Body dictates strengths as cyclist ? How to know them ?

A light bike doesn't replace good fitness.

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Kupepe
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Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 5:04 pm

by Kupepe

Hello,

I have been cycling for the last 3 years. Unfortunately with 2 8 month breaks due to newborn babies which put me back a lot in matters of condition. Up till now I have been doing club rides and a two or three 200 km audaxes for the fun with friends.

The last 3 months have been very interesting for me since with the guidance of a former professional athlete friend I have improved my pedalling technique (high cadence, no bouncing, loose shoulders, feet etc) and breathing quite a lot and have seen great improvement in efficiency when going up hills or when I am at the drops.

Now, I am starting to think to preparing to do some racing. I am willing to put the effort to be adequate, in order to follow the bunch without dying on the bike, learn how to move inside the bunch etc, during the next season. I am 38 and with 2 kids. I am planning to start with creating a solid base for next year. Then maybe do more specific sweetspotthreshhold training and see where we go from there.

This former athlete friend suggested that at first I should start with some basic running during weekdays in order to build my cardiovuscular strength, do one long ride during the weekends and hit the gym to strengthen my core. After 3 months I should go to do some measurements to define my FTP etc and build a more solid plan from there. Fine by me. Does it sound ok as a logic to you? Unfortunately where I live I dont have access to a cycling coach.

Due to my profession I am quite analytical and I prefer to do some smart, efficient training since with 2 kids there is not so much time available. Doing some reading I understand that our physiology dictates in some degree the kind of cyclist he can be. Are you a sprinter, a breakaway rider, a TTer or a Climber. How can I determine that ?

Thank you in advance and sorry for the wall of words.

by Weenie


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shoopdawoop
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by shoopdawoop

Do you have a powermeter? If so read training and racing with a powermeter! If not do you have a heart rate monitor? Being analytical you will love these tools!


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Kupepe
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Joined: Sat Jun 22, 2013 5:04 pm

by Kupepe

Got the heart rate monitor. I have been using a powermeter a the last 2 months ... a loaned one ... really love it but cant afford one atm ...

7ducati
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Joined: Mon Oct 10, 2011 8:34 pm

by 7ducati

Are you planning on doing more crits, RR's, TT's? Is your area exceptionally hilly? If your area is like mine, most races end in bunch sprints, but there isn't enough team organization at the low levels to protect a pure "sprinter" throughout the race until the end. And there aren't really any sustained climbs for a climber to get away. So usually most people fall into "Rouleur" category, an all-a-rounder. But I wouldn't really worry about categorizing yourself until you see, during a race, where your strengths are.
2017 Cervélo S3
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Tinea Pedis
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by Tinea Pedis

Highly recommend going through the threads on here.

Quick examples of threads that will help are on the front page, as Stickies

viewtopic.php?f=8&t=94503

and

viewtopic.php?f=8&t=78810

other like

viewtopic.php?f=8&t=13123

viewtopic.php?t=12698

will be a good start too.

Lots of reading, smart training and racing will help give a better idea of where your strengths lay.

dgran
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Joined: Mon Dec 03, 2012 10:04 pm

by dgran

I get the sense that you are looking for a phenotype, such as body proportion or muscle mass, to indicate areas of strength. There may be some trends but the real magic of this sport lies in chemistry you can't even see, such as the ability to clear lactic acid, mitochondrial density and oxygen carrying capacity. Assuming that people train with vigor and recover also, these factors will separate people rapidly.

From an analytic perspective there isn't a lot of technique in cycling that affords much benefit. Races aren't won because because of smooth pedal stroke or relaxed shoulders. This stuff helps but they aren't even won because the strongest and most fit person crossed the line first. Most often the "win" goes to the person who burned their matches at the optimal time. I can't begin to count the number of times I've seen weak riders with experience win races and sprints. I say this as someone with a cat2 physiology and a cat6 mentality when it comes to racing.

There is one area though where being analytic can pay off on the training. Most people ride too hard on easy days and too easy on hard days. The sure sign of a mediocre rider is that their rides always average about the same speed. A very fit rider will have a wide delta between the pace they ride for endurance and threshold. An insecure rider who measures ride volume will unknowingly sacrifice opportunity to work on top end effort in order to log miles. A power meter is most helpful in this way so that you think of rides in terms of stress and adaptation.

Illuminate
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Location: Australia

by Illuminate

Dgran - excellent response! Out of interest - medical background?

dgran
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by dgran

Illuminate wrote:Dgran - excellent response! Out of interest - medical background?


My background is IT but as a hobby I read about the physiology of sport.

boots2000
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Joined: Mon Oct 15, 2007 9:28 pm

by boots2000

To determine what you accel at you need to conduct some testing.
Or follow trends on training peaks.
10 sec power
30 sec power
60 sec power
5-10-20-30 min power
You can see what you are good at and bad at. Decide if you need to train those areas more, or if you just accel in other areas.
Don't let body type restrict you.
I have seen skinny sprinters are pretty large climbers.
A really successful sprinter (who did not at all have impressive legs) one told me- "Physique does not equal physiology".

motormouth
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Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2013 8:05 pm

by motormouth

dgran - your comment about training analysis hits close to home for me... I always feel like I'm overdoing it on my base days, but don't know what they should look like in terms of HR and time, compared to the one or two hard efforts to pull that top end up. Do you have any articles/plans you would recommend as an intro to planning your training regiment? I am targeting the cross season.

Illuminate
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Location: Australia

by Illuminate

dgran wrote:
Illuminate wrote:Dgran - excellent response! Out of interest - medical background?


My background is IT but as a hobby I read about the physiology of sport.


:thumbup:

nathanong87
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by nathanong87

motormouth wrote:dgran - your comment about training analysis hits close to home for me... I always feel like I'm overdoing it on my base days, but don't know what they should look like in terms of HR and time, compared to the one or two hard efforts to pull that top end up. Do you have any articles/plans you would recommend as an intro to planning your training regiment? I am targeting the cross season.


bruh, tinea pedis posted valuable links already

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Rick
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Joined: Sat Aug 29, 2009 4:30 pm

by Rick

I tend to be analytic also. But one thing that my experience has taught me is that "analytical" is just not really very valuable in bike racing.
Believe me, I wish it were.
My advice is to go enter some races and you will see where your weak and strong points are.

motormouth
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Joined: Fri Jan 04, 2013 8:05 pm

by motormouth

nathanong87 wrote:
motormouth wrote:dgran - your comment about training analysis hits close to home for me... I always feel like I'm overdoing it on my base days, but don't know what they should look like in terms of HR and time, compared to the one or two hard efforts to pull that top end up. Do you have any articles/plans you would recommend as an intro to planning your training regiment? I am targeting the cross season.


bruh, tinea pedis posted valuable links already


I checked them out, but none were in the language or info of what I was looking for (did you actually click on those links??).

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Tinea Pedis
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by Tinea Pedis

That's not an exhaustive list motormouth.

A search will find you plenty more.

by Weenie


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