Anyone can become an A grade rider?

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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby toolonglegs » Tue Sep 25, 2012 4:49 pm

eon wrote: I have no idea what FTP or VO2 or kw/kg etc etc.

Not too complicated mate...
FTP is basically the best average power you can hold for a one hour best effort.
VO2 is not so important as few people ever get it tested, VO2 max is basically the upper ceiling, what I suppose is important is how you close you can get to it.
watts per kg... well you already know what that is... 90kgs 1st race / 70kgs last race ... more power / less weight.
Put it all together... your ftp is 300 watts / you weigh 70kgs ... your watts per kg is 4.28 w per kilo at ftp.

I am also trying to figure out how I can step up a level... basically sandbagging in Cat 2 now but could easily run around in Cat 1 now if I wanted to. But I have decided I want to stay in Cat 2 till June next year ( not so bad as the season here is finished til March now ). Mainly because I want to do some stage races as a Cat 2 rider ( Cat 1 and 2 are combined in these and the guys winning Cat 2 could "easily" win Club level Cat 1 races on the right day )
My plan is to drop another 8-10 kgs, hopefully up the power another 5%, be totally focused on these races and not worry about my form on the smaller races as they will be used as training.
So basically lots of tempo /sweet spot / ftp work till about March with at least 1 cyclocross race per week when possible through winter for intensity. Then using racing to build my form up for June... and having fun along the way :D .
PS... I don't and probably won't have a power meter, I don't use a heart rate moniter. So a speedo and an ability to make my self suffer will have to do :D .
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by BNA » Tue Sep 25, 2012 4:56 pm

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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby jules21 » Tue Sep 25, 2012 4:56 pm

eon wrote:A lot of things in between and a couple of nice wins, but my training from the beginning have always consisted of: on average 2 (3 if im lucky) rides a week Tuesday night M7 cycleway(85km), Sat &/or Sun (early @stupid oClock : 60-90km).
No structure, just ride hard every ride and regularly hit Gorge & Bobbin on the weekends for hill repeats.

that seems like very little training for an A-grader to me. i generally do 250-300km per week, mostly commuting. i am pretty fit and have been met with disbelief once when i tried to register in D grade (someone had mistakenly marked me down as B), but i am certainly not in A grade. i know my riding isn't structured properly and i could get more out of it, but i also think some people just have good genes.
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby toolonglegs » Tue Sep 25, 2012 6:18 pm

I have averaged 12 hours a week since start of March... that is already difficult to find. Not sure how much is needed to really see a big diference, maybe I could stretch to 15 if I really pushed it but no more. I see some of the young guys round here riding DN1 ( Division national level 1 ) doing about 20 hours a week... but they are not far off pro level.
What is everyone spending time wise on the bike ( better judge than kms IMO ).
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby jules21 » Tue Sep 25, 2012 6:23 pm

13.5 according to strava!
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby toolonglegs » Tue Sep 25, 2012 6:37 pm

whats your strava tag Jules?
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby PawPaw » Tue Sep 25, 2012 8:56 pm

toolonglegs wrote:What is everyone spending time wise on the bike ( better judge than kms IMO ).


Recently, I've been doing
1.5hrs x 4-5 weekday mornings
1hr x 2 weekday afternoons
4-6 hrs Sat
1-4 hrs Sun
= 15 hrs a week.

The weekday mornings are mostly tempo pace with a few 3-5 minute threshold or anaerobic efforts.
Afternoons are solo intervals and/or paceline crit track work, 2-3x10, or 1x10 and 1x20.

I'm going to have a 2 week break at the end of this 2mth block to focus on cutting bodyfat.
The bigger hours have been stimulating my appetite too much. Usually I do 7-10 hrs.
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby toolonglegs » Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:10 pm

No wonder you are hungry :-) ... That's a lot of riding.
I am trying to do 2 to 3 hours 4 times week and a longer hard ride on the weekend plus a recovery somewhere in there as well. But life is getting in the way too much!... And winter will be getting in the way soon too!.
But in the flip side my rides are always hard and I am not doing much cruising around. I will be skipping nearly all club riding this winter as they are just too slow in the off season and I just get cold and bored!
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby PawPaw » Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:48 pm

toolonglegs wrote:No wonder you are hungry :-) ... That's a lot of riding.
I am trying to do 2 to 3 hours 4 times week and a longer hard ride on the weekend plus a recovery somewhere in there as well. But life is getting in the way too much!... And winter will be getting in the way soon too!.
But in the flip side my rides are always hard and I am not doing much cruising around. I will be skipping nearly all club riding this winter as they are just too slow in the off season and I just get cold and bored!


