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Pseudo-Poll...your "Offseason"(18 posts)

Pseudo-Poll...your "Offseason"funknuggets
Sep 24, 2003 10:35 AM
What do you guys do in your "offseason"?

We have many racers in our group that at a specific point in the season, they go into hibernation. I realize that many posters on this board dont have a specific racing season, or they live in a climate that allows them to easily ride outside all year long. But for those that do have an offseason, what do you do???

Nothing at all until next year, or until you start building base. Crosstrain on MTB, Running, Swimming, Spinning Classes, weightlifting... or just ride easy until x date... etc etc...

Im just curious how to approach this offseason for the most optimal results next year and wanted to see what everyone else does. Last year I just took two months off, and then began building base from Nov until Late Feb...

So ponders the funk...
re: Pseudo-Poll...your "Offseason"PEDDLEFOOT
Sep 24, 2003 10:40 AM
Lots of Spinning classes (I'm an instructor) Some rideing on the trainer.Light weight lifting for upper body and some heavier lifting for the legs.Alot of stretching and some swimming.
All this talk of "offseason" is getting me down...biknben
Sep 24, 2003 10:43 AM
Offseason? We don't need no stinkin Offseason!!!!

When the clocks change I continue to commute on the bike and ride whenever weather allows on the weekends. In recent years I've added running and XC-skiing. Riding both MTB and road year round helps to mix things up.

In NJ, darkness is as much of a barrier as the weather. Last year was an exceptionally cold winter. A typical winter will allow me to ride without taking
i all
the fun out of it.
No weights. No spinning classes.Spunout
Sep 24, 2003 10:47 AM
Swimming, XC skiing, hiking, cyclocross, non-technical MTB rides. Stretching, yes.

December I will start spin-ups and 1hr rides on the rollers, 5 hours activity per week. January will be 10 hours plus.
dear The Funk,JS Haiku Shop
Sep 24, 2003 10:51 AM
"offseason" = november-march, 0*F - 45*F temps, very little snow/ice, but plenty of cold rain and sleet/hail.

last year, november-january was great fun with both cyclocross and cross-country run series.

during the full "offseason" i'll ride road long on weekends, ss/fixed on the about 60-80%(thanks to MB1), short geared road rides as light is available after work on weekdays, mix in some mtb, run, lift, whatever.

trainer time disgusts me, but i keep one around anyhow.

running is a great "offseason" alternative, as i can get much more workout in much less time and have more time afterwards to hang out around the house. it's also refreshing that the only gear needed is shoes, and there's no maintenance required.

it would be nice to secure a club membership and start swimming this winter.

between now and december, my time will be dominated by running and cyclocross. riding road, fixed or geared, will take a back seat to other goals. mid/late december, it's time to build mileage again, getting ready for the february to may rides.

or at least that's what i'm planning. ya never know.
No such thing as an Off-Season for us. nm.MB1
Sep 24, 2003 10:51 AM
re: Pseudo-Poll...your "Offseason"MShaw
Sep 24, 2003 11:06 AM
This next year, I'm going to try something novel: actually deliberately peak for a pair of races in May, then again in August. This means the training cycle starts in mid-Nov for me. Till then, I'm running, riding mtn bikes, and planning on "racing" cross. I'm riding my road bike one-two times/week just to keep the legs going around in circles.

For offseason training in VA, November meant a switch to running and mtn bikes outside, trainer workouts inside on the road bike, some limited road riding outside when it wasn't too nasty/cold/icy/salty, and some fixed gear training rides thrown in just for funsies.

Now that I live in San Diego where there's a core of guys that stay X fit all year round, I still find myself in the habits I developed in VA when I first started riding (with the exception of the trainer: I can still ride outside...) If I try and stay in racing shape year round, I find I burn out in June/July, kinda like this year...

If you want an excuse to get out of the house and ride, try racing and training for cross. Glory in the bad conditions and ride when everyone else is looking at their trainers with dread!

The thing that helped me is to find a group to ride with. That way, if you are tempted to bail, you know that there's some friends waiting for you to show. This applies to trainer workouts as well. It seems that if you're doing workouts alone in the garage, it hurts a lot more than if you're doing them with a friend or three.

That help?

re: Pseudo-Poll...your "Offseason"MR_GRUMPY
Sep 24, 2003 11:14 AM
Oct 1- Oct 31......MTN bike 3 Hrs a week
Nov 1- Nov 30......MTN bike 3 Hrs a week, Road ride easy 4 Hr
Dec 1- Dec 31......Base Trainer workouts 7 Hr a week
Jan 1- Jan 31......Harder Trainer workouts 7 Hr a week
Feb 1- Feb 28......Interval training w/o 7 Hr a week
Mar 1- Mar 31......Outside road.. ... Early races
April - Sept ..... Race
Ride the bike - XC skibimini
Sep 24, 2003 11:24 AM
Ride the bike unless the roads aren't cleared of ice and snow and the real temperature is not too cold (below 20 F)

If there is snow on the ground I go X-C sking. It's an excuse to get outside. I don't think it helps the cycling (and I know cycling doesn't help the XC sking since I'm always in deep pain after the first couple of times out each year).

If I can't do either, it's down into the dark basement to ride the boring, stupid trainer.

I ease up on the biking intensity until Feb. Just get out on the bike to get outside.

This year I will be hitting the hill intervals hard starting Feb early March. The first race of the year is a 25 mile circuit race with the toughest hills of the season. (The race is organized by a sadistic little runt that likes to see us big guys in intense pain;-) I got toasted big time last year (lapped by a couple of 140# guys from the local race club that broke away the first lap and never looked back). Would be happy to finish next year in the pack and not get lapped.

Gosh! Winter Su#ks in the midwest.
End of October burnoutPaulCL
Sep 24, 2003 11:31 AM
By the end of October, I want off the bike. I may ride a dozen times between Nov.1st and Feb. 1st due to weather and apathy. I start getting revved up to ride in February.

Offseason: used to be racquetball until my club closed the courts becuase of waning interest. I played 3x/week. Now, I life weights three times per week. Last year,in addition to the gym, I did two spinning classes per week plus a couple of hours per week on the rollers. No matter what I did, I couldn't maintain my fitness. March was painful.

This offseason, I plan to lift again but not so much upper body. My wife likes it, I like the strength but I put on too much weight. It took me until June to lose the muscle weight. I plan to do the spinning classes a couple of times per week and to run as much as weather allows. If I could limit my weight gain to 5 - 8 lbs, I would call it a successful winter.

still ride every weekend, spin indoors 3 nights a week (nm)terry b
Sep 24, 2003 11:36 AM
I don't need no stinkin off season!Sadlebred
Sep 24, 2003 12:39 PM
Just kidding. Here in GA, we are able to ride year round including at night after work if we so desire. Since I race cross and plan to go to nationals this year, my race season won't end until Dec. 14. At that point, I will take a week off and become a couch potato and each junk food.

Nov-Dec. Race cross. Continue to ride 4 days a week. Run once a week. Still training....

Mid Dec-Mid Feb: Run once a week, trainer 2 nights a week (Trainer class with an instructor...on our own trainers and bikes), ride outside on the weekends. Lots of low intensity base miles, spin ups, with tempo and cruise intervals added in during Feb.

Late Feb-March: Start dreaming about daylight after work. Stop running. Try to ride outside once a week in the dark after work (or commute to work once a week). Start longer tempo and begin intervals. Stop running.
Barring ice on the road or 18" snowfall ...Humma