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Slapshot

Off Season Training

Apart from the turbo trainers etc... what is the best off season training? what other sports are recomended to practice??
JDS

sking is ment to be good but thats rather hard in England
Slapshot

I normally go skiing once a year, 1 week off, but thatīs it, donīt think that would do much.

How does running affect your body??? (if your main sport is cycling)
tiggertoo

I suppose we are fortunate here not to have an 'off season'.

But, as well as riding every weekend - 86 miles last Sat, probably something similar next Sat. - I also do two 3 mile runs a week as well as 3 spin classes and work out in the gym almost every day and swim whenever I can get around to it (god, no wonder I'm tired all the time).

Anyway, cross training is supposed to be good, and for a cyclist, IMO, if you can't get out to ride, spinning and running are good.
mowcopmick

If you're serious about your racing there is no off season really. Having said that putting a map in your pocket and riding round the Peak District in October and November calling in on coffee and cake shops is some relief (not that I'm serious about my racing these days). There are some great tea and coffee stops around Leek you know!
mootaineer

I'm hoping not to have an off-season this year.
My summer hasn't been all that great...spent a lot of it with niggling injuries that prevented me from riding.

I'm hoping I can convince myself to get up and ride to work even when it gets cold, maybe up to 3 times a week, if possible.

Other than that a bit of swimming...no running because my back doesn't like it and lots of stretching.

I also have an indoor trainer but I hate using it...can't think of anything more boring! I wouldn't mind one of those tacx VR trainers though...see if I can beat Lance! Wink

...unlikely even then... Rolling Eyes
Boogerd_Fan

bergaretxebe wrote:
I normally go skiing once a year, 1 week off, but thatīs it, donīt think that would do much.

How does running affect your body??? (if your main sport is cycling)



Supposedly not very well. It works a completely different set of muscles to those used in Cycling.

I prefer swimming and the odd squash game once the temperatures reach freezing or the snow (which lasts about 3-4 weeks) arrives preventing me from kitting up in extra layers and going out.
mootaineer

Skiing/snowboarding can't be that bad, can it?
Even though you may be exercising different muscles you're:
- passively altitude training
- raising your HR

The other thing I do (more out of passion than for fitness) is mountaineering. Very peaceful and dead quiet going up mountains in the winter (away from the popular resorts, that is).
crash48

You have to have some time off, even if it is only two weeks without touching the bike.
Slapshot

I havenīt touch it for exactly 2 weeks, this weekend will be my first "winter" ride
Lucy_Aspenwind

Living at 1800m of altitude - I ride year round actually being as it is sunny and mild in the winter. During the week I use the indoor trainer as the days are too short. Whereas on weekends I will ride outdoors during the warmer parts of the day.

I've tried skiing but I always end up on my bum! Laughing
crash48

I was off it for 17 days as I went to Sicily for a hoilday-seeing the mountains their and lack of cars in the country side made we wish I had it.

Got back on the bike last week and riding and doing some weights for the legs and some core work. Do weights for 3-4 months and then do some specific big gear work on the bike when riding as well as fast spining work to convert the weigh work into bike power.

Hate gyms but the weights work for me. Try and do 10 hours on the bike in the winter period-two or three rides which are outside. Try and increase that to 12 hours in spring, and then up to 14 and above in summer.
cheshirecat57

crash48 wrote:
Do weights for 3-4 months and then do some specific big gear work on the bike when riding as well as fast spining work to convert the weigh work into bike power.


Crash,

This interests me as I am right there, right now but am a relative novice in cycling terms having ridden again for the first time for 25 years this summer. Can you tell me which weights, and no of sets you do?

I see there are no Cycling messages in the 606 site btw

Cool

CCat
crash48

cheshirecat57

Let me first stress weights are to build up strength without bulk. It will not help your endurance but it will improve your power and force you can apply. It is also good to do all this in the base periods.


I do 3 or so weeks doing Dumbell Lunges, leg curls, back rows, and tricep pulldowns (helps when you are riding in the drops for a long time) at small weights and 3 sets each with 15 reps.. Then I do abs and back extensions.

I would then move on to Leg press, and maybe squats, leg curls and back rows but at heavier weights and up to 4 or 5 sets and 12-15 reps for 3-4 weeks.

Then The same tasks, but lifting heavier weights (to gain strength)but with less reps and still 3-4 sets for 3 weeks.

Then small weights but with more explosive actions like jump squats to really develop the power. You don't have to do these but I find they help. Be careful though

Always do your core as well after you have lifted.

All the time however (usually the next day and on your long rides on the weekend) do a variety of big gear work to develop that strength to on the bike power. You could do 4 x8-12 second sprints from a standing start in 52/23 ( with 5 misn recovery between each interval) or as big as you can turn over, or do some climbs in big gears @ 50-60 rpm for a couple of mins (again with good recovery) or some one legged drills. Just riding bigger gears then usual on your rides for periods of time helps as well. Just don't over do it HR wise early in the season with the climbing drills.

