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  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    Wow, nice times. So you pretty much run a half marathon at a faster pace than every participant in the 5K I did can run 3.2 miles.
    My best 5K time was 20:21. I'm too slow to be a serious 5Ker, I don't enjoy the training volume needed for marathons, so the half is my favorite distance.

    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    Dwayne, I`m not up on what`s good for marathon times, but 3:35 sounds awfully fast to me. What are the distances for full, half, and olympic length events?
    Good luck for next week!
    The 3:35 bummed me out, I was shooting for 3:20 or under. 3:35 works out to an 8:12/mile pace, so not terrible, but not like the 7:01 pace I can hold for a half marathon.

    Olympic is a 1.5K / 0.93 mile swim, a 40K / 24.8 mile bike ride, followed by a 10K / 6.2 mile run.
    Half iron distance is a 1.93K / 1.2 mile swim, 90K / 56 mile bike, and a 21K / 13.1 mile run. Best I've done there is 5:38 (horrible 46 minute swim, 2:36 bike, and a 2:11 run, not terrible for a 90+ degree day) .
    Full distance is a 3.86K / 2.4 mile swim, 180K / 112 mile bike, and a 42K / 26.1 mile run

    Thanks, I'll need all the luck I can get!
    '94 RSBikes Stampede (commuter), '05 Prophet, '09 Scattante XRL Team, '10 Slice 4
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  2. #52
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    I only run if I'm being chased.
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  3. #53
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    I started as a runner in high school and college. After college I managed a run specialty shop for several years and for part of that time, I was competitive on the local/regional road racing circuit. Once I left the running store I transitioned into the cyclist that I am today. I did a handful of sprint triathlons several years ago but I don't run at all anymore. The last time I went for a run, was probably 3 or 4 years ago. I don't enjoy it as much as riding my bike and it's pretty much as simple as that.

  4. #54
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    So I'm tapering my running next week to try to be more fasterer on my bike and I decided I wanted to follow the running with an event, to cap this transition.

    I did an off-road duathlon yesterday. 5k run on easy trails (though my GPS had it at 3.03 miles, so not sure which measurement is most accurate) and 5.3 mile mountain bike. I got the run done in 23:33, PR for me and also the first time I've run "like I mean it" since 2008. Whole event took me just under an hour, which was good for a pretty good position in the short course group. Of course, most of my cycling peers were doing the long course. But I didn't want to run two 5ks.

    I still don't like being in the water.

    I'm sore today. Go figure. My ankles are feeling pretty good, though, which I was a little nervous about.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  5. #55
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    Sounds like a fun event. I wish we had some more fun mountain bike oriented races around here.

    I'm planning on a sprint tri this spring. I still don't like the running or the water.

    So what's the key to getting faster on the bike? Intervals and rest days probably. I put in quite a few miles last year but seem to be at a plateau.

  6. #56
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    I'm fastest on my bike when I ride a lot and race a lot. The simplistic answer, for someone who's riding a fair amount already, is that you need to dig deeper and hold out longer from time to time. I find I can only do about three really high-intensity rides, usually intervals, in a week before I start getting overtaken by fatigue. Races are really great workouts, though, and for those of us who aren't as motivated during training rides, I think they're a big part of really getting intensity.

    This year, I'm trying to do a structured training plan, from Friel's The Mountain Biker's Training Bible. Ask me in a few months how it's working. I recently also started using more gadgetry (previously just a runner's watch with timing functions only) to train. So I'm learning that some of the cliches about rec. riders, like riding too hard on easy days, apply to me.

    Last year, I didn't ride that much during the winter, rode more, including some intervals, in late spring/early summer when classes weren't so crazy, and then ran, raced on the track, and rode a fair amount through the summer. I ended up having a lot of fun and doing okay on the track and had a good endurance MTB race in August, and then my fitness pretty much tanked. I'm becoming more and more of a believer in periodization, and I'm hoping that if I take a more disciplined approach this year, I can be stronger and faster for my main events, and possibly have a non-sucky 'cross season if I decide to do it.

