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Former gear masher trying to mend his ways.......(6 posts)

Former gear masher trying to mend his ways.......joekm
Oct 3, 2002 9:33 AM
This is an update to my previous post.

Yesterday, rather than ride, I made so adjustments to my position on the bike (moved the seat, dropped the stem by one spacer, and slightly rotated the handlebars back).

Today, I decided to do a trial run on my lunchtime circuit following the repeated advice to run between 80-85 rpm at the crank. To avoid spending too much time shifting, I decided on shift points of 75 and 85 rpm.

My lunchtime course is an undulating to moderately hilly 11.6 mile circuit. There is also a Hooter's at the top of the worst hill so I use that as a motivator (i.e. - can't look like I'm on the verge of a heart attack as I ride by ;) ). Anyway, my prior best average speed was 19.3 mph.

Today, I just posted an average speed of 19.9 mph. However, my average heart rate was 170 - which is pretty fast for me.

Obviously, I'll need to make a few runs to know for sure but it appears that, despite the fact the 80+ rpm feels odd, I seem to be faster at that cadence.
Same in my experience too....fbg111
Oct 3, 2002 1:20 PM
when I switched from mashing to spinning, my average speed went from 18.5 to 19.0 on a 20 mile course. A few weeks later I did my first tri with a 14 mile bike course, and I averaged 21.0mph. Now my avg. is up to 22 on that same 20mile course. It really works once you get used to it.
Same in my experience too....joekm
Oct 3, 2002 5:33 PM
I hope so, truth be told I darn near puked when I got off the bike. Apprarantly, it's a matter of waiting for the slow twitch muscles to develop.
Be careful, start slowjohnnybegood
Oct 3, 2002 6:59 PM
170 bpm is high for me, but I'm almost 50. There are charts available on the internet which will show the appropriate range for your age and health. If you have ever had a cardio-pulmonary stress test (treadmill) the cardiologist probably told you your optimum pulse. Here's what I have observed. The faster you spin, the easier it is on you legs and knees, but the more work it is for your cardi-pulmonary system. I would choose a range for your pulse and maintain the pulse range. As your heart/lungs get stronger, you can increase your cadence while maintaining the proper pulse range. I maintain a cadence of 95-105 on the flats and 85-95 while climbing. I know, I know, I should use a higher cadence while climbing, but I go out of my pulse range. A good way for me to tell my pulse range without a heart rate monitor, is if I cannot talk, or it hurts because I am breathing too fast/hard, I am out of my pulse range. Your are right about your climb past Hooters with one exception, you not only do not want to look like you are about to have a heart attack, you really don't want to suffer a heart attack.
Or keep the cadence up but RIDE slowerRay Sachs
Oct 4, 2002 4:36 AM
You can gear down when you increase your cadence too. Working on your spin without having a heart attack or nearly puking at the end of the ride is very possible. Back off to 17-18 mph for a few rides. You don't need to be obsessed with speed when you're trying to develop a new technique.

I agree...joekm
Oct 4, 2002 6:45 AM
Part of the problem was that I use this ride as a barometer to determine which group I can go out with in my local bike club. About 2/3 into the ride, it was looking like a 20 mph average was within my grasp (the goal I set for myself before attempting to go out with the "A" riders). This motivated me to go perhaps a little harder than I should have. Previously, I did a test on my rollers and got a measured max HR of 185 (I've hit 187 on the hills, but I'm going with 185 as it was a more controlled measurement). So, a 170 average is definately level 5, anaerobic, and a little over the top (and I've got the sore legs to prove it).

I'm still researching best training methods and soliciting advice as I can. In the past, I only trained for raw leg strength and explosiveness. While my legs got very strong, my bike performance was always mediocre. Since joining the bike club, I've made rapid improvements as compared to training alone and the advice has all turned out to be good.

In any event, I've got the fall and winter to train until the group rides start again in ernest. I'm hoping that I will be ready to hang with the "A" riders by the Icicle Meltdown in March.

Today, however, is a rest day......