These big gear drills are good to break up a long ride, or just do then on a one 45-60 mins turbo ride with some tempo work. I always try and do 30 mins of easy spinning after the weights just to shake out the legs and then do the big gear drills the next day.


I must stress I hate gyms but I found it worked well for me-as I was a skinny runt anyway and needed some more power. You will not put on much extra weight. If you don't like weights just do all the big gear drills.

Once spring starts you can stop the weights. If you do them don't rush into them, lift really easy weights at the start (don't get injured) and get someone to show you how to do them correctly.

Don't let it effect the amount of time you ride too much as that is the fun bit. I take around 35-40 mins to do the weights and core. Weights are also supposed to be good for people over 40 as well.

Hope this helps.
cheshirecat57

crash48 wrote:

Hope this helps.


It helps a great deal. Thanks for such a detailed and useful response.

I managed to do a lot of long'ish rides - c. 60 miles during the summer and early autumn and don't want to go on too much beyond that so am not too concerned about endurance issue but am painfully aware of my comparative lack of speed. Pushing the big 50 this year as well but managed a MHR of 177 RHR of 52. Averaged a shade under 16mph over Manchester to Blackpool this summer.

I would love to buy some power trainer stuff but as has been stated earlier they are just too expensive for a rank amateur

Now were is my gym bag...

Thanks very much Very Happy

CCAT57
crash48

No problem.

Fast cadence drills work well for speed as well. sping small-med gears at 110 + for 1 min and increase that over time.

It does not sound like you have too many issues to be concerned about.

50 is the new 30 isn't it?
bbnaz

Living in the desert allows me the luxury of year round riding. However I have found swimming to be an excellent cross train in terms of cardio vascular workout plus the endurance is nice.

Riding jumpers also keeps me fit when not on the bike.
crash48

'Riding jumpers also keeps me fit when not on the bike'

What is that?
Slapshot

I was going to ask the same question!!!!
bbnaz

horses mates, horses Wink

you know of those 4 legged creatures? I ride show jumpers.
Lucy_Aspenwind

There have been numerous peer-reviewed studies done showing that lifting weights will not improve cycling performance.

Strength is not a limitation in cycling except for the very weakest, frail people....ie...78 year old men & women.

During LA's Alpe D'Huez TT win a few years ago the average force for each leg was ~ 25kg. There are very very few people that are unable to exert 25kg of force per leg.

What limits you from riding at 400+ watts/hour is your cardiovascular fitness, lactate threshold, vo2max, and AWC - not force.
crash48

'There have been numerous peer-reviewed studies done showing that lifting weights will not improve cycling performance'.

And there have been just as many that say the opposite.

I am not advocating the often heard saying 'but the pros do it' but Why do all pros and track endurance riders lift weight in the off season? They are not going to waste their time doing weights if there was no benefit.

The new world countries of cycling ie USA, Australia etc are major advocates of this form of training and these advancements are rapidly being adopted by the so called 'old world cycling nations'.

Strength (force) is a major limiter in cycling for a lot of riders not just the frail or old.

The primary limiter holding most cyclists back in the hills is either force or muscular endurance. It makes the most sense to first build sufficient force work in the weight room prior to hitting the open road to transition to bike-specific force work.

Weights will not help cycling endurance i agree, but a off season weight program combined with on the bike strength drills-to convert the strength into cycling power will be a beneft to most people.

As you have used Armstrong as an example, he alays lifted weights in the off season and then did slow cadence steep hill drills to convert that into cycling strength.
alanmcn1

Is it just me, or is the thing that stps me from riding well is that I cant take enough fuel with me for a big ride. If I go out on a big meal I cant ride well, and if I go out, i cant take enough water and munchies with me to keep me going. My last ride was a prime example. Went out and first hour and half was excellent, churning a good gear, breezed a couple of rolling hills, all going well. then i was running low on water, hit a big old hill, and died quarter of the way up. proper knocked, puking the lot. Any help on getting round that?

For whats its worth, i find my limiting factor is leg muscle endurance. The lungs and power are excellent, but I just reach a point where thr legs ache too much to go on.
CapeRoadie

Lucy_Aspenwind wrote:
There have been numerous peer-reviewed studies done showing that lifting weights will not improve cycling performance.

Strength is not a limitation in cycling except for the very weakest, frail people....ie...78 year old men & women.

During LA's Alpe D'Huez TT win a few years ago the average force for each leg was ~ 25kg. There are very very few people that are unable to exert 25kg of force per leg.

What limits you from riding at 400+ watts/hour is your cardiovascular fitness, lactate threshold, vo2max, and AWC - not force.


I read a study recently that basically agrees with what you're saying Lucy_Aspenwind. It appears that those who are beginner to intermediate cyclists or even club cyclists who race, improve their cycling by simply cycling more. On the other hand, cycling works in the sagittal plane only, and the frontal and trasverse planes need to be worked for general health and fitness. Only cycling may cause other problems to develop due to lack of conditioning in the two planes not exercised much, or at all, by cycling.
Lucy_Aspenwind

Specificity, specificity folks. Weight training will make you stronger in the gym, not your bike! Although you are far more likely to injure yourself in the gym than on the bike. Moreover, you are apt to gain weight which will further slow you down.