It's disappointing when you realize you've done 400+km in the week, often with 3000+m climbing, only to find you haven't lost weight.
ANyway, it's probably not that bad. Over the last 2 mths, my legs have made cross sectional gains, and I've lost around 1.5cm off my waist.
Need another 8-10cm off the waist though. Building muscle is tough once you get over 50, so shouldn't be too down on myself.

I've de-prioritized racing in favor of working strength endurance and stripping fat, hence the volume.
However, to be honest, I had 10 days off the bike 2 mths ago and lost more bodyfat then than when riding.
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby twizzle » Tue Sep 25, 2012 9:56 pm

Approx 10 hours a week. Sometimes a little less, sometimes a little more. Trying to slot in a recovery week occasionally... I'm not very good at that. Once Summer hits, I should be up around 12-13 hrs a week... if I can get up early enough and get enough sleep.


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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby jules21 » Tue Sep 25, 2012 10:08 pm

toolonglegs wrote:whats your strava tag Jules?

over here
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby toolonglegs » Tue Sep 25, 2012 10:36 pm

jules21 wrote:
toolonglegs wrote:whats your strava tag Jules?

over here

love the name :-)
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby philip » Wed Sep 26, 2012 8:28 am

According to strava I do about 8 hours/week. Ok I don't put my commutes in but that probably only adds and hour or two a week. That 8 hours is high intensity stuff though. I raced for about a year before getting to club A grade.
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby eon » Wed Sep 26, 2012 9:39 am

jules21 wrote:
eon wrote:A lot of things in between and a couple of nice wins, but my training from the beginning have always consisted of: on average 2 (3 if im lucky) rides a week Tuesday night M7 cycleway(85km), Sat &/or Sun (early @stupid oClock : 60-90km).
No structure, just ride hard every ride and regularly hit Gorge & Bobbin on the weekends for hill repeats.

that seems like very little training for an A-grader to me. i generally do 250-300km per week, mostly commuting. i am pretty fit and have been met with disbelief once when i tried to register in D grade (someone had mistakenly marked me down as B), but i am certainly not in A grade. i know my riding isn't structured properly and i could get more out of it, but i also think some people just have good genes.


Strava says 5h / week for me.. that cant be right.

Tues Night 85-90 is a high pace depending on who shows up. plenty of hurt
- For instance last night, i was late so I was on TT mode for 40kms (70+mins) till i hooked on the group, then it was intervals on the way back.
Sat morning 60-70km about 3-8 laps of the gorge depending on time i get out. 1200-1600m climbing
Sun morning prob same as Sat but to Bowen or MTB at Dural.

this gets me to about 150-220 on a week. About 10h
previous week i only got 1 ride in but it was to terrigal return which clocked me 3000m+ climbing in one ride.

intensity of my ride, well for me is quite high as i dont get to ride enough to build a base etc etc, i'm basically on anearobic with spurts of sprints here and there from the beginning to end. I'm pretty smashed every ride. ( prob not the most efficient way of training - but this is all i know at this point - with the advice i've been reading, i need to change it up to improve some more )

toolonglegs wrote:
eon wrote: I have no idea what FTP or VO2 or kw/kg etc etc.

Not too complicated mate...

oh geez - i've had to read that a few times...

