Friday, October 30, 2015

Training Updates

First, slowly but surely changing the name from CinciCyclingCoach to Wimberg Fitness Coaching. Have the new logo in place, secretary of state registration is in place, etc.

This week included one hour circuit class on Monday, more strength training on Tuesday (50 pull ups, 100 pushups, 75 dips as I taught my outdoor class....cold morning so I wanted to keep moving), Wednesdays double header of spin and circuit classes (8, 15, 12 and 8 minute efforts in spin pushing close to 300), off Thursday and today. Hopefully a 100 miler on Saturday.

Reading How Bad Do You Want It by Matt Fitzgerald. Like his other books, its very good.

Did the first of the in-home interviews for the movie Cleves:Seconds to Years by Sam Lowe.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Riding and Hiking in TN

Did both of my classes on Wednesday morning and then drove to TN. Rode 1:17 here, NP at 277 with 40 minutes at 300. Hiked 7 hours to start the day; according to my friend, that was 35,000 steps. Did these later i the day with 10 minutes at 60/325, 7.5 minutes at 57/315, 7 minutes at 60/321, 2.5 at 58/323, 1 at 62/332 and 5 at 58/317. Basically used any up hill to get some low cadence effort in.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Muscle Tension, 6x4 minutes

The goal here is low cadence and decent power. I used a hill near our house, Heekin Avenue from Eastern to the crest of the hill in Ault Park at the playground.  It's a 4 minute climb so I did it 6 times. Breakdown on watts/cadence....343/52, 350/53, 359/54, 344/53, 363/54, 357/49. Ended up with 1600' of climbing in 47 minutes, normalized power at 297 for the entire ride.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

email to me coach with response to follow


I rode the last time trial of the season tonight and posted the results to TrainingPeaks. I was considering doing one on Sunday but given the 4 hour round trip drive and cool forecast (upper 40's to low 50's), I think I'll pass. Here are some of my thoughts on how things went this year: 

State championships: thrilled to go 5 out of 5 in gold medals at these(3 Ohio, 2 KY); power and effort in each was about as expected

nationals in MN: can't complain about two silvers but missing that gold by 1.1 second still bothers me; don't want to settle for silver again in Birmingham in 2017

our local Tuesday tt: overall, much slower than in the past; I did ride my 300th race on that course at the last event in September; thats a lot of tt's over 19 years on one course; I definitely don't attack it like I used to; I think its good training but certainly not my priority like it used to be; I still won my age and had the 5th fastest time of the year out of 600-700 rides; my best this year was just 8 seconds slower than last years best; I hold the all-time record for most age bracket championships at one else has more than 7 or 8; still, I hate riding times over 23 minutes; I went 5 or 6 years without that happening and it happened a few times this year; also, haven't been below 22 minutes in a couple of years; if its not a priority, should I be bothered? managing the event has certainly changed how I approach it and riding virtually solo 90 minutes before everyone else can be tough

Blue Streak: rode well and won my age every time but once and that was when I was messing around with my position on the bike in April; like our local tt, I'm not hitting those really fast times in the 21's like I used to but still top 5 out of 110-130 riders every time

Overall, did well in the ones that really count while a little disappointed in the local it's  

I do feel like I did well in the training efforts and I do take the days off. Could be I'm just getting old!   ;-)   I feel like I should still be riding as fast as I did 4-5 years ago. and, while I may getting a little bored with our local tt, I was super fired up for states and nationals and even tonights last tt. I was bummed out that it was the last one and I'm looking forward to the start of the indoor tt's in November. The desire is still there! 

Looking at the winter, I do want to keep my Monday evening strength class and my Wednesday double header of spin/strength on the schedule. I think Tuesday and Thursday could be good days off. I don't mind doing intervals on Monday and then doing the class later that afternoon. My Mondays are pretty open for riding. Same with Friday and Saturdays. Endurance on Sunday seems to work as I have a spin class in the morning that I usually don't ride spring through early fall but do ride mid-fall to late winter. For the most part, I do get some good tempo to steady state to power interval efforts in the classes. Coupled with the strength class, which have plenty of plyometrics, the classes are good training in my opinion. 