As for LA and some pro's doing weights, there is no study that supports it being beneficial. You might ask Carmichael & Ferrari about the benefits of EPO.....

Force is *not*, I repeat, the limiting factor in cycling performance unless your birthday was say, before 1930! What limits your performance is the efficiency and ability of the various components that contribute to and make up the cardiovascular system. In order to perform at a high level for prologoned periods, your body must have the ability to deliver the oxygen and other fuel needed. That is the challenge, not force.

If you are talking about any event longer than a 200m match sprint, then weights won't make you better. If you are talking about a match sprint, then we can have that conversation and see where weights may have a place.

I can easily generate 400+ watts, just like LA did in that Alpe D'Huez TT a few years ago. The big difference, aside from my not doping, is that he could easily do it for an hour whereas I can only manage it for a few minutes.
CapeRoadie

Lucy_Aspenwind wrote:
Specificity, specificity folks. Weight training will make you stronger in the gym, not your bike! Although you are far more likely to injure yourself in the gym than on the bike. Moreover, you are apt to gain weight which will further slow you down.

As for LA and some pro's doing weights, there is no study that supports it being beneficial. You might ask Carmichael & Ferrari about the benefits of EPO.....

Force is *not*, I repeat, the limiting factor in cycling performance unless your birthday was say, before 1930! What limits your performance is the efficiency and ability of the various components that contribute to and make up the cardiovascular system. In order to perform at a high level for prologoned periods, your body must have the ability to deliver the oxygen and other fuel needed. That is the challenge, not force.

If you are talking about any event longer than a 200m match sprint, then weights won't make you better. If you are talking about a match sprint, then we can have that conversation and see where weights may have a place.

I can easily generate 400+ watts, just like LA did in that Alpe D'Huez TT a few years ago. The big difference, aside from my not doping, is that he could easily do it for an hour whereas I can only manage it for a few minutes.


What about rehabilitating an injury or strengthening core muscles, Lucy_A? Working out in a gym and building core muscles seems to be very important for cyclists, if you ask me. Cycling will strengthen your erector spinae (extensors) in the lumbar and dorsal regions, but won't strengthen your:

rectus abdominus
abdominal obliques
transverse abdominus
quadratus lumborum
lumbar multifidus

to any great degree.

Yet, to have spinal stability, you have to have all of those muscles working. I agree that in strengthening those muscles, it is useless to use heavy weights and low reps, as that will develop Type II muscle fiber (needed for that 200 meter sprint). Spinal stability requires development of Type I fibers through endurance, static and dynamic stability training.

What do you think about that?
tiggertoo

In order to strengthen my back and shoulder muscles (important for riding) , I do high reps and low weights, three times a week in the gym.

But, as has been said before, strong riding comes from strong lung and heart functions. Do two 20 minute interval rides at near max time trial rate with a five minute break between, twice a week, and see if that helps.
CapeRoadie

For a different viewpoint, see:

http://www.pezcyclingnews.com/?pg=fullstory&id=4456
Lucy_Aspenwind

CapeRoadie wrote:

What about rehabilitating an injury or strengthening core muscles, Lucy_A? Working out in a gym and building core muscles seems to be very important for cyclists, if you ask me. Cycling will strengthen your erector spinae (extensors) in the lumbar and dorsal regions, but won't strengthen your:

rectus abdominus
abdominal obliques
transverse abdominus
quadratus lumborum
lumbar multifidus

to any great degree.

Yet, to have spinal stability, you have to have all of those muscles working. I agree that in strengthening those muscles, it is useless to use heavy weights and low reps, as that will develop Type II muscle fiber (needed for that 200 meter sprint). Spinal stability requires development of Type I fibers through endurance, static and dynamic stability training.

What do you think about that?


What do I think about it? I think it is actually a good subject to bring up, the whole core set of muscles and what not, as it has become a popular subject among the masses.

A few things...

I think there is nothing wrong with doing stabilization and core exercises - I would not criticize someone for doing situps or what have you.

I would also say that doing such exercises will not make you any faster or stronger on a bike. Injuries to those muscles are far more common in gym settings (ie....due to lifting weights!) than on a bike.

The real goal in cycling is power - sustainable if you do endurance events, and maximal if you do match sprints and the like.

My peak power is over 1400 watts and 5s power is over 1300 with a slight build - yet I probably couldn't squat 250 pounds even. One component of power is force, but equally important is speed - how fast & how coordinated you can apply your force, rather than just max force. This is reflected in that this type of power is considered neuromuscular, because of the heavy involvement of the nervous system.

