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  1. #1
    robust, yet smooth
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    best 30 min. "spin" workout? 45 min? 1 hour? (xpost)

    Here's the deal - because of my daughter's swim lessons, I've been getting short periods of free time at the gym. How would you structure a "spin" workout with 30-45 minutes?

    Yeah, I know, it's not my favorite way to do things either. But it makes more sense than doing the stairmaster! What can I say, it's my passion. Plus, my coworkers been hitting the spin class, and d@mmit, *I'm* the sprinter/climber b/w us!

    Thanks all,

    -capt p

  2. #2
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    One I like...

    Best with a CD/mp3 chosen for the task, but it might work with ambient gym music too.

    First tune - warm up. Finish at a cadence/resistance that you could maintain for the entire block of time that you'll be working out, but not too easily.

    Each subsequent - at some point during each song, jack up the resistance and sprint ALL OUT for 20 sec (or 15, or 30 sec). Morris wants you seated for sprint intervals, but I like to mix it up. When finished, go back to your baseline cadence/resistance. Do not cheat and drop the resistance to recover... if you have to do this you started off too hard.

    You may be surprised how hard it is at the end. Mucho sweat.

    One reason I like it is because if I count the sprints off in my head, I never need to refer to a clock. You can do the whole thing with your eyes closed if you want. It seems that when I define my workout durations with a CD instead of some arbitrary span of time, they go by much more quickly. Like a race, which the workout kind of mimics.

  3. #3
    robust, yet smooth
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    cool

    Good idea. "My" gym is the local blue-collar, God fearing Y and in general, the ambiant music is less than inspiring to me. I like the meditative bent and I like the short and sweet layout. I'm going to try this one.

    thanks,

    -capt p

  4. #4
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    I have my mp3 player loaded with songs just for spinning. I generally do a song of warm up and then go back and forth between climbing (out of seat, both kind of fast and really hard and slow, depending on song cadence) for a song, seated going pretty fast (not quite sprint because I do it for a whole song--though I try to throw in some 20 second all out sprints in these songs) and seated climbing. I find if the music is good, I have a hard time stopping when the time is up. I also use a heart rate monitor and follow that to keep my level up, kind of intervalling between really high at 85-90%--usually on the out of seat climbs, and recovering at about 75%, usually the psuedo sprints. I actually find this more effective for conditioning during the week than actual riding because I don't have to stop for lights, deal with traffic, etc, and can just keep my pace up. (can't really get to trails during the week.) I also alternate this when I can with actual "recovery" rides that are at least an hour, aiming for a fairly steady hr of about 65%-70%.

  5. #5
    robust, yet smooth
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    side question about endurance

    thanks triscuit.

    this makes me think about a side question I have, which is: Why do short but intense interval sessions build endurance? I mean, the stressing of the specific muscles and the cardio system aren't all that long. So why does this increase endurance? Is it due to an increased heart rate following the workout? Better processing of lactic acid? The fact that if you can put up with X amount of short, hard pain, you can put up with x+x+x amount of long, slow pain?

    I'm not doubting it, I just don't get it.

    Great reply, thanks again.

    -capt p

  6. #6
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    I don't really remember all the science of this stuff, and you can probably find a good book on it, or a website that describes training methods and body functions relating to oxygen metabolism, or maybe another forum reader, but here is my rudimentary understanding of this stuff:

    Your body creates energy for activity through aerobic and anaerobic metabolism. Aerobic means you are using oxygen to create energy. Anaeorbic means you don't have enough oxygen to create it, and your body ends up creating lactic acid in the process of creating energy (not sure why, but it does...) But your body cannot provide energy anaerobically for very long, generally only a few minutes. By increasing your conditioning, you increase your anaerobic threshhold--the point at which your body switches from aerobic to anaerobic metabolism. The most effective way to do this is by exercising at an anaerobic level, but you can't do it for very long, so you do it with intervals to mix anaerobic effort with recovery.

    Why would you want to do this?

    A higher anaerobic threshhold means you will be able to exercise harder and longer without producing lactic acid, so you won't get sore.

    It is basically the same concept if you do longer intervals at not quite your anaerobic threshold--you are increasing your body's ability to metabolize oxygen so you can workout harder for longer periods of time, but since it is too hard to sustain for a long period, you mix it with recovery time. But ideally you mix up intervals with long workouts in or just above your comfort zone, because that is what will increase your endurance.

    But one thing to note, if you do take on real anaerobic threshold intervals, it is like weight lifting. You need recovery time in between, so that your body can flush out the lactic acid.

    If anyone out there has problems with the accuracy of my descriptions, please correct. I haven't studied this stuff in a long time.

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