SST & Riding Tempo & Training in "No Man's Land"

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paddy
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by paddy

would be interested to see if there's any consensus on this one.

Sweet spot training advocates training at around 90% of FTP.

Riding "tempo" i have understood to be pretty much the same thing - riding at zone 3, again at around 90% of FTP.

however, elsewhere i have read that you should use tempo intervals only for 5 to 6 weeks to bridge the gap to higher intensity work following base training, but after that training in zone 3 is pretty much a waste of time as you are effectively training in "no man's land" - junk miles - hard enough that they tire you out, but not hard enough that they bring decent gains to your FTP.

what's the story here - is the "no man's land" zone 3 theory outdated, and the revised view now that riding for extended periods at tempo/sweet spot is worth doing all year round? or have i missed something.
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bdbike16
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by bdbike16

SST is the zone between 85-95% of your SST.

The second chart shows the physiological benefits for training in each zone, including zone 3 - it helps Increase muscle glycogen storage better tan any other zone:
http://home.trainingpeaks.com/articles/ ... oggan.aspx

by Weenie


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Tapeworm
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by Tapeworm

It largely depends on what you are training for ie: the type of racing or events. If a large part of your chosen type of event has a lot of "tempo level" effort then it will pay to spend a far bit of time in this zone.
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devinci
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by devinci

There is no "no man's land" in training.

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STARNUT
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by STARNUT

no it's not a waste of time.


You do realize that a kid in his first crit or a TdF stage winner will have the same power profile for a race. You're always in zone 3 if the race is longer than an hour. If your race is 4 hours long at your NP will be in zone 3/tempo, why would you not train that way?

Starnut
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paddy
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by paddy

i agree it makes sense to train in zone 3, but just that i was getting a bit confused as some (probably older) sources seemed to specifically advise against doing any real training time in zone 3.

you've probably seen it already, but here is a recent training article from pez which i stumbled across and which has some interesting comments on zone 3 training, and winter training in general:

http://www.pezcyclingnews.com/?pg=fullstory&id=7831
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devinci
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by devinci

I think they are effectively older sources.

My opinion is you get adaptations in every zone you train in. The adaptations are just different and specific to each training intensity.

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STARNUT
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by STARNUT

devinci wrote:I think they are effectively older sources.

My opinion is you get adaptations in every zone you train in. The adaptations are just different and specific to each training intensity.


exactly, you 'da man. This is exactly what I tell my guys. Along with, "you have to ride hard to ride hard and you have to ride fast to ride fast." That is training in summation. You will adapt to JRAing in zone 2 however, I don't think it's the adaptation a competitive cyclist would want.

My other favorite is the food example. All of my athletes are aware of what they eat to some degree. A few are OCD/neurotic and a few are the opposite end of the spectrum. I always tell the to listen to their grandmothers. "You are what you eat". It extends to training as well....... "you are what you train".

Specificity, Specificity, Specificity, Specificity, Specificity, & Specificity. Train how/what you race. Race with your PM and look at the file and build workouts from that. I have never been in a race (crit, RR, circut, CX, mtn, or TT) where my NP was below Zone 3, never. I've never seen a race file like that either.

Starnut
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devinci
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by devinci

STARNUT

It would have been nice to have your contribution in the "building muscles" thread, as I was fighting pretty much alone against the weight training myths.

You seem pretty much spot on training wise. In accordance to my training phylisophy.

:smartass:

Well, I think

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STARNUT
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by STARNUT

Check it now :mrgreen:

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ACDC
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by ACDC

Currently I'm incorporating a fair bit of “sweet spot training” into my week broken down into 20min intervals within a 90-120min ride on the trainer. My sweet spot is around 156-159 bpm which is about 92-94% of my LTRH. I aim to do these intervals at a steady 90rpm but often find that I’m slowly dropping my cadence just to maintain my HR within the tight zone.

For my 2x20 threshold intervals, which I do at between 95-100% LTHR I concentrate on keeping keep my cadence steady and smooth and let my HR drift upwards through the zone. Should I apply the same when doing the sweet spot intervals and aim for an avg. HR during the interval of between 156-159?

Thanks
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devinci
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by devinci

I would keep the steady cadence when doing sweet spot and let HR drift up. Cardiac dirft is a normal phenomenon, especially indoors, because you blood flows more superficially to evacuate heat, so thre is less blood to your working muscle, therefore your heart needs to pump faster.

jacktdf
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by jacktdf

Ive been doing some sweet spot and think its the real deal. I feel like my threshold has gone up significantly. What are your experiences with SST?

DanW
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by DanW

It's an interesting question that got me thinking too having started to use power and some of the sessions on Trainerroad. Lots of programmes use SST yet the common belief is Z3 is "junk miles".

My feeling on this is that both can be correct to an extent and the important thing is the duration spent in the "sweet spot" and when it is in your year.

In terms of short(ish) intervals then it seems SST is most often used to bridge to LT work and not jump too quickly in to the hard stuff. Perhaps if you were to keep doing sweet spot intervals rather than LT intervals towards race time then you would have lesser gains in speed?

However to spend longer in the "sweet spot" towards race time and not just do shorter intervals here can still be beneficial as, as others have said, races use a lot of Z3 and above.

So maybe short SST is best used as a bridge to LTT and longer SST continues to be useful afterwards in conjunction with shorter LT intervals? SST is perhaps "junk miles" if continuing to use for shorter intervals when LT stuff would be more beneficial afterwards?

by Weenie


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devinci
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by devinci

It is junk training time and it's not.

For me, someone spending considerable weekly hours in the tempo/threshold range may actually be wasting some precious recovery and effort time. Depending on the rider's goal events. There is a place in the training schedule for that kind of long steady effort at moderate intensity but including such training for several days a week might be a waste of time. This sort of workis makes you *feel like you've worked hard but more often then not, you've just worked too hard or not hard enough. It may leave you too fatigued to approach a real high intensity session properly and it does not allow you to recover, at least partly, like a Z2 ride would.

It is still a relatively useful training intensity but people tend to do too much of it.

DanW, im not sure what you mean with shorter and longer SST efforts. But the way I understand it, I don't agrre with the dynamic you are describing.

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