Take the vertical jump for instance - it surprises many people to learn that olympic power lifters have among the highest scores in the VJ, which is a good measure of power. Why? Because unlike bodybuilders who may lift heavy weights, slowly for low reps, these olympic powerlifers use movements that emphasize both force and speed, which is another way of saying power !
CapeRoadie

Lucy_Aspenwind wrote:
CapeRoadie wrote:

What about rehabilitating an injury or strengthening core muscles, Lucy_A? Working out in a gym and building core muscles seems to be very important for cyclists, if you ask me. Cycling will strengthen your erector spinae (extensors) in the lumbar and dorsal regions, but won't strengthen your:

rectus abdominus
abdominal obliques
transverse abdominus
quadratus lumborum
lumbar multifidus

to any great degree.

Yet, to have spinal stability, you have to have all of those muscles working. I agree that in strengthening those muscles, it is useless to use heavy weights and low reps, as that will develop Type II muscle fiber (needed for that 200 meter sprint). Spinal stability requires development of Type I fibers through endurance, static and dynamic stability training.

What do you think about that?


What do I think about it? I think it is actually a good subject to bring up, the whole core set of muscles and what not, as it has become a popular subject among the masses.

A few things...

I think there is nothing wrong with doing stabilization and core exercises - I would not criticize someone for doing situps or what have you.

I would also say that doing such exercises will not make you any faster or stronger on a bike. Injuries to those muscles are far more common in gym settings (ie....due to lifting weights!) than on a bike.

The real goal in cycling is power - sustainable if you do endurance events, and maximal if you do match sprints and the like.

My peak power is over 1400 watts and 5s power is over 1300 with a slight build - yet I probably couldn't squat 250 pounds even. One component of power is force, but equally important is speed - how fast & how coordinated you can apply your force, rather than just max force. This is reflected in that this type of power is considered neuromuscular, because of the heavy involvement of the nervous system.

Take the vertical jump for instance - it surprises many people to learn that olympic power lifters have among the highest scores in the VJ, which is a good measure of power. Why? Because unlike bodybuilders who may lift heavy weights, slowly for low reps, these olympic powerlifers use movements that emphasize both force and speed, which is another way of saying power !


I completely agree that power is essential.

That said, in order to have power, as a beginner-intermediate cyclist especially, one must first have, and in the following order, flexibility, stability, and strength, before training power. Training power too early, without training flexibility, stability and strength, on a bicycle, often leads to low back pain and other injuries. I agree that injuries are more common in gyms, but then a gym is absolutely not necessary to train flexibility, stability, strength or power. That said, back injuries are common among cyclists. So, if the body is not ready for power training, by first having the necessary flexibility, stability and strength, then injuries are likely. I have seen this time and time again, where beginning to intermediate, and sometimes even elite athletes (usually coming off an injury), will train in the incorrect order, or rush too quickly through that order, and have to start from scratch all over again. And again.

Power in ANY sport is first generated in the core. It is a fact that no muscle in the body can contract without first contracting core muscles, especially the transverse abdominals. I would argue that most cyclists have no idea where this set of muscles is, nor do they know how to strengthen them. Further, since the spine is much like a flag pole held up by guy wires, i.e., it is supported on FOUR sides and not just one or two, then in order to strengthen the core enough to generate power on a bike, cycling is clearly not enough.

And that's because cycling works in the sagittal plane only. That means the direction body parts move, such as torso and lower extremities, is up and down (i.e., sagittal), not side-to-side (i.e., frontal), and not with rotation (i.e., transverse plane). Yet core strength requires strengthening in all three planes of movement, since core muscles cannot be strengthened in just one plane. That's also why "sit-ups" are not enough. It's the "what-have-you" part that requires more. "Sit-ups", or crunches, as we say now, are not enough to strengthen the core. Crunches will help, but crunches work only the sagittal plane. If any of the core muscles are strengthened during cycling, the rectus abdominus (i.e., the "six-pack") muscles are.

Stop thinking about the core muscles as simply sagittal plane. Stop thinking about LBP (low back pain) as a simple "one-sided" problem that a few "sit-ups" or crunches can help. Those exercises are okay, but not nearly enough to develop core strength or prevent LBP. The muscles I listed above need to be strengthened, and they also need to be symmetric, especially in the frontal plane. All three planes must be exercised to fully develop the core. ALL guys wires must be strong and evenly tensioned, to use my analogy.

Further, the transverse abdominals act like a guy wire that holds the front-back-left-right guy wires together. If the guy wires are weak, core stability is weak. If they are unevenly tensioned (weak or tight or short on one side versus the other), that asymmetry causes joint malposition and results in weakness of the entire lumbar support system. And if the lumbar mulitifidi are weak, then lumbar stability suffers and disc shear increases resulting in injury to spinal discs, especially in cyclists. And that's because cycling is performed while seated, and sitting is the most stressful posture for lumbar discs (vs. standing or laying down). Leaning forward in the race position orients the discs vertically, and gravitational forces, especially bumpy roads, exert vertical shear forces on the discs. Which reminds me...

