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  1. #1
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    Endurance Coach Recommendation in Fort Collins Area ???

    Has anyone used a fitness expert in the Fort Collins area to develop a mountain bike endurance training plan? I've never taken mountain biking beyond the "joy of riding" level, but am planning a few 60+ mile endurance rides this year and want to be in good enough shape to finish with a smile (and not be last ).

    Not so much looking for regular "coaching", just a written plan specific to my current fitness and goals. I may end up just picking up one of the many books on the subject and develop a plan myself, but since I have zero training knowledge, thought I'd talk to someone first.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    Just ride a lot. Work your way up... 60 milers ain't that big.


  3. #3
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    I'm in the same boat. I picked up the The Mountain Biker's Training Bible by Joe Friel. It is easy to understand and easy enough to layout a training schedule. I think the biggest difference between a DIY program and a Coach would be the extra motivation a coach would provide.

    I think I can do okay with the physical fitness part, the nutrition/fueling part to prevent a sour stomach during long events has me more concerned. But I am reading up on that too.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by jradin
    Has anyone used a fitness expert in the Fort Collins area to develop a mountain bike endurance training plan? I've never taken mountain biking beyond the "joy of riding" level, but am planning a few 60+ mile endurance rides this year and want to be in good enough shape to finish with a smile (and not be last ).

    Not so much looking for regular "coaching", just a written plan specific to my current fitness and goals. I may end up just picking up one of the many books on the subject and develop a plan myself, but since I have zero training knowledge, thought I'd talk to someone first.

    Thanks in advance.
    I don't know about local resources, but there is quite a bit of discussion on the matter on the endurance forum here at MTBR.

  5. #5
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    The MacEachran brothers that run Orchards Athletic Club in Loveland are cycling coaches...that might be worth looking in to. I have not used their expertise much, but they have been very helpful with general everyday fitness help when I am in the gym.
    Ride Hard & Don't Get Dead!

  6. #6
    jl
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    jradin,

    I assume you are looking at doing some racing events. To be honest, back when I did some racing, I've never used a fitness expert, because any racing I've ever done, I've paid for the race. I didn't think paying an 'expert' would make me good enough to be a professional. ...

    I would suggest buying a couple of books, and doing some searches on the internet. The main principles are intervals, power, and long slow distance. Most of this can be obtained by reading some training books.

    If you are really serious about upping your training, you probably need to answer 2 questions: 1) Where can a I get a road bike? 2) What are the good group rides that will provide the incentive I need to suffer?

    The final question would be, who can I hang with that does some really good long MTB-rides. In the end, it's all about riding, the more the better, the faster the better .

    I'm glad I'm riding for joy these days--I have finished last, but always with a smile. Why not smile, I chose to do whatever it is I'm doing...

    Quote Originally Posted by jradin
    Has anyone used a fitness expert in the Fort Collins area to develop a mountain bike endurance training plan? I've never taken mountain biking beyond the "joy of riding" level, but am planning a few 60+ mile endurance rides this year and want to be in good enough shape to finish with a smile (and not be last ).

    Not so much looking for regular "coaching", just a written plan specific to my current fitness and goals. I may end up just picking up one of the many books on the subject and develop a plan myself, but since I have zero training knowledge, thought I'd talk to someone first.

    Thanks in advance.
    Ride On!

  7. #7
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    The best advice I ever got when it comes to training was the following,

    1. Ride everyday
    2. If you feel good go hard
    3. If you feel like crap take it easy

    The hardest part about endurance riding/racing is gauging your effort. It will take time to recognize when your body needs you to bring the pace back a notch in order to have enough left in the tank to finish the ride. Oh yeah, be sure to ride with people that are faster than you and I guarantee you will get faster.

    IMHO paying for a cycling coach is a waste of money for all but pro level cyclists who are trying to eek out that last 0.5% improvement that they could not get on their own. I've got Friel's book and it tells you pretty much what any cycling coach will tell you. I haven't looked at it in years, if you want it its yours...that is if I can find it.

    Good Luck!

