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PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 3:24 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 17, 2014 7:40 am
Posts: 80
Hi everyone,

I've spent hours and hours reading through the Training subforum here, and catching up on references of concepts/routines posted here I didn't quite understand. I've tried using all that info to compile my own winter training schedule. There's just so much to go through, that I want to run it by people who have more experience with this kind of thing than me (you guys!), to make sure I'm in the right ballpark.

Some things you probably need to know about me. I'm a 30 year old cyclotourist. I don't race. I've been riding for 8 years, but in the past haven't really made a conscientious effort to do things 'right'. I'd usually go out once or twice a week to ride solo or with friends, usually flat out from kilometer one to kilometer last. Upside is that I was making progress this way because of constantly training above my limits. I didn't get overtrained because, well, I didn't train frequently enough. It's kind of obvious this wasn't the most efficient or effective way of training.

I'm in the process of building a new bike (to be posted in the general section soon!) and I really want to make a well informed effort at training the best way I can.
My goals: various cyclotours (Ronde van Vlaanderen, Amstel Gold Race, Tilff Bastogne Tillf, etc., +150km rides) and a couple of trips to the mountains (likely Mont Ventoux and Vosges in 2015).
My tools: on weekdays, I'm usually only able to train between 8pm and 10pm, so I'll do most if not all of these on the turbo trainer (Elite Digital Mag). When weekends are dry/not freezing, I'll incorporate one or two routines in a longer riding session outdoors. I don't have a power meter, nor can I justify the price of one given my modest ambitions, so I'll mostly be relying on heart rate.

So, this is what I've come up with:

Day 1 (Rest):
Easy pedaling session: 60 min - 90 rpm - 75% max HR
Core exercisis off the bike

Day 2 (Threshold):
10 min - 90 rpm - 65 % max HR
20 min - 90 rpm - 85% max HR
10 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR
20 min - 90 rpm - 85% max HR
5 min - / rpm - < 65% max HR

Day 3 (Rest)
Rest off the bike

Day 4 (VO2max):
10 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR
5 x 4 min - 100 rpm - 95% max HR followed by 4 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR

Day 5 (Gym):
20 min warmup - 90 rpm - 65% max HR
Weights (leg extention, press and curl)
Core exercises

Day 6 (Anaerobic):
10 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR
6 x 30 sec max effort followed by 30 sec rest
6 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR
6 x 30 sec max effort followed by 30 sec rest
6 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR
6 x 30 sec max effort followed by 30 sec rest
10 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR

Day 7 (Gym):
20 min warmup - 90 rpm - 65% max HR
Weights (leg extention, press and curl)
Core exercises


This gives me 3 hard sessions, 2 gym sessions and 2 rest days (one on the bike, one off). Do I have all my bases covered in terms of types of training? Is it balanced enough or is it too hard/soft? Anything you would change?

Thanks in advance for any pointers or advice!


Last edited by Norregard on Wed Jan 07, 2015 12:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Posted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 3:24 pm 


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 1:51 am 
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Joined: Thu May 03, 2007 10:39 am
Posts: 2529
A few quick Qs:
What are the goals of the gym sessions?
What constitutes "core exercises"?
What lead to the specific RPM for sessions?

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"Physiology is all just propaganda and lies... all waiting to be disproven by the next study."
"I'm not a real doctor; But I am a real worm; I am an actual worm." - TMBG


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 12:06 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 17, 2014 7:40 am
Posts: 80
In the past I've found that by doing lower body weights, I've gained strength in my legs faster than I would on the bike. The goal is to build up strength quickly, as I'm not the strongest person around (I'm actually quite scrawny at 187cm and 66kg, which is only just above the 'healthy' levels on the BMI scales). As a bonus, I get some personal guidance with regards to my core exercises, which is one of my other weak points that I really want to work on.

