Cold Weather Training
I just read in a cycling magazine the athletes who train in the cold, and lest say that would be around that freezing mark, would also be likely to have scarring in their lungs from the cold dry air. Long term, thats a problem. as much as training inside isn't much fun, long term it appears to be better than slamming those intervals outside on cold days.
LT Tests for UC Cycling Team: some comments
I'm looking forward to our weight training demo tomorrow. We'll be running through a lot of different options for lower and upper body, core/foundation, plyometrics, etc. Here is a link that has a list of some of what we'll be looking at tomorrow:
It looks like most of you have completed the LT test and some have done that and the Field Test. We'll be repeating both in time. The 2x8 field test is a pretty easy way to see how your training has progressed. Ultimately we want to see improvement in LT since it is best indictor of success in endurance events. We drive improvement in LT through aerobic training and anaerobic training by varying the frequency, intensity, time in and between our intervals with the result being increased overall aerobic power.
We also need to consider improved economy of our cycling which includes everything that allows you to accomplish the same movement as your competition but with less effort. This could be better position on the bike, a better bike although don't let this be a concern, a better pedal stroke, being able to relax on the bike, pedaling as little as possible in a crit or road race to conserve energy, the ability to ride longer with less physical stress to areas other than our legs like upper back and shoulders, and on and on. I think it was Joe Friel, author of several books on training and also a coach, who said the best training program is that which gives you the best results in the least amount of time. Ideally we're Keep that in mind as you work your way through your intervals and we start to con side ways to improve our economy on the bike. Tomorrows training will apply to that economy and to our anaerobic training.
20-20-10-10 steady state comments
my notes to my coach:
I took yesteday off and will do my spin/circuit double header on Wednesday (getting huge crowds, 35 in spin and 45 in the circuit...New Years resolutionists!) so I did the 5x12 today; totalled spaced out on the first one and went 20 minutes; I thought I had gone past 12 so I decided to take it to 15 but I was past 15 miniutes headed to 20; did the second for 20 and then did 2x10 minutes; 317, 318, 317 and 320 on these. if you had assigned 20 minute efforts I would have broken them into 10's. I never liked the 20's and yet I end up doing two of them. Felt good overall. Just tired of riding inside. No relief in site on the weather.
two 20 minute and two 10 minute steady state efforts, graph
5x10 steady state
Another day of steady states, 10 minutes each, 5 between. Held 320 on each with another day in the basement.
RoadBikeRider article on time trials
5x12 steady states comments
These are some long efforts to do in the basement but got through them. Held right around 320 on each.
5x12 steady states, graph
5x10 steady state comments
another day inside as its cold (in the teens) and snowed yesterday and more coming today. held 312, 320, 318, 314 and 316. Really about 10 watts too low on all of them. Oh well.
Another day with some high cadence efforts a few short study state efforts and then three 5k tt's. Held 349, 350 and 345 on the tt's. Certainly feeling the effect of the 55 circuit class yesterday. Tomorrow is an off day.
three more 5k tt's in doors
further indoor tt thoughts
In talking with one of my athletes we were looking at the indoor tt in 1/3 splits. Better to go off hard and try to hang on? Better to ride for average throughout? Just out of curiosity I broke my indoor tt into thirds. My highest average power came in the last 5 minutes and it was 5% higher than the first 5 minutes. My first 5 minutes was at my average for the entire ride. The middle 5 was about 2.5% below my ending average. And just so the math doesn't seem off, these weren't perfect 5 minute splits. The middle was actually closer to 6 minutes and the last just under 4 but you get the idea. I paced myself at the start based on where I thought I could end with the power and had a little left in the end to ramp it up.
comments on Indoor Time Trial
The goal was to ideally do a little better than last month and I did end up taking 11 seconds off. Upped the average power according to the CompuTrainer to 376 or 4.9 watts/kg. Had some great competition in my 3:00 start time from a couple of 30-39 riders who finished about 10 seconds behind me. Some recovery miles today and then off tomorrow.
3rd Indoor Time Trial Results
Indoor TT Warmup comments
Did 4 x 60 seconds high cadence at around 120 each and then three five minute efforts with 2 minutes tempo, 2 minutes steady state and then 1 minute tt pace: 288/330/358, 300/331/367, 300/331/365.
Will be shooting for 365-370 tomorrow for the 10k event.
warmup for tomorrows indoor tt, graph
Took yesterday off and today did my spin class and circuit class for two hours at pretty high intensity. Spin class was a mix of climbs and steady state flat road efforts. Circuit class, with a record 45 attendees, was a lot of strength work with a few 5 minute ploy efforts. Tomorrow will be some endurance miles, light on Friday and then some openers on Saturday in preparation of the indoor tt on Sunday.
Master Rider Fails Drug Test
This is pathetic but not surprising. I suspect there are many more who have been dominating well beyond what seems possible given their age.
RALEIGH — At 62, David LeDuc was the aging – but often still invincible – king of bicycle racing in North Carolina.
The lean, 21-time national champion and 2001 age-group world champion could still humiliate entire packs of top-level amateurs who were decades younger. And he did it so often and so convincingly that rumors he was using performance-enhancing drugs had become commonplace.
