Any tips on resuming training after a long(ish) break?

A light bike doesn't replace good fitness.

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the_marsbar
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by the_marsbar

For the first time I've been forced to take some time off cycling without an injury being the cause. I am finishing a PhD, and I've been way too busy. I don't feel like it's necessary to go into greater detail, the main point is that I haven't been cycling for a good few months now.

This is a new situation for me, and I'm a bit unsure how to get back into training again, without overdoing it or something like that. I was training around 8-10 hours a week, and my FTP was approx. 4 w/kg when I stopped. My own idea would be to do a new FTP test, and start following a program (I used to use TrainerRoad). But is it better to focus on endurance training now, or short/hard intervals? The cyclocross season is just around the corner, so in order to get some fun out of that, I would lean towards the shorter intervals, to regain some sprinting ability.

Any input/thoughts?

by Weenie


Rubik
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by Rubik

I took years and years off. I came back, rode easy for about a week, then started SST and threshold intervals 3-4x a week, along with a group ride, typically around 8-12 hours a week. Within 3 months I was at 90%+ what I was when I left, and within 6 months was getting podiums at p/1/2 races.

It all came back really quickly.

Cyclocross is aerobic, so the better your aerobic conditioning, the more harder efforts you'll be able to make throughout the race. I'd sprinkle in some 30-60s stuff, but still focus primarily on threshold and that vicinity.
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the_marsbar
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by the_marsbar

Great, thanks for the input. I really appreciate it.

What you did sounds more or less like what I had in mind myself.

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Snabb
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by Snabb

I`m in the same situation. Was in good shape in the spring and raced and then took the summer "off". My experience is that the first weeks no structure is needed just ride. Because you will feel like s*it most of the time but slowly you will start to feel better again. Don`t push it just ride and have fun. Fitness will come back faster than you think. Atleast thats what I`m telling myself.
Ride lots!

waltthizzney
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by waltthizzney

find some group rides and dont look at your computer

joeyb1000
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by joeyb1000

I vote for some long easy rides to start. It will take a few weeks for your rear-end and knees to get used to the bike again.

AJS914
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by AJS914

After 3 months of snow, I jump started my spring by vowing to ride every day for two weeks up and down the bike trail. Two weeks/200 miles was enough to make riding a habit again and get the kinks out and get the butt used to riding.

dim
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by dim

I'm in a similar situation as I'm waiting for surgery to repair a hernia .... (hopefully at the end of this month)

I will start off slowly and do short rides, then start cycling on some longer flat routes ... Nothing too strenuos, and I will try and keep the average cadence at 80 Rpm

then start on a 40km route that has just over 300m of elevation and see how that goes

as I get fitter, I will increase the distance and elevation .... I need to do long hilly rides as I'm hoping to do some long Audax rides next year

I have just bought a Stages powermeter and will try and make heads and tails of the data
Trek Emonda SL6
Miyata One Thousand

hercio
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by hercio

Few years ago I re-started with cycling generaly.
First few weeks I was just riding. And yes; I did use cycling computer to monitor HR and CAD. Beacause after a few rides I felt like superman and that feeling would result iin devestation let say in 8-10 weeks. Gradualy increasing and resting is key not to fall into traps.

Image

That worked for me in many areas; cyloing, studying.

Enjoy!

IchDien
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by IchDien

^
This could be one
Of the best posts I've seen.

PJCM
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by PJCM

I am 2 months into resuming riding after 8 months of glandular fever/mono. Acknowledging that is a different circumstance to a non-medical induced break, my learning was to erase expectations embedded by my previous fitness. I had to reset my expectations on what gearing I could use in a given situation and how long that I could/should ride. It took a month of riding by feel before I felt a noticeable return in fitness. Also, I found the Strava fitness & freshness graph was helpful reassurance of progress. Today, I've resumed racing (in a lower grade) and continuing to build volume and intensity. So overall, I'd suggest resuming riding before resuming training.

biwa
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Joined: Fri Sep 21, 2018 8:39 pm

by biwa

hercio wrote:
Wed Jul 11, 2018 8:44 am
Few years ago I re-started with cycling generaly.
First few weeks I was just riding. And yes; I did use cycling computer to monitor HR and CAD. Beacause after a few rides I felt like superman and that feeling would result iin devestation let say in 8-10 weeks. Gradualy increasing and resting is key not to fall into traps.

Image

That worked for me in many areas; cyloing, studying.

Enjoy!
Great illustration and tips. I guess the key is not to despair when you go through the transition periods.

TheKaiser
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by TheKaiser

biwa wrote:
Wed Jan 02, 2019 6:15 am
Great illustration and tips. I guess the key is not to despair when you go through the transition periods.
Yes, very valuable. And remember that your capacity may be greater than what your training program dictates. A conservative/safe training program will ensure sufficient transition periods without risking overtraining, which can be catestrophic. Better to play it safe.

by Weenie


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