    Broadly, I guess the secret is to ride a lot at moderate intensity, mix in some high-intensity rides starting a month or two before the event, rest but without being totally sedentary for the week or so before the event, and then ride it as hard as you can. So basically what you say. The training books and plans have some conflicting attitudes about timing for intervals - some say that they're not useful more than two months out from an event and some suggest substituting them for volume during base. Really has a lot to do with how much time the athlete has to train.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  7. #57
    weirdo
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    Congrats on the PR, Andrew! For a run on trails with many competitors, do people tend to get bottled up a lot? Sounds tough and makes me think of a peloton riding through blind alleys. Raced on "the track" in the summer- velodrome or running track?
    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    I'm planning on a sprint tri this spring. I still don't like the running or the water.

    So what's the key to getting faster on the bike? Intervals and rest days probably. I put in quite a few miles last year but seem to be at a plateau.
    You had me fooled

    You already know I have an aversion to training, so about as far from an expert in the matter as possible, but I`ve seen it written many times that if you ride a whole lot of slow miles what you get is really really good at riding slowly. That certainly holds true for me, but for the first time in my life I`m at a point where temptation is creeping in to do something about my dismal speed. Might have to start thinking more along those "training" lines.
    Recalculating....

  8. #58
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    Good stuff. Mountain biking seems good for intervals because sometimes the going just gets hard and you have to push to get up that hill. Thinking back I guess my endurance has increased. When I started riding every day I would be pretty tired by the end of the week and now I do it routinely.

    I would think that the cross training that the running provides would be helpful to help build a base without overdoing your cycling muscles.

    Report back on your progress.

  9. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    You had me fooled
    It's that whole range of ability thing. It always amazes me. Like my signature use to say: "Among my friends I ride like a GOD, when I enter races and ride with my peers I ride like a DOG"

    Against literally anybody I know personally, I can ride circles around them. Go longer, faster... If I enter in a race with serious competitors in the slowest class, I end up near the back of the pack. I'm always impressed at how good some people are. Same with mountain biking. A 20" drop is about all I'm comfortable with and then I watch something like Rampage and they are riding down cliffs. It blows my mind.

    I know I'm never going to win any races but I do like to be able to surprise people sometimes.

  10. #60
    weirdo
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    Against literally anybody I know personally, I can ride circles around them. Go longer, faster... If I enter in a race with serious competitors in the slowest class, I end up near the back of the pack. I'm always impressed at how good some people are.
    I know EXACTLY what you mean.
    On the flip side, that association perspective does present another option for getting "fast". Much easier than working at it .
    Recalculating....

  11. #61
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    Want to go for a ride?

  12. #62
    weirdo
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    Sure. Take off now and I`ll meet up with you in Omaha.
    Recalculating....

  13. #63
    Fat-tired Roadie
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    Congrats on the PR, Andrew! For a run on trails with many competitors, do people tend to get bottled up a lot? Sounds tough and makes me think of a peloton riding through blind alleys. Raced on "the track" in the summer- velodrome or running track?
    Thanks! Being able to run healthy crept its way into being a major training goal for me last year, so I'm quite happy with having been able to do some events.

    The way that this run was organized, people had time to fan out pretty well before we got onto narrow trails. So I doubt I spent any more than a minute at most running slower than I wanted to.

    "Track" was a velodrome. Races are very short, with lots of opportunities to earn points, and there are three of them in an evening. It really freed me to open up the throttle all the way, something I'm always a little averse to doing in longer races, for fear of bonking. I've been transferring a little of that attitude to intermediate-length races, like 'cross and yesterday's event, and I think it's a more successful approach than strategizing had been. Still won't do it for 50 miles, though!

    bedwards - mountain bikers turn out to be a lot better at certain things than people accustomed to the idea of structured workouts give us credit for. Major skills that come up a lot in MTB are good pedaling technique, climbing, and burst power - they show up in dealing with loose climbs, in the greater amount of climbing in most mountain biking, and in dealing with short, steep, often technical climbs. It's interesting to look at a track of a mountain bike ride with a heart rate monitor. I find I tend to spend a fair amount of time in zones 1, 4 and 5 - basically riding easy or riding very hard - and blow right through 2 and 3. In other words, where I ride at least, I'm almost always either climbing, pumping rolling singletrack, or recovering. I think that where roadies accustomed to structured workouts are often a lot stronger is in doing longer steady-state efforts, something that's much easier to do on the road and that's a big part of most training plans.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  14. #64
    weirdo
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    Training 101

    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    So what's the key to getting faster on the bike? Intervals and rest days probably. I put in quite a few miles last year but seem to be at a plateau.
    Once again, I`m going to intentionally mispost here in Commuting, where I`m comfortable. I know that plenty of "family" has experience in the matter.