This week, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency announced that LeDuc, a longtime Triangle resident who goes by the nickname “The Ol’ Man” in local racing circles, had failed a urine test at the U.S. Masters National Road Championships in Oregon this summer.
LeDuc, who lives in Willow Spring, admitted to using an array of performance-enhancing drugs: amphetamines; synthetic testosterone; and EPO, a particularly dangerous drug that has been a mainstay of some of the most sophisticated cheaters in professional cycling, including Lance Armstrong.
In a news release the USADA said LeDuc had accepted a two-year ban from competition. Unlike Armstrong’s case, though, the national testing agency had allowed him to keep all his wins prior to the test.
“I told them don’t even waste your time testing the ‘B’ sample, I’m guilty,” said LeDuc in a telephone interview. “They said, ‘Well, since you’re not going to contest it, we’ll give you the minimum penalty of two years.’ ”
Doctors, he said, had given him legitimate prescriptions for the amphetamines and testosterone to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and low testosterone, respectively, but that he had no excuse for the EPO.
LeDuc said that he had been riding clean when he won the national championships. He declined to say how long he had been using the amphetamines, but that he had been using the testosterone and EPO only a short period before he got caught.
“The irony is that it didn’t help, because this year I had the worst results of my life,” he said.
There are, of course, significant differences between the likes of Armstrong, who was making tens of millions of dollars from the sport, and aging athletes like LeDuc, who owns a small roofing company and races for prizes little greater than his entry fees.
Social media storm
LeDuc’s suspension had generated a blizzard of I-told-you-so crowing, gossip and speculation on cycling social media sites such as the Google groups Raleigh Rides and Chapel Hill Cycling. And race officials across the state said that they had been bombarded with calls and emails about the case.
A common question is why someone old enough to be a grandfather would use such drugs to win obscure races with tiny prizes, said Judy Rhyne of Southern Pines, a long-time national racing judge and president of the Carolinas Cycling Association, an umbrella group that works with the national sanctioning body to promote racing in both states.
“Facebook has been lit up for the past 24 hours about this, and there are people out there who say why would a 62-year-old man do this,” she said. “Clearly they don’t understand masters racing, because you have folks who want to stay relevant.
“It’s not all of them, of course, but there are some who just can’t let go,” she said. “It doesn’t matter that they’re racing for 50 bucks, and in some cases you’ve got former pros who have raced in Europe and are aging and aren’t as competitive, and they can’t compete against some 17-year old phenom and they are doing whatever it takes to remain competitive and relevant. Their ego won’t let them just ride off into the sunset.
“We’ve had other racers test positive, and I’ve been approached by racers who are, let’s just say, enraged,” she said. “You look at them, and you know when people are throwing bicycles at you, or you start to worry that they might whip out a gun and shoot you, you start to wonder if there is more to it than anger management, if it may in fact be some sort of chemical fueling that rage.”
She also said there has been what seems to be an unusual amount of fist fights in recent years, particularly among masters racers. At one race last year, one middle-aged rider got into a fight with a 15-year-old boy.
All that leads her to think there should be more local drug testing.
Doping has long been a problem not just in the professional ranks but also in amateur bike racing, and has gotten more scrutiny lately. A masters racer from California in 2012 failed a drug test at the same race as LeDuc, and in 2010 a racer named Pete Cannell, who lives in Mebane, was suspended two years for using an anabolic steroid. He forfeited three masters national championships.
Testing, though, is so expensive that it has been rare at amateur events other than national championships. That’s beginning to change, though. Rhyne said her organization is planning to partner with the national sanctioning body, USA Cycling, in a program to share the cost for USADA testing at some events this year.
“The CCA board, we really want it to be fair competition, fair and clean, so it’s the right thing to do,” she said.
LeDuc’s use of testosterone reflects overlapping trends, said several local cyclists and race officials: a suspected rise in doping among aging amateur racers and a well-documented jump in the use of the hormone by baby boomers who are trying to fight the effects of aging.
Anti-aging clinics can be quick to prescribe it to older for older men who complain of “symptoms” such as fatigue and lower interest in sex, even if test results show they’re simply at the low end of the normal range for testosterone.
A study published last year in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine of nearly 11 million men found that the number who had been prescribed testosterone had tripled since 2001 and that many showed no evidence of a real deficiency.
Many racers and race officials widely believe than a significant number of masters racers have taken advantage of the trend not only to boost their energy, but also their race results.
LeDuc said he suffered from symptoms such as lethargy and depression, and his doctor diagnosed him with low testosterone.
A blood test, he said, showed that his levels of the hormone were unusually low. After he started using it, his levels weren’t above the normal range.
The USADA can issue waivers for competitors who have a legitimate medical need for drugs that are otherwise banned. LeDuc said after he was caught that a lawyer with the doping agency told him he probably could have received one for the amphetamines, though one for the testosterone would be more difficult, as the agency doesn’t consider simply a low level of the hormone to be a medical problem.
Testosterone levels normally drop as men age.