Since you're talking power lifting, then you probably already know that when an Olympic power lifter performs the lift, increasing the IAP is a necessary precursor to the upward acceleration during the lift. IAP stands for "intra-abdominal pressure", or the air pressure inside the abdominal cavity. By "sipping in air", the power lifter can increase the pressure of the abdominal cavity. But that will happen only if that lifter performs an "abdominal brace" maneuver, that is, if s/he keeps the abdominal wall tensed and firm while sipping in air (and thereby contracting the diaphragm muscle). Since the belly doesn't stick out with an abdominal brace, air pressure inside the abdominal cavity increases, and we have "increased IAP".

Now, the back wall of the abdominal cavity is actually the spine, so increasing IAP will therefore increase air pressure against the spine, and will increase spinal stability during the lift. No IAP, no spinal stability. No core strength, no spinal stability. No spinal stability, possible and even likely herniated disc(s), and you probably know how often herniated discs occur in power lifting. TOO OFTEN! So, in essence, no core stability and strength equals no power, or worse, injury and end-of-career.

So I strongly disagree that core exercises will not make you faster on the bike.

In fact, most of my colleagues in strength and conditioning circles would disagree. For beginning, intermediate and even club racers who are not at the elite level, cycling is the most important exercise to make them faster, I agree. Yet, it is that same population that appears to have the most vulnerability to LBP and other cycling-related injuries (not talking about crashes here). And for elite riders, weight training (including power lifting) has been shown to offer a real advantage to cycling power, during the off-season and even during the cycling season. All cyclists should perform core exercises regularly.

It's an old saying in strength and conditioning that you "cannot fire a cannon from a canoe": all power, in all sports, begins with the core. "Core strength" is not just a fad or "popular topic among the masses". The "core" is a set of lumbar spinal muscles that are inside every human being and are dissectable and tangible and easily strengthened once the anatomy and physiology are learned. You must have a stable center or core in order to generate force against it. It's basic biomechanics and physics, it's the basis for the best physical medicine treatment for LBP, and at the heart of any strength and conditioning protocol for sport. Including cycling.
Lucy_Aspenwind

Here we go again, hopefully for the last time.

The force required for endurance cycling is minimal. Top 5 in the Alpe D'Huez stage in this year's TDF required a grand total of 25kg between both legs - do you know anybody under the age of 70, who is even remotely healthy who can't do that?

Very little core strength is required in cycling, for the same reasons. No more than what you use to climb two steps on a staircase at a time!
CapeRoadie

Lucy_Aspenwind wrote:
Here we go again, hopefully for the last time.

The force required for endurance cycling is minimal. Top 5 in the Alpe D'Huez stage in this year's TDF required a grand total of 25kg between both legs - do you know anybody under the age of 70, who is even remotely healthy who can't do that?

Very little core strength is required in cycling, for the same reasons. No more than what you use to climb two steps on a staircase at a time!


How are you defining "strength"? The most important part of core "strength", in order to prevent LBP and to improve cycling, for that matter, is endurance strength. I am talking Type I muscle fiber, as I said above. There are two types of "strength" out there, wouldn't you agree? One is the "strength" required to sprint 200 meters, running or on a bike, and the other is the "strength" required to run 26.2 miles at a 5:00-min-per-mile pace or climb incredibly long, steep mountain passes in a Grand Tour, for example.

To win a GT or distance event where both mucles fibers are necessary, the preponderance of mucle must be Type I fiber with some Type II mixed in for accelerations while climbing or for finishing sprints, whether they be flat or uphill.

But let's just talk endurance cycling and Alpe d'Huez, since that was the point you made. The question is NOT whether a person can generate 25 kg force up Alpe d'Huez, the question is whether a person can do it for 13.8 km, with 21 turns at an average gradient of 8.1%, from the double-panel with Coppi and Armstrong to the top of the hill and views of Grenoble! If Type I muscle fiber is not trained, it won't happen! And pushing that hard for that long up a climb requires highly trained Type I muscle fiber, especially in the core muscles, or decreased power will result.

Power equals work/time equals force x velocity, right? Right. That means low cadence requires higher force for the same power, or alternatively, lower force equals higher cadence for the same power. What you're saying is that climbing the Alpe requires little force but a higher cadence or pedaling velocity, and I agree. Power is essential, whether you climb like Lance or like Ullie. What I am saying is that the ability to turn the crank at high cadence FOR 13.8K requires great muscle endurance in order to do it in record time! If we are talking about faster times, then power is essential!

The ability to generate power with a high cadence requires little force but great velocity and endurance if one is to do it in Pantani time (record up Alpe d'Huez = 36'50" in 1995)! Therefore, power requires either higher force for a given velocity or higher velocity for a given force. And since climbing requires the latter, maintaining a higher crank velocity, i.e. cadence, then the aerobic muscular system must be strong and well-trained, and Type I or endurance muscle fiber is necessary.

