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Cyclists training bible(17 posts)

Cyclists training bibleJoshua
Jun 19, 2002 4:37 AM
Thinking of picking this book to help improve my over-all cycling capabilities, you know, ride farther and faster. I was wondering how many of you have used this book, if its any good or if you have any other suggestions. Thanks
Good book. They don't call it the bible for nothing - nmMcAndrus
Jun 19, 2002 4:42 AM
Yes.Len J
Jun 19, 2002 4:47 AM
I use it, & have found it to be very helpful.

That being said, I would not recommend it for a newbie. You need a base level of both knowledge & conditioning to benefit & understand his approach.

The thing that I like about it is that he starts with your goals, the amount of time you can ride and and honest assessment of your limiters (through testing & questions) to determine and develop an optimal use of the time to overcome your limitations. It's a good read that I find myself going back to frequently to reread sections as I follow the plan.

I thought I understood training when I completed developing my training plan but I have learned as much since as I've followed the plan & seen what works for me & what doesn't.

Good Luck

Jun 19, 2002 4:51 AM
Even though I am fairly new to cycling I have been an avid runner and swimmer. I recently completed my longest ride to date wich was 76 miles in a little over 5 hours. I am just looking for something to help get me on a good training regiment.
I'd say go for it. nmLen J
Jun 19, 2002 4:58 AM
If you getting the "Bible" meansrefusenik
Jun 19, 2002 4:47 AM
we dont have to read anymore useless posts from you, I say get it.

I will even send you a check.

Reach down deep and do something without getting validation first.
If you getting the "Bible" meansJSchneb
Jun 19, 2002 5:27 AM
Joshua ,

The Cyclist's Training Bible is a great resource, however, it's geared towards building race-specific fitness. It bases your entire training plan around developing a "peak" at the time of your most important races. It does this by assessing your "limiters" and then focusing your plan around them. It might not be usefull to you if your goal is just to build overall fitness.

refusenik - How's that asking for validation? BTW - who's post is more useless?
Disagree.Len J
Jun 19, 2002 5:40 AM
While I agree that it is geared towards race-specific fitness, I don't race & have found that identifing my limiters & training around them has helped me become a fitter cyclist. I also geared my "Peaks" to specific events that I am participating in. I believe the book is portable to non-reacers.

Jun 19, 2002 7:05 AM
True, but you still have to have "something" to plan your "peaks" around. :)
If you getting the "Bible" meansJSchneb
Jun 19, 2002 5:31 AM
Try reading this...

Dog "Forum Pact, Part II" 3/26/02 10:49am
getting the bible will meanJoshua
Jun 19, 2002 6:31 AM
Getting the bible will mean even more posts from me. So why don't you just refrain from replying to any posts on this board since you obviously have an inadequate amount of knowledge to give any useful information.
Joshua, just ignore him. -nmTig
Jun 19, 2002 6:38 AM
What movie: "Sweets, you couldnt ignore me if you tried."refusenik
Jun 19, 2002 6:55 AM
I think that there are better books to start with. I had thebill
Jun 19, 2002 6:59 AM
book for a year before I was able to figure out how to use it, which now seems stupid, since it has become something of a bible, including augmentation and updates from Friel's columns in Velonews.
It is geared for racers. Racers and far and fast guys are different animals. I ride sometimes with guys that don't race but that go far and fast. I also sometimes ride with racers. They are very different experiences. I question whether the racers could keep the pace that the far and fast guys go, as I question whether the far and fast guys would get lost at the first uphill racer's surge. Lots of very competent riders have no need to develop some of the skills Friel discusses, such as jumps, etc.
Until you know what you want out of your riding, I think that the energy to understand the book can be counterproductive. It helps you to categorize your goals and form strategies to meet them, but it doesn't help you formulate goals, which is what a newbie really needs. You have to understand first that cycling is not one skill, and that different types of cycling require different skills, and then you have to figure out what kind of cyclist you want to be. Then Friel's book becomes the bible.
Arnie Baker's book Smart Cycling isn't bad. Lots of other skills in there, too, such as handling, tweaking the bike, etc.
My two centsMr Good
Jun 19, 2002 8:39 AM
Bicycling magazine published a fat volume (260+ pages) called The Complete Book of Long-Distance Cycling (Rodale press). It's better than the average Bicycling mag. stuff for beginners, it's more geared toward people who don't necessarily want to race but want to do brevets, centuries, enjoy fast-paced long rides, etc.

Friel says in the beginning of the Training Bible that his book is for road racers who've raced seriously for a couple of years, upgraded through the categories, and now want to get REALLY serious and structured in their training. Of course, anyone can get some benefit from the book--but you may not get as much out of it until you've done a lot more (competitive) riding.

Friel's book is is great for what it is, but it's not for everyone. The Training Bible assumes that you already know a lot about cycling, from years spent racing or riding with a club. It is incredibly detailed--in terms of designing a race-specific training plan--almost too much to take in at once. It's something you learn from as you train, but using Friel's book demands that you are disciplined and want to think a lot about your training. It doesn't just give you a plan--it tells you how to assess yourself and develop your own plan. My feeling is that some people will train more productively by sticking to a simple plan (of course I don't presume to know what's best for you!)

In my case, I bought the book and immediately had a cerebral understanding of its lessons, but it took me almost two years of racing to learn from experience how to apply the book's lessons: how to "read" what my body is telling me (RPE), to learn by trial and error how my body responds to training cycles, and to develop fitness to a level high enough to benefit from intense training cycles. But having said all that, I guess I wouldn't have been aware of all these things if I hadn't been reading the book, right?

Also, the Training Bible is entirely about building your engine. There's a quick chapter with Friel's food advice, but nothing about race tactics, bicycle prep, bike handling skills, etc. As you said you want to develop "over-all cycling capabilitites," you may want to look elsewhere for these other subjects (joining your local cycling club is always a good start!)
Keep your money.refusenik
Jun 19, 2002 8:46 AM
you can still buy it hereTig
Jun 19, 2002 2:28 PM
"The Complete Book of Long-Distance Cycling" can be bought for $15.95 from the author at: