deaming/planning for next year
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  1. #1

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    Question deaming/planning for next year

    Hi all,

    This is my first post to this forum although I've been lurking here for about a month or so.The Seattle cross season just wrapped up a couple weeks ago with an awesome snow covered final (although not nearly as brutal as the nats from the sounds of it) and I've started dreaming/planning for next year.

    This was my first cross season and I had a hell of good time. I raced my MTB in the men's B catgeory and I feel like I did pretty well overall. I started racing Bs beacause I missed the start time for Cs the day of my first race. I didn't feel too badly outclassed or finish dead last so I just kept racing Bs. Over the course of the season I consistently improved as I got a better grasp of my strengths and weaknesses and learned some race strategies. By the end of the season I logged a couple top 20 finishes (fields where about 35 to 40 racers big). My best result of the season was in the finals where I placed 17th. I came 19th in the overall series primarily by showing up consistently and fininshing every race.

    I'm already excited about next years season, although it's obviously a long ways off. This season was the first time I raced a bike since highschool when I did a little bit of xc mtb racing (9 years ago), and I've deffinately been bitten by the racing bug. I guess my question is what kind of improvements can I expect to make if I really put some effort into it. I would really like to be able to compete at higher level next year and possibly travel outside of Washington for some races.

    Obviously, one of my first steps is to get some cash together for an actual cross bike instead of the 27.5 pound, 5 inches of front travel hardtail I was riding this year. I know that getting a new ride should help me move a little faster, but I'm not really sure what kind of difference I can expect it to make. I've never had a chance to ride one since I'm about 6'4" and I didn't know anyone who had a bike that was big enough for me and was willing to let me take it for a test lap. I do know that it would certainly be nice to have 8 fewer pounds on my shoulder on a run-up.

    It'll be nice to get a new bike but I know that in the end any bike race always comes down to the engine, me in otherwords. So I've been thinking about trying set up some sort of training program to power up for next season. I'm currently a fit individual but pretty much untrained by any real standard. I bike about 20 minutes at a brisk pace to and from work most days, and I get out for rec rides when I get a chance, which is unfortunately not that often ( less than once a week ). Aside from cycling I run every now and then and play ultimate on occasion. I'm a pretty avid rock climber which tends to invovle doing a decent bit of hiking with a moderately heavy pack (20-35 lbs) and to take up a lot of my time (probably why I don't get out ot go MTBing more often). Anyhow, like I said, I am active/fit but untrained. If I'm honest with myself, I could probably also lose about 11 pounds or so to get down to a true race weight. I'm currently at 6"4', 185 lbs and about 12% body fat. I figure with some effort and discipline I could probably get down to about 174 and 6% body fat (easier said than done I know ;) ). If nothing else it would definately be nice when I'm hanging by fingertips and would probably bump my climbing up a notch.

    I'm hoping that by by next season I might be able to be competative (ie not get lapped) in the A field of my local series. I guess I'm just looking for opinions as to whether this a reasonable goal or not.

    To give you a reference my average lap time was 8:59 over 7 laps for the finals.

    The winner of the A race had and average lap time of 7:14 over 8 laps.

    5th place averaged 7:37 over 8 laps.

    10th averaged 8:07 over 8 laps.

    and 13th (the last rider not to get lapped in the A race) averaged 8:21 over 8 laps.

    I certainly wouldn't expect to win to much next year, but I do feel that I should be able to hold my own if I put some effort into it. Any opinions on whether this is a achievable goal would be much appreciated. Also, if any you have any suggestions about any worthwile training programs, books or other resources that would be a big help. Thanks in advance for any input and sorry for the legth of this post (I guess I just wanted to be thorough).

    -David

    Love Life and Life will Love you back

  2. #2
    50ft. Queenie
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    i would wait untill you are finishing consitantly in the top10 of the bigger B' races (ie 100 racers) or top5 in smaller races.

    guys who were winning races in new england then up'ed to the A's still get schooled in the bigger races.

    one more year in the B's will get you stronger & build your confidence.....

