Best Climber All Things Being Equal

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Futuroscope said:
Train low, race high (carbs) has been around for a while now but does it really work (that way)? How much training can you really do with low carbs?

I don't know much about training methods but if you look at running the kenyans are eating a bunch of carbs. What serious endurance athlete consistently eats low carb? You need fuel.
Swedish biathlete Björn Ferry ate only about 15 percent carbs on a diet with 5000 calories and he was one of the fastest skiers out there back in 2010. Won an Olympic Gold medal in Whistler in the pursuit.

I am no expert but if he can train and compete on a LCHF diet, most endurance athletes should be able to do it.
 
Futuroscope said:
Train low, race high (carbs) has been around for a while now but does it really work (that way)? How much training can you really do with low carbs?

I don't know much about training methods but if you look at running the kenyans are eating a bunch of carbs. What serious endurance athlete consistently eats low carb? You need fuel.
As described in a book called 'Advanced Marathoning' by Pete Pfitziger, during an effort, your body burns mostly carbs and some fat as well. Once you are carb depleted, your body will start using more fat as energy. The ratio will change. Yet, your body is not as efficient at burning fat as it is at burning carbs, resulting in a lower level of performance. Through training on low carbs, you can get your body to be a bit more efficient at burning fat. You can't do that on race day, or as you wrote 'consistently' though.
 
Jul 10, 2013
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I don't think there is any evidence for that. Training low intensity does make you use fat instead of carbs, and thus increasing efficiency, and is well documented.
 
Nov 29, 2010
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Yeah definitely heard of some skiers using low carb diets with great success.

Cycling is quite different to a lot of endurance sports in the sense that you don't put in the same effort over a long duration (normally the quickest way to complete an endurance event) as instead there are moments in every race where you need to put in big surges of power (attacks, climbs, sprints) and other times very little (sitting in the bunch, descending.)

Fat is fine for medium power the whole duration but you can't make the big short surges without that supply of sugar. You just don't go as fast.

If the tour de france was a TT every day then LCHF could work, but it's not.

Edit: It could be useful to try LCHF when putting in base miles in the winter months though. But when you start HIIT you'll need carbs.
 
Jul 9, 2009
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Walkman said:
Swedish biathlete Björn Ferry ate only about 15 percent carbs on a diet with 5000 calories and he was one of the fastest skiers out there back in 2010. Won an Olympic Gold medal in Whistler in the pursuit.

I am no expert but if he can train and compete on a LCHF diet, most endurance athletes should be able to do it.
Maybe one day/session per week but consistently eating low carb sounds stupid to me. And when you are eating 5000+ calories 15% is still not under 100g of carbs.
 
Jul 10, 2013
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It's not as simple as that. What you eat doesn't really matter because, aside from blood sugar, it get's processed before metabolism gets into the picture.

The body doesn't know or care if the triglyceride it burns originated from carb or fat.

Athletes state all kinds of things. Mostly bull**** to confuse their competitors.


Also, when low carb high fat people count their carbs, they almost always count it wrong. Carb counting can't be hard, I know. But they just lie.
 
Tonton said:
In modern cycling -years AE as in After Eddy, 1964 when he won the World's Amateur Championship and became the God Of Cycling-, on an even playing field (no doctors or same doctors), who do you think is the best climber of them all? Why? How much did doping impact their performance, in your estimation? Even better, rank them...

Eddy
Lucien
Bernard
Greg
Lucho
Claudio
Marco
Lance
Nairo
Other
Where is Bahamontes?
 
Dec 13, 2012
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Futuroscope said:
Train low, race high (carbs) has been around for a while now but does it really work (that way)? How much training can you really do with low carbs?

I don't know much about training methods but if you look at running the kenyans are eating a bunch of carbs. What serious endurance athlete consistently eats low carb? You need fuel.
Plus a diet very low in carbs but high in protein/fat takes a lot longer to digest. Not great when you need to train.
 
Almeisan said:
I don't think there is any evidence for that. Training low intensity does make you use fat instead of carbs, and thus increasing efficiency, and is well documented.
True, the ratio is modified (not instead as you wrote), but overall calorie expenditure is lower: therefore you can actually burn less fat than exercising at higher intensity. It's the myth of 'lose weight without much exercise'. Now, it doesn't translate into your body becoming able to better manage burning fat at high intensity, when glycogen is depleted. Which is why adapting your body to (every bit counts) be more efficient burning fat when everything else is gone makes sense. For the evidence, I'll find the book (I just moved, it's buried in a tub somewhere), and see what link I can find. Great book.
 
Tonton said:
True, the ratio is modified (not instead as you wrote), but overall calorie expenditure is lower: therefore you can actually burn less fat than exercising at higher intensity. It's the myth of 'lose weight without much exercise'. Now, it doesn't translate into your body becoming able to better manage burning fat at high intensity, when glycogen is depleted. Which is why adapting your body to (every bit counts) be more efficient burning fat when everything else is gone makes sense. For the evidence, I'll find the book (I just moved, it's buried in a tub somewhere), and see what link I can find. Great book.
A webinar by him :
http://www.humankinetics.com/upcoming-webinars/upcoming-webinars/register-now-marathon-training-how-to-optimize-your-training-program-to-reach-your-potential-
could save you the search?
 
The best climber of the modern era was Edita Rumsas.

Gets busted for holding, is detained in a French prison while her husband refuses to answer for her, comes up with a hilarious excuse for the PED's in her possession, and walks back into his arms when released. And we never heard a peep of complaint about any of it from her.

Hard as nails. Would have made a great Classics rider, especially Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.
 
There really is only one rider for this list:

Luis Ocana

The guy put 9 mins into eddy in one mountain stage. Totally destroyed Fuentes in the mountains in 1973.

