Mt Coot-tha training

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Mt Coot-tha training

Postby Fatrobo » Sat Jun 18, 2011 1:19 pm

Morning all,

A work collegue and I have made a serious agreement to improve our training for the anual BDO Coot-tha ride as opposed to the usual 2 week cram before the big day.

My situation, mid level cyclist, comute a couple of times a week (total 40-60km per week) plus a 50km+ ride on the weekends. Spend a lot of time in the gym as well. Best time going up coot-tha is around 13.30. Ideally I'd like to get a sub 11.00 time but I am not sure what is acheievable.

I am sure there is plenty I can do over the next year, some of which I realistically would be willing to do and some I simply couldn't be bothered. My question is more related to the gym and squatting. As I don't think I would be willing to give up my gym time, should I switch over from doing low volume and heavy weights to doing something with higher reps to help with my endurance in my legs? I guess any other excercises I can do in the gym to help with hill climbing is much appreciated as well.

Also any tips on hill climbing sessions I might be able to fit in on a sunday afternoon? Hill repeats etc?

Thanks in advance.
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by BNA » Sat Jun 18, 2011 1:31 pm

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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby Comedian » Sat Jun 18, 2011 1:31 pm

Mate Mt Cootha is a really great place. To get better I suggest going there often! :)

I'm kind of doing the same thing. I go there usually at least a couple of times a week. I've started to see some progress too. :)

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Once you can climb hills on a bike it's all downhill. :mrgreen:

Hopefully I'll know what that's like..... one day. :shock: :lol:

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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby Fatrobo » Sat Jun 18, 2011 1:44 pm

Yeah definately agree there. At this stage (almost a year out) we are thinking of keeping it at once a week as motivation might fade, then stepping it up 6 months out. I just thought I might be able to make changes to my leg training in the gym to help....
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby Ross » Sat Jun 18, 2011 8:48 pm

IMO the best training for hills is to ride up hills!
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby lethoso » Sun Jun 19, 2011 2:39 pm

Fatrobo wrote:Yeah definately agree there. At this stage (almost a year out) we are thinking of keeping it at once a week as motivation might fade, then stepping it up 6 months out. I just thought I might be able to make changes to my leg training in the gym to help....


I don't think strength work is going to help you at all really. Not to say you shouldn't do it, just that you shouldn't expect it to help you on coot-tha.

Do more miles, more hills. Given you're not sure how much you can be bothered to do, I'd suggest avoiding hill repeats as they're boring and painful. Lately I've been trying to hit a different hill every weekend - there's a pretty good number of them within a reasonable radius of the CBD. I've been thinking about posting a list in the QLD forum.

Also, given your username, losing some weight will give you a proportional boost to your speed up cootha ;)
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby Comedian » Sun Jun 19, 2011 2:59 pm

Yep... I'm done being nice here.... LOL.

Harden up princess and get riding! Cootha is a lovely place... beautiful scenery... lots of riders to chat to and always a challenge. If you really want to better your time you just need to go there and keep going there. Try and do full circuits ... I reckon it's better than up and back. Also, going there often helps you get on top of the mental aspects of the hill. After a while you get to know the place and you can concentrate on technique and fitness.

With those times you'll have girls passing you. :shock: You wouldn't want that now? :lol: The only way to do better is to do it often. :mrgreen:
Once you can climb hills on a bike it's all downhill. :mrgreen:

Hopefully I'll know what that's like..... one day. :shock: :lol:

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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby Fatrobo » Sun Jun 19, 2011 7:42 pm

Hahaha yeah a little tough love is good for you! Certainly need to just get up there. I was just wondering if making any of the said changes to my gym workouts would make any difference. Back into it this week!

P.S The username doesn't give much of an idication of the weight I need to loose.
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby brades68 » Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:23 am

Steve - you have a compact Groupset? I've got 2 mountains around here, Mt Archer ( http://www.bikemap.net/route/956917 ) & Mt Morgan, to tackle but doubt there is enough HTFU to haul my 100kg arse up there on a standard groupset.
or maybe there is enough HTFU??