  3. #3
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    Couple thoughts--you can gain time per lap very quickly by working on the key elements of transition in cyclocross, mount, dismount, shoulder, hurtle and run with the bike from all types of terrain. You need to learn to do it correctly and practice a little, it is pretty easy to learn. You can get 10 or more seconds a lap just by doing this.

    If you want to improve as a cyclist, the workouts that most cyclists use are:

    1) endurance rides of a couple hours

    2) tempo rides at a brisk pace of 10-40 minutes of "tempo" effort

    3) Intervals of 30 secs to 5 minutes at a a hard pace with a period of recovery

    4) road or mountain bike racing during the summer months

    To get faster at cycling, you need to spend more purposeful time on the bike, within limits. I can't really discuss a plan for improvment within the constraints you laid out.

  4. #4
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    Getting a cross bike will definitely be a step in the right direction. It will make you faster, and your transitions will be better because of it. If you can afford 2 inexpensive bikes that fit you will be up to speed and ready to make your move from the Bs to the As when your progress allows. I'd say that finding a coach that knows how to train for cyclocross asap is going to be the next sensible step if you are looking to be serious about racing. Getting started with someone in the late spring or summer would probably be good, that way you can get used to working together and they can help you build as much of a base as you can with what time you have. If you can get to some road or mtn races over the summer that will help too.

  5. #5

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    Thanks for the replies so far, I really appreaciate the wealth of experience available here.

    My basic plan at this point is to try to log a lot of base miles over the off season while gradually increasing the intensity and adding more power and sprint work heading into the spring. I definately would like to get back into doing some MTB races this summer although road will probbaly have to wait. I'm a student and scratching together the funds for one extra bike, let alone two, will be kind of hard,

    As far as the tecnical cross skills go, I found that I usually made up time when it came down to getting off the bike and running. I've got a long stride and I think this may help as I was often able to outrun my competitors. Getting clipped back in still needs a good bit of work though, I end up fumbling for my pedals about 2 out 10 times and definately lose some time here. Areas I really need to improve are probably my acceleration out of tight corners and seeing/picking the best line. Watching the A race after my race I would often see the elite level riders taking lines through tricky sandpits and other such areas that where much faster than the ones I had chosen. I guess hindsight is 20/20 in bike racing too. I' guessing that more saddle/racing time and some sprint workouts should help me improve these areas.

    jroden: I'm definately planing in spending more time in the saddle, I was basically just laying my current riding time to show that there is a lot of room for improvement there. ;)
    If I rearange my priorities I figure I should be able to log 10-15 hours a week on the bike

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lupine
    Thanks for the replies so far, I really appreaciate the wealth of experience available here.

    My basic plan at this point is to try to log a lot of base miles over the off season while gradually increasing the intensity and adding more power and sprint work heading into the spring. I definately would like to get back into doing some MTB races this summer although road will probbaly have to wait. I'm a student and scratching together the funds for one extra bike, let alone two, will be kind of hard,

    As far as the tecnical cross skills go, I found that I usually made up time when it came down to getting off the bike and running. I've got a long stride and I think this may help as I was often able to outrun my competitors. Getting clipped back in still needs a good bit of work though, I end up fumbling for my pedals about 2 out 10 times and definately lose some time here. Areas I really need to improve are probably my acceleration out of tight corners and seeing/picking the best line. Watching the A race after my race I would often see the elite level riders taking lines through tricky sandpits and other such areas that where much faster than the ones I had chosen. I guess hindsight is 20/20 in bike racing too. I' guessing that more saddle/racing time and some sprint workouts should help me improve these areas.

    jroden: I'm definately planing in spending more time in the saddle, I was basically just laying my current riding time to show that there is a lot of room for improvement there. ;)
    If I rearange my priorities I figure I should be able to log 10-15 hours a week on the bike
    Check this bike out. It will probably fit you, it might be somewhat risky but the price might stay low enough.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/2005-Bianchi-axi...QQcmdZViewItem

    I'm considering it myself.
    Zero

  7. #7
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    You can do fine off that kind of volume. I think developing some strength in your legs with some low rpm, heavy gear work during the winter and spring, plus some tempo type work would be a good plan for your initial phase. People use things like grinding up a hill at 50 rpm's or starting in a big gear from a standstill.