Therefore, great strength in Type I muscle fiber is required both in the legs, and in the muscles against which the legs can move. The legs cannot move unless there is a core against which to move. Those leg and core muscles must be stable, strong, and Type-I fiber rich, or a record time simply is not possible. And that's why most people under the age of 70 cannot climb like Pantani, even though they can generate similar power, force and velocity. They do not have the endurance fiber to maintain it!

You said it yourself:

Quote:
My peak power is over 1400 watts and 5s power is over 1300 with a slight build - yet I probably couldn't squat 250 pounds even. One component of power is force, but equally important is speed - how fast & how coordinated you can apply your force, rather than just max force. This is reflected in that this type of power is considered neuromuscular, because of the heavy involvement of the nervous system.


You are somehow equating core strength with force, and I think that's where we're getting hung up. You said "this type of power is considered neuromuscular, because of the heavy involvement of the nervous system". Another way to say that is a higher number of muscle fibers are involved, with greater coordination between them required. Again, I agree. However, you are forgetting that "neuromuscular" (and all power is neuromuscular, if it involves muscle, btw) power, as you defined it, requires a Preponderance of Type I muscle fiber working in a highly coordinated fashion. Those fibers not only have to work in a coordinated fashion (i.e., "neuromuscular"), they have to have the energy to do it.

That means heavy reliance on the aerobic system of energy production, or what we call a "big endurance engine". Core endurance strength is a necessary part of that engine, and core strength is required. Does that make sense to you now?
Lucy_Aspenwind

The reason say, about 10-15 people can generate 400 watts for an hour on the planet (at some ungodly low body weight).....is NOT because they can generate great force, the force is minimal, no more than climbing stairs.

The reason they can do this and everyone else cannot, is because of the development of their cardiovascular & aerobic abilities.

Lifting weights, training your core, etc - does ZERO for your heart, lungs, and bodies ability to deliver energy to sustain 400+ watts.

End of story.
CapeRoadie

Lucy_Aspenwind wrote:
The reason say, about 10-15 people can generate 400 watts for an hour on the planet (at some ungodly low body weight).....is NOT because they can generate great force, the force is minimal, no more than climbing stairs.

The reason they can do this and everyone else cannot, is because of the development of their cardiovascular & aerobic abilities.

Lifting weights, training your core, etc - does ZERO for your heart, lungs, and bodies ability to deliver energy to sustain 400+ watts.

End of story.


Wrong! You are simply redefining what weightlifting and core training are. Don't punch your monitor yet! Read on! I think we agree more than we disagree.

After I finished editing my last post for grammar and clarity, I read your latest post and see we agree about aerobic or cardiovascular capacity. However, you are absolutely incorrect that "lifting weights and training your core does little for your heart, lungs and body's ability to deliver energy to sustain 400+ watts". Absolutely incorrect! You are defining weightlifting and core strengthening as a necessarily anaerobic venture. Nothing could be further from the truth! Weightlifting and core training can be aerobic or anaerobic, depending on the amount of weight lifted, the number of reps per set, best defined perhaps as the "intensity" of the exercise. Low reps high weight = anaerobic. High reps low weight, especially over long periods of time = aerobic. Sustained stationary positions required in core training - aerobic. It's a heart rate/lactate threshold thing.

In core strengthening especially, the most useful exercises for cycling are aerobic and absolutely strengthen not only the core but the cardiovascular system! In fact, one of the biggest mistakes made by personal trainers and physical therapists when strengthening the core is to train the muscles anaerobically, with high force, when what the patient or client or athlete needs is endurance training. That type of training is BY NECESSITY aerobic or cardiovascular! Type I fiber is the most important fiber to train, whether it be for endurance cycling or a LBP patient. There are thousands of exercises that one can do in circuit training, for example, that require weights, medicine balls, etc., that are part of a cardiovascular strengthening program. Those exercises develop aerobic fitness. When you make the exercises aerobic and functional, you have perhaps the best core strengthening program in existence. Functional means training movement patterns, not individual muscles, and therefore more "neuromuscular", since you like that term.

Without highly developed and coordinated Type I muscle fiber in your arms, legs, core, lower back, torso, etc., you would not be able to sustain a higher cadence for very long on a long climb. After all, the cardiovascular system without Type I muscle fiber development is fairly useless, wouldn't you agree? Cardiovascular means heart and peripheral vessels, after all. Without Type I muscles to do the work of the cardiovascular system, there IS NO MOVEMENT POSSIBLE in endurance events. The more Type I (i.e. aerobic) muscle fiber, the bigger the engine in endurance events. Now does it make sense to you?
CapeRoadie

Here's a little review for you and a picture of my favorite climb.

Review:

http://www.coachr.org/fiber.htm

Abstract:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entre...st_uids=1501563&dopt=Abstract

Full article:

http://64.233.161.104/search?q=ca....utexas.edu/coyle/pdf%2520library



Having some Type IIA fiber means you can accelerate and sprint faster up that final 500M, and a little Type IIB might win it at the tape. Wink
crash48

This post is still going on hey.

Laymans time...

In my my post about weights, I said that weights will not do anything for your endurance-you need to ride to do that.

