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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_doctor View Post
    I have Friel's book.
    Burn it!

    Seriously just about useless and in most cases counterproductive.

    If you want to get fast:
    http://www.amazon.com/The-Obree-Way-.../dp/1408196425

    The Obree Way is hard but it will make you fast.

    Regardless my simple view of training is as follows:

    Under 10% body fat? If not cut weight until you get there. Plans are pretty much useless if you are not thin. The cost of the extra body fat is not just the extra weight. Fat changes an athlete's thermodynamics, energy production, and hormonal make up. Thin and hungry is a big part of riding fast. No point in anything else plan wise until weight is in the proper range.

    The next factor is pedaling dynamics. Single speed is not the only way and it's not just about high cadence. Really you need to get power across the range of cadences plus understand the smoothness on the dead spot. Another tip that can be crazy helpful is riding with a trailer because the dead weight on the trailer will make you feel your dead spot. In the Obree book, Graeme also describes his indoor trainer setup. Removing the flywheel from the indoor trainer lets you feel that dead spot. Feeling the dead spot is the key to developing power across it.

    The third factor is a constant riding level. It does not take tons of time or hours to be fast but consistent riding is pretty important.

    Provided you have the main things down you should consider some planning around your training but the mainstream is mostly wrong. Most heart rate and power zone style training is usually something that looks good in books but it is not the real world. 90% of what is in most books is total rubbish. Thankfully the Obree book is the exception but it is quite hard to implement.

  2. #27
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    Suggesting that anyone attempting to improve as a cat 4 needs to put in 10 to 12 thousand miles a year is stupid and I don't waste a lot of time addressing stupid. Winning is about eliminating all excuses for failure, the last of which would be insufficient miles in the OP's case.
    Quote Originally Posted by pedalbiker View Post
    Translation: I can't actually refute anything you say so I'm just going to mask that insecurity with some irrelevant little quibbles where by I question your ability to ride.

    Yeah, keeping it classy, bud. 50 years of riding and you still know a thing or two, yeah? By all means, address the actual content of my post, then, and wow us all.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by farnsworth View Post

    This advice may sound strange but if you look across the sport strong road riders have often had single speed (velodrome) experiences..
    Yep.

    No, most (the vast majority) of strong riders have not.

  4. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_doctor View Post

    I am really concerned about the guy posting about me looking for affirmation of my excuses. I feel that we are supposed to throw ovations towards him for being super special. It is only biking.

    .
    Eh. I see someone ignore all salient advice and instead go on and on about completely irrelevant topics and I question his motivation and excuses.

    If that offends you, ignore it as that's not the intent. My intent is to try and point out what matters. You obviously have your mind made up about certain things (hr, cadence, etc) and will ignore everything that doesn't agree with that. That's your loss, not mine.

    It is what it is.

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by SwiftSolo View Post
    Suggesting that anyone attempting to improve as a cat 4 needs to put in 10 to 12 thousand miles a year is stupid and I don't waste a lot of time addressing stupid. Winning is about eliminating all excuses for failure, the last of which would be insufficient miles in the OP's case.
    I did 11,000 miles as a Cat 4. Maybe that's why I was a cat 1 two and a half seasons later. Probably it was a combination of things. But undoubtedly miles are huge.

    But ignore that for a second because this was my one and only point with regards to that comment: If you've been doing the same thing for five years (I'd say two years max) and it isn't working, then change it up. That's how endurance training works. Your body gets used to a stimulus and plateaus. You have to change that stimulus to improve.

    It's an aerobic sport that rewards aerobic work.

    You can disagree and throw out clever little quips about winning til your hearts content. Some people talk about it, other people do it.

    Personally, I look to those that do it rather than talk about it.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by farnsworth View Post
    Burn it!

    Seriously just about useless and in most cases counterproductive.

    If you want to get fast:
    The Obree Way: Graeme Obree: 9781408196427: Amazon.com: Books

    The Obree Way is hard but it will make you fast.

    Regardless my simple view of training is as follows:

    Under 10% body fat? If not cut weight until you get there. Plans are pretty much useless if you are not thin. The cost of the extra body fat is not just the extra weight. Fat changes an athlete's thermodynamics, energy production, and hormonal make up. Thin and hungry is a big part of riding fast. No point in anything else plan wise until weight is in the proper range.

    The next factor is pedaling dynamics. Single speed is not the only way and it's not just about high cadence. Really you need to get power across the range of cadences plus understand the smoothness on the dead spot. Another tip that can be crazy helpful is riding with a trailer because the dead weight on the trailer will make you feel your dead spot. In the Obree book, Graeme also describes his indoor trainer setup. Removing the flywheel from the indoor trainer lets you feel that dead spot. Feeling the dead spot is the key to developing power across it.

    The third factor is a constant riding level. It does not take tons of time or hours to be fast but consistent riding is pretty important.