    Short intervals in the summer will help your snap coming out of turns.

    Practice developing a proceedure for pre riding and inspecting the course so you can both figure out and remember your cues for picking the lines through tricky sections. Since the loops are so short, this takes on a higher importance.

    Work to develop skills to take the fewest number of steps though a given section and get back going and clipped in with the fewest feet covered on your bike. Once you can do this, work on actually accelerating through the sections.

    In a perfect world, all your barriers are 15 inches high, two in number and 12 feet apart, so you can practice for how it "ought" to be set up according to the rules, some promoters don't do it quite right...

    Practice running up hills with your bike.

    Practice stepping off your bike when it is going fast enough to scare you a little, then jumping right back on after 5 steps and clipping right in.

    Keep us posted on your progress.

  8. #8
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    I used to be an avid climber (back when I lived in the Midwest) and understand how that builds core strength. It's probably the primary reason you did as well as you did with the amount (low) of bike training you did. So here's my $.02 (you can stick a check in the mail):

    1) Don't worry about losing weight. Just don't gain any.

    2) Concentrate on a 6 month traning schedule with three parts:

    a) June/July: Base. Get some miles in and don't worry too much about intensity. I'd suggest working on skills during this time too. Also, long rides are overrated. By July my max ride time was perhaps 2 hours with lots of shorter sessions.

    b) August/Spetember: Build. Build your intensity. Tempo rides of 1-1.5 hours. Intervals twice a week. Skills one a week. Mix up interval types. Substitue an interval session with a race simulation of you have a good place for a mock course.

    c) October/November: Race. Listen to your body and adjust interval and tempo sessions to allow recovery from races. Two weeks before your championship races, cut total saddle time back a bit but still get in some intensity. Peak for the double points.

    Up through May, screw around. Mountain bike. Climb. Commute. Ride when you want to. Then get serious. I could have been mid-pack fodder in the Masters 35+ down here in Portland (but raced the Masters 35+ B's, moving up next season) and my "big" weeks in July were like 12 hours in the saddle. For me, I did a three week cycle and these are my approximate hours for each:

    Base: 9-10, 11-12, 6 (rest)
    Build: 8-9, 9-10, 6 (rest)
    Race: 8-9, 9-10, 6 (rest) -- includes races

    Also, I didn't run at all this year but will incorporate a little of that next year. Mostly I just want to develop and maintain foot speed.

    I would suggest that you could substitute climbing for easy days so your total saddle time could be reduced 2-3 hours per week. That just means when you are on the bike, you aren't goofing around.
    Pro rep, yo!

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lupine
    Hi all,

    This is my first post to this forum although I've been lurking here for about a month or so.The Seattle cross season just wrapped up a couple weeks ago with an awesome snow covered final (although not nearly as brutal as the nats from the sounds of it) and I've started dreaming/planning for next year.

    This was my first cross season and I had a hell of good time. I raced my MTB in the men's B catgeory and I feel like I did pretty well overall. I started racing Bs beacause I missed the start time for Cs the day of my first race. I didn't feel too badly outclassed or finish dead last so I just kept racing Bs. Over the course of the season I consistently improved as I got a better grasp of my strengths and weaknesses and learned some race strategies. By the end of the season I logged a couple top 20 finishes (fields where about 35 to 40 racers big). My best result of the season was in the finals where I placed 17th. I came 19th in the overall series primarily by showing up consistently and fininshing every race.

    I'm already excited about next years season, although it's obviously a long ways off. This season was the first time I raced a bike since highschool when I did a little bit of xc mtb racing (9 years ago), and I've deffinately been bitten by the racing bug. I guess my question is what kind of improvements can I expect to make if I really put some effort into it. I would really like to be able to compete at higher level next year and possibly travel outside of Washington for some races.