The efforts that I find really challenging during the indoor winter training are the long steady states like the 20 minutes x 3. Outside, no problem, inside, they are soooo long. Part of the problem is how the Cycle-Ops Indoor 400 works. You pick the desired power and then have to maintain cadence but it seems to drop over time and the power drops. Maybe we have an alternate if I can't get out? Or we break them into shorter but more efforts? Of course, maybe this reflects some of the drop in power/effort on the local tt's? Maybe mentally I have a block with some of these? Oddly enough, I like the 30 second and one/two/three minute efforts. Short, sweet and painful. 

While I am competitive with other riders in my age bracket at most races and ideally in the top 3, I still compare myself to the younger and in a few cases older riders beating me. Tonight I was beaten by two guys around 30 and one guy 59. Keep in mind that the latter is the national champion in the 55-59 the last three years and top 5 in the world the last two. Regardless, I feel like I should be close to them over 10 miles, not a minute back. But, that would take a PR ride on that course tonight under less than ideal conditions. 

Next years goals: win the state senior tt's and state USAC tt; the former will qualify me for Birmingham
                             win the KY state senior it's 
                             ride masters nationals USAC in Winston-Salem, 10!! 
                             local tt's: get back into the 21's, at least a couple of times 

Next year will be my 20th year riding time trials. So, I'm not even halfway there! I think I can go well into my 80's.  Thats of lot of intervals still to do. 

Sorry for the long email. 

