Is there one session I should do to get faster/fitter?.

richard36
richard36 Posts: 346
I'm doing about 120 - 160 miles a week. These rides are mostly solo with one group ride on a Saturday (about 50 miles). The mid week rides are between 20 - 40 miles and the average on undulating routes is about 17 - 17.5 mph.

Usually there are times during each ride when I try and cycle quite hard on the flats and up the hills.

I was wondering whether there was a good session to do perhaps once a week (instead of one of my 20 mile plus rides) and that will improve my fitness. Thinking of something like an interval session (I'm used to doing interval type sessions with my running but don't know anything about interval type sessions on the bike).

Can anyone advise me on what type of session would really bring on my fitness if I was to do it say once a week?

Thanks

Comments

  • Alex_Simmons/RST
    Alex_Simmons/RST Posts: 4,161
    Fitness for what?

    There are no magic bullet sessions, rather there is training that is done in context of all your training over weeks and months, and that is specific to your needs, goals and current capabilities.

    What that is will change with time. IOW whatever session you select, you'll likely need to change it before long to continue the training stimulus.

    Improvement is an integral of all that you do, not about any one session.
  • richard36
    richard36 Posts: 346
    General cycling fitness!

    I'm aware there are no 'magic bullet sessions'. However, even though I'm not specifically training for any one event I do want to improve and thought I could at least start by introducing a weekly interval type session. This will of course be alongside my long group ride at the weekend and 3/4 midweek undulating/hilly rides parts of which are ridden reasonably hard.

    Assuming it's an interval session I should introduce what would it look like?

    Thanks
  • Richard36 wrote:

    Assuming it's an interval session I should introduce what would it look like?

    Thanks

    Read the post above
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • saprkzz
    saprkzz Posts: 592
    I lost all motivation a year ago, and stopped riding. Recently getting back on the back (8ish weeks ago), I lost all my fitness, really ALL my fitness, I was racing comfortable in 2/3 cat races & riding chain-gangs with 22mph av speed etc...
    Also I was 12stone 5 when I was at my fittest.

    Coming back onto the bike, and riding solo I was only really managing 15-16mph av rides where I used to be at about 20mph on the same routes.
    I am slowly getting back on it, and my fitness is coming back, the biggest hurdle I am leaping is my weight, I went up to 15 stone, I have already lost a stone in the 8 weeks.

    I have found by riding with people quicker than you is the biggest gain. If you ride solo it is so hard to maintain effort, plus when you ride with others you have no choice but to keep up :)

    I went out on Monday night with 2 guys who are 2nd cats, and I was so nearly sick during ride and especially after, my bike covered in sweat, and I was actually dizzy when I got back home. I wasn't able to help much on the front, as they were taking turns, but this in my opinion is the only way to make "me" faster. The results I am seeing by getting my legs ripped off every week is noticeable.

    Interval sessions are good, but I strongly recommend riding with meat heads!! :)
  • bigmitch41
    bigmitch41 Posts: 685
    Just ride, your going through the pain barrier now due to the obvious lack of fitness and extra kg's, once you get some structure to your training and diet plans I would say you should make gains pretty quickly.
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  • richard36
    richard36 Posts: 346
    I've been doing on average 120-150 miles a week since January but with no real structure. My diet is great and my weight is 65kg. I'm a 3 hour marathon runner so general fitness is good.

    I want to introduce one session for the moment (will add to it some weeks down the line) which will help bring on my fitness. The only kind of thing I can think of is a dedicated interval type session however am open to suggestions.
  • stevie63
    stevie63 Posts: 481
    I think it would be a good idea to think of a specific goal that you want to attain which will then allow others to suggest a specific session. So for example you seem to suggest that your longest rides are around 50 miles, so maybe you want to target a century ride. If you are already doing the odd century, maybe you want to complete one in a faster time.

    It is this specificity that has allowed you to run a 3 hour marathon, because you had a goal to target.
  • N0bodyOfTheGoat
    N0bodyOfTheGoat Posts: 5,999
    Are you using a heart rate monitor?

    If you are not doing so already, try riding at "threshold" zone for the ride.

    Ride a heavier bike and/or carry up to ~5Kg of weight ballast.

    Choose routes that mean more climbing.

    etc.
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  • imposter2.0
    imposter2.0 Posts: 12,028
    edited May 2017
    Richard36 wrote:
    I've been doing on average 120-150 miles a week since January but with no real structure.

