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Increasing speed

Sep 1, 2009
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Just wondering what type of workouts I can do to increase my speed in an hour long race. I just did a 4.3 mile 2550 vert race and my legs felt great, but my lungs could not go any more.
I can ride tons of hills for 50-60 miles at a good pace, but this race best time was about 36 minutes kicked my ****.

What do you do to increase your tempo in these shorter races?
 
Aug 13, 2009
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I guess the simple answer is "ride faster in training".

Treat it like a TT, shorter distances at over speed. But the vertical component adds in a twist: you're only going to climb as fast as your going to climb. Losing weight (as long as it's not muscle) means faster uphill. More power for the same weight means faster uphill. Do "under/overs" where you spend time a little bit above LT (but not completely blown) then come back down for a bit and repeat. Teaches the body to realize "oh good, I'm not going as hard, time to start recovery". Amazing what a difference of 7 beats of HR can mean sometimes (think about contesting a crit or a points race on the track).

Perhaps shorter hills, doing hill sprints and repeats?

I'm just tossing out ideas to get you and others thinking. If someone with the right palmares says that I'm full of crap, so be it, listen to them.
 
Jun 9, 2009
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There are three important principles of training: Wolff's law, specificity, and recovery.

Wolff's law simply states that the body will adapt to the stresses that are placed upon it.

The law of specificity states that the adaptation to stresses placed on the body are specific to the stress.

Recovery time is needed following the stress to allow the adaptation to occur.

Training is a form of stressing the tissues of the body in a structured manner. In order to go faster, a cyclist needs to generate more power. In order to generate more power a cyclist must train for strength, footspeed, endurance, and increasing of the lactate threshhold.

Strength training is best done in the gym but can be done on the bike, too. I find leg presses to be the best gym exercise. On the bike, overgearing for interval training will have a similar effect.

Cadence training is done with spin sprints.

Endurance training is the goal of longer rides.

Lactate threshhold training is best done in hour-long efforts at time-trial speed.

Create a training program where each of these aspects os focused upon once per week.

Allow time for recovery between training sessions and be sure to weat well and sleep well.

Obviously, this is a very basic outline. I hope it helps a little. Feel free to ask more questions if you'd like help with the formulation of a more structured plan.
 
david puts it very well. in order to get faster, you need to ride with faster people. a group ride will do that usually. once you can hang in the entire distance up and down, you will reach a certain level. there may be one in your area i would suspect.:cool:
 
David Suro said:
Strength training is best done in the gym but can be done on the bike, too. I find leg presses to be the best gym exercise. On the bike, overgearing for interval training will have a similar effect.
Strength training is best done in the gym however strength is not a limiter for endurance cycling performance.

The only on bike work that might have an impact on strength would be very short, very hard sprints, full gas standing starts and hill sprints.

The forces involved in "overgeared" interval training are far too low to induce changes in strength.
 
Mar 18, 2009
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Simular to an over under I would work a few diffrent interval durations, just below threshold. 10-15 beats below threshold. To develop aerobic power delivery, and avoid fatigue. Staying below threshold will make sure you get a full recovery in a timely manner.

Try a 5 minute interval. Then recover as much time as nessasary. Then do a 2 min. recover followed by another 2 min. Then bring it back to your tempo. Try to stay as fast as possible, and as smooth.
 
Jul 14, 2009
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Don't ride with anyone to be fast! Do lots of interval training and jumps in big gears. 52x15 at balls out for 20 seconds on. When you are by yourself rap out your small ring at 130 rpms at whatever gear for 80 to 120 seconds. Huge changes in leg speed and the ability to get on top of a big gear if even for a 100 ft will make you faster. Motor pacing can be done with any car/van motorcycle in the right place. Work out and learn to draft and come around whatever obstacle(motor) at 30,35+ miles per hour and you are set. You can get out of the saddle but ringing past the motor and dropping back in to recover will make you win. If you can go faster without getting out of the saddle you will win.Riding in groups is grand but to win, alone fast is what you need to learn.
 
Aug 6, 2009
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David Suro said:
There are three important principles of training: Wolff's law, specificity, and recovery.........................

Create a training program where each of these aspects os focused upon once per week.

QUOTE]


While I strongly agree mostly with what Dr Suro has said here, I must ask him to elaborate a little more on the final point. From all the reading and discussions I have had with others, i thought it was better to concentrate on one aspect of a skill for about 4-6 weeks.

For example

3-5 weeks of

Lactate threshold workouts 2 x week : increasing in length/number of sets etc over the course`of the first three weeks
3 days of 'recovery' in between
1-2 days of enudrance (aerobic) on sat/sun -incuding a few sprints for fun/form

1 week of rest

Won't concentrating on one skill yield a greater adaption?

After this concentrate on another element needed for increasing speed eg. power - stomps, cadence, sprints, strength on bike
 
Mar 18, 2009
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For a 36 min race you would need to work on power delivery in intervals of about 2 min. It sounds like the endurance is no longer a limiting factor. Speed and power it what I would work on. Make sure your form stays smooth. Once you beging to go over the line, and loose form, back out.

Practicing sloppy form hinders overall performance.

All the comments I have read seem very accurate.