Peter A. Wimberg

Just Ordered this: How Bad Do You Want It

ditor’s note: This excerpt is republished from “How Bad Do You Want It? Mastering the Psychology of Mind over Muscle,” by Matt Fitzgerald with permission of VeloPress.
Greg LeMond woke up in a strange bed. For a second or two he knew nothing more, his mind hovering in that narrative-free state of animal consciousness that greets each of us at the threshold of wakefulness. Then it all came back to him. He was in a hotel room in Versailles, France. The date was Sunday, July 23, 1989. At 4:14 that afternoon, he would compete in the final stage of the Tour de France. It was going to be the most important race of his life.
He dressed in a yellow T-shirt and baggy blue shorts and made his way down to the ground floor, where he sat at a long table and ate a hearty breakfast of pasta, bread, cereal, eggs, and coffee with his teammates on the ADR cycling team. An hour later, they were on their bikes, just cruising, loosening up their legs for later. Overcast skies loomed above them as they pedaled away from the hotel, but by the time the ride was complete the clouds had burned off and the air temperature had risen into the low 80s. LeMond later told writer Sam Abt what he told his trainer, Otto Jácome, when he returned to his lodgings.
“My legs are good. I’m going to have a very good day.”
There was plenty of time left to kill. As the second-place rider in the general classification (GC), or overall race standings, LeMond would start the conclusive 24.5km individual time trial next to last among the Tour’s 134 surviving competitors, two minutes before Frenchman Laurent Fignon, the race leader. A two-time winner of the Tour de France, Fignon stood merely 50 seconds ahead of LeMond after 20 stages and more than 2,000 miles of riding. LeMond was the stronger time trialist, but he would have to make up an improbable two seconds per kilometer between Versailles and Paris to overtake Fignon in the GC and claim his own second Tour de France victory. Whichever way it went, it promised to be the closest finish in the event’s 76-year history.
A 24.5km cycling time trial is an exercise in pacing. So are all races that last longer than 30 seconds. In races that last less than 30 seconds, competitors go all-out, pedaling, striding, or stroking at absolute maximum intensity from start to finish. They hold nothing back and utilize their full physical capacity. In races that last longer than 30 seconds, competitors do hold back. They pedal, stride, or stroke at less than maximum intensity at all points of the race except perhaps the very end. Instead of going all-out, they maintain the highest intensity they feel capable of sustaining through the full race distance.
Why 30 seconds? Because humans cannot sustain maximum intensity exercise longer than about 30 seconds without exceeding the highest level of perceived effort they can tolerate. Athletes are conscious of their effort in shorter races, of course, but because they know their suffering will end quickly they do not use this perception to control their pace, which is constrained only by their physical capacity. But when an athlete starts a race that he knows will last longer than 30 seconds, he holds back just enough that his perceived effort limit is not reached until he is at the finish line. That is the art of pacing.
What happens when an athlete tries to sustain a maximum intensity of exercise longer than 30 seconds? Anna Wittekind of the University of Essex answered this question in a 2009 study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine. Nine subjects were asked to ride stationary bikes outfitted with power meters as hard as they could for 5 seconds, 15 seconds, 30 seconds, and 45 seconds on separate occasions. When she reviewed the results, Wittekind found that the subjects had generated slightly less power during the first 15 seconds of the 45-second test than they had in the 15-second test. In other words, they had not pedaled as hard as they could at the start of the longest test ride, even though they had been instructed to do so. Instead, they had unconsciously paced themselves.
Wittekind speculated that, on the basis of past experience, the subjects recognized that they could not sustain a true maximal effort for 45 seconds without exceeding their maximum tolerance for perceived effort, so they held back just a little without even realizing it. These results suggest that the limit of maximum perceived effort tolerance is so impenetrable that athletes are not psychologically capable of even trying to sustain a maximum exercise intensity longer than approximately 30 seconds.
The fact that pacing is required to maximize performance in all races lasting longer than half a minute has some interesting implications. A sprinter finishes every race knowing he went as fast as he could (technical errors notwithstanding). Longer races are different. Because it is necessary to hold back to some degree at almost every point in these races, it is impossible for the athlete to know upon finishing whether he might have gone faster — if only by a second or two — if he’d held back just a bit less somewhere along the way.
Many automobiles have a “range” feature that displays the number of miles the vehicle can travel before it runs out of gasoline. This number is not open to interpretation. If the range display says 29 miles, you’d better find a gas station within the next 29 miles. The mechanism of regulatory anticipation that athletes use to control their pace in races is different. It’s not a number but a feeling, and like all feelings it is open to interpretation. One of the most important and valuable coping skills in endurance sports is the ability to interpret the perceptions that influence pacing decisions in a performance-maximizing way. As an endurance athlete, you want to get better and better at reading these perceptions in such a way that your internal pacing mechanism functions more and more like an automobile’s range display. You want to be as correct as you can possibly be when determining the swiftest pace you can sustain to the finish line without exceeding your perceived effort tolerance.
