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Motivation after abandoning mid-race

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  • marykamaryka Posts: 748
    cojones wrote:
    maryka wrote:
    I'd really need to see your top 5 sec, 30 sec, 1 min

    5 sec = 970w
    30 sec = 521w
    1 min = 381w
    5 min = 297w

    Well in absolute watts your 5 secs kills mine :lol: admittedly that's my worst of the 4, but in w/kg we're the same and I struggle with corners and short duration surges in a men's race if I'm not in the middle of the bunch (thus giving myself some room to slide back -- if I'm the last to go into a sharp corner, I'm pretty much guaranteed to be dropped).

    In absolute watts, your 30 sec is the same as mine, your 1 min and 5 min are lower than mine (probably more a case that mine are higher as that's the strongest part of my power profile). In w/kg, if any of those (30 sec, 1 min, 5 min) has to be done as a surge up a hill you will struggle I think.

    It's probaby more likely you've never really done a 100% effort at 1 min or 5 min so can probably do better there. But I suspect you're going to need to work on bunch positioning a lot, as well as fitness, to make up for your lack of ability in the sprinty stuff. Then again, you can also work on shorter duration stuff and improve there as well, a big part of the 5-15-30 sec stuff is technique -- being in the right gear, etc.
  • cojonescojones Posts: 131
    maryka wrote:
    It's probaby more likely you've never really done a 100% effort at 1 min or 5 min so can probably do better there. But I suspect you're going to need to work on bunch positioning a lot, as well as fitness, to make up for your lack of ability in the sprinty stuff. Then again, you can also work on shorter duration stuff and improve there as well, a big part of the 5-15-30 sec stuff is technique -- being in the right gear, etc.

    I think you're right...achieving 100% effort is difficult I think. Improving my bunch positioning is my number one priority. I'm going to some coaching sessions at Castle Combe so will be in sponge mode and soak up all that good advice and experience.

    Thanks for your analysis and advice.

    p.s. yes, any spurts uphill are a guaranteed killer for me!
  • If you're looking for motivation go back to the start of this guys blog and work your way through it chronologically.
    http://cyclingapprentice.com/ It follows someone who wanted started racing fairly unsuccessfully and gradually improved.

    Personally the first race I did went like this. I got mud in my cleats, dropped before i'd got clipped in, rode two wet and windy laps on my own (about 8 mins) and then quit. I came back a few months riding with the faster guys in my club, got lucky and won a race. So it's definitely possibly. As I was just hoping to finish in the bunch after the first attempt I was riding on a provisional license so I am still a 4th cat.

    I've done a few 4th cat races this year and consider myself one of the weaker 4th cats in the races over longer time periods. So no breakaways, pulls on the front for me. Just hiding in the bunch and trying to survive. It's a big effort for me but I can just about stay on. I know it's not what you want to hear but looking at the ride you posted on Strava unless it was exceptionally bad conditions I don't think you're strong enough to stay in the bunch unless it's an easy course/slow race or you have exceptional race craft.

    Our max HRs are basically the same and here is a solo ride I did that was similar to the group ride you posted if you wanted a yardstick. Keep riding, and try to push yourself by riding with people faster than you and as your fitness improves that will motivate you to keep training/racing.
    http://app.strava.com/activities/52723747
  • I found this notion motivating to me though I'm not sure it will be for you, it may even be demotivating. I think that up to a very high level cycling is mostly training and at amateur levels discrepancies in genetics etc can be overcome with superior training.

    As a result I believe that if they want it enough and train smart/hard enough the vast majority of people can be successful as opposed to a sport like football where some people just have no hope. Judging form the level you are at and the amount of cycling you have done compared to my own experience and others I know I would consider you around an average responder and therefore consider it definitely achievable for you. I know some people get by on less, especially people who have been fitter previously and are only maintaining their level, but I think most 4th cats are doing 6 hours/100 miles a week min for a sustained period of at least a few months including some hard rides/ intervals.
  • cojonescojones Posts: 131
    Thanks for the replies. I think if I set realistic targets for this year, increase and keep a schedule of training and stick to it (difficult with a young family and work) and continue to push myself with the club rides I'll improve over the summer and maintain some motivation to race next year.
  • cojonescojones Posts: 131
    ...the other thought I had was that my training should entail doing race-like rides, so I keep them short, c.15-20 miles and try to keep the speed up. Everyone is recommending doing more miles in training so should I increase the number of these types of training ride or do longer rides?
  • marykamaryka Posts: 748
    cojones wrote:
    ...the other thought I had was that my training should entail doing race-like rides, so I keep them short, c.15-20 miles and try to keep the speed up. Everyone is recommending doing more miles in training so should I increase the number of these types of training ride or do longer rides?

    Both. My training is a mix of shorter, harder rides (both in groups or race-like situations, and solo doing SST/FTP work) and longer rides. You do need to ride more to get more miles in your legs and longer rides do that better than shorter. You don't need to ride easy on your long rides, you can do a mix of tempo rides (2 hours at ~80% FTP) and mostly easy long rides with harder efforts thrown in (hills/Vo2max intervals, or SST/FTP intervals). If you do longer rides with a group it'll usually be a mix of easy stuff in the middle of the group, harder stuff if you're on the front, some burn-ups, sign sprints, hills, etc. All of this is good all-around training to get fitter which is what you want to do.
  • cojonescojones Posts: 131
    I raced again today. Had a terrible start as I couldn't clip in quickly enough, so was fighting back from the off. It didn't take long to get dropped but I achieved my objective of finishing! I came 3rd out of of 5 para cyclists so I'm happy with that.

    More importantly, the british cycling guy caught up with me afterwards and told me he was reclassifying me down to a C3 from a C5 which is great. It means I was competing against guys with less impairment than me, hence the effect on my motivation.
  • thiscocksthiscocks Posts: 549
    Ive DNFd the last 6 or 7 crits ive done this year through one reason or another (crashes and getting dropped mainly!). Sometimes the races are hard sometimes they are easier (seems to be totally at random no matter what riding ive done before hand). I Gave it a rest for a while (did some mid week tts instead) and now looking to enter some more crits through the summer. Wonder if there's a record number of repeat DNFs? Might aim for that. End of the day if you get dropped its no big deal, its all good training anyway on an evening where id otherwise be watching tv. Saying that the apprentice was good last night.
  • edtenedten Posts: 228
    Just see the getting dropped as part of the learning curve and see the races as valuable training and experience. Keep at it, it takes several years for endurance athletes to reach optimal fitness levels. Just try to hang on in the races for as long as possible...I agree easier said than done but a lot is mental strength too and being able to block out pain when you're legs are screaming to stop is important. Try not to hang at the back either, the surges will be greater. Also on hills if the power isnt there, position yourself near the front before getting to the hill so if you slip down the field you're not straight out the back.
  • PiersHSPiersHS Posts: 109
    When I first started racing, so my first 2 crits or so, I kept getting dropped and lapped, but normally found it made me want to get back out and train more!

    Turn the negative feeling of abandonment into some determination to smash it, and it'll really help :)
    Forza Zappi's CC
  • cojonescojones Posts: 131
    Thanks.

    I'm getting the feeling that I have reached my level of performance for this season. I'm not too worried about being dropped this year any more but my average speeds, on my own, in these races is spot on 19mph each race irrespective of terrain and weather. Same for 15, 20 and 30 mile races. I finished a 50 mile sportive with an average of 17mph on Sunday (with some cat 4 and 5 climbs), so it looks like my body has reached its optimum for my current training regime. I came 3rd out of 25 in my category, male 18-39, so considering I'll be in the 40-49 category next year, I'm happy with that!
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