    Obviously, one of my first steps is to get some cash together for an actual cross bike instead of the 27.5 pound, 5 inches of front travel hardtail I was riding this year. I know that getting a new ride should help me move a little faster, but I'm not really sure what kind of difference I can expect it to make. I've never had a chance to ride one since I'm about 6'4" and I didn't know anyone who had a bike that was big enough for me and was willing to let me take it for a test lap. I do know that it would certainly be nice to have 8 fewer pounds on my shoulder on a run-up.

    It'll be nice to get a new bike but I know that in the end any bike race always comes down to the engine, me in otherwords. So I've been thinking about trying set up some sort of training program to power up for next season. I'm currently a fit individual but pretty much untrained by any real standard. I bike about 20 minutes at a brisk pace to and from work most days, and I get out for rec rides when I get a chance, which is unfortunately not that often ( less than once a week ). Aside from cycling I run every now and then and play ultimate on occasion. I'm a pretty avid rock climber which tends to invovle doing a decent bit of hiking with a moderately heavy pack (20-35 lbs) and to take up a lot of my time (probably why I don't get out ot go MTBing more often). Anyhow, like I said, I am active/fit but untrained. If I'm honest with myself, I could probably also lose about 11 pounds or so to get down to a true race weight. I'm currently at 6"4', 185 lbs and about 12% body fat. I figure with some effort and discipline I could probably get down to about 174 and 6% body fat (easier said than done I know ;) ). If nothing else it would definately be nice when I'm hanging by fingertips and would probably bump my climbing up a notch.

    I'm hoping that by by next season I might be able to be competative (ie not get lapped) in the A field of my local series. I guess I'm just looking for opinions as to whether this a reasonable goal or not.

    To give you a reference my average lap time was 8:59 over 7 laps for the finals.

    The winner of the A race had and average lap time of 7:14 over 8 laps.

    5th place averaged 7:37 over 8 laps.

    10th averaged 8:07 over 8 laps.

    and 13th (the last rider not to get lapped in the A race) averaged 8:21 over 8 laps.

    I certainly wouldn't expect to win to much next year, but I do feel that I should be able to hold my own if I put some effort into it. Any opinions on whether this is a achievable goal would be much appreciated. Also, if any you have any suggestions about any worthwile training programs, books or other resources that would be a big help. Thanks in advance for any input and sorry for the legth of this post (I guess I just wanted to be thorough).

    -David

    Love Life and Life will Love you back
    I don't think that kind of improvement is out of the question. I was 1-1.5 minutes a lap faster on most courses this year compared to last year. This has to be put into perspective though. Last cross season I had just started "training," riding a couple hours a week, low intensity, with some group rides. All this year I did more like 14 hours a week with 2-4 interval sessions in most weeks.

    Practice your technical skills a lot. Also, you should try to get a coach or learn as about training as possible. The training forum here is not very good. Join cyclingforums.com and go to the training forum there. Read the topica wattage list, even if you don't plan on getting a powermeter. Read stuff by guys like Andy Coggan. Then apply all of that knowledge when designing a training plan.

    Edit: I see at this point you're pretty much untrained as far as racing goes. Don't take that as an insult, you have to be pretty fit to place mid-pack in a b race. The good news is that you likely have a fair bit of talent, and the potential to make big gains by next year with focused training.
    Last edited by whoawhoa; 12-19-2005 at 11:15 AM.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lupine
    Hi all,

    This is my first post to this forum although I've been lurking here for about a month or so.The Seattle cross season just wrapped up a couple weeks ago with an awesome snow covered final (although not nearly as brutal as the nats from the sounds of it) and I've started dreaming/planning for next year.
    Hey, David! Glad you are here. I think my perspective may help you some. I was you a couple years ago and I raced all this season in Seattle as a B before moving up to the A's for a couple races. I'm 28 years old, 6'4" and I weigh 167 pounds (about 15% body fat according to my BF scale).

