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TT Newbie looking for training advice and possibly a plan.

DanEvsDanEvs Posts: 640
I've done two TT's now and took the plunge last night by coughing up for membership of my local club. From here on in I'm looking at doing a TT most weeks as well as my usual MTB riding/playing.

I ride MTB enduro's and have a good base level of fitness but really seemed to be lacking power last night and feel that I need help developing my legs. On the MTB I regularly run high HR's without any trouble and can ride at 90-95% of my heart rate range for an hour relatively easily whereas on the road bike I seem to lack the power to spin the pedals fast enough to really take advantage of my cardio and my legs get heavy. I'm recovering from a knee arthroscopy performed 21st May but feel pretty good about it.

I'm quite new to all this training/fitness lark and I know there are some very clued up peeps on here who can maybe help me improve my TT performance so any pointers gratefully received.

I'm 27, 5'9" and weigh 76kgs (need to lose a few :D ) and ride 3-4 times a week.

2 previous TT's-
May- 22mile in 56mins on a hilly course av-23.5mph.
last night- 10mile in 26mins on a flat course av 23mph! (post knee op)

Posts

  • I'm wondering whether your maximum HR is higher than you think it is.

    The primary determinants of performance in TT racing are:
    - Sustainable aerobic power (and to some extent your sustainable power to weight ratio)
    - Good pacing
    - Aerodynamics

    So to improve speed / times in a TT, then you'll need to address all three of these.

    From a training perspective, well that's a matter of doing sufficient work, in a progressive manner, that elicits the desireable changes in sustainable power. That typically involves riding a variety of efforts levels from basic endurance riding through to short efforts at above 10-mile TT pace. Generally a blend of enduance, tempo, theshold and efforts close to Maximal Aerobic Power are key to attaining improvement, as is gradually ramping up how much you do each week and how much intensity you do each week.

    The optimal mix of those depends somewhat on the time you have available and your fitness level and training history.

    but if one is not sure, then simply riding a little more each week, including some hills, a longer ride, and some short sharp stuff, with the occasional race, will usually provide for enough stimulus to improve fitness but perhaps not as quickly or effectively as one might achieve it through a somewhat more structured/planned approach.
  • DanEvsDanEvs Posts: 640
    First of all thanks very much for your reply.

    I think you may be right about my max HR although I've looked through my training log and I'm maybe higher im my HRR than I think. Thursday night's 10mile TT was at an average of 179bpm which isn't really that low at all is it? :roll: My max is 199 and it appears I can usually sustain 180bpm for 1hr and I appear to drop off by 10bpm/hr thereafter.

    So the main question is what can I do to improve my performance in the TT's? I'm currently riding a normal road bike with drops and an XC lid so I know there are future gains to be had from aero bike/helmet but I've told myself I'm not going to splash out on any kit until I'm able to do mid 24's on the 10 miler. Does this seem reasonable enough or should I just get the gear now and enjoy the benefits?

    Alex- will one of your TT plans have any adverse effects on my MTB enduro fitness/ability or will I benefit there as well?
  • DanEvs wrote:
    So the main question is what can I do to improve my performance in the TT's? I'm currently riding a normal road bike with drops and an XC lid so I know there are future gains to be had from aero bike/helmet but I've told myself I'm not going to splash out on any kit until I'm able to do mid 24's on the 10 miler. Does this seem reasonable enough or should I just get the gear now and enjoy the benefits?
    Well really you are the only one who can answer the question of how much speed matters to you and by which methods you choose to gain it. There are those that are quite happy to TT against themselves using the old skool bike set up and not go the aero bike set up. But don't get frustrated at not beating guys that are less powerful than you.

    Here is an example of an analysis of the difference between a TT bike set up and a standard road bike set up:
    http://alex-cycle.blogspot.com/2009/04/new-skool.html
    DanEvs wrote:
    Alex- will one of your TT plans have any adverse effects on my MTB enduro fitness/ability or will I benefit there as well?
    Well, to quote a pretty well respected exercise physiologist: "It's an aerobic sport, dammit!". :wink:

    IOW, the primary fitness improvement that will benefit both events is lifting your functional threshold power. Obviously there are specific elements to fitness for each events (specificity principle) but becoming fit for TTs would not be a hindrance to MTB performance and is more than likely going to improve it.

    As to the plans, since they are customised, they can incorporate training for both events.
  • simon_esimon_e Posts: 1,676
    I'm on my second season of club time trialling and find that I'm hardly any quicker than 12 months ago. The advice I've been given by more experienced riders is roughly:

    - winter training rides will pay off. You can't expect to significantly improve your performance without solid base training. *
    - intervals (3 mins above TT pace, 3 mins light spinning, repeat 3 or 4 times).
    - train by doing what you want to improve, so each week try doing 1 interval session and 2 time trials at distances near your target.

    * Easy/leisure rides and most people's commuting rides don't really qualify.
    Aspire not to have more, but to be more.
  • simon tsimon t Posts: 132
    Simon E wrote:
    I'm on my second season of club time trialling and find that I'm hardly any quicker than 12 months ago. The advice I've been given by more experienced riders is roughly:

    - winter training rides will pay off. You can't expect to significantly improve your performance without solid base training. *
    - intervals (3 mins above TT pace, 3 mins light spinning, repeat 3 or 4 times).
    - train by doing what you want to improve, so each week try doing 1 interval session and 2 time trials at distances near your target.

    * Easy/leisure rides and most people's commuting rides don't really qualify.

    I would suggest getting a plan from Alex.you will definate improve quicker with a progressive training plan from someone who knows what they talking about.just because someone is experienced it doesnt mean they are training correctly.
  • simon_esimon_e Posts: 1,676
    simon t wrote:
    I would suggest getting a plan from Alex.you will definate improve quicker with a progressive training plan from someone who knows what they talking about.just because someone is experienced it doesnt mean they are training correctly.
    Thanks. I like the idea of a training plan but the reality is I suspect I wouldn't do it justice. I know I don't train enough.

    In fact I don't train. That's the problem (I'll spare you the excuses). So advice from people who've been doing it for a while plus the great info provided here by Alex and others will have to do me for now.
    Aspire not to have more, but to be more.
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