    Here`s the deal: my definition of training has always been what happens after the conductor calls "all aboard", but I`m hoping to improve my speed for non-race road rides, so now I think it`s time to dip my toe in the training thing and see if I can really keep with some kind of basic plan for long enough to make a difference.

    I hear that recovery and rest days are often undervalued by new trainees who don`t have a good grip on how the body works. I take it both (recovery and rest) are important for different reasons and serve different purposes? And cool down is different from recovery? For both cool down and recovery, what kind of cadence recommended? Fast, slow, steady, or mix it up? I take it the important thing for cool down is to ride easy for long enough to let my HR and breathing get back to near resting levels. Is that right?

    For the hard-and-heavy riding my vague plan is to ride relatively hard on a 60 mile road loop once per weekend and all out for a 10 mile rural TT loop around my little valley once during the week. Sound reasonable? I guess the weekend long loop would serve me better with some intervals built in, yes? It`s got one steady climb for about five miles and a lot of rollers, so that sort of gives me automatic intervals as long as I`m not lollygagging on the uphills.

    As far as the daily riding goes, I`ve been hitting it hard lately on my short commute (about 13 minute avg in summertime conditions), but that really isn`t long enough to get a warm up, a ride, and a cooldown, and I`m not sure if it would interfere with the work/recover/rest pattern. Of course, I could always modify the route to just about any length. Thoughts, suggestions, or comments on any of this appreciated.
    Recalculating....

  15. #65
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    Being only barely faster than the spotted salamander, I don't have good advice, but I did read a good review yesterday on Kent's Bike Blog of The Obree Way, it sounds like a really really honest book, down-to-earth and non-techy (retro?) advice on training from the record breaker Graeme Obree. Kent's Bike Blog

  16. #66
    weirdo
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    ^^Looks like it isn`t yet available in book form, but I`d love to read it when it`s released. I`m already an admirer of Obree, and his no BS way of thinking is bound to simplify the complicated and confusing. The part that Kent the blogger quoted about marzipan is funny- good cycling food because it doesn`t produce crumbs and you can eat it even when gasping for breath, or something to that effect. English marzipan must be different from the Mexican version (I`ve never seen a yank/gringo version) because I like the taste and texture, but it gets crumbs ALL OVER the place and I find that I`m prone to choke on the dust if I don`t eat it very carefully!
    Recalculating....

  17. #67
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    The flippant answer to "How do I get faster for non-race rides?" is "Just ride your bike faster." The less flippant answer has to do with how much faster.

    Do you want to ride more than you do now, or just faster? I know you have some cool bikes, but don't have a great sense of how much riding you're doing.

    One of the types of training ride in a lot of structured plans is the "tempo" ride. That refers to a ride with intervals done at the next faster pace from someone's endurance pace. If you're using heart rate zones, it's zone 3. A typical tempo workout would have two intervals done at that pace, 20-60 minutes long (so really long for an interval) and a rest of a few minutes in between. I think those are supposed to be best for getting overall speed to drift up.

    The other thing to look at is if there's a specific circumstance that really slows you down relative to your peers. Hills, for example. Work on that, and get a better average.

    Usual disclaimers - I don't coach anyone but me, my only qualifications are reading some of the literature and trying some of this stuff, etc.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  18. #68
    weirdo
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    Thanks, Andrew. I know I really should cough up a few bucks for one of those training books, and I might eventually do just that, but I think I`m trying to keep myself from committing too much. Keeping things as casual as possible, it`ll be less a blow to my ego in the event that I fold up and don`t "go the distance" with the whole training thing. Sound stupid? There`s a reason it sounds that way

    I`ve never heard the term "tempo ride" before, wonder if it`s the same idea that`s sometimes called LSD for long, steady distance. I ought to look into that because "getting overall speed to dift up" is my hope. On the other hand, you mentioned something else that rings with me. I really don`t have any riding peers, ride so rarely with any other peole that I honestly can`t say whether the relative speed difference is more on flats or climbs, but it`s the climby rides that threaten my ability to finish within the allotted time limits. So I guess, if I thought of the clock as my peer, the climbs should be what I concentrate on.

