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Time Trial Ordeal! HELP

McBain_v1McBain_v1 Posts: 5,237
I desperately want to reduce my time for a 10-mile route. I won't tell you what it currently stands as because it is so pitiful. However, I can only really get on the turbo trainer after work for about an hour tops.

Are there any good work-out sessions that will help me to boost performance :?:

I've heard about doing alternating fast/slow cycles, pedalling using just one leg for short periods, doing lung-busting sessions on the biggest gear you can handle, getting as high a cadence as you can sustain for 5/10/15 minutes etc...

...are there any basics that I should be doing :?:

What do I ride? Now that's an Enigma!

Posts

  • richaricha Posts: 1,634
    What sort of improvement are you looking for McB?
    Rich
  • Try a search in these forums for "2x20" . It seems to work for most TTers; at least those that can stand the sheer mental tedium/torture that they are.
  • Jez monJez mon Posts: 3,809
    The trouble with 2x20 is that it's hard to fit them in an hour session.

    Warm up 20 minutes

    Interval 20 minutes

    Rest 10 minutes

    Interval 20 minutes

    Warm down 10 minutes

    Thats too long.

    Shorter, more intense intervals can have a good effect if you really are limited in your training time. You'll find all kind of variations for intervals all different length and various recovery times.

    Some basic lactic acid threshold intervals might work well, the interval is about 5 (or more) minutes long at about 80-90 percent heart rate, at the end of the interval your legs should burn! Then take about 3/4 minutes recovery. Then repeat.

    Fit as many as possible in before the hour is up/you can't keep up.

    If you find you're still fresh at the end of the session then extend the intervals.
    You live and learn. At any rate, you live
  • Jez mon wrote:
    The trouble with 2x20 is that it's hard to fit them in an hour session.
    Are you kidding?
    That's only 40-min of riding at level, so that give 20-min for warm up , recovery between efforts and cool down. That's more than enough time.
  • BronzieBronzie Posts: 4,927
    Jez mon wrote:
    The trouble with 2x20 is that it's hard to fit them in an hour session
    :?:
    You don't need 10 min recovery in between - 5 is enough - I'd suggest:

    10-15min warmup / 20 min effort / 5 min recovery / 20 min effort / 5-10 min warmdown

    That's 1 hour to 1h10m at the most
  • McBain_v1McBain_v1 Posts: 5,237
    Thank you people :)

    I would really like to be able to do 10 miles in under 30 mins :oops: :cry:

    At present I am hovering around 32 mins and just don't seem to be able to get faster. My overall goal would be to get down to about 25 mins but I know that will take some serious training, but for now a sub-30min time would be brilliant.

    <stop laughing you lot>

    Going to try and do some weight lifting for my legs (squats, leg extensions, calf raises, hamstring curls, deadlifts) to boost power as well.

    What do I ride? Now that's an Enigma!
  • Parsnip49Parsnip49 Posts: 205
    10 min warm up

    7 reps of 90s @ FTP+10% and 90s 60% FTP

    3 mins @ FTP

    10 mins warm down

    Doesnt take long, and really boosts your threshold performance.

    If you dont have a powermeter, ignore the FTP bit and do it by HR - although i find this much harder to do, as you HR rises as you get further into the set. Basically for the upper interval i target 180 (above my 10 mile TT HR) and 140ish for the resting part.

    Work at keeping good form, and a steady cadence. If your on a TT bike/are using aerobars - get aero and stay there - even on the turbo. If not, get in the drops, keep your knees in to the top tube and get your back flat - get used to being aero when working hard.
  • McBain_v1 wrote:
    Thank you people :)

    I would really like to be able to do 10 miles in under 30 mins :oops: :cry:

    At present I am hovering around 32 mins and just don't seem to be able to get faster. My overall goal would be to get down to about 25 mins but I know that will take some serious training, but for now a sub-30min time would be brilliant.

    <stop laughing you lot>

    Going to try and do some weight lifting for my legs (squats, leg extensions, calf raises, hamstring curls, deadlifts) to boost power as well.
    Well there are three big things to improving TT times:

    - training to increase your sustainable (aerobic) power
    - reducing the resistance forces against you (better tyres, more aero position and equipment)
    - improved pacing

    Do all three things well and you will drop times dramatically.
  • Jez mon wrote:
    The trouble with 2x20 is that it's hard to fit them in an hour session.
    Are you kidding?
    That's only 40-min of riding at level, so that give 20-min for warm up , recovery between efforts and cool down. That's more than enough time.
    Case in point - a ride of mine from last week:
    http://alex-cycle.blogspot.com/2008/07/ ... ake-2.html
  • Personally I'd recommend "2x5's " 25 min warm up, 1x 5 min slightly faster, 15 mins rest, 1 x 5 min almost as hard as the first rep, then warm down at B+1 effort, where B=boredom threshold. This coefficient is extremely rider dependant and can also vary for each rider hourly, so its practically immeasurable. Unfortunately to my knowledge there is no known cure, not even the prospect of the humiliation of regular appearances in the bottom percentile of every race entered.
    Welcome to the world of under-achievers, it's a warm and friendly place down here :D and surprisingly comfortable!
  • Jez monJez mon Posts: 3,809
    I didn't say it was impossible!

