9:32 am

sogood wrote:There's plenty of information on the net too.

The problem with the net is that everyone's an expert - there's just as much bad information as there is good. Of course I'm sure there's bad books out there too, but if a trusted person recommends a book it's probably harder to go wrong.
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