Its all about power to weight ratio and you can increase your power by weights, and hardlly put any any weight on-so long as you do the the right weights.

Combine that with big gear work and you convert that strength into cycling power. Its not just leg weight either. Strong triceps help you stay in the drops longer-hence a better and faster position.

And a strong core is a no brainer. You need a strong back and abs to transfer your power-in just about all sports.
CapeRoadie

crash48 wrote:
This post is still going on hey.

Laymans time...

In my my post about weights, I said that weights will not do anything for your endurance-you need to ride to do that.

Its all about power to weight ratio and you can increase your power by weights, and hardlly put any any weight on-so long as you do the the right weights.

Combine that with big gear work and you convert that strength into cycling power. Its not just leg weight either. Strong triceps help you stay in the drops longer-hence a better and faster position.

And a strong core is a no brainer. You need a strong back and abs to transfer your power-in just about all sports.


Yes, exactly right.
Esteban

Hi!

Just joined the board.

I'm just getting into using my turbo trainer for the winter months and was wondering if any of you had any favourite work outs for turbos or any technical drills that can make your pedal stroke more efficient?

Would be interested to hear from any of you as I'm not a particulalry serious cyclist at the moment but would like to improve my skills and fitness after a number of injuries.

Thanks.
CapeRoadie

Welcome to the board, where sometimes people are nice to one another. You could try one-legged pedaling, i.e., pedaling with one shoe unclipped. You'll have to pedal "circles" that way.
alanmcn1

I already asked this, but could someone give me tips on fuelling up for long rides. I seem to knock when am out, and can't physically carry alot of fluid and food when out on a ride?
CapeRoadie

alanmcn1 wrote:
I already asked this, but could someone give me tips on fuelling up for long rides. I seem to knock when am out, and can't physically carry alot of fluid and food when out on a ride?


Try sipping Accelerade or similar 30 minutes before your ride, then every 10-15 minutes into it. Eat meals on the bike when you would normally eat meals off the bike during really long rides. That should help.
mootaineer

alanmcn1 wrote:
I already asked this, but could someone give me tips on fuelling up for long rides. I seem to knock when am out, and can't physically carry alot of fluid and food when out on a ride?


Hi Alan,

I like taking energy bars.
I vary between GO's chocolate and orange bars and Honey Stingers.
www.honeystinger.uk.com
Both reasonably tasty and not too difficult to swallow (no jokes please) Neutral
I bought some honeystingers at the Cycle Show this year and I think they're pretty good.
The GOs are a bit chewy so you may find that the power you want to put out through your legs ends up in your jaw! Wink
They're also both reasonably small and I find that I only need between 2 or 3 per ride, though it depends on how far you intend to go!
We also normally have lunch stops or breaks and normally refuel with some tea or a light lunch.

It may be worth having one bottle containing pure water and another containing a drink (high5, isostar, etc)...

I have also read somewhere recently that protein-added drinks help performance but I'm not entirely convinced.
crash48

What mootaineer said.

Further, drink every 15 mins and eat every 20-20 mins. But don't eat too much in one go-just nibble.
tiggertoo

I take two Hammer Endurolyte capsules before the ride, and one every hour of the ride.

I have a bowl bran flakes and milk with a banana for breakfast, and a gel before I start the ride. If I'm driving more than a hour to the ride start, I'll eat a peanut and jam sandwhich (on white bread) before the start.

I eat a smoked turkey whole wheat sandwich at the mid point of my ride, and nibble on fig newtons throughout.

At the end of the ride, I eat another peanut and jam sandwich for recovery.

As anyone will (or should) tell you, you have to experiment to find what nutrition works for you. There is no magic formula.
mootaineer

tiggertoo wrote:
I take two Hammer Endurolyte capsules before the ride, and one every hour of the ride.

I have a bowl bran flakes and milk with a banana for breakfast, and a gel before I start the ride. If I'm driving more than a hour to the ride start, I'll eat a peanut and jam sandwhich (on white bread) before the start.

I eat a smoked turkey whole wheat sandwich at the mid point of my ride, and nibble on fig newtons throughout.

At the end of the ride, I eat another peanut and jam sandwich for recovery.

As anyone will (or should) tell you, you have to experiment to find what nutrition works for you. There is no magic formula.


Hey tigertoo...that's a lot of eating!
I find that cereal doesn't work for me. Especially in this cold weather I find that I'm searching for a toilet (or a very hidden bush) rather quickly! Confused

Those Endurolyte capsules seem a good idea though I generally find that once I start taking a tablet/capsule supplement I'm psychologically hooked, fearing that if I don't take one before the next ride my performance will be degraded.
Not sure we can find those over here though haven't tried looking...