    If you don't have an objective, then you don't need a structure.
    Richard36 wrote:
    I want to introduce one session for the moment (will add to it some weeks down the line) which will help bring on my fitness. The only kind of thing I can think of is a dedicated interval type session however am open to suggestions.

    As has already been pointed out - 'fitness for what?' Imrovements in speed, endurance, climbing, etc - all dictate a different approach, so there simply is not going to be one single sessions which will give you an 'improvement' until you can clarify exactly what type of improvement you are hoping to see.
  • kingstongraham
    kingstongraham Posts: 27,359
    What "fitness" are you trying to improve though? Do you want the cycling to help maintain/improve the marathon running? Endurance riding? Climbing faster?
  • AK_jnr
    AK_jnr Posts: 717
    Running intervals closely match cycling ones.
    Strength = hill reps
    Economy = easy
    Vo2 max = 3 - 5 mins efforts
    Speed work = 400's or 1 minute on the road
    Lactate threshold = tempo 20 minutes plus
  • Alex_Simmons/RST
    Alex_Simmons/RST Posts: 4,161
    AK_jnr wrote:
    Running intervals closely match cycling ones.
    Strength = hill reps
    Economy = easy
    Vo2 max = 3 - 5 mins efforts
    Speed work = 400's or 1 minute on the road
    Lactate threshold = tempo 20 minutes plus
    And they also all impact all of those things (except strength, cycling != strength work), like I said, training responses are on a continuum.

    But if the OP is desperate to try some intervals then 4-6 x 4-5 minute efforts at VO2max inducing pace/power with similar duration recovery times once per week for the next 6 weeks will either give aerobic fitness a nice boost, have minimal impact, help them lose the will to live, or induce a cardiac arrest.

    Which of those outcomes occurs depends on the individual's unique medical condition, and their physiological and psychological responses to training.

    All we can ever do here (ethically as well as in reality) is provide general advice. Being specific just isn't possible or sensible without a vastly greater knowledge of the individual concerned.

  • But if the OP is desperate to try some intervals then 4-6 x 4-5 minute efforts at VO2max inducing pace/power with similar duration recovery times once per week for the next 6 weeks will either give aerobic fitness a nice boost, have minimal impact, help them lose the will to live, or induce a cardiac arrest.

    :D:D:D
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • mamba80
    mamba80 Posts: 5,032
    AK_jnr wrote:
    Running intervals closely match cycling ones.
    Strength = hill reps
    Economy = easy
    Vo2 max = 3 - 5 mins efforts
    Speed work = 400's or 1 minute on the road
    Lactate threshold = tempo 20 minutes plus
    And they also all impact all of those things (except strength, cycling != strength work), like I said, training responses are on a continuum.

    But if the OP is desperate to try some intervals then 4-6 x 4-5 minute efforts at VO2max inducing pace/power with similar duration recovery times once per week for the next 6 weeks will either give aerobic fitness a nice boost, have minimal impact, help them lose the will to live, or induce a cardiac arrest.


    :lol:

    i have to admit Alex, that the one session i found very useful for what i wanted to improve on was your very own hour of power, i used it alot to liven up boring turbo sessions esp over winter, modified it, so sprints every song on Spotify!
  • Alex_Simmons/RST
    Alex_Simmons/RST Posts: 4,161
    mamba80 wrote:
    AK_jnr wrote:
    Running intervals closely match cycling ones.
    Strength = hill reps
    Economy = easy
    Vo2 max = 3 - 5 mins efforts
    Speed work = 400's or 1 minute on the road
    Lactate threshold = tempo 20 minutes plus
    And they also all impact all of those things (except strength, cycling != strength work), like I said, training responses are on a continuum.

    But if the OP is desperate to try some intervals then 4-6 x 4-5 minute efforts at VO2max inducing pace/power with similar duration recovery times once per week for the next 6 weeks will either give aerobic fitness a nice boost, have minimal impact, help them lose the will to live, or induce a cardiac arrest.


    :lol:

    i have to admit Alex, that the one session i found very useful for what i wanted to improve on was your very own hour of power, i used it alot to liven up boring turbo sessions esp over winter, modified it, so sprints every song on Spotify!
    Oh my, what a long time since I did one of those! Perhaps with my gradual return to riding again I'll once again do something like that if ever I feel the need to do some turbo work. That was before all the fancy pants interactive video trainer sessions available nowadays.

    BTW - the HOP workout was originally devised/described by Bill Black.

    For anyone else wondering...
    http://alex-cycle.blogspot.com.au/2009/ ... to-it.html