Setting and pursuing time-based race goals is very helpful in the process of calibrating anticipatory regulation. This practice enables athletes to interpret their effort perceptions in a more performance-enhancing way by transforming the racing experience from an effort to go as fast as possible into an effort to go faster than ever before. Validation of this approach comes from a 1997 study done by researchers at Israel’s Ben-Gurion University and published in the Journal of Sports Science. High school students were subjected to a test of muscular endurance and then spent eight weeks training to increase their time to exhaustion. Some of the students were given a nonquantitative goal to “do their best.” Others were given a quantitative goal to better their performance in the initial test by a certain percentage. Even though all of the students did the same training, those who pursued quantitative goals improved their performance significantly more when the muscular endurance test was repeated after eight weeks.
More recently, a team of researchers led by Eric Allen of the University of California found that finish times in marathons tend to cluster near the round numbers (such as 4:30 and 4:00) that runners typically pursue as goals. This pattern would have carried little significance if Allen and his colleagues had not also noted that those runners who end up closest to these round numbers at the finish line slow down less than other runners in the final miles of a marathon — evidence that the pursuit of these round-number goals enhances performance. Regardless of how an athlete chooses to train, her training will yield greater improvement in race times if improving race times is the explicit goal of the training process.
Paying attention to the clock reduces the uncertainty associated with reaching beyond past limits and in this way facilitates effective pacing. While it may be impossible for an athlete who completes a race of a certain distance to know if he could have tried harder, it’s relatively easy for an athlete who completes a race of a certain distance in a certain time to aim to cover the next race of the same distance a second or two faster than he did the last time.
According to Samuele Marcora’s psychobiological model of endurance performance, the amount of effort that an athlete puts into a race is influenced by her perception of the attainability of her goal, a concept borrowed from Jack Brehm’s theory of motivational intensity. If the goal seems to fall out of reach at any point during the race, the athlete is likely to back off her effort. If the goal seems attainable, but only with increased effort, the athlete is likely to increase her effort, provided she’s not already at her limit. By keeping track of, and aiming to improve, personal best times for specific race distances, athletes can exploit this phenomenon to try harder than they would otherwise be able to. The goal of improving your time for a certain distance by 1 measly second almost always seems attainable. And if that goal is attainable, then the very slightly greater level of perceived effort that an athlete must endure to achieve it is likely to seem more endurable than it would seem if the athlete were going entirely by feel. It’s not the time goal itself that enhances performance but the effect that the goal has on how the athlete interprets her perception of effort.
Setting time-based goals that stretch you just beyond past limits is like setting a flag next to a bed of hot coals to mark the furthest point reached in your best fire walk. That flag says to you, “This is possible, and you know it. So why wouldn’t it be possible for you to make it just one step farther the next time?”
A real-world example of this process of using time-based goals to recalibrate perceived effort in a performance-enhancing way is South African runner Elana Meyer’s career progression at the half-marathon distance. In 1980, when she was 13 years old, Meyer took her first shot at 13.1 miles, winning the Foot of Africa half-marathon in a mind-boggling time of 1:27:10. Nine years later, Meyer made her professional debut at the same distance, running 1:09:26 in Durban. In 1991, she smashed the half-marathon world record in London, clocking 1:07:59. Between 1997 and 1999, Meyer broke the record thrice more, running 1:07:36, 1:07:29, and finally 1:06:44 in Tokyo at age 32.
Obviously, Meyer’s development as an athlete was responsible for much of this improvement. But her pursuit of time goals also played a role. It is interesting to note that her margins of improvement tended to get smaller as her career advanced. Her big leaps from 1:27 to 1:09 and from 1:09 to 1:07 were undoubtedly fueled principally by gains in fitness. Meyer probably wasn’t even thinking about her first half-marathon when she made her pro debut, so much stronger was she by then. But her last two world records were set on familiar courses on which she had already posted fast times, and in each of these cases she set out deliberately to run faster than ever before. It’s likely that Meyer was not any fitter at the 1999 Tokyo Half Marathon, where she ran 1:06:44, than she had been a year earlier in Kyoto, where she ran 1:07:29, but she had the crucial advantage of having run 1:07:29 already.
But wait: If Meyer was just as fit (not to mention a year younger) when she ran the slower time, then can it not be said that timekeeping held her back in the 1998 Kyoto Half Marathon, even as it pulled her beyond the world record of 1:07:36 she had set on the same course in 1997? There is indeed evidence that the influence of clock watching on endurance performance is two-sided. The same time goal that enhances performance when it is perceived as a target constrains performance when it is perceived as a limit.