Does anyone else ever get cramp while riding?
I sometimes do after an intense session, though I'm always able to ride through it. Would be able to ride faster without though...
alanmcn1

Cheers guys. I go out on my own, and hate to carry hulking packed lunches with me ha ha. I like the sound of the energy bars and gels. I usually just take water with me for drinking, but may try an energy drink on the bike next time. many thanks
tiggertoo

Mootaineer, you can get endurolyte capsules here:

http://www.hammernut.co.uk/
mayofan

im not sure if anyone has made this point but does it not depend on what type of weights youre doing....obviously as people have said power is not really an issue...so no heavy weights, low reps, as they will also increase weight
rather endurance is the issue..so therefore low weights high reps will obviously increase muscle endurance, and cycling performance, without adding weight

this is the opposite for sprinters, as what theyre looking for is power above all else

also ive a question for those more knowledgeable than myself...i play rugby, and am trying to cycle, but im finding it very difficult to train for cycling as as far as i can see theyre detrimental activities...mass is good in rugby, not good in cycling...power, sprinting is important in rugby...endurance important in cycling

as well as this im 6ft and 140 pounds...perfect for a climber...but i need to put on weight for rugby...obviously im wiry...good core, leg strength or id get squashed...but im not sure is there any way to strike a balance between the two??will i just have to concentrate on one or the other??

on top of this my cycling endurance is not good...hard to cyclo over 20 miles at over 15mph..but im aerobically fit...scoring consistently above 12 in a bleep test...or running a mile in about 5 30
CapeRoadie

mayofan wrote:
im not sure if anyone has made this point but does it not depend on what type of weights youre doing....obviously as people have said power is not really an issue...so no heavy weights, low reps, as they will also increase weight
rather endurance is the issue..so therefore low weights high reps will obviously increase muscle endurance, and cycling performance, without adding weight

this is the opposite for sprinters, as what theyre looking for is power above all else

also ive a question for those more knowledgeable than myself...i play rugby, and am trying to cycle, but im finding it very difficult to train for cycling as as far as i can see theyre detrimental activities...mass is good in rugby, not good in cycling...power, sprinting is important in rugby...endurance important in cycling

as well as this im 6ft and 140 pounds...perfect for a climber...but i need to put on weight for rugby...obviously im wiry...good core, leg strength or id get squashed...but im not sure is there any way to strike a balance between the two??will i just have to concentrate on one or the other??

on top of this my cycling endurance is not good...hard to cyclo over 20 miles at over 15mph..but im aerobically fit...scoring consistently above 12 in a bleep test...or running a mile in about 5 30


I've been there. Listen, here's what you need to do:

Ride every day. Every day. Do one hard day, then one easy day. Do easy and hard weeks. Even easy and hard months. Drink a sugary salty drink during your rides, and drink a recovery drink (Endurox R4 or Ultragen, or skim chocolate milk, etc.) 15 minutes after. Ride 1000 miles. Increase the mileage 10% per week for a while before increasing intensity.

Good luck!
crash48

I think cape has just about got it right.

Consistency is the key. Don't have too many breaks ie try to avoid 2 and 3 days off the bike in a row. Even if you only have 4 hours to ride in a week, try and break the rides down into daily rides rather than two rides of 2 hours. Therefore you can build on what you are doing.

I think one day off is fine, but recovery rides after a hard day is always a good thing.

Get some miles in your legs before upping your intensity. But saying that do some 'tempo' rides in your 'base period and some big gear work. I always think a climb or two (nothing crazy) in your base period is good-slowing upping the amount you do and the intensity you do them at.

You will need to find your HR zones as well by doing a field test or two. Then you can concentrate on the intensity.
mayofan

see the problem is that im playing field sports(rugby, GAA),... well off season now but im in the gym, running a lot, lifting weights, swimming to keep fit...is that any good for cycling or do you really have to be on the bike...cos with irish winter settled in weekend is the only available daylight for cycling...how useful is the exercise bike???
crash48

Any general fitness will help-as its fitness right.

Get your self a turbo trainer and hook your bike on to it and train that way through the winter and then get out on the weekend when you can.

That way with the turbo you are still in a riding position and set up correctly to simulate your outdoor riding. There are all manner of tasks you can do on your turbo ie endurance, speed, power, force etc and it is one good workout-mind numbing at times but a good workout.

The spin bikes at gyms will still give you good workouts however if that is the only choice.
CapeRoadie

mayofan wrote:
see the problem is that im playing field sports(rugby, GAA),... well off season now but im in the gym, running a lot, lifting weights, swimming to keep fit...is that any good for cycling or do you really have to be on the bike...cos with irish winter settled in weekend is the only available daylight for cycling...how useful is the exercise bike???


General fitness helps in the off-season, and there are more opinions out there than successful athletes. I say ride. In the dark, if you must, on quiet Irish roads with a BIG headlamp, but ride nonetheless. The exercsie bike is very useful if it's a more modern one, i.e. a LeMond trainer where the position is that of a road bike. Running will not help your cycling beyond keeping your aerobic fitness levels good.

Ride the bike, man, ride the bike.
tiggertoo

Spinning in the gym, is just as good as riding the bike outside - as long as you simulate the ride.
mayofan

cool..thanks for advice Cool

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