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Mt Coot-tha training

Postby Comedian » Wed Jun 29, 2011 11:02 am

brades68 wrote:Steve - you have a compact Groupset? I've got 2 mountains around here, Mt Archer ( http://www.bikemap.net/route/956917 ) & Mt Morgan, to tackle but doubt there is enough HTFU to haul my 100kg arse up there on a standard groupset.
or maybe there is enough HTFU??

Cheers
Mick

Yes I have a compact... I thought you did too.

And yes, HTFU princess. :)

Being able to climb hills on a bike is a really cool thing to be able to do and separates you from 95+% of other bike riders.

Yes, I did three laps this morning and am now breaking into the ten minute bracket which is an improvement for me. :)
Once you can climb hills on a bike it's all downhill. :mrgreen:

Hopefully I'll know what that's like..... one day. :shock: :lol:

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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby winstonw » Wed Jun 29, 2011 12:08 pm

Hi Fatrobo.

IMO, faster Coot-tha times require improvements in both cardio and leg strength.
My fastest is 13.15. I think my best time would not be under 11 minutes due to health issues and age so that's my goal. Life tends to get in the way of training regularly though.

I have a compact chainring with 25 largest cog. Gear ratio influences the watts'kg you can generate at a particular cadence, so effects your climb time signiiicantly.

My suggestions for building strength and cardio on the bike:
- build the time you can ride out of the saddle on the flats. Get into a higher gear and don't sit down for 5 minutes, and build that up to 20 minutes. when building leg strength your muscles should be pretty sore most of the week.
- do less junk hours. for most sessions, work closer to lactate threshold, where you struggle to talk full sentences.
- if your heart is ok, regularly pepper your rides with high intensity intervals. Best to get a stress ecg done though if you have been overweight, sedentary, and over 35.
- hit Coot-tha 2x per week for 3-4 weeks, then give yourself a break for 2-4 weeks, then hit it again. Trying to do it regularly week after week can be boring and logistically demanding unless you live nearby.
- when doing Coot-tha, do repeats. progress to higher gears, and doing more out of the saddle intervals. Don't worry about your time so much. Take note of where the steep sections are and progress to standing through those.
- for progressing, load yourself with extra weight (water bottles, tools, backpack).

For the gym,.
- progress from high to low rep explosive positives and super slow negatives for squats, leg press, knee extenions, and leg curls.
- build up to a one legged bodyweight squat. start with 2-5 minutes of step ups. progress to 2-3 mins of super slow step downs (reverses) off the back of a high step or bench. increase step height so that your knee is bending much more than 90 degrees. progress step downs to where your rear foot doesn't touch the floor between repeats. you'll start to feel your gluts working better.

Finally, aim for bodyfat <= 12%.

And make sure your bike is in 100% good mechanical order. S%^t happens quicker on Coot-tha.
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Mt Coot-tha training

Postby Comedian » Wed Jun 29, 2011 12:47 pm

winstonw wrote:Hi Fatrobo.

IMO, faster Coot-tha times require improvements in both cardio and leg strength.
My fastest is 13.15. I think my best time would not be under 11 minutes due to health issues and age so that's my goal. Life tends to get in the way of training regularly though.

I have a compact chainring with 25 largest cog. Gear ratio influences the watts'kg you can generate at a particular cadence, so effects your climb time signiiicantly.

My suggestions for building strength and cardio on the bike:
- build the time you can ride out of the saddle on the flats. Get into a higher gear and don't sit down for 5 minutes, and build that up to 20 minutes. when building leg strength your muscles should be pretty sore most of the week.
- do less junk hours. for most sessions, work closer to lactate threshold, where you struggle to talk full sentences.
- if your heart is ok, regularly pepper your rides with high intensity intervals. Best to get a stress ecg done though if you have been overweight, sedentary, and over 35.
- hit Coot-tha 2x per week for 3-4 weeks, then give yourself a break for 2-4 weeks, then hit it again. Trying to do it regularly week after week can be boring and logistically demanding unless you live nearby.
- when doing Coot-tha, do repeats. progress to higher gears, and doing more out of the saddle intervals. Don't worry about your time so much. Take note of where the steep sections are and progress to standing through those.
- for progressing, load yourself with extra weight (water bottles, tools, backpack).

