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  1. #1
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    Cat2->Cat1 Base Miles.....

    I raced our local summer series this past year and finished up 3rd overall in Cat2. So I submitted a request to USA Cycling to get my Cat1 upgrade. Lo and behold they granted my request. I've been slumming in sport for 3 years now. Time to make the leap.

    My question to you is base miles. How many hours do you generally do before jumping into intervals/build period? My first race is in April XC in Delaware.

    Last year I didn't really do any to speak of, 50-60 mile group rides at 18-20mph on the road. Some hard 1 hour hammerfests with some big roadies. Nothing really specific just fun hard riding with some rest. This year I want to get my training dialed in. The years (4) before I have been doing 12 hour races and the Shenandoah 100 and doing 60-80 miles rides just about every other weekend with lots of climbing. I plan on doing the climbing rides this spring to prep for interval work.

    I do mostly road riding for training and mtb work to keep the skills sharp. No powermeter no desire to drop that kind of coin on one. I do have a HRM and a garmin.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisJ View Post
    My question to you is base miles. How many hours do you generally do before jumping into intervals/build period?
    Since I'm an older dude, I do the 2:1 type cycle (2 weeks on, 1 week lower volume). After that first cycle (3 weeks), I start integrating tempo intervals (classic Friel book model, which is 12 week base). Also some long winter group rides on Saturdays (3-4 hours), which gives some occasional threshold and VO2max efforts here and there.

    But I don't start harder intervals (threshold, race start sims, etc.) till towards the end of base, which goes right into the first race of season. But it's a very steady, methodical, integration of progressively harder intervals throughout the 12 week base period.
    Last edited by Poncharelli; 11-26-2012 at 10:42 AM.
    Head Coach, Ben Lomond HS MTB Team
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  3. #3
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    How many hours do you generally do in the 2 week on period per week? 8-12 with that including your 3 hour weekend ride? We have a few around here but they are 50 miles average around 18-20mph with some attacks up hills thrown in for good measure. Seems to be a pretty solid plan. After that period start doing some vo2 efforts/2x20s and such?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisJ View Post
    How many hours do you generally do in the 2 week on period per week? 8-12 with that including your 3 hour weekend ride? We have a few around here but they are 50 miles average around 18-20mph with some attacks up hills thrown in for good measure. Seems to be a pretty solid plan. After that period start doing some vo2 efforts/2x20s and such?
    I don't see a 50 mile group ride, even at 18-20mph, really being that effective for base training. It's pretty easy to maintain 18-20mph when you're drafting, too easy. You want effective base miles, try to get in 40-50 miles keeping your HR in the 135-145 (or whatever your endurance HR zone is) zone the whole time. Pedaling the entire time. Even pedaling on the down hills to keep that HR up. Pretty much no coasting besides when you're having to stop for a red light. IME I find I can't keep my heart rate up while drafting, especially if there's any sort of downhill. So, my advice, lose the group ride and go solo to get in some serious base miles. Especially for mountain bike, where many races end up being essentially time trials. I'm currently getting in 10-12 hours per week. I only get 1 hour rides each weekday before work, with usually 1 weekday off, then get the rest of the hours in on the weekend. and it's tough just finding that much time with a family and all.
    "Great things are not accomplished by those who yield to trends and fads and popular opinion."-Jack Kerouac

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    The heart rate stays up if your near the front. The first few seem to rotate though. And constant rollers.

    Bike Ride Profile | Add a 53t and all is well near Washington | Times and Records | Strava

    Last group ride. No HRM was running with my phone.

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    DLd
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisJ View Post
    The heart rate stays up if your near the front. The first few seem to rotate though. And constant rollers.

    Bike Ride Profile | Add a 53t and all is well near Washington | Times and Records | Strava

    Last group ride. No HRM was running with my phone.
    Ah, yeah, hills help for keeping up the HR on group rides. I think about choosing long even flat rides when trying to rack up base miles. Sometimes I forget that isn't an option for some...
    "Great things are not accomplished by those who yield to trends and fads and popular opinion."-Jack Kerouac

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    Its an option around here some hills but no real long ones. I think long sustained climbs would be great for base miles. If you go out and do consistent long slow miles your will become a long slow rider. 50-60 mile rides at 18-20 mph. You will be in good shape for specific 2x20s, vo2 efforts and pushing yourself more in the spring. At least thats my thinking.

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    I famously (at least in Big Bear) put in low miles per week, 45 miles commuting and about 30-70 miles per week on the road or mountain bike.
    I race cat.1 50+, I won the local race series and never finished less than 4th.
    The point I'm making is, sometimes it isnt your weekly miles or time, but the base miles that you mention, in which I try to get as many as possible during the early season.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisJ View Post
    How many hours do you generally do in the 2 week on period per week??
    Earlier this season, 11 to 14 hours. Pretty tough getting to that 14 though.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisJ View Post
    After that period start doing some vo2 efforts/2x20s and such?
    After base (March) I like to combine weekend crits, short hammerfest rides, and long solo intervals as well. Mixing it up. The crits and group rides will work high end power and group riding skills (I race road too). Long solo intervals and long solo rides for increased threshold power.

    Larger consistent volume riding seems to work well for me. It may not work for others. Probably something about my own personal physiology. I've always been aerobically weak, so I believe I benefit from lots of aerobic overload.
    Last edited by Poncharelli; 11-27-2012 at 10:17 AM.
    Head Coach, Ben Lomond HS MTB Team
    www.utahmtb.org
    Cycling Team and local Club:
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