    For you personally, do you take both rest days and recovery ride days? Do you pay any attention to your cadence on recovery rides or during the cool down phase of a ride? Assuming you ride them at all, that is.
    Recalculating....

  19. #69
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    In the winter I do a couple of off rouad run bike run races. First you have to run around 4 miles than 14 miles on the bike and than 2 miles running. Transition from biking to running can be hard.

  20. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by rodar y rodar View Post
    Thanks, Andrew. I know I really should cough up a few bucks for one of those training books, and I might eventually do just that, but I think I`m trying to keep myself from committing too much. Keeping things as casual as possible, it`ll be less a blow to my ego in the event that I fold up and don`t "go the distance" with the whole training thing. Sound stupid? There`s a reason it sounds that way

    I`ve never heard the term "tempo ride" before, wonder if it`s the same idea that`s sometimes called LSD for long, steady distance. I ought to look into that because "getting overall speed to dift up" is my hope. On the other hand, you mentioned something else that rings with me. I really don`t have any riding peers, ride so rarely with any other peole that I honestly can`t say whether the relative speed difference is more on flats or climbs, but it`s the climby rides that threaten my ability to finish within the allotted time limits. So I guess, if I thought of the clock as my peer, the climbs should be what I concentrate on.

    For you personally, do you take both rest days and recovery ride days? Do you pay any attention to your cadence on recovery rides or during the cool down phase of a ride? Assuming you ride them at all, that is.
    Tempo isn't the same as long steady distance. For me, "long steady distance" refers to endurance rides spent at an endurance effort, aka Zone 2, as much as possible. So tempo is the next step up in speed - enough that it's now hard to ride at that effort for more than an hour, but still primarily aerobic. Basically, if your comfort level is Zone 2, tempo is that first step outside. Which should be enough to get the desired result, but not be too brutal to do for sufficient duration, or feel good the next day.

    That's not to say that steady rides aren't also important. I started training with a heart rate monitor recently, and found that the same cliche that applies to everyone applies to me - my untargeted rides are all over the place, with some zone 1 sprinkled in. This is supposed to reduce the effectiveness of the ride some, although I think it's probably not that big a deal as long as I'm not lollygagging for several minutes at a time.

    There's a big diversity of hills. For me, leveraging a hilly route is all about knowing I get a chance to recover on the way down. So I'll climb pretty hard if I'm trying to ride it fast.

    As far as rest days, recovery days, and cool down phases - I don't currently do rest or recovery days, but I ride my bike to school five days a week. So I try to remember that I'm just riding to school, not racing to school. I think that when I'm being "good," those days stand in for recovery days pretty well. Not doing rest days most of the time is probably not a great thing, but since I have more time on the weekend, it's hard to give up those training (and riding for fun!) days, or one of them, for a rest day. I lose a day from time to time, so I tell myself that I'm getting enough fully off-bike days. I do try to plan my routes so that I get a bit of a cool down on the last section. I very rarely watch my cadence actively, but I pedal as close to continuously as terrain permits. So I'd typically be pedaling while I cool down. Honestly, I don't know if it makes me any faster. But it gives a sense of conclusion to the workout and makes the transition to not working out a bit less jarring. So I like to cool down.

    I've found the books interesting; time will tell if I'm finding them helpful. I like that buying a training book has given me a resource that has a whole lot of information assembled in a coherent way. I've been able to learn a lot of facts and individual workouts on the 'net, but this isn't a great place to get it assembled into a cohesive whole. If you're an academic type, some of the books also have good bibliographies.

    I think there are a few different ways to approach structured training. This year, I was going to go all in and do a periodized training plan - basically hours and workout type targets for every week from the first week of January through to a couple weeks after the end of my season. That has turned out not to be very realistic with the rest of my life...