  8. #8
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    Wow, lot's of great advice. I think I'll go the book route for now. I've been trolling the Endurance forum, as well as some endurance racer blogs, which is really what got me thinking about more intentional training in the first place.

    I'm doing the 64 mile Growler, and also plan to sign up for the Laramie Enduro. I've been a 3 day/week mountain biker for four years and started mixing in occasional road rides last Spring. I'm trying to get up to 4 days/week on a bike (no small task for this working stiff family man) and just really want to make my rides more INTENTIONAL (while not losing my passion for riding). Maybe that means buying a heart rate monitor, as is generally recommended in what I've read so far, and riding (as jl suggests) for a specific principle (speed, power, interval, etc.)

    I think I'll start with flash's and molastown's suggestion (Joel Friel), and possibly Chris Carmichael's Time Crunched Cyclist. I've got a decent base now, but any kind of intentional training plan (and in-race fueling/pacing advice) can only help.

    Thanks again.
    Jordan

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jradin

    I think I'll start with flash's and molastown's suggestion (Joel Friel), and possibly Chris Carmichael's Time Crunched Cyclist. I've got a decent base now, but any kind of intentional training plan (and in-race fueling/pacing advice) can only help.
    I am not a strong or fast guy at all, but I like to pretend that some day I will be and I read a lot of books, blogs, message boards, etc. I will agree with the recommendation on Friel's book. My favorite book of all time is "Racing and Training with a Power Meter", but it is really tailored to (you guessed it) using power meters. I've got Carmichael's new book too, but don't really like it that much. Its kind of "crash course" routine instead of the slower, steadier approach of Friel and many of the other books. In fact it specifically says to only do the program for 12 weeks and then do transition work.

    Coaches are really expensive, and unless you are throwing down the big cash most of what you get are automated spreadsheets and little interaction. I also think unless you are someone who has been racing and have plateaued off a bit that you can self coach yourself to improved fitness.

  10. #10
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    Since you already have a good base, I recommend the Damone "five-point plan"

    1 - One after work trail ride during the week with fast riders (if possible). No stopping at tops of climbs or taking photos, balls to the wall in the 2 hour range, beer after for recovery.

    2 - One weekend trail ride 50 mile range tortoise and the hare, don't worry about going fast just ride for 6+ hours. The speed will come week by week from the mid week ride. Drink beer during and after. Practice eating stuff on these rides, chips, PBJ, hammer gel, oatmeal cream pies, whatever tastes good. Small amounts more often works best for testing so you don't barf.

    3 - Every other week try to either double up with 2 weekend rides or 2 mid week rides. You'll know which one because you will jones for it as you get stronger. Stick to all natural organic trail training, do not touch a road bike.

    4 - Simple way to judge effort on long rides. Basically you have 2 hours of anaerobic effort in you during a day (breathing so hard you can't talk). You can use it all in a row, or you can use 5 minutes here and there. Keep in mind that even if you use it all up you can still keep moving, don't quit.

    5 - 1500 trail miles by the growler and you'll be fine. 2000+ you'll rip.

    Sounds crazy but it works.

  11. #11
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    Roids worked for me.

  12. #12
    Now with 20% more fat!!
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    Most people get 'roids after training for events like this...

    Oh, and don't listen to Jdub - he is fast and humble. Join any of his rides if you don't believe me. Jdub and Mateo are two of my heros, so take what they say to the bank - invest with it - and retire early.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by mateomtb
    Since you already have a good base, I recommend the Damone "five-point plan"

    1 - One after work trail ride during the week with fast riders (if possible). No stopping at tops of climbs or taking photos, balls to the wall in the 2 hour range, beer after for recovery.

    2 - One weekend trail ride 50 mile range tortoise and the hare, don't worry about going fast just ride for 6+ hours. The speed will come week by week from the mid week ride. Drink beer during and after. Practice eating stuff on these rides, chips, PBJ, hammer gel, oatmeal cream pies, whatever tastes good. Small amounts more often works best for testing so you don't barf.

    3 - Every other week try to either double up with 2 weekend rides or 2 mid week rides. You'll know which one because you will jones for it as you get stronger. Stick to all natural organic trail training, do not touch a road bike.

