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 Post subject: How to get faster
PostPosted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 5:29 am 
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Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2016 9:50 pm
Posts: 51
I am wanting to get .5 to 1 mph faster on my regular rides. Have a HRM but no PM. Is there a standard way to achieve it (ie: just more miles & time/experience)?

Have been cycling much more the past 2yrs and have added 2.5mph to my avg speed while tripling my standard ride distance. Guess we all just want to reach that next level above our current status!

Have a friend who rides at the faster speed and would love to be able to tag along without feeling like he is always waiting on me or that I'm about to collapse.

Thank you for your ideas & specifics on what has worked for you.


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 10:42 am 
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Joined: Sat Jun 19, 2004 11:08 am
Posts: 7014
Location: Urbana, Illinois
Find a local team and when they ride. Learn to draft but you will improve. You will also get dropped unless someone works with you which will frequently happen. Go time trial, it will make you faster. Do intervals once or twice a week. 5 minutes with 3 minutes rest, riding easy between each interval. Work up to 6 to 10 of them. Race, racing for me makes it easier than doing interval training to get into race shape.

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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
Posted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 10:42 am 


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 1:08 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 05, 2014 9:20 pm
Posts: 100
hill repeats are another good one,

I have a hill near me thats not a thru road, so not a lot of traffic, its a half mile 5% climb, I started off at 3:20, and its dropped down through the the 3 mins, abd now I'm at 2:40, once a week i'll bash out 5-10 hard repeats on it,

another good one is the turbo, get warmed up, and then bang out a set time at constant power (obviously easier if ou have a power meter but you can use HR, and speed as an indicator) somthing like 4x 5 mins to start and lengthen the duration, get up to 2x 20 mins with 5 mins rest between. really makes a diference.


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Mon Jul 10, 2017 1:41 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 5:08 pm
Posts: 924
You need to increase the amount of threshold work you do every week. This will increase your FTP which will increase everything else. i.e.. speed, VO2 etc.

First will need to do a test to find your FTHR. From there you can begin doing threshold and sweetspot workouts two to three times a week based on your heart rate.

Find a plan to fit your available volume. Can be on Zwift, TrainerRoad, whatever. Loads of places have plans for increasing FTP. Find one and stick to it.

8 week blocks are common. With a retest on week 5.

If that all sounds a bit much and too serious, then get a few Sufferfest videos and do those 2 or 3 times a week whenever you feel up for it. It tells you to work at effort level 1 to 10. Don't need to do any testing or know any technical terms related to power etc. Just download vid and smash it on the turbo. Quite fun too.


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 4:21 am 
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Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:52 pm
Posts: 1464
Mvcap, how many miles/hours per week are you putting in now?

To summarize what the others have said, it's probably time to add some intensity to your rides. Long intervals, short intervals - research seems to say that they achieve about the same thing.

Going by your average mph though isn't the greatest way to measure your improvements. Are you using Strava? I like tracking my times on certain segments over time to see if I'm getting faster. I also use certain segments for fitness tracking - like checking my time on a certain climb.

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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 8:24 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 22, 2014 11:48 am
Posts: 2422
Location: Vienna Austria
For 0.5 to 1mph faster, simply use aero clip ons.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:35 pm 
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Joined: Fri Apr 22, 2016 9:50 pm
Posts: 51
AJS914 wrote:
Mvcap, how many miles/hours per week are you putting in now?

To summarize what the others have said, it's probably time to add some intensity to your rides. Long intervals, short intervals - research seems to say that they achieve about the same thing.

Going by your average mph though isn't the greatest way to measure your improvements. Are you using Strava? I like tracking my times on certain segments over time to see if I'm getting faster. I also use certain segments for fitness tracking - like checking my time on a certain climb.

Around 6.5 to 7hrs per week, which for me is roughly 120mi per week. This is over 5 sessions on average, a blend of 35ish mile rides + 20mi more intense rides. I have not done dedicated intervals on a consistent basis so far. Strava yes, I love it and have been improving steadily and moving into the top 10 for a number of nearby segments. So I am seeing the improvement, I just want to accelerate it!

Good suggestions so far, thank you all and please keep em comin!


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:52 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:52 pm
Posts: 1464
It sounds like you have enough base to start doing a dedicated interval session. Give it a go once or twice a week. Don't do more because you need to recover. Do you do group rides? A group ride where the guys are faster than you will also whip you into shape and push you beyond what you'll probably do on your own.

A basic training book like Friel's can help:

https://www.amazon.com/Cyclists-Trainin ... 1934030201

I also highly recommend the the Velonews Fasttalk podcast. They cover a lot of these issues in depth.

http://www.velonews.com/tag/fast-talk-podcast/page/3

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Colnago C59


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:44 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2017 1:59 pm
Posts: 92
mvcap wrote:
I am wanting to get .5 to 1 mph faster on my regular rides. Have a HRM but no PM. Is there a standard way to achieve it (ie: just more miles & time/experience)?

Have been cycling much more the past 2yrs and have added 2.5mph to my avg speed while tripling my standard ride distance. Guess we all just want to reach that next level above our current status!