    First of all I will address the bike. My first 'cross race was on a 22 pound XC racing bike. My next race was on a stock 60cm Jake The Snake (bought in september of 2004). The JTS was a huge improvement over the XC bike.

    This year I built a new 'cross bike with the JTS frame. Ultegra 10 shifters/ders/cassette, ksyrium SSC tubular with tufo elite lps tires, ritchey pro components, and froggleggs brakes. The new bike I built up for this year was light years better than the stock jts and I truly believe the new bike helped my placing in races a lot. I also built up another JTS this fall but it's not quite as nice as the main bike. I plan on upgrading the B bike to be identical to my mainr JTS for next year's racing season. Anyways, a pimp bike with tubulars is so nice and having an identical pit bike will be amazing I imagine. 60cm jts fits me PERFECT and I have a 36.5" inseam.

    Last year I wasn't so serious and as a newbie 'cross racer I was safely midpack in the B's in ECC races (best finish 22nd worst 28th) with minimal training. This year I decided to put it all on the line for 'cross. After taking the winter off from riding (big mistake) I started training in March of 2005. I roughly followed the Cyclists Training Bible and trained for a peak in Late September. Late Spring and Early summer I was riding huge 18 hour weeks. While racing mountain bike in the indie mountain bike series. Anyways, by August I was doing some crazy hard intervals. The first couple races of the season my training turned out to be a success as I took 3rd place in each of the first two B races I did (I almost won ECC #1- I broke away from a group of 4 on the beginning of the last lap but was caught mere meters from the finish line). I went on to gather 9 top 3's including 3 wins in regional races before I grew enough balls to try the A class. The truth is, if you are winning B races (even pulling top 5's) in Seattle you are more than fast enough for the A's. The only difficulty with an upgrade is getting used to the extra distance. Two guys who beat me in early season B races (when I was finishing 2nd or 3rd behind them, including one guy who caught me in ECC #1) went on to get top 10 finishes in their first A races (Granted, one of these guys is a cat 1 roadie and the other guy was the top expert mtn bike racer in the indie mountain bike series).
    I wish I had upgraded to A sooner rather than later. So keep in mind that if you train hard all year and you do very well in your first couple B races (top 3's) then it's advised that you upgrade to A's.

    My mistake was waiting until the end of the season before I tried racing A's. If it looks as though you are going to be too fast for B's then get into the A's! Racing in the A's is great training. In the B's I was always off the front riding by myself. In the A's I was riding with other people and there are definately tactics involved, my B career involved me riding off the front at the gun and usually getting caught by 1 or 2 guys on the last lap. I learned nothing racing off the front as a B. Things that I thought I was good at were actually huge weaknesses in the A's. So when I started racing A's I was able to determine what my weaknesses are and what I need to improve upon for next year to be more competitive in the A's (weaknesses = running, short sprints and using my brain and not going 100% when unnecessary and my transitions to/fro bike are pathetic).

    So I guess my point is ( and to answer your question), if you are truly serious and put in the hard work it's completely possible for you to be an A rider next year. I wish I would have done every race this year as an A, however since my previous best finish was 22nd in the B's I was just hoping to reach top 10 B by the end of the season (Never imagined I'd be a contender for B wins from the first race of the season).
    Last edited by mattv2099; 12-19-2005 at 01:22 PM.

  11. #11

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    Thumbs up Training Help

    We all know that the fittest athlete won't always win a bike race, and that is what gives the rest of us hope day in and day out. For road races, you have to race smart. For cross races, it is important to race smart, but it is more important to be technically sound going over obstacles.

    The two hardest points of a cross race for newbies are the intensity and the barriers. You should have a leg up on normal starters because of your bike handling skills. Most roadies use cross to hone their bike handling skills, but mtb'ers have a good leg up to start.

    As for intensity, listen to all those who posted before me. They seem pretty sound.

    For barriers, I have had the most success by practice, practice, and practice. I am fortunate enough to have a nice grassy area in my yard that I set up a mini cross course in. I "built" 5 barriers and set them up in a way that would allow me to practice a number of cross-specific skills.