    Provided you have the main things down you should consider some planning around your training but the mainstream is mostly wrong. Most heart rate and power zone style training is usually something that looks good in books but it is not the real world. 90% of what is in most books is total rubbish. Thankfully the Obree book is the exception but it is quite hard to implement.
    I think burning books is bad advise. I certainly think both books are good references. It's been a while...IIRC G. Obree is a bit monolithic or unidimensional in his specificity. Not very applicable to the working man like myself with a full career and family. He talks about many of the same things every other book does (recovery, fit, breathing, stretching, nutrition) from one perspective; his. Not saying I disagree with anything specific, just that, modeling your riding around what one man does is something quite different that what Friel, and my favorites Allen and Coggan write. Discounting all their research is sort of putting your head in the sand and I guess I don't understand that thinking.

    There is room for them all. Something can be learned form them all I should say.

  7. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by woodys737 View Post
    Discounting all their research is sort of putting your head in the sand and I guess I don't understand that thinking.

    There is room for them all. Something can be learned form them all I should say.
    I kid, I kid....

    But really beyond entertainment the heart rate, power meter, and zone focus from most of the training books is silly. It makes for good reading and sometimes it is fun to track data but really it's beyond silly for most riders. Certainly some top pro riders focused on a specific goal *might* benefit from the data to guide their doping programs but really I doubt even that. Most of the data is useless.

    On the other hand information about diet, stretching, breathing, guidelines for recovery, and especially pedaling techniques is useful. So I would say burn only some of the chapters from various books.

    BTW, the the thread started with "I bought a HRM...." coming back to that let me share my own personal experiences with HRM training and racing. Way back in the 1990s I got one and tried a season of zone training. It took a lot of fun out of riding and really did not help me improve. I found that on some days the same effort was 10 to 20 beats different from other days. If you look at the science the impact of heat, hydration, and other factors is 10 to 20 beats. Basically perceived effort was a better guide for me vs. the number on the watch. Given the 10 beat spread I very much question the effect of zones because plans based on HRM are asking for a level of accuracy that is outside of what the measurement can provide.

    Consider "maximum heart rate". Basically this is a myth. On some days I get to the upper 170s and on other days that I get to the low 180s. Basically on any given day my maximum heart rate is different. This is likely a function of hydration, blood volume, hormone fluctuation, etc. At the end it does not matter why there is flux in the number because once you recognize that the number has a random component you understand that it is not useful.

    The goal of power meters is to track efforts without using heart rate. They make a lot more sense but really outside of very high level athletes working towards very specific goals they just don't seem useful. I have a computrainer and used it for a season with focused workouts around power but really found that it was both not fun and not very useful for the goal of simply obtaining the best fitness possible given the constraints of having a job, paying the bills, etc.

    My "training" these days is mostly about having fun. If I want to get faster I watch my diet a bit and do some harder rides. The one big area that I think makes a HUGE difference in performance is focusing on pedaling dynamics. Riding single speed is useful as are other techniques that I mentioned to improve your pedaling dynamics. Basically time you spend focusing on this area will provide a bigger bang for your metaphorical then anything else.

    In the end all of cycling for non-pros is entertainment so really it's best to just find the view that makes you happy. I simply want to share that HRMs have not been helpful for me and also there are plenty of examples of top riders who got to their level without spending time looking at digits flashing on a computer screen.

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by farnsworth View Post
    I have a computrainer and used it for a season with focused workouts around power but really found that it was both not fun and not very useful for the goal of simply obtaining the best fitness possible given the constraints of having a job, paying the bills, etc.

    A computrainer is not a powermeter. No kidding that a winter on one of those wasn't fun. Ugh. I'd probably make it about five rides before I'd have to get outside for a proper workout.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by farnsworth View Post
    The one big area that I think makes a HUGE difference in performance is focusing on pedaling dynamics. Riding single speed is useful as are other techniques that I mentioned to improve your pedaling dynamics. Basically time you spend focusing on this area will provide a bigger bang for your metaphorical then anything else.
    I don't think the cycling world agrees.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by pedalbiker View Post

    Personally, I look to those that do it rather than talk about it.
    And yet, here you are-- talking about it. Consider that the OP likely wants to have a life and compete successfully as a cat 4. Most well rounded 40 years olds have a wife and kids and a real job. Many divide their time between racing, riding with the family, and participating in winter sports during the winter.

    It should be possible to do all or the above and compete successfully as a cat 4 who only has time for 5 or 6 thousands miles.

    Finally, you will know when you have all the answers on training when professional teams bid for your services as a coach. Until then, you may want to stop dismissing the advice others offer and belittling the OP.

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by SwiftSolo View Post
    And yet, here you are-- talking about it. Consider that the OP likely wants to have a life and compete successfully as a cat 4. Most well rounded 40 years olds have a wife and kids and a real job. Many divide their time between racing, riding with the family, and participating in winter sports during the winter.

    It should be possible to do all or the above and compete successfully as a cat 4 who only has time for 5 or 6 thousands miles.