    Another approach, one that I think works better for a more casual cyclist, including me, is to figure out a training week, and try to do that. For example, right now, my theory now is as follows:

    Monday: Commuting, catch up on tasks at home.
    Tuesday: Commuting, go for a run of about an hour
    Wednesday: Commuting, go for a bike ride of about an hour and a half
    Thursday: Commuting, go for a bike ride of about an hour
    Friday: Commuting only
    Saturday: Go for a run of about an hour
    Sunday: Go for a bike ride of about two hours.

    I've accepted that I'll rarely hit all those goals, but having them on a calendar still helps me get a bit closer. Not making a plan like that, for me, can mean that I don't do much during the week and then go on a monster ride on Sunday, from which I need to recover some, before repeating the same pattern. Which is actually not terrible, but I think that riding more frequently is better for me. I'll re-look at my book and my old schedule on Wednesday, but I think the rides are supposed to be something a bit more specific than long steady distance at this point. I'll try to get some structured workout type rides in there on Wednesday and Thursday; Sunday is for mountain biking. Wednesday too if I'm really on top of school, but it's a big pain to get to trails right now.

    I have found that I can get faster at 'cross doing more-or-less the same week every week and incorporating some intensity. So while the effectiveness of this sort of plan vs. more planned periodization is certainly debatable, it does work better than just riding a lot.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  21. #71
    weirdo
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    Okay, I`m going to try a simple program and see how it goes. The tempo thing sounds good for my purposes, so I`ll keep that in mind for a weekly "long" loop, and ride an all out TT of my 10-ish mile neighborhood loop mid week, with commutes however I feel like. I don`t quite know how the effort zones work, but I think I get the general idea, and since I don`t have a way to measure that anyway, I suppose that "one notch up from neutral" is close enough. I really need to document times somehow in order to see how it`s working, so will come up with a time+conditions sheet for each of the regular rides and be sure to keep the routes uniform from week to week. Will post progress or lack thereof in a month or so.

    Andrew, thanks for your words of wisdom here. I appreciate your taking the time to spell it out for me. It sounds like cadence isn`t particularly important for those aspects I was asking about. I`ll dig around a little bit more just for peace of mind, but ain`t going to worry much about the matter.
    Recalculating....

  22. #72
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    How's the training going rodar?

    I just ran my second 5K (and third run) of the year and shaved a few minutes of my PR. Finished in 22:41. Better than most, not even close to some. How some people can run that far in under 15 min blows my mind.

  23. #73
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    Another PR, groovy
    Since you mentioned the run in the daily thread with no details, and your blog had no details, I figured you`d have the down and dirty of it here. Not particularly interresting? Did your wife run it also? Wishing your (both?) a limp-free, shin splint-free week.

    Training...
    I learned something for sure that I`ve long suspected. Training sucks! I followed my program for four weeks. After week three, I was amazed at how much improvement I saw in the TT part. Then week four had me back to several seconds longer than week one`s "control" ride! My guess in hindsight is that I was probably getting some reasonable improvement in strength, but that my times were more affected by better pacing and by ever warming conditions letting me get away with less parachute wrapped around my body. I tell ya- there`s no way in hell I can sprint for a half hour. Maybe not even world class cardio freaks can do that, I don`t know. But even going as hard as possible for me, a 30 minute spree is torturous. What I felt can`t be accurately described as pain, more like unimmaginable discomfort with a nice mix of nausea thrown in for good measure. I won`t be doing that kind of crap again- Andrew and the rest of the CX gang can keep it! The road loop was actually not bad. By A.S.`s explanation, I think it works out to a 3.5 hour "tempo lite" ride. I got a little tired of the same route every week, but no big deal. Mostly I stopped when the brevet season started up, so I subbed events for training. Then the events ended and I`ve been busy with non-bike stuff. Nw that I have some base line numbers for that route, I`ll probably revisit it from time to time to compare current conditioning.
    Recalculating....

  24. #74
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    I'm not big on training either. 50% of my running is still in races. On the bike I have the base miles covered so some days I just decide to hit the hills hard (intervals) or go for a good overall average speed (tempo, I think). Of just make headway speed (rest). Then there was today. I took the Scott and was trying to beat the rain to work.(incentive)

    My 5K plan on this race was to pick somebody that I knew would be running the time I wanted and I stuck with him.

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