For the gym,.
- progress from high to low rep explosive positives and super slow negatives for squats, leg press, knee extenions, and leg curls.
- build up to a one legged bodyweight squat. start with 2-5 minutes of step ups. progress to 2-3 mins of super slow step downs (reverses) off the back of a high step or bench. increase step height so that your knee is bending much more than 90 degrees. progress step downs to where your rear foot doesn't touch the floor between repeats. you'll start to feel your gluts working better.

Finally, aim for bodyfat <= 12%.

And make sure your bike is in 100% good mechanical order. S%^t happens quicker on Coot-tha.

Yeah! All that and HTFU princess! :mrgreen:
Once you can climb hills on a bike it's all downhill. :mrgreen:

Hopefully I'll know what that's like..... one day. :shock: :lol:

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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby brades68 » Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:55 pm

winstonw wrote:Finally, aim for bodyfat <= 12%.

:shock: :shock: 12% - uptopia for me!

Righto, searching the cupboard for HTFU pills and have found a 12-27 cassette, might swap that over to see what happens. although looking at Sheldon Brown ( http://www.sheldonbrown.com/gears/ ) it's not a whole lot of difference. Ahh well, ignore the time and speed and just do it!

Cheers
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby winstonw » Wed Jun 29, 2011 2:59 pm

Comedian wrote:Yeah! All that and HTFU princess! :mrgreen:


Yeah HTFU "progressively" so that the body's adaptive response is optimal. :D
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby lethoso » Wed Jun 29, 2011 6:07 pm

winstonw wrote:- for progressing, load yourself with extra weight (water bottles, tools, backpack).


why not just ride faster :?:
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby winstonw » Thu Jun 30, 2011 11:18 pm

lethoso wrote:why not just ride faster :?:


Forever?
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby lethoso » Fri Jul 01, 2011 6:29 pm

winstonw wrote:
lethoso wrote:why not just ride faster :?:


Forever?


huh?
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby winstonw » Fri Jul 01, 2011 10:41 pm

lethoso wrote:
winstonw wrote:
lethoso wrote:why not just ride faster :?:


Forever?


huh?


Leth, if it was as simple as "just ride faster", then professional cyclists wouldn't take drugs.
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby lethoso » Sat Jul 02, 2011 12:00 am

winstonw wrote:Leth, if it was as simple as "just ride faster", then professional cyclists wouldn't take drugs.


oh, I think you missed the point I was trying to make. Why load yourself up with extra crap to make the hill harder, when you could achieve the same thing by riding up it faster...
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby Fred Nurk » Sat Jul 02, 2011 11:06 am

brades68 wrote:Steve - you have a compact Groupset? I've got 2 mountains around here, Mt Archer ( http://www.bikemap.net/route/956917 ) & Mt Morgan, to tackle but doubt there is enough HTFU to haul my 100kg arse up there on a standard groupset.
or maybe there is enough HTFU??

Cheers
Mick


Does that mean you're trying to tackle the razorback as a climb? Thats a rather sharp gradient at the end of it.
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby winstonw » Sun Jul 03, 2011 5:30 pm

lethoso wrote:oh, I think you missed the point I was trying to make. Why load yourself up with extra crap to make the hill harder, when you could achieve the same thing by riding up it faster...


lethoso wrote:oh, I think you missed the point I was trying to make. Why load yourself up with extra crap to make the hill harder, when you could achieve the same thing by riding up it faster...


OK, I think I see what you are getting at.