The potential for time standards to become performance limiters is most apparent at the elite level of endurance sports. There have been many noteworthy cases in which a performance breakthrough by one athlete triggered a widespread revolution in performance and thereby revealed that previous standards had been holding the sport back. Between 1994 and 2008, for example, the women’s world record for triathlon’s Ironman distance was stuck at 8:50:53. Only seven women recorded times under 9 hours in that 14-year span. When Yvonne van Vlerken finally lowered the Ironman world record to 8:45:48 in July 2008, the floodgates were opened. Six other women dipped under the 9-hour barrier in the next few months. Van Vlerken’s mark lasted only one year, as did the subsequent record. By the end of the 2011 season, the Ironman world record for women stood at 8:18:13, and sub-8:50 performances had become commonplace. Was the new generation of female triathletes that much more talented than the previous one? No. These women just weren’t held back by a tendency to regard the time of 8:50:53 as an unsurpassable human limit.
In consideration of the two-sided nature of time’s effect on endurance performance, it is tempting to ask what sort of time goal would have the best possible effect on performance. Such a goal would need to seem reachable, but barely so. (Indeed, in the Ben-Gurion University study I mentioned above, students given a “difficult/realistic” goal improved more than those given either an “easy” goal or an “improbable/unattainable” goal.) This ideal goal would also need to be sufficiently well defined to pull the athlete beyond past limits, yet somehow vague enough that it did not place an artificial ceiling on the athlete’s performance.
LeMond’s situation at the start of stage 21 of the 1989 Tour de France met these requirements perfectly. LeMond had to beat Laurent Fignon’s time in the 24.5km time trial by 50 seconds. But Fignon would start behind him, so LeMond could not approach the race with a specific time in mind, such as the 27:30 clocking that Thierry Marie posted early in the day, which stood as the best time in the field when LeMond started his ride. Instead, LeMond knew only that he had to ride 50 seconds faster than the best time Fignon—one of the world’s best time trialists besides LeMond himself — could conceivably achieve on his best day.
LeMond told reporters before the race that he believed the task facing him lay at the very outer limits of the achievable. He was not certain that he could pull it off even if he gave more than he had ever given before on a day when he had more to give than ever before. Nor was he certain that he couldn’t. It is hard to imagine a goal construct that would have elicited a better performance from LeMond in the most important race of his life.
After lunch, LeMond checked out of the hotel and made his way toward the Palace of Versailles, a Vatican-like architectural colossus in front of which a comparatively flimsy temporary starting platform had been erected under a white canopy. A massive crowd had gathered there to witness the showdown between the two men at the top of the overall. Behind the start line was a small warm-up area. Within its narrow confines a handful of riders traced tight loops. LeMond joined them and soon met Fignon head on. LeMond averted his gaze. Despite this demurral, Fignon thought the American looked relaxed. In fact, LeMond was terrified, his stomach knotted with dread of the suffering he was about to inflict on himself.
At 4:12, Pedro Delgado, who stood 1:38 behind LeMond in the GC, rolled off the starting ramp and accelerated down the broad Avenue de Paris. It was now LeMond’s turn to mount the platform. Television cameras rolled as a silver-haired race official with black-framed glasses held LeMond’s bright red Bottecchia time trial bike upright and a countdown was intoned over loudspeakers.
“Cinq … quatre … troix … deux … un … Allez!”
LeMond stood on the pedals and began a hard windup, his feet churning like the steel wheels of an accelerating locomotive. When he hit 100 revolutions per minute, he dropped his butt onto the saddle and settled his forearms into the aero bars. A pair of police motorcycles guided him down the runway-wide boulevard as a flotilla of vehicles, including a white Peugeot containing ADR team manager José de Cauwer, followed behind.
LeMond’s plan was simple: to ride just a bit faster than he ever had, holding back a little less than he had ever dared in similar circumstances. LeMond lowered his head and rode with his eyes cast straight downward, as though indifferent to where he was going, looking up only briefly every few seconds to check his line. His meaty quadriceps billowed with every downstroke.
LeMond was already more than a mile down the road toward the Parisian suburb of Viroflay when Fignon set off behind him. With his granny glasses and blond ponytail, he looked more like a high school drama teacher than a professional cyclist as he sprinted away from the starting gate. Fignon had been seen fiddling around with a set of triathlon bars earlier in the day, but he’d elected to leave them behind. His bike did have the advantage of being outfitted with two aerodynamic disk wheels, however, whereas LeMond, expecting more crosswinds than he actually would encounter on the course, had gone with spokes in the front.
Fignon felt strong and confident. He zipped through Viroflay and approached Chaville, the crowds thinning as he went. After he passed five kilometers, his team manager, Cyrille Guimard, shouted from the trailing car, his words captured by a nearby cameraman’s mic.
“Six secondes!” he called out. “Vous avez perdu six secondes!”
He had already lost 6 seconds to LeMond. Fignon turned his head and stared incredulously at Guimard. LeMond was not yet gaining the 2 seconds per kilometer he needed to overtake the Frenchman, but given how well Fignon himself was riding, he couldn’t believe the American was going that much faster.