    First, I built the barriers 15" high. That is higher than you should ever encounter in a cross race, but I did this for a reason. If you are used to jumping over a barrier that is 15", you will never have an excuse to trip or stumble over a 12" one during a race. This will help a ton.

    Secondly, I built them 6' wide. I would usually do my skills day with a buddy, and we would practice going into the barriers side-by-side, so when raceday comes you aren't chicken to fly into a barrier set neck and neck with somebody.

    I built the barriers using two upside-down "T's", with a 6' 1"x2" board resting on top. These are portable, light, and store easily. Also, when you practice entering barriers faster and faster, you won't kill yourself if you forget to lift your bike or something. The barrier will just fall off and the worst that will happen is that you look silly.

    When you compete next year in the B's, your biggest advantage will be barrier skills. Practicing like this will naturally help your running, but running is an important part of cross training.

    Hope this helps!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ridewt
    I'm just about exactly your height and build. I just bought a Redline Conquest Pro frame -60 cm. I wanted that bike because it has a long 60 cm TT, which I need because of long torso. Anyway, it is not an expensive bike and fits well. I've raced road for years but only just started cross. I agree that if you have good fitness, the skills sections of cross is where you'll gain or lose time.
    No comments on the 61cm Bianchi with the smoke damage, eh?

    Funny, is this a tall guy's thread? I'm considering both the JTS and Redline frames in 60cm. I want to build it myself, I'm having trouble getting a JTS frame though (looking for anything but that hiseous orange).

    6'3 and 180 lbs here. Probably racing B's in Seattle next year, I'm 35 so I have some options. I'm considering giving up tri's and just doing road and cross, all three is next to impossible if you want your sanity.
    Zero

  13. #13
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    Redline 60 cm

    Quote Originally Posted by Lupine
    Hi all,

    This is my first post to this forum although I've been lurking here for about a month or so.The Seattle cross season just wrapped up a couple weeks ago with an awesome snow covered final (although not nearly as brutal as the nats from the sounds of it) and I've started dreaming/planning for next year.

    This was my first cross season and I had a hell of good time. I raced my MTB in the men's B catgeory and I feel like I did pretty well overall. I started racing Bs beacause I missed the start time for Cs the day of my first race. I didn't feel too badly outclassed or finish dead last so I just kept racing Bs. Over the course of the season I consistently improved as I got a better grasp of my strengths and weaknesses and learned some race strategies. By the end of the season I logged a couple top 20 finishes (fields where about 35 to 40 racers big). My best result of the season was in the finals where I placed 17th. I came 19th in the overall series primarily by showing up consistently and fininshing every race.

    I'm already excited about next years season, although it's obviously a long ways off. This season was the first time I raced a bike since highschool when I did a little bit of xc mtb racing (9 years ago), and I've deffinately been bitten by the racing bug. I guess my question is what kind of improvements can I expect to make if I really put some effort into it. I would really like to be able to compete at higher level next year and possibly travel outside of Washington for some races.

    Obviously, one of my first steps is to get some cash together for an actual cross bike instead of the 27.5 pound, 5 inches of front travel hardtail I was riding this year. I know that getting a new ride should help me move a little faster, but I'm not really sure what kind of difference I can expect it to make. I've never had a chance to ride one since I'm about 6'4" and I didn't know anyone who had a bike that was big enough for me and was willing to let me take it for a test lap. I do know that it would certainly be nice to have 8 fewer pounds on my shoulder on a run-up.

    It'll be nice to get a new bike but I know that in the end any bike race always comes down to the engine, me in otherwords. So I've been thinking about trying set up some sort of training program to power up for next season. I'm currently a fit individual but pretty much untrained by any real standard. I bike about 20 minutes at a brisk pace to and from work most days, and I get out for rec rides when I get a chance, which is unfortunately not that often ( less than once a week ). Aside from cycling I run every now and then and play ultimate on occasion. I'm a pretty avid rock climber which tends to invovle doing a decent bit of hiking with a moderately heavy pack (20-35 lbs) and to take up a lot of my time (probably why I don't get out ot go MTBing more often). Anyhow, like I said, I am active/fit but untrained. If I'm honest with myself, I could probably also lose about 11 pounds or so to get down to a true race weight. I'm currently at 6"4', 185 lbs and about 12% body fat. I figure with some effort and discipline I could probably get down to about 174 and 6% body fat (easier said than done I know ;) ). If nothing else it would definately be nice when I'm hanging by fingertips and would probably bump my climbing up a notch.

