How to train effectively???

The foundations for successful riding

How to train effectively???

Postby Rhinotones » Thu Nov 04, 2010 12:47 am

So, I've been riding since July this year. I started on a very basic mountain bike (averaged 180km/week), got hooked on cycling and bought a Giant Advance 2011 road bike late September. Clocked up just over 1000km for October doing 4-5 rides per week.

I ride on my own and haven't really spoken to any cyclists on how to train and improve. I guess i'm looking for some guidance/advice from any guru's out there.

I usually ride for between 1.5 - 3 hours (average speed usually between 30 and 33.5km/hr and always push myself. I've just started to introduce some small hills into my training (Springbrook QLD 600mtr elevation approx)

What types of training should I do to:
a) Increase endurance
b) Increase speed
c) Break up the training whilst maximising my fitness.

I hope to eventually like to find a group to ride with (once my level is good enough and I have a few km's behind me) and start competing. Any suggestions in the Surfers Paradise/Gold Coast area?

Thanks in advance.

Rhino.
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by BNA » Thu Nov 04, 2010 4:54 am

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Re: How to train effectively???

Postby foo on patrol » Thu Nov 04, 2010 4:54 am

You shouldn't have any problem finding group rides to go on down there.

Interval training will sharpen up your speed for sprinting. = Pick out an object up the road and sprint to it. Do this 4/5 times through out your ride, for about 100mtrs to start with. Then up to 200mtrs as you get better but only two days a week to start with.
For strength, nothing beats hills and slow starts up to almost sprint pace. The slow starts are done like you are taking off from a stand still at the lights and you're trying to beat the cars across the intersection, then you just come back to your normal pace.

Hope this helps you a bit and enjoy the sport. :)

Foo
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Re: How to train effectively???

Postby DanielS » Thu Nov 04, 2010 10:04 am

Its hard to answer these questions without a specific goal in mind. Do you want to race? Are there any cyclosportifs or mass-rides that you would like to do? Having a goal in mind will help motivate you as well.

The sort of riding you are doing at the moment sounds good, and doing some group rides will help you learn many more things such as how to draft and how to ride safely in tight quarters. At this stage in your cycling, this might be the best thing for you. Just pick a good group -- there are a lot of 'bunch rides' out there which are total chaos and you won't learn anything.

For general improvement in fitness, one thing that you can do is long(ish) sustained efforts that are close to your lactate threshold. Basically, go hard for 15-20 mins (at a consistent pace, which will probably feel easy to begin with feel gradually harder). Rest a bit, then do it again. This sort of workout is commonly called a '2x20' (2 lots of 20 mins). These will give you a lot more bang for your buck than sprint intervals.
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Re: How to train effectively???

Postby casual_cyclist » Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:57 pm

Rhinotones wrote:What types of training should I do to:
a) Increase endurance

Ride further
b) Increase speed

Ride faster
c) Break up the training whilst maximising my fitness.

Ride with a group. I always push harder when riding with other people. You can also break up your training with intervals/fartlek. Dunno why but I find these fun to do. intervals helped me increase my speed as well as being fun.

You didn't mention rest. Rest is a very important part of training. Adequate rest will see you improve faster than not resting enough.
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Re: How to train effectively???

Postby Rhinotones » Thu Nov 04, 2010 3:25 pm

Its hard to answer these questions without a specific goal in mind. Do you want to race? Are there any cyclosportifs or mass-rides that you would like to do? Having a goal in mind will help motivate you as well.


Yes I would like to race. I'm doing my first mass ride this weekend - Brisbane to Gold Coast. To be honest I have no idea what types of events are out there. I guess I'm looking at road races. I have no idea what sort of distances they would be, though I would train for anything.

For general improvement in fitness, one thing that you can do is long(ish) sustained efforts that are close to your lactate threshold. Basically, go hard for 15-20 mins (at a consistent pace, which will probably feel easy to begin with feel gradually harder). Rest a bit, then do it again. This sort of workout is commonly called a '2x20' (2 lots of 20 mins). These will give you a lot more bang for your buck than sprint intervals.


This sounds great, thanks.

Rest is a very important part of training. Adequate rest will see you improve faster than not resting enough.


At present I roughly ride 2 days in a row and have a day off (this equates to 4-5 rides/week) When I do a lonish ride 100km+ or a hill ride of around 70km (try to do once per week for each) I do them on the second riding day just before my rest day. Does that sound like adequate rest?

Thanks Foo as well, I will try those ideas also.
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Re: How to train effectively???

Postby casual_cyclist » Thu Nov 04, 2010 5:45 pm

Rhinotones wrote:At present I roughly ride 2 days in a row and have a day off (this equates to 4-5 rides/week) When I do a lonish ride 100km+ or a hill ride of around 70km (try to do once per week for each) I do them on the second riding day just before my rest day. Does that sound like adequate rest?

Dunno. You need to look out for symptoms over time that indicate you are overtraining.

Several symptoms are associated with the overtraining syndrome: Decreased performance, mood changes, weight loss, decreased appetite, muscle soreness, reduced motivation and fatigue.


more info here: http://www.training4cyclists.com/overreaching-is-not-equal-to-overtraining/

I did reach an overtrained state last year. Even after a couple of days off my legs felt dead and I had no energy to ride. Rides I used to find easy became a struggle. I took a week off but it didn't make any difference. It took 3-4 months of a much reduced workload to recover.

Something advised in the article and by others on this forum is to have a light week every fourth week... 3 weeks training then 1 recovery week.

Performance plateus, reduced motivation and fatigue are early signs. If that happens you either need to change your training routine or rest more. Starting with a light week is sensible if you start experiencing these symptoms. Something I look out for is training becoming a chore instead of being fun. I cycle, skate and run and really enjoy it. Mostly I find any activity fun. If it starts to feel like a chore I know I need to either mix it up or take it easy for a while.
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