Up the road, LeMond received the same news from José de Cauwer. Before the race, LeMond had asked Cauwer not to supply any such information, and he tersely reminded his manager of that wish now. For the remainder of the time trial, his mind would be focused entirely on the image of creating distance between himself and the man behind him, and on the only number that mattered: 50 seconds.
Passing through Sèvres, on the west bank of the River Seine, LeMond came to an overpass. He moved his hands to the outer bars and pedaled from a standing position to avoid losing speed as he climbed. If the policeman on a motorcycle cruising close behind him had checked his speed gauge at this moment, he would have seen the needle fixed at 54 kilometers per hour.
Minutes later, LeMond crossed the Pont de Sèvres, a bridge over the River Seine, at the far end of which he made a sharp right turn onto the Quai Georges Gorse, carving the corner with such bold precision that his right shoulder came within centimeters of clipping spectators leaning against a barrier on the inside of the turn.
At 11.5 kilometers, LeMond passed an official time check. His split of 12:08 was the fastest of the day by 20 seconds. Fignon reached the same point 2 minutes and 21 seconds later, having now lost 21 seconds to LeMond since the start. If Fignon continued to lose time at the same rate, he would complete the time trial 45 seconds slower than LeMond and would win the Tour de France by five seconds.
The Quai was as flat and straight as a drag strip. LeMond took full advantage, settling into a chugging rhythm that nudged his speed even higher. The drivers of any trailing cars with manual transmission would have been forced to shift into fourth gear to keep up.
As LeMond approached 14 kilometers, the Eiffel Tower rose into view ahead. Fignon’s deficit had risen to 24 seconds. LeMond still was not gaining time quite fast enough, but as hard as he was pushing himself, he still felt strong, whereas Fignon’s shoulders had begun to rock, a telltale sign of encroaching weariness. A clear difference in the relative speeds of the two men became apparent to cycling fans watching the battle on television at home. Every 10 or 15 seconds, the coverage jumped from Fignon to LeMond, and when it did, the passing scenery accelerated noticeably.
The last part of the course skirted the famous Jardin des Tuileries — Paris’s Central Park — and dumped riders onto the Champs-Élysées for the homestretch to the finish line. Tens of thousands of spectators lining the streets there erupted when LeMond came into view. (His French surname, French language skills, and all-American charm had won him many admirers in the Tour’s host nation.) He passed under a banner marking four kilometers to the finish line. His advantage was now 35 seconds. LeMond had stolen exactly two seconds per kilometer from Fignon over the last 6.5 kilometers; he would have to nearly double that rate of separation on the Champs-Élysées to win the Tour.
LeMond’s last best chance to gain that separation lay just ahead of him, at three kilometers to go, where a false flat rose gently from the Place de la Concorde to the Arc de Triomphe. It wasn’t much of a hill by Tour standards, but to an exhausted rider — as Fignon was quickly becoming — it would feel like a Pyrenean switchback. LeMond attacked it hard, telling himself that his career depended on it. As he neared the top, his torso began to pump up and down like an oil horse. Any consideration of good form had gone out the window — all that mattered now was effort at any cost.
At the Arc de Triomphe, LeMond made a hairpin right turn and entered the final straight to the finish line. Moving down the same false flat he had just ascended, he hit 40 mph, approaching the motor vehicle speed limit on the Champs-Élysées. He passed under the 1-km banner. Over the race radio came word that LeMond still needed 10 seconds.
Ahead on the road, LeMond saw the rocking posterior of Pedro Delgado, who had started two minutes before him. LeMond felt a magnetic pull, and he used it to raise his effort level one more excruciating notch for the final drive to the finish line. He crossed at 26:57, beating the previous best time of the day by 33 seconds. LeMond hung his head like a recipient of bad news as he coasted to a stop. A moment earlier his legs had felt as though they were going to explode. Now they suddenly felt capable of going another 10 miles. Had he done enough?
The waiting began. LeMond dismounted and turned back toward the racecourse and the finish line clock, understanding that if it displayed the number 27:47 before Fignon finished, he had won the Tour de France. The anticipation was unbearable. When Fignon came into sight, LeMond reflexively shaded his eyes and looked away — but only briefly.
Fignon was shattered with fatigue, no longer able to hold a straight line and nearly drifting into a barrier of scaffolding at the outer edge of the 70-meter-wide road in his flailing efforts to drive his machine toward the line. The seconds ticked by with surreal slowness. But the magic number finally appeared, and when it did, Fignon was still 100 meters from the finish. He stopped the clock at 27:55. LeMond had won the Tour by eight seconds.
LeMond’s average speed for the 24.5km time trial was 33.89 mph — an all-time record for Tour de France time trials, by a long shot. And to this day, no Tour rider has ridden faster than LeMond except in shorter time trials undertaken on fresh legs on the first day of the race instead of the last.
It would seem that, in the right circumstances, an old-fashioned stopwatch — properly used — can affect endurance performance more powerfully than either the finest equipment or the most potent chemicals — not to mention lift an athlete to his finest hour even after his best days are behind him.


Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Time Trial Clinic, November 10th at Cincinnati Sports Club....Free!

I'll be putting on a time trial clinic on Tuesday, November 10th, 7-9 pm at the Cincinnati Sports Club. All are welcome as we discuss how to train for and ride time trials, where to spend your money on equipment, strength training exercises to use year-round, etc. This is applicable for triathletes also. Connect me if interested in attending at

IDEA Fitness Journal, October 2015

As part of my ACE Personal Trainer Certification I have to submit so many CEU's per year. The monthly IDEA magazine is a great source for this given the quizzes with each issue. Its also just a great source of fitness ideas. I've been reading it for about 5 years. Here are some thoughts from this months issue:

The probability of someone with low end obesity achieving a normal weight is 1/210 for men and 1/124 for women. In the morbidly obese, its 1/1290 for men and 1/677 for women. Why people fail is another set of articles and books.

Tart cherry juice is great for reducing post exercise pain given that it is full of anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. Its also been shown to reduce the risk of upper respiratory tract symptoms after running marathons. I'm adding it to my diet! You need the equivalent of 50 cherries per serving, two per day, which is attainable with the juices.

How long does it take to lose and regain fitness when you stop? With 2 weeks off of leg exercises, you essentially age another 40-50 years with those muscles according to the article. Six weeks of training wasn't enough to bring it back. Strength training was needed to get you there. For every week off, basically triple that to get back what you lost.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Tempo Efforts

Scheduled to do 4x15 but given limited time did 1x30 and 1x20 at 301 and 292 respectively. Used the crit course at Ault Park. Good place to practice holding power in the downslope. Also, registered for the 5 Indoor TT's, first one in November.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Great Article on Strength Training for Endurance Athletes

The Importance of Strength Training for Endurance Athletes

Friday, October 2, 2015 | By Taylor Thomas
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The Importance of Strength Training for Endurance Athletes
When talking to cyclists I often get the same response when discussing the importance of strength training. It typically goes something like, “I don’t want to take away from my riding time.” The fear is that any time that’s available would be better spent training specifically for their sport, and not on strength and conditioning. This sentiment is not unfounded for time-crunched athletes looking to squeeze every possible gain from the time that they have available.
However, the importance of strength training cannot be underestimated, and the shoulder seasons are the perfect time to integrate off the bike training. This is the time to identify weaknesses and strengthen those areas. Shifting a small amount of time to strength-focused training can lead to big gains when the volume begins to increase.

Why Strength and Agility Training?