Have a friend who rides at the faster speed and would love to be able to tag along without feeling like he is always waiting on me or that I'm about to collapse.

Thank you for your ideas & specifics on what has worked for you.


GP4000s tires with latex tubes
Skinsuit
Aero helmet

That very well could get you a mph on its own depending on what you're currently using.

I know there's a good half mile + an hour difference between my aero race wheels with good tires and latex tubes versus my training wheels with butyl and crappy tires.

Besides that, intervals. 3 on, 3 off, first one hard, second harder, third one pretty much all out, and 2-3 more as hard as you can does a nice trick.

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Cat 1


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 8:13 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2016 6:35 pm
Posts: 152
Stop worrying about speed unless it is uphill.


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 3:38 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 05, 2013 3:29 pm
Posts: 419
mvcap wrote:
I am wanting to get .5 to 1 mph faster on my regular rides. Have a HRM but no PM. Is there a standard way to achieve it (ie: just more miles & time/experience)?

Have a friend who rides at the faster speed and would love to be able to tag along without feeling like he is always waiting on me or that I'm about to collapse.

Thank you for your ideas & specifics on what has worked for you.


There are a lot of great suggestions already, both in terms of training, and in terms of equipment changes to get that .5 - 1mph that you need. One quick question for you though. If you can ride on your own and sustain a pace that is only 1mph slower than your friend, can't you just draft him for most of the ride and start riding with him right now? Or are you already trying drafting, and you still need another .5-1mph despite the 20+% power savings of riding in his draft?

If you ride a lot of steep hills, it's obviously a different story altogether in regard to the effectiveness of drafting.


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 3:47 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 25, 2017 8:08 pm
Posts: 3
If you have access to a turbo trainer, ideally one that has an ergo mode, then you could try a couple of months subscription with TrainerRoad.

I can honestly say, without doubt, my sustained power output (and my wife's) has noticeably increased since we have been using it (and that's using TR's virtual power approach - so it's not crucial for you to have a PM).

Up until purchasing a subscription I hadn't really committed to any structured training on the bike. I'd do long day rides with my club as well as a lot of cycle touring, etc so had a base on which to build. I read several books on training with power, one of which was Joe Friel's 'The cyclists training Bible', so understood how to structure a year long plan. But the tricky part I found was defining goals and then putting it all together and that's where TR really is a great way to help take away some of the guess work.

For someone like myself that was a new comer to structured training on the bike, along with the Tacx Vortex, I consider it one of the best cycling related purchases I've ever made.

Good luck


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 9:57 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 15, 2016 9:08 pm
Posts: 213
I was reading about how people were using their muscle groups and in particular, wondering whether I was using my glutes sufficiently/appropriately. It's the statement along the lines of "when climbing sit back and use the glutes and heels to push down on the pedals" that triggered experimentation with my pedal stroke.

I observed the angles my feet adopted throughout the pedal stroke and noticed that my toes either point down while pulling up and in the first half of the downward push, and flat the rest of the way. I reduced the time my feet were flat, to pushing down with my heels during the second half of the downward stroke.

The results were immediately noticeable. On a short 8% 5-min climb, my VAM went from around 1200 to 1350. On a 15 min 10% climb, it went from 1100 to around 1200.

I believe the impact was due to using more muscle groups (quads and glutes), spreading the load. In addition, I thought that increased usage of more muscles meant I can target them more during training. After a couple of months focusing on the pedaling, on the short climb my best VAM went up to ~1550, and on the 10% climb it went up to 1300.

Because of the downward heel push, my legs were effectively more extended and I had to lower my seat to compensate.

The downside: prior to this new pedaling style, i.e. for the majority of my life, I only ever had cramps in my calves. Perhaps once or twice in my quads. My cramps are now spectacular: all the major muscle groups (calves, quads, glutes) cramp simultaneously, and when that happens I pretty much collapse by the side of the road. That usually happens when I'm climbing so I'm not going fast anyway, and I consider that to be a small price to pay.


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Sun Jul 30, 2017 4:35 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 27, 2016 5:33 am
Posts: 99
Location: Prescott, AZ
Buy a power meter, do some baseline tests You can either specialize in one area if your already super fit. Or, if your trying to gain overall fitness, I would identify weaknesses, design a program emphasizing working on weaknesses. and repeat every 3 months.

Also, people in general have the tendancy to ride too hard everywhere, or even too moderate. Most of your riding should be in the 120-150bpm range, and maybe one or two days a week that are suffer fests. When your not riding, relax on the couch as much as possible, but go for walks often to keep your legs fresh.

You really have to be patient, consistent, and keep all nutrition and sleep dialed. It takes awhile.


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
Posted: Sun Jul 30, 2017 4:35 pm 


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 Post subject: Re: How to get faster
PostPosted: Sun Jul 30, 2017 5:15 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jun 21, 2017 1:37 pm
Posts: 98
I think the best way to get faster is just by doing it. What I mean is let's say you have this hour long route. The more you do that route as long as you keep pushing you are going to get faster. I think once you get to a certain level, you can optimize training with structured intervals and stuff.


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