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Turbo progam.

OS 65OS 65 Posts: 415
Hi there

I don't have much time to train so I've been using the turbo alot and try to fit in sessions when time allows.

All my turbo sessions are at a hard level and on consecutive days during the week I mix a 20x2 session, a spin session and a mixed session (sprints, 4min intervals and spin)

At the weekend I have an easy 40 mile group ride which in August I want to swap to a 10 or 25 TT

Should I be doing three hard turbo sessions after each other or do turbo enthusiasts mix easy and hard sessions? It would seem odd, to me, to ride a 20x2 session below TT pace

My turbo sessions last between and hour and 1hr 15mins including a 15min warm up and 10 min warm down

During my last couple of sessions I've not been able to ride above 85% of max pulse but haven't felt particularly tired off the bike

I'm at a fitness level that allows me to stretch 3rd cat riders on a chaingang.

I'd like to get under the hour for a 25TT this year!

So to sum up I'm not sure if every session on the turbo should be hard, when its the main form of training. Should I mix hard with moderate sessions?

Thanks

OS 65

Posts

  • BeaconRuthBeaconRuth Posts: 2,086
    OS 65 wrote:
    Should I be doing three hard turbo sessions after each other or do turbo enthusiasts............
    Is anyone a 'turbo enthusiast'? I love it like a love taking medicine. :(
    ......... mix easy and hard sessions? It would seem odd, to me, to ride a 20x2 session below TT pace
    It would be worth sometimes doing long intervals just below TT pace. How about doing 25x2 or 15x3 on the same gear but dropping the cadence by a couple of rpm? - say 15-20W lower if you're looking at your power? You'll still get quite a lot of the benefit from these, but without quite so much attrition, probably enabling you to train again the next day.
    So to sum up I'm not sure if every session on the turbo should be hard, when its the main form of training. Should I mix hard with moderate sessions?
    It depends what you call 'hard'. I would say an hour at a good tempo pace (the kind of pace you would do a brisk two-hour ride on the road) is quite a tough session, but it's also the kind of thing you can repeat on consecutive days. It brings massive benefits to basic aerobic fitness, but there's no need for your HR to go above about 85%maxHR.

    There are a whole range of things you can do to mix things up if you're getting on the turbo on consecutive days, but overdoing it is a risk unless you bear in mind the damage you're doing to your muscles with the various different kinds of sessions. Generally speaking it's probably only a good idea to do hard intervals (at TT pace or above) every three days. In between knock the pace back and do slightly easier long intervals, or steady tempo work, have complete rest or do easy spins. The mix and balance of all those depends on your time and your current fitness. Don't worry, you will still make huge gains in fitness when you're working below TT pace, as long as you're not taking it too easy.

    Ruth
  • OS 65OS 65 Posts: 415
    Hi Ruth

    Thanks for your free advice. I hope you don't mind me asking a few more questions. I don't mind the turbo, almost an enthusiast!

    I don't use a power meter, just a cadence monitor and HRM.

    I did a 10 tt in May and felt fine keeping my pulse around 176 (my threshold is 175 after a fitness test) on the turbo I really struggle to get above 173 (not sure if its psychological or not) and have been happy with anything above 170

    I do a 20x2 once a week at tt pace, the last one was about 5-10 beats (163-170) lower than I normally manage but not out of choice, I just couldn't sustain an effort to get my pulse higher although I got my pulse higher on the second 20.

    I seem to get my pulse higher when I spin at a higher cadence and struggle at slower cadences

    From what you say it sounds as though my sessions are too hard, On the turbo I'm always at the max of what I can do and hadn't realised that lower intensity work produces results.

    Would you suggest the harder intervals are short ones, eg 4 mins if the 20x2 are more moderate.

    After the turbo session, although I'm winded immediately after I don't appear to get the muscle strain the next day that I would get on a 40 mile chain gang so I was assuming that all though the turbo sessions are intense their short length of intensity meant I could do them all the sessions at a high intensity

    Thanks again

    OS 65
  • BeaconRuthBeaconRuth Posts: 2,086
    OS 65 wrote:
    I don't use a power meter, just a cadence monitor and HRM.

    I did a 10 tt in May and felt fine keeping my pulse around 176 (my threshold is 175 after a fitness test) on the turbo I really struggle to get above 173 (not sure if its psychological or not) and have been happy with anything above 170

    I do a 20x2 once a week at tt pace, the last one was about 5-10 beats (163-170) lower than I normally manage but not out of choice, I just couldn't sustain an effort to get my pulse higher although I got my pulse higher on the second 20.

    I seem to get my pulse higher when I spin at a higher cadence and struggle at slower cadences
    Bear in mind that the aim is not to get your pulse high! The aim is to generate a high power output.

    To be perfectly honest I would try to move away from worrying about exactly what your HR is doing. What HR you race at and your 'threshold HR' aren't a great deal of use or interest really. I would be more interested in finding a way to measure how hard you're working - say by looking at your rear wheel speed for a given turbo resistance setting? (Or even by looking at cadence for a certain gear and turbo resistance combination.) Then do some trial and error to find the maximum (precisely constant) speed you can sustain for a 20 min interval. It doesn't matter what your HR does - if you have an ounce of energy or strength left after the 20mins, increase the speed a touch next time. The weather, your state of tiredness or who-knows-what-else may affect what your HR does but if you work on increasing the speed you can sustain for 20mins then you'll know you're improving. Every 0.1mph increase means a handful of seconds off your TT times.
    From what you say it sounds as though my sessions are too hard, On the turbo I'm always at the max of what I can do and hadn't realised that lower intensity work produces results.

    Would you suggest the harder intervals are short ones, eg 4 mins if the 20x2 are more moderate.
    We're back to what do you call 'hard'. 2x20min as hard as you can manage is a very tough session and if done properly I would definitely call them 'hard'. Shorter intervals (eg. 4 or 5mins) can be just as hard or harder, depending on whether you prefer short intense pain to long, drawn-out pain............... whatever, in most cases I wouldn't advise doing any intervals more often than 1 day in 3. On the other days take the effort right back and do long steady efforts at 75-85%maxHR. (This is when using a HRM does become useful)
    After the turbo session, although I'm winded immediately after I don't appear to get the muscle strain the next day that I would get on a 40 mile chain gang so I was assuming that all though the turbo sessions are intense their short length of intensity meant I could do them all the sessions at a high intensity
    It is possible (though not always necessary) to do a lot of muscle damage on the turbo, so don't underestimate how much recovery you need if you've worked very hard. It sounds to me as though you've never felt your legs throbbing and screaming out in pain for a couple of hours after a turbo session? Perhaps it's just me then. :(:wink:

    Ruth
  • OS 65OS 65 Posts: 415
    Hi Ruth
    Thanks for the extra advice, I appreciate it. It sounds more complicated than I anticipated and I guess it looks like I'm a bit out of date with my training knowledge!

    I'll work out a to set my turbo up to use in a more precise manner.

    I suppose what I was looking for when I for when I first wrote the post were turbo sessions I could do inbetween the hard sessions so that I didn't end up overtraining and weren't just riding more easily for longer.

    It appears I just do the routines I've been using but at a slower pace.

    Thanks again

    OS 65
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