    It's just from my point of view, I would prefer a nice long warm up (20 mins), physiologically, it might not be necessary, but for me, I find it's a mental thing, I want a longish warm up to prepare me.

    I have tried a number of sessions which i needed to fit into a short amount of time. The trouble is, it's easy to skip the warm down, mentally you think you've done the training, of course soon after you regret not doing the warm down.
    You live and learn. At any rate, you live
  • McBain_v1McBain_v1 Posts: 5,237
    Thanks to Parsnip, Alex and SteveR for their tips - all very useful stuff and something that I will be having a go at very shortly. Another question, is it best to do a different work-out every night or to maybe do a week of the same work out, or even the same workout every other night to allow some recovery inbetween :?:

    What do I ride? Now that's an Enigma!
  • BronzieBronzie Posts: 4,927
    2-3 hard interval sessions per week (with recovery rides if needed in between) is probably going to be enough both physically and more importantly mentally.

    Depending on your age and ability to recover, the 2x20s can probably be done back to back on consecutive days, but as Steve has pointed out, they are not the most enjoyable things you can do on a bike.
  • Parsnip49 wrote:
    10 min warm up

    7 reps of 90s @ FTP+10% and 90s 60% FTP

    3 mins @ FTP

    10 mins warm down

    Doesnt take long, and really boosts your threshold performance.

    If you dont have a powermeter, ignore the FTP bit and do it by HR - although i find this much harder to do, as you HR rises as you get further into the set. Basically for the upper interval i target 180 (above my 10 mile TT HR) and 140ish for the resting part.

    Work at keeping good form, and a steady cadence. If your on a TT bike/are using aerobars - get aero and stay there - even on the turbo. If not, get in the drops, keep your knees in to the top tube and get your back flat - get used to being aero when working hard.

    Hi parsnip.

    I'm not sure if you're using a power meter or going on perceived exertion here, but ftp+10% seems a bit low for a 90 second interval?

    Or maybe it's just me?

    Cheers, Andy
  • McBain_v1 wrote:
    Thanks to Parsnip, Alex and SteveR for their tips - all very useful stuff and something that I will be having a go at very shortly. Another question, is it best to do a different work-out every night or to maybe do a week of the same work out, or even the same workout every other night to allow some recovery inbetween :?:

    Hi there.

    Everybody's different! Recovery between intervals depends a lot on things like how much and how good a sleep you're getting, how much stress you have at work, and at home and how physically active your job is.

    Personally I find that I could do the longer intervals (e.g. the famous 2x20min) for several days in a row - if I wanted to. The shorter intervals (2 or 3 min reps) I would definately not repeat 2 days in a row. You could do it, but the second day would be very tough, and probably counter-productive. Strangely I don't find that sprint intervals (level 7 15-30second stuff) doesn't affect me at all - maybe I don't put enough effort into it.

    Your mileage may vary. My main difficulty is balancing this with running track and pool sessions...

    Cheers, Andy
  • willbevanwillbevan Posts: 1,241
    one that ive been doin lately thats been helpin me continue improve

    10 mins warmup

    6 x 3 min racepace intervals , 3 min rest

    10 mins cooldown

    Gets in under an hour

    Starting to do longer intervals like the 2x20s are closer to TT, but found the above helps :)
    Road - BTwin Sport 2 16s
    MTB - Trek Fuel 80
    TT - Echelon

    http://www.rossonwye.cyclists.co.uk/
  • Parsnip49 wrote:
    10 min warm up

    7 reps of 90s @ FTP+10% and 90s 60% FTP

    3 mins @ FTP

    10 mins warm down

    Doesnt take long, and really boosts your threshold performance.

    If you dont have a powermeter, ignore the FTP bit and do it by HR - although i find this much harder to do, as you HR rises as you get further into the set. Basically for the upper interval i target 180 (above my 10 mile TT HR) and 140ish for the resting part.