My views are based on two well accepted athletic training principles:

1. prioritizing a base of adequate strength before quicker/ballistic movement.
This is to provide a period of anatomical adaptation of tissue so it is strong enough to tolerate the stresses of more ballistic and repetitive motion. Considering riders of equal lactate thresholds but unequal strength, the one with lower strength will suffer more muscle microtrauma and DOMs for the same climb. Over time, the scarring associated with inflammation will compromise their relative rate of improvement.

2. sports performance is superior when individual physiological systems are subjected to optimal adaptive stress.
A training philosophy of 'riding faster' requires improvement in many physiological systems to produce two outcomes - improved lactate threshold and power. It is difficult to stress each system optimally by 'riding faster', when only one (or few) systems are the primary limiters of speed. i.e. muscle strength and neuromotor gains cannot be adequately stressed for faster power improvement, when lactate threshold limits speed.

Finally, 'rIding faster' mixes strength and speed training. Trying to increase speed without an adequate strength base can lead to poor cycling technique.

Loading yourself up with crap at lower speeds helps build an adequate strength base.
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby ldrcycles » Sun Jul 03, 2011 7:02 pm

My best is 11:11 on this years run, how the HELL the fastest bloke did it in 6:38 i have NO idea, i was drooling all over myself lol. I have a hill on my commute of similar gradient but only 1/4 the length, it clearly wasn't enough, i reckon the only way to really train for it is to actually do THAT climb, as others have said.

To add to the equipment list, i was running 53-39 cranks and a 32tooth MTB cassette, i'm NOT a climber :-)
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby brades68 » Mon Jul 04, 2011 3:48 pm

Fred Nurk wrote:
brades68 wrote:Steve - you have a compact Groupset? I've got 2 mountains around here, Mt Archer ( http://www.bikemap.net/route/956917 ) & Mt Morgan, to tackle but doubt there is enough HTFU to haul my 100kg arse up there on a standard groupset.
or maybe there is enough HTFU??

Cheers
Mick


Does that mean you're trying to tackle the razorback as a climb? Thats a rather sharp gradient at the end of it.

No, not Razorback - not enough HTFU in the world for me to try that! i have been up the highway though, on a compact, and it wasn't non stop - but no walk of shame :)

Cheers
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby winstonw » Tue Jul 05, 2011 6:34 pm

ldrcycles wrote: how the HELL the fastest bloke did it in 6:38 i have NO idea,


Like this:
600 watts, 80rpm, 28kph for the first 30 seconds then
400 watts, 70rpm, 17-20kph for 5.7 minutes then
600 watts, 80rpm, 20kph for 20 seconds.
all out of the saddle.
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby Yongkun » Thu Jul 14, 2011 4:20 pm

Did my first Cootha ride alone, struggled to find the way there, nearly took the motorway..

Some section of the ride are really steep and i am running a 53/39 with 11-25 cassette on my Fulcrum 5 wheels, definitely suffered like a dog up.
There are many cars when i was cycling, therefore i really had to brake hard several time in descent.
Hope to build on my current climbing fitness..

Anyway heres my ride: http://app.strava.com/rides/914828

Maybe i will try to better my lap next week.
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Re: Mt Coot-tha training

Postby lethoso » Fri Jul 15, 2011 3:30 am

Yongkun wrote:Did my first Cootha ride alone, struggled to find the way there, nearly took the motorway..

Some section of the ride are really steep and i am running a 53/39 with 11-25 cassette on my Fulcrum 5 wheels, definitely suffered like a dog up.

Maybe i will try to better my lap next week.


fyi - the climb most people refer to when talking about cootha is the back - head straight up the hill instead of turning left at the fork, then it's downhill for a km or so till you get to the start of the back. The back is slightly shorter, a little steeper, but of a more consistent gradient than the front. For an easier route out there, take sylvan rd in toowong (where the regatta hotel is, there's a underpass from the riverside bikepath which links up with land street then from there sylvan), then jump off the road onto the bike track just before it meets milton road. This goes past the bus depot and into anzac park, then there's a cycle bridge over the main road which puts you onto mt. cootha rd.

Nice time for your first attempt, got me worried about my ranking on strava :)
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