I have a routine that usually takes me about 30 minutes to complete.
I do the following:
2 x 5 min handbike
2 x 10 crunches (legs on exercise ball)
2 x 10 diagonal crunches (10 left, 10 right)
2 x 10 ball pass
3 x 30 second plank (normal, left, right)
10 x plank to push up and back
10 x two point bridge
10 x camel/cat
5 x superman (hold for 5 sec)
10 x candlestick

With regards to the RPM. I've always valued cadence over power, and although I've only recently acquired a cadence sensor, I've always noticed I had a quite high cadence when riding, compared to the people I ride with at least. Since getting a cadence sensor, I've been experimenting a bit. I find that for training purposes, 90 RPM is fast enough so that I have to focus on my cadence to keep it going, but not too fast that it becomes uncomfortable. I can quite easily keep 90 RPM up for at least an hour of training if I focus on it. So when making this schedule, I decided to use that as my 'base cadence'.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 12:28 am 
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Ok. First you don't really build up strength on the bike. Cycling is an endurance sport. Strength is not a significant factor to performance. However, if you are targeting strength for a holistic approach to health and well-being then some strength work is a good idea. So if you are going for some supporting strength work avoid the machines at all costs.

Machines have a limited ROM, can put greater strain on joints and do not employ many (if any) stabilizing muscles, and these are the muscles you really want to be using, especially to "injury proof" the body... if done right.

Squats (all variations) and deadlifts are excellent for this. . The benefits, especially to posterior chain (often grossly underdeveloped in cyclists) are worth the investment in time to get the movements right. Check the ego at the door and start with a broomstick, but that's where you start and then move the weights up from there (slowly!)

Core - planks, bridges, supermans are good, the rest, especially the crunches are a waste of time. Tiny ROM in spinal flexion isn't a really helping anyone and may conflate any low back issues if you have them. Again, if you do free weight stuff then that takes care of a lot of the "core" work.

Cadence - so far all signs point to the fact that self-selected cadence is still the best way to go. Unless there is some specific aspect of your cycling which is being hampered by cadence being either too low or too high, then trying to maintain a specific cadence is not worth the time invested. Same goes for trying to pedal in circle, suppleness blah blah blah.

Anaerobic - the session you have listed there is following a Tabata style protocol. Due to the rest interval being so short this become more of a vo2max session than an anaerobic one. The 4 or 6 x [30xsecond ON/30 seconds off] format, tilts it more to the anaerobic.

Lastly, keep an eye out in the 2nd hand power meter market. You should be able to pick one up for $400-600 in very good condition.

Otherwise all good. Test occasionally on a climb or fixed course to track improvements.

_________________
"Physiology is all just propaganda and lies... all waiting to be disproven by the next study."
"I'm not a real doctor; But I am a real worm; I am an actual worm." - TMBG


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 12:47 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 17, 2014 7:40 am
Posts: 80
I use the word strength as functional bike oriented strength/leg power. So what I mean by gaining strength is actually enlarging the amount of power output/wattage I can sustain. I probably didn't word that very clear. I've always attributed this amongst other things to muscle power, am I completely wrong thinking this? I know VO2max plays a big part as well (especially in the sustaining part), but if the power isn't there to begin with, VO2max alone won't help me, right?

From your post I understand that machines might not be the best way to go about this, so I'll limit the number of reps I do on the machines, and replace them by squats and deadlifts. What am I looking at realistically in terms of reps? Ego is definitely not a problem, so I'm quite comfortable starting with a broomstick!

I'll change my anaerobic workout to (I'll change to opening post for further reference):
10 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR
6 x 30 sec max effort followed by 30 sec rest
6 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR
6 x 30 sec max effort followed by 30 sec rest
6 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR
6 x 30 sec max effort followed by 30 sec rest
10 min - 90 rpm - 65% max HR

I have a monthly test at the gym to track improvements. It's all on the bike trainer so not very real world, but I can easily supplement that with a frequent real world test on the bike.

Thank you so much for your advice and time! You've been a fantastic help!


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