    Work at keeping good form, and a steady cadence. If your on a TT bike/are using aerobars - get aero and stay there - even on the turbo. If not, get in the drops, keep your knees in to the top tube and get your back flat - get used to being aero when working hard.
    That would be a borderline endurance/tempo effort with an IF of ~ 0.85. Sort of a low end sweet spot workout. OK for a general workout.

    But if you make the "off portion" at 90% of FTP (rather than at 60%), now you have an IF of ~ 0.91 overall (bang in the middle of sweet spot training.) including a 27 minute effort with IF ~ 1.01. Very hard but certainly feasible.
  • ToksToks Posts: 1,143
    Jez mon wrote:
    The trouble with 2x20 is that it's hard to fit them in an hour session.

    Warm up 20 minutes

    Interval 20 minutes

    Rest 10 minutes

    Interval 20 minutes

    Warm down 10 minutes

    Thats too long.

    .
    Absolute nonsense!! for the last two years my 2 x 20 regime looks like this -10 min warm up; 20min interval; 5 min break; 20 min interval ;5 min cool down
  • McBain_v1McBain_v1 Posts: 5,237
    It does seem from what people are saying that the "2x20" sessions are more appropriate to time trial training. Unfortunately there is quite a bit of jargon floating around which has me mystified:
    if you make the "off portion" at 90% of FTP (rather than at 60%), now you have an IF of ~ 0.91 overall

    What the humpin' heck does that translate as :?: :shock:

    FTP :?:
    IF :?:

    It's all a mystery to me :oops:

    What do I ride? Now that's an Enigma!
  • Parsnip49Parsnip49 Posts: 205
    Thats what i get for doing maths in my head while pretending to do work...

    My FTP is 310 (im a climber, not a TTist, wimpy but im trying :P)

    On portion of interval at 370

    Off portion at 210

    so +20% and 70% (roughly) I find it works for me.

    Its more for Fitness than power on the bike, as it puts my HR right around 180 at the end of one of the 90s reps - my max being about 189. It also leaves me with a little in the tank, which is useful n the road for a hill/sprinting out of a turnaround and enough to finish with a puke inducing sprint
  • Parsnip49Parsnip49 Posts: 205
    FTP = Functional Threshold Power.

    Basically its the maximum power you can maintain over a 1 hour period.

    IF = Intensity factor

    This is you power for the ride over your FTP - basically how hard you are working - recovery wattage will be low in relation to your ftp so a low IF etc.
  • McBain_v1 wrote:
    It does seem from what people are saying that the "2x20" sessions are more appropriate to time trial training. Unfortunately there is quite a bit of jargon floating around which has me mystified:
    if you make the "off portion" at 90% of FTP (rather than at 60%), now you have an IF of ~ 0.91 overall

    What the humpin' heck does that translate as :?: :shock:

    FTP :?:
    IF :?:

    It's all a mystery to me :oops:
    Well to be fair, the answer was in direct response to a poster who clearly knows what these terms mean.

    FTP (functional threshold power) is how much power you can sustain for about an hour. In other words, how hard you ride when doing a long time trial of ~ 25 miles.

    IF (Intensity Factor) is one way of equating how much power you produce relative to your own FTP. So an IF = 1 means you are riding at FTP. An IF of 0.8 means you are riding at 80% of your FTP and so on. There's a little more to it that that but that's the gist.

    It is very useful to describe training as being relative to our own level of fitness. When riding with an IF of 0.9 say - it is as relatively hard for me as it is for you, just our FTPs are probably different and the absolute power will be different.
  • Parsnip49 wrote:
    Thats what i get for doing maths in my head while pretending to do work...

    My FTP is 310 (im a climber, not a TTist, wimpy but im trying :P)

    On portion of interval at 370

    Off portion at 210

    so +20% and 70% (roughly) I find it works for me.

    Its more for Fitness than power on the bike, as it puts my HR right around 180 at the end of one of the 90s reps - my max being about 189. It also leaves me with a little in the tank, which is useful n the road for a hill/sprinting out of a turnaround and enough to finish with a puke inducing sprint
    That is a significantly different session!
    IF of 0.90 overall with 27 min @ IF = 1.0.
    Again very hard but feasible.
  • McBain_v1McBain_v1 Posts: 5,237
    Okay - pardon my ignorance. Sounds as though the next step is to go and purchase an SRM power meter set up :?

    What do I ride? Now that's an Enigma!
  • McBain_v1 wrote:
    Okay - pardon my ignorance. Sounds as though the next step is to go and purchase an SRM power meter set up :?
    You don't need a power meter in order to learn about the concepts used when training with one.

    Ask questions and read up - there are a number of excellent sources of information and publications.
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