Luis Ocana is the greatest climber based solely on those two years.

Whether an eddy without the Blois accident could have kept going at 1969 level might have made it interesting. 1969 Merckx vs. 1971/73 Ocana would have been fantastic.

Ocana would have won.
 
plagioni said:
And yet three of the last four Tours (2011, 2012, 2013) have been won by world class TT specialists. I wonder what would happened if MTF were to be reduced and ITT kms increased.
Pure climbers should really never, or rarely win a GT. I agree with echoes that CN is absolutely obsessed with MTFs. In 1976 van Impe won what considered an incredibly mountainous TDF because it had four MTFs. The Vuelta is belittling itself by all these MTFs. GTs are historically supposed to crown the best all-rounder and the rider that recovers best. Not - or almost never a pure climber. Merckx and Hinault caused destruction on flat stages. The best stage this year was a throwback with the Roubaix stage.

Just because one may not like the recent winners (who can TT) does not mean that they should have been replaced by some mountain goat. Historically they are more the style of rider who has won and should win such a test. Anquetil was a calculating bore who survived the mountains (who Wiggins reminds me most), but no one would ever argue that he wasn't the best all round rider of his generation.
 
Aug 31, 2012
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plagioni said:
And yet three of the last four Tours (2011, 2012, 2013) have been won by world class TT specialists.
Why do we call Froome a TT specialist when he is actually an even better climber than he is a time triallist? in 2012 and 2013, he was the best climber in the world yet merely the second or third best time trialist.
 
Jun 30, 2014
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Walkman said:
And this is not speculative? Lemond at least got the VO2 Max to back it up. Give me some of the other riders numbers and we can talk.
Sorry if I bump an old thread, but i think Landis had a VO2 Max of 90 when he was 19.
 
SeriousSam said:
Why do we call Froome a TT specialist when he is actually an even better climber than he is a time triallist? in 2012 and 2013, he was the best climber in the world yet merely the second or third best time trialist.
Yeah, by this logic pretty much every Tour in over 2 decades has been won by a world class tt specialist.

Indurain 1991-5
Ullrich 1997
Armstrong 1999-2005
Landis 2006
Contador 2009-2010

The only exceptions are Riis 96, Pantani 98, Contador 2007 Sastre 2008 and Nibali 2014.

Makes sense considering those with the best programmes are the freshest for both mountains and tts.
 
Aug 4, 2011
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Got to be a juiced up Lance
He destroyed a juiced up Pantani with ease.
What about Evans
The year Evans won the tour he was something special.
He got the better of Contador and Andy S. That ride to huez to reel in Schleck
That was special.
 
Jun 5, 2014
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ray j willings said:
Got to be a juiced up Lance
He destroyed a juiced up Pantani with ease.

What about Evans
The year Evans won the tour he was something special.
He got the better of Contador and Andy S. That ride to huez to reel in Schleck
That was special.
Lance did not even come close to what Pantani was in terms of climbing. That one day on Hautacam vs a shadow of the old Pantani :rolleyes: .

7 W/kg for 50 minutes like in Montecampione 1998 or 36:40 - 36:50 up Alpe d' Huez are numbers Lance could dream of. Lance going against vintage Pantani would have made the control freak paranoid ( well, he still almost went paranoid calling Dr.Ferrari during the TdF 2000). I just don't want to start another discussion as this isn't the right thread.

All in all...LeMond had an incredible talent (in general)....Pantani also (climbing) ...and if we go back...most people who lived in that age swear that Coppi was out of this world...he recorded some climbing times which were unbelievable if you consider the fact how bad the roads and how heavy the bikes were.
 
does consistency matter

for all the mutant watts he did he only beat Tonkov by 2 minutes or something on GC and wasn't even the best climber in the 1997 Tour across all mountain stages

of course 98 Tour to June 1999 is another matter
 
Jun 5, 2014
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roundabout said:
does consistency matter

for all the mutant watts he did he only beat Tonkov by 2 minutes or something on GC and wasn't even the best climber in the 1997 Tour across all mountain stages

of course 98 Tour to June 1999 is another matter
The 1997 course was better for him than the one in 1998. He was seriously ill in the stage to Courchevel and considered retiring after that stage. Then a super Ullrich was in charge. Bad first week etc...it was his first GT after the accident so it's normal that he wasn't at a level which he had the years after.

However....doing sub 37 minutes in 1997 while still not at his best tells a lot about what Marco had in him. Or doing 36:40 in 1995 (record) while completely missing the last corner. It's not like drafting or pacing was important because Pantani ( similar to Armstrong) attacked before the first corner. Flat out until the top. A 36 flat was surely possible for him in 98/99.

Well...he is a climber so winning by 5-6 minutes wasn't easy for him. 1999 Giro would have been 7 minutes however.

Of course he didn't win by a mile in the 1998 Giro but he destroyed Zülle and the others. It was only Tonkov resisting but then the same Tonkov showed the best climbing performances of his career in that race (6.53 W/kg for 50 minutes after a 240 km long stage - as many W/kg as the best Armstrong over 35-40 minutes).

This thread is about the "best climber". In a GT it would have been a very close fight to defeat Armstrong because ...despite being able to do 49.5 km/h in TT's during 98/99 ..he still would have lost a handful of minutes ( we were robbed of a legendary fight in the years 99- 2003) .
Maybe he would have lost 3-1 ...we don't know....but climbing wise there is no comparing.

Concering consistency....Pantani reached that consistency in 98/99...climbing like a god...TTing better than every other pure climber...it was his misfortunes that we did not see that 98/99 Pantani a year or 2 earlier....in order that we might have seen 3 or 4 years of "that" Pantani. Then the tragic day in 99....He never had the chance to show it for longer.
 

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