    4 - Simple way to judge effort on long rides. Basically you have 2 hours of anaerobic effort in you during a day (breathing so hard you can't talk). You can use it all in a row, or you can use 5 minutes here and there. Keep in mind that even if you use it all up you can still keep moving, don't quit.

    5 - 1500 trail miles by the growler and you'll be fine. 2000+ you'll rip.

    Sounds crazy but it works.
    Great practical advice, but you left out a key point: which beer?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jdub
    I've got Carmichael's new book too, but don't really like it that much. Its kind of "crash course" routine instead of the slower, steadier approach of Friel and many of the other books. In fact it specifically says to only do the program for 12 weeks and then do transition work.
    Agreed. I'm going to start with Friel's book.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by jradin
    Agreed. I'm going to start with Friel's book.
    One last thing....I would definitely check out some of the prebuilt training plans by some of the well known endurance racers / coaches before going the route of the coach. These plans are cheap comparatively ($100 range) and will lay out a nice progression scheme for you to get faster if you don't want to bother with building your own plan.

    Check out Lynda W's plans here:
    http://lwcoaching.com/?page_id=87

    And TrainingPeaks.com also has some really good plans.

  16. #16
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    Ben Ollett - Ollettcoaching.com
    He recently moved from Ft Collins down to Golden

  17. #17
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    There are a number of coaches here in the Fort. You might be more successful in getting contact in the yourgroupride.com forums.

  18. #18
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    Mateo, thats a sweet training plan, I may modify it to bring the whiskey flask for those long rides but besides that it is a spot on training plan for some endurance MTB racing in '10.

  19. #19
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    I may modify it to bring the whiskey flask for those long rides
    That's a sweet mod.

    John, you're funny.

  20. #20
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    My advice for what its worth, bring a flask of whiskey EVERY trail ride and sip alot...... definitly go with others who are willing to " trash" you (its worked for me, in fact the guys I ask to "trash" me I think they like it.....) miles and more miles, and ride the road bike. Oh yeah, don't do it if is not fun!!! Good luck

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkaredShtles
    Just ride a lot. Work your way up... 60 milers ain't that big.

    Really? You got's to be high.

  22. #22
    My cup runneth over
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    Quote Originally Posted by mateomtb
    Since you already have a good base, I recommend the Damone "five-point plan"

    1 - One after work trail ride during the week with fast riders (if possible). No stopping at tops of climbs or taking photos, balls to the wall in the 2 hour range, beer after for recovery.

    2 - One weekend trail ride 50 mile range tortoise and the hare, don't worry about going fast just ride for 6+ hours. The speed will come week by week from the mid week ride. Drink beer during and after. Practice eating stuff on these rides, chips, PBJ, hammer gel, oatmeal cream pies, whatever tastes good. Small amounts more often works best for testing so you don't barf.

    3 - Every other week try to either double up with 2 weekend rides or 2 mid week rides. You'll know which one because you will jones for it as you get stronger. Stick to all natural organic trail training, do not touch a road bike.

    4 - Simple way to judge effort on long rides. Basically you have 2 hours of anaerobic effort in you during a day (breathing so hard you can't talk). You can use it all in a row, or you can use 5 minutes here and there. Keep in mind that even if you use it all up you can still keep moving, don't quit.

    5 - 1500 trail miles by the growler and you'll be fine. 2000+ you'll rip.

    Sounds crazy but it works.
    Great plan.

    I train for off-road tris and follow a similar pattern but have to balance swims and runs in with the rides. Something I started last year that helped a lot was the type of nutrition on the longer rides (4 hours mostly for me – I still need to work up to the 6 hour rides). I juiced a bunch of fruit (half a pineapple, 3 apples, 3 oranges, 2 grapefruits, 2 limes etc) and immediately froze it the night before and sipped it throughout the ride the next morning – a ton of healthy calories/sugar, stays cold throughout the ride and you don’t have to stop. Definitely takes some preparation but immediate energy.

  23. #23
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    This is what I was looking for yesterday. http://www.coloradopremiertraining.com/

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