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PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2013 4:15 am 
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Hey WW, long time lurker here.

I have a slightly unique schedule in that I work 3 12hr days and then im off for 3 days. Its actually quite nice from a training standpoint. My three days at work go pretty quick, then I have three whole days to commit entirely to training and recovering. I do, however, struggle a bit with the structure of my training since Im cramming a lot into those three days. I usually end up with 10 to 12 hours on the bike each week, and thats all in three days, with the exception of the occasional "bike walk" at night after my last day at work.

I do train with power and put a lot of emphasis on FTP, as I feel that the higher the "ceiling" the better. A sample training block for me would look like this:

1.)Bike walk after 3rd day of work. 45mins really easy or 45mins with 2x3min Zone 5/6 openers depending on the workout planned for the following day
2.) Threshold work. Typically 4x10s or 2x20s. Once I finish the threshold work ill soft pedal for 20mins and the finish out the ride in upper zone two. shoot for 2.5 to 3 hours total on these.
3.) 3 to 4 hours tempo or Vo2. Tempo may be 2x45mins or 1x60mins. Vo2 would be 4x4minute with some easy pedaling and then zone two.
4.) Long day. 4 to 5 hours usually all zone two. If i did Vo2 the day before i may do some tempo late in the ride on this day.

I have had some success with this basic theme as Im a cat 3 with 4.52w/kg 20 minute power. I do feel like ive hit a bit of a plateau here recently though, so im very interested in everybody's thoughts.

ps. If im off on a weekend and there is a race within 6ish hours of my house, Ill be there. Absolutely crave racing my bicycle!


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2013 7:20 am 
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Can you elaborate? Do you work in a Hospital as one example = 3 days staggered or 3 straight like a Fireman?

I don't do either but maybe I can help by asking a friend who has the 3x12 schedule (staggered) and trains around it. She's a nurse and fairly successful racer.


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Posted: Mon Apr 29, 2013 7:20 am 


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:31 pm 
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Sure. Its three days on, then three days off straight. So, work, work, work, off, off, off... regardless of the week.

Im also on my feet for most of the twelve hours Im at work, so recovery isnt exactly optimal. Since I cram a lot of riding into those three days Im pretty tired my first day back at work.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 12:28 am 
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Life is what it is, and unless you are a pro, the riding must come second.

4.52w/kg is pretty good so what youve been doing to now is obviously working. Maybe think about a few weeks of hitting high mileage/lower intensity to change it up a bit.
I find that works for me (not at 4.52 w/kg though!)


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 4:44 am 
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Indeed. Its certainly important to keep things in perspective.

Ill look into the high mileage/lower intensity route here soon. I think you hit on the point though, I should probably just change it up a bit regardless. Keep the mind fresh and the body guessing a little.

Thanks for the responses.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 11:19 am 
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Yep, just keep changing what your doing on your off days. 3 days together like that will always take a toll though, and I think the reason you have plateaued is because you can't really fit more in because of work.

I can only suggest that if you can do a workout on the 2nd 'work day' of 30mins, and replace the 2nd 'off/cycling day' with a recovery ride (while upping the 1st and 3rd day off intensity or distance) you might get a little extra out of yourself.

30mins isn't much, but it is enough to get some good quality high intensity training in. 10 or so mins warmup, 10-15mins warmdown. Then take your choice of super hard intervals to fill in the middle 10mins :P

Probably the hardest, but most beneficial, is two 1min efforts at almost 'kilo effort' intensity. They will warp your mind with pain, but they build lactate power like no other training method.

Do the 2nd one after 5mins break from the first. Don't do them at absolute 100% effort. Your looking at an effort intensity that has you lactating up hard at about 45secs into the first effort, and about 30 seconds into the 2nd. But if your cracking hard in the 2nd effort at say 20secs in, stop at 45secs and warmdown. And you must do the 15min warmdown... its just as important as the effort in this form of training.

The other workout you can also try three 2min on/2min off efforts as race winning intervals. i.e. Hard 5-10s sprint, then hold form and keep the power going hardcore, but slowly releasing the effort over the next 2mins, aiming to only lactate up right near the end of each effort.

When you get good at pacing the 2min efforts, you will learn how to get to 1m45s with a little in the tank such that you can then do an all out sprint of 15seconds.

Other than that, I don't think you can get much more out without looking for another job, sorry :/

Cheers,
metal


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:29 pm 
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I have worked a similar roster in the past, 2 days on, 2 off, 3 days on, 3 days off, 12 hour shifts. Because the shift change from days to nights I effectively got 3 days off most times.

So, I did:-

Day 1: Long ride with [4x (30sec effort/30sec rest)]x2.
Day 2: Short ride with 3x 3mins effort/3 mins rest.
Day 3: Short ride with 2x 20mins effort/10mins rest.

Rinse/repeat.

The goal was mainly short TTs and track racing so it worked well enough for that. Far from optimal though.

The rest of the time was just trying to recover from night shifts. Haven't had to do that for years, never want to again. Shift work is balls.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 2:19 pm 
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Tape, interesting that you're doing the hard 3x3 on the second day, after presumably being a bit tired from the day before. Is there any reason for this arrangement? I thought the general idea was to do the most intense interval sessions best rested.

Thanks.

(Trying to do a somewhat time constrained training schedule myself)

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 10:21 pm 
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Sheer personal preference. Whilst the 30sec repeats are brutally hard at the time I find I recover pretty well from them. And the fact that facing the 3x3s first up from having full days off was... mentally challenging.

The 2x20 were at the end as I find these, if done at the 90-95% range, to be quite manageable even with heavy legs. YMMV.

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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2013 6:45 pm 
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Much appreciated, as always.

Could you maybe elaborate a bit on what the [4x (30sec effort/30sec rest)]x2 are achieving, and what the break between the two set should be?

Many thanks.

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PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 4:05 pm 
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I'd add some strength/stability/flexibility work to your 3 day off and I think you'll see dramatic improvement in how you feel during the 3 day on.

Sent from my ADR6300 using Tapatalk 2

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PostPosted: Mon May 06, 2013 1:01 pm 
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I wanted to clarify a bit on this; I've been doing side planks + pushups + some simple yoga poses (downward dog, back bridge, pigeon, warrier, tree) + toe extensions (calf) . This doesn't take much time at all, but in particular the side planks have been pretty amazing. I feel much more balanced and stable. My shoulders feel solid instead of weak. And my weight is exactly where I want it to be. So I think this is easily folded into your schedule, even if riding time is constrained.

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PostPosted: Mon May 06, 2013 5:16 pm 
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I appreciate the advice. I could probably benifit from some work like this.

I just had a proper fit done, and the results feel promising. My knees were quite a bit forward of my pedal and also unsupported by my shoes, so we were able to get my legs working in a more "piston like" motion. Im anxious to get into some of my intervals and see how it translates into my numbers.

Thanks for the responses.


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Posted: Mon May 06, 2013 5:16 pm 


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