Most non-elite athletes have a hard time understanding how time spent training off of the bike is a productive part of reaching their overall goals.  While it seems counter intuitive to many, it’s important to recognize that when training the focus should be on well-rounded athletic development and not a singular strength. This means identifying weaknesses and working to improve those areas in any way possible. Working on strength and agility allows you to shift your focus towards areas that don’t get proper attention when the focus is 100 percent on the bike. Areas like the core, lower back, and upper body can always benefit from off the bike exercise. These are areas of weakness for many cyclists and if strengthened, it can result in increased power and improvements to a rider’s form.
While strength and conditioning can help deliver notable physiological improvements, it also provides a valuable psychological shift as well. During the off-season and early base period, allowing yourself to focus on strength training as a way to maintain and improve your fitness can leave you feeling refreshed and ready for the season without feeling like you’ve fallen behind. Replacing one or two workouts a week with some time off of the bike can not only help you overcome weakness, but it will leave you feeling strong and less likely to become injured when the training load increases.

What Type of Strength Training is Best?

There are any number of workouts to choose from when it comes to strength training. Today’s gyms are overrun with options from CrossFit to group classes and everything in between. While everyone is different when it comes to the best way to train, there are a few things that I like to recommend for my athletes so that they get the most out of their time off of the bike.
First, functional exercises are a great compliment to the isolated movements experienced on the bike. Exercises that include lateral movements, sprints, and explosive exercises are the perfect way to work several of the body’s systems at once. These types of workouts help to strengthen joints and connective tissue making for a strong and injury resistant body.
As Many Reps As Possible (AMRAP) circuits are also a great tool for cyclists. These high intensity workouts are designed to not only be great strength workouts, but also provide a top end cardio session as well. These sessions provide an opportunity to blend both muscular development with gains to a rider’s top end and explosive power.
When constructing the perfect strength workout try to include high intensity body weight and explosive power workouts for maximum efficiency. Exercises like plyo pushups, jump squats, and mountain climbers are the best way for time-crunched athletes to see gains without a huge time commitment. Try the workout below for 8 to 12 minutes performing as many sets as possible in the given time.
  • Side Lunges: 15 per side
  • Bridge: 10 reps
  • Single Leg Squats: 10 each leg (20 total)
  • Burpees: 10 reps
  • Mountain Climbers: 25 each side (50 total)
  • Step Ups: 10 each leg (20 total)
  • Jump Squats: 12 reps

Focus on Your Weaknesses

Don’t be afraid to identify your weaknesses and design a plan to strengthen them. Now is the time of year to focus on the things that, if improved upon, could make you a better rider. If top end power is an issue focus on functional, fast paced exercises like jump squats and jumping lunges. For mountain bikers and cyclocross racers upper body exercises can be vital for improving bike-handling skills.
It’s important for every athlete to not neglect your upper body. As cyclists we often times become too lower body dominant, and forget that our upper body helps us maintain proper form. Not to mention the power that a strong core can help deliver.
Core work should be a part of every strength workout. Perform exercises that engage the core while also helping to develop other primary muscles. Remember that your body doesn’t use one muscle at a time, but rather utilizes sets of muscles in concert to create balance and power. Training with this in mind will help you become a better all-around athlete as well as helping to strengthen your problem areas.  
Strength training shouldn’t be an afterthought for endurance athletes. Dedicating time to identifying and strengthening weaknesses makes for a well-rounded and injury resistant athlete. High intensity exercises offer dual benefits for cyclists allowing them to not only become stronger, but also develop top end power and speed. These gains can provide advantages when the race season begins that are not only physical but mental as well. Focused attention on strength and agility work keeps motivation high and burnout low. The goal of every cyclist should be to develop as a well-rounded athlete ready to tackle any race-day scenario. Strength training provides an athlete the tools necessary to be strong, injury resistant, and mentally prepared.

Second Day of Tempo Efforts

I won't be able to ride tomorrow so I did the 4x15 today. Waited until the rain stopped and the headed out in the 46 degree temps. The last 20 minutes it was pouring again. Basically went non-stop on these. Held 291 for 10, 291 for 14, 290 for 10, 290 for 15 and the split the 7 minutes home at 276 and 294. Did 56 of the 60 minutes scheduled. Less than one minute between each.

Friday, October 2, 2015

4x15 tempo efforts

I did these inside due to the rainy colder conditions and limitations on time. Held around 280 for each effort. Ideally outside pushing over 300. Have to admit that I wasn't too motivated to do inside intervals. 

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