    I'm hoping that by by next season I might be able to be competative (ie not get lapped) in the A field of my local series. I guess I'm just looking for opinions as to whether this a reasonable goal or not.

    To give you a reference my average lap time was 8:59 over 7 laps for the finals.

    The winner of the A race had and average lap time of 7:14 over 8 laps.

    5th place averaged 7:37 over 8 laps.

    10th averaged 8:07 over 8 laps.

    and 13th (the last rider not to get lapped in the A race) averaged 8:21 over 8 laps.

    I certainly wouldn't expect to win to much next year, but I do feel that I should be able to hold my own if I put some effort into it. Any opinions on whether this is a achievable goal would be much appreciated. Also, if any you have any suggestions about any worthwile training programs, books or other resources that would be a big help. Thanks in advance for any input and sorry for the legth of this post (I guess I just wanted to be thorough).

    -David

    Love Life and Life will Love you back
    I'm just about exactly your height and build. I just bought a Redline Conquest Pro frame -60 cm. I wanted that bike because it has a long 60 cm TT, which I need because of long torso. Anyway, it is not an expensive bike and fits well. I've raced road for years but only just started cross. I agree that if you have good fitness, the skills sections of cross is where you'll gain or lose time.

  14. #14
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    Redline

    Quote Originally Posted by giovanni sartori
    No comments on the 61cm Bianchi with the smoke damage, eh?

    Funny, is this a tall guy's thread? I'm considering both the JTS and Redline frames in 60cm. I want to build it myself, I'm having trouble getting a JTS frame though (looking for anything but that hiseous orange).

    6'3 and 180 lbs here. Probably racing B's in Seattle next year, I'm 35 so I have some options. I'm considering giving up tri's and just doing road and cross, all three is next to impossible if you want your sanity.
    I really like the Redline. I think the JTS has a different rear spacing than regular road - 135???? Anyway, I've read some comments about the Redline fork but it is fine once you toe-in the brakes enough. I think fork chatter is a common problem - I couldn't believe how badly mine chattered but once I toed it in, it was fine. I'm just a beginner at cross but I wouldn't want to spend a fortune on a bike that gets pretty harsh abuse as part of it's normal racing/riding.

  15. #15
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Nov 2004
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    635
    [QUOTE=Lupine]]

    David,
    I think we battled it out a few times at the end of the season. I dropped down to B's from Mstr A's since i was only riding on Sat/Sun for the last four weeks of the series. You finally got me at the finals on the last lap. I believe you passed me when i totally bonked(only had enough gas for a 45min race & they had us out there over an hour that day) & I said I didnt have anything left. I think you said something like "its the last lap of the season, give it all you got" or something. I lost 7 places that last lap & could barely turn the pedals to the finish. Hard day. MattV & I rode together a little that day too.

    Here is a couple of suggestions for you. If you can make it out to South SeaTac for the Wed. Night Worlds (April-August) thats perfect training for cross. You would be racing against most of the top Seattle crossers as well, only on mtb bikes. Another thing I would suggest is get a cross bike built up asap & ride the crap out of it. Cross gets much more technical on a cross bike. You'll be suprised at how a superfast trail on your mtb will suddenly get a bit sketchy on cross bike with skinny tires & drop bars. . Its more fun though. When fall rolls around, if you can make it out to Marymoor park for the cross workouts (Wednesdays), they are a huge help as well.

    Good luck & I'll see you on the trail~
    DP
    Last edited by DPCX; 12-19-2005 at 10:42 PM.

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