He also said he had been given bad advice by various people on how quickly the drugs would leave his system and be undetectable in a test. In the case of testosterone, he believed the test would only catch him if his levels were unusual. Instead, it was able to determine the hormone wasn’t produced by his body.
Decades ago, amphetamines were a popular choice in the pro ranks, and some racers died after using them.
EPO, though, which came along later, is an entirely differently realm. It’s normally used for treating anemia, but endurance athletes abuse it to raise their red blood cell count. That lets their blood carry significantly more oxygen to their muscles.
If it’s not closely monitored by a medical professional, though, it’s easy to overdose, making the blood so thick your heart can’t pump it anymore. Several professional cyclists are believed to have died that way.
LeDuc said he was unaware of the specific dangers of the drug, and that a friend who competes in a different sport had given him a small amount shortly before the nationals this year, after learning that LeDuc was having a poor season.
LeDuc said that he has been struggling in recent years, feeling physically ill after every race.
He agreed that it probably was age-related.
“The feeling right after I get off the bike, it’s like having the flu without the congestion and fever, it’s that bad, it’s just this malaise,” he said. “And for five years I keep saying why do I keep doing this? And if I didn’t get good results once in awhile I wouldn’t, I promise you.”
LeDuc, who is from Canada, starting racing in 1980 when he was as a graduate student in English at N.C. State University after seeing the iconic cycling movie “Breaking Away.”
He had been a gifted runner in high school and ran in graduate school, so he was able to quickly move up in the cycling ranks.
In recent years LeDuc, astride one of his sleek, Italian carbon-fiber race bikes, was a respected and often feared presence at some of the tougher race-training rides, setting a pace that lesser riders could find torturous. And at the starting line of races, even the best riders in the region would shudder when they looked beside them and see LeDuc.
He has long been something of a litmus test for local riders. Many firmly believed he was doping and shunned him for that reason alone. Others simply didn’t like his style, which can be brusque. But he also attracted a group of admirers, many of whom joined him on regular weekly training rides and found him generous with help and advice.
Ronnie Hinson of Raleigh, who raced professionally and then in masters events until in 2008, said that he was among those who thought LeDuc should be more pleasant on the bike rather than, say, berating those who aren’t up to his standards, but that he was obviously talented.
“It’s a sad day for cycling,” Hinson said. “A lot of people looked up to him, but a lot were suspicious, and this will follow him the rest of this life, especially around here.
“The bottom line though is that he had been doing this long enough to know what’s right and what’s wrong,” he said.
Often a fixture
For years other riders would ask Hinson how someone LeDuc’s age could ride so well. He said that without proof he didn’t feel right about giving his opinion. Privately, though, he had long been troubled.
“Dave was doing things that no other human beings of that age had done yet,” he said.
LeDuc is almost a fixture at the 39-year-old Tour de Moore in Southern Pines, which one of the largest races in the Southeast.
Race director Mac Canon had raced with LeDuc on the same team in the 1980s and had sometimes done training rides with him.
“He’s an excellent racer, an excellent rider, and he’s safe to be around,” Canon said. “I’m shocked, but he has had a lot of wins, and won a lot of races convincingly.”
“Nobody trains harder them him, though,” Canon said. “Most of us have jobs and family, and he has few concerns but his job. He doesn’t have children or anything, and he’s definitely full on. Some people take time off in the winter, but he doesn’t. He just goes and goes.”
At the Tour de Moore in 2013, LeDuc won the 27-mile race for over-60 racers in the morning, then lined up for the 55-mile race for 50-plus rider at 12:15 p.m. He won that one, too.
Canon said that the race officials already had been considering a drug testing program for 2014 simply to protect the reputation of the event. The announcement about LeDuc underlined the importance of that.
A general hatred among many cyclists for dopers was reflected in harsh postings on local cycling forums this week.
LeDuc, though, said that many of his friends had made a point of calling or emailing to express sympathy.
“This has made me understand what’s really important in life, and it’s those people,” he said.
He said he would continue his local training rides.
“I’d have to be put in a rubber room if I couldn’t ride my bike,” he said.
LeDuc said that he plans to race again when his sanction is over. For his first full season back he’ll be 65.
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comments on high cadence, steady state and 3x5k
With the temps well below zero, these were inside. Held 118-121 on the 4 90 second high cadence efforts. Really no problem with those. Could push it closer to 140-150 if needed. Then did 3x1 minute steady states at 330 each as a warmup for the 3x5k efforts. Held 350, 356 and 362 with just 2 minutes between efforts. Will take tomorrow with some endurance the rest of the week and the indoor tt on Sunday.
high cadence, steady state and 5k efforts, graph
Last Few Days
After the Wednesday morning hours spin and hour circuit we headed to Tennessee. I did get a late afternoon/evening ride. A little cold with temps in the low 30's but glad I got it in as it rained all day Thursday. Took that as an off day and went to American Hustle. On Friday with a couple of inches of snow on the ground and temps in the low teens I took a nice hike up Newfound Gap Road to Campbell Overlook, rode inside on the trainer for 1:15 (185 watts, low endurance pace), and then hit the Gatlinburg Rec Center to do some upper body lifting. Drove home today and did my 5/2/5/2 x 4 efforts again.