20kg less weight = faster :D now HOW do i get more power ?

more hill repeats ? TT efforts ? Intervals ? --> all good advice from everyone on this thread. just need to structure it so it makes sense and fits in and just have a crack at it. Be nice to get back to A grade (CLUB LEVEL) by end of year and have a go.
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby toolonglegs » Wed Sep 26, 2012 3:36 pm

If you haven't got much time then intensity is the way to go... As long as you recover well.
I don't have much structure during the warmer months as I am playing too much :-) .
But I do aim to get some structure this winter... Lots of threshold work at around sweet spot to FTP. No long rides though as it really is too cold for more than 2 hours ( except when I go on stupid adventures of course ).
Throwing in 1 hour cx races as often as possible. But 50 minutes of suffering isn't going to induce much fatigue.
Early next year I will start doing more vo2 level stuff ( 5 minute efforts ) on top of the FTP stuff.
Then use racing to build (although my fav races are right at the start of the season ).
Make it all fun by doing lots of the real suffering on strava intervals :-) ... And not getting roped into too many club rides during winter. Socially they are great but 4 hours freezing my arse off a 28kmph av sucks!.
If I can get back on track losing weight I might be able to step back up to A grade :-) . Me with my calves bigger than most I race against thighs :-0 .
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby ni78ck » Wed Sep 26, 2012 3:45 pm

philip wrote:According to strava I do about 8 hours/week. Ok I don't put my commutes in but that probably only adds and hour or two a week. That 8 hours is high intensity stuff though. I raced for about a year before getting to club A grade.

your a machine phil, im following you closely on strava! :)
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby Le Velo » Wed Sep 26, 2012 8:02 pm

Av 416km per week
15 hours
12,500km for the year
130,000+ of elevation
Got stuck into a bit more racing this year and have been cycling seriously for 3 years now and start racing last year in D grade then jumped in C and now B club where my best placing has been 2nd.
Road race grading is master C and have had good placings also in top 10s

Getting stuck into more interval work now also and learning a bit more of the racing craft

Can anyone become an A grade rider? I would say most probably ...... The right training structure, nutrition and rest plan should achieve that.

Hopefully I will get there next year myself :)
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby toolonglegs » Thu Sep 27, 2012 7:33 am

Monsieur, I have sortie in your old neck of the woods Saturday morning :-) ... That is if the Grand Colombier and Col de la Biche are snow free!
Ps... Some peps doing a lot of riding here!... Better pick my game up!.
PawPaw... I saw only CN that Thomas Dekker had only lost 900grams from start to finish of the Vuelta so you are in good company ;-) .
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby PawPaw » Thu Sep 27, 2012 8:03 am

toolonglegs wrote:Monsieur, I have sortie in your old neck of the woods Saturday morning :-) ... That is if the Grand Colombier and Col de la Biche are snow free!
Ps... Some peps doing a lot of riding here!... Better pick my game up!.
PawPaw... I saw only CN that Thomas Dekker had only lost 900grams from start to finish of the Vuelta so you are in good company ;-) .


900g would be a lot for a 188cm 69kg 19.5 BMI pro to lose. what's relative is the body fat you start with :)

conversely, one of our pack who weighs 68kg, lost 5kg setting a new record riding around Australia! maybe I just need to up my hours so I don't have as much time to eat... :lol:
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby Le Velo » Thu Sep 27, 2012 8:18 am

toolonglegs wrote:Monsieur, I have sortie in your old neck of the woods Saturday morning :-) ... That is if the Grand Colombier and Col de la Biche are snow free!
Ps... Some peps doing a lot of riding here!... Better pick my game up!.
PawPaw... I saw only CN that Thomas Dekker had only lost 900grams from start to finish of the Vuelta so you are in good company ;-) .


Bonjour ! Should be snow free still ? Or has the old grey typical winter weather already started? ..... you'll enjoy the pain no doubt :)
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby ft_critical » Thu Sep 27, 2012 1:32 pm

philip wrote:According to strava I do about 8 hours/week. Ok I don't put my commutes in ...


Secret training, I knew it! :!:

7hrs pw for me. :D
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby toolonglegs » Thu Sep 27, 2012 2:56 pm

PawPaw... He said he is about 4 kgs overweight ... But just riding ( as in doing a grand tour :-) ) wasn't enough to shift it!.
Le Vélo, yes weather has been horrible... Although Saturday looks a bit better.
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Re: Anyone can become an A grade rider?

Postby philip » Thu Sep 27, 2012 7:01 pm

ft_critical wrote:
philip wrote:According to strava I do about 8 hours/week. Ok I don't put my commutes in ...


Secret training, I knew it! :!:

hah, you're the one turning off early to do secret solo kms from an already hard training ride!
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