    Finally, you will know when you have all the answers on training when professional teams bid for your services as a coach. Until then, you may want to stop dismissing the advice others offer and belittling the OP.
    Because I DO it, bud. And I'm telling exactly how I do it. You are brazenly ignoring that because it ruins the entire premise your geriatric rants are based on.

    Yes, it SHOULD be possible. Yet it's not. So he should try something different. You don't even disagree with that but you're being so pig-headed you can't understand it.

    Like I've said in multiple posts now, you have to change up the stimulus. You, for example, can't stop being an *******. So perhaps the stimulus of this thread is too much for you and you would progress if you went to another one where your 50 years would actually be worth something.

  12. #37
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    Calm down a little, Honey.

    Because you are obviously the highest paid internet coach in internet cycling, consider the possibility that there may be a way for the OP to become a competitive cat 4 racer by changing his approach from the current random one to one of rational structure as recommended by a myriad of real coaches. Further consider that, assuming average cycling talent, he may be able to do that within the current time allotment and without getting a divorce or losing his job.

    These considerations may be well outside of your comfort zone as you've so eloquently pointed out, however, take a chance on the remote possibility that the OP may be a real cyclist and not need to do 10 or 12 thousand internet miles to be a competitive cat 4 racer.

    I thank you in advance for what I'm confident will be another measured and rational response!
    .
    Quote Originally Posted by pedalbiker View Post
    Because I DO it, bud. And I'm telling exactly how I do it. You are brazenly ignoring that because it ruins the entire premise your geriatric rants are based on.

    Yes, it SHOULD be possible. Yet it's not. So he should try something different. You don't even disagree with that but you're being so pig-headed you can't understand it.

    Like I've said in multiple posts now, you have to change up the stimulus. You, for example, can't stop being an *******. So perhaps the stimulus of this thread is too much for you and you would progress if you went to another one where your 50 years would actually be worth something.

  13. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by SwiftSolo View Post
    Calm down a little, Honey.

    Because you are obviously the highest paid internet coach in internet cycling, consider the possibility that there may be a way for the OP to become a competitive cat 4 racer by changing his approach from the current random one to one of rational structure as recommended by a myriad of real coaches. Further consider that, assuming average cycling talent, he may be able to do that within the current time allotment and without getting a divorce or losing his job.

    These considerations may be well outside of your comfort zone as you've so eloquently pointed out, however, take a chance on the remote possibility that the OP may be a real cyclist and not need to do 10 or 12 thousand internet miles to be a competitive cat 4 racer.

    I thank you in advance for what I'm confident will be another measured and rational response!
    .
    How is it that you are so completely dense that you completely skip over my postings on not one, not even two, but MULTIPLE times? Is it willful belligerence or just flat-out ignorance?

    Or is this simply a result of diminished mental faculties?

    Nevertheless, I absolutely love, LOVE, that you are now going on about a coach when I mentioned that on the very first page of this thread.

    Love IT!

    Your presence in this thread has been a massive failure from the get-go. That your only responses have been heinously pathetic attempts to discredit what I write while then going on to actually recommend things I've previously written manifests that assertion to the fullest. I suggest you take a few days off the internet before you embarrass yourself further.

  14. #39
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    You're apparently assuming that I read your posts that are not directed to me? You obviously missed the part of my first response where I indicated I don't waste a lot of time on stupid.

    Admittedly, I violated my own rule when you continued to defend your claim about the Op being some kind of slacker/excuse maker because he expects to do well in cat 4 without putting in 10-12 thousand miles a year.

    I want to thank you for your "measured and rational response"! It was everything I expected.
    Quote Originally Posted by pedalbiker View Post
    How is it that you are so completely dense that you completely skip over my postings on not one, not even two, but MULTIPLE times? Is it willful belligerence or just flat-out ignorance?

    Or is this simply a result of diminished mental faculties?

    Nevertheless, I absolutely love, LOVE, that you are now going on about a coach when I mentioned that on the very first page of this thread.

    Love IT!

    Your presence in this thread has been a massive failure from the get-go. That your only responses have been heinously pathetic attempts to discredit what I write while then going on to actually recommend things I've previously written manifests that assertion to the fullest. I suggest you take a few days off the internet before you embarrass yourself further.

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by SwiftSolo View Post
    You're apparently assuming that I read your posts that are not directed to me? You obviously missed the part of my first response where I indicated I don't waste a lot of time on stupid.

    Admittedly, I violated my own rule when you continued to defend your claim about the Op being some kind of slacker/excuse maker because he expects to do well in cat 4 without putting in 10-12 thousand miles a year.

    I want to thank you for your "measured and rational response"! It was everything I expected.
    You clearly don't read the posts that ARE directed to you, either. Which is a prime reason for my questioning of your apparent lack of reading abilities.

    Coupled with you continually displaying a devastating lack of any sort of logical thought, or even cognitive ability, and we're left with you taking more and more drastic "leaps" to make these sad little rebuttals.

    Now you're to the point of simply making up things as an attempted defense. You're getting further and further off the reservation, yet you can't seem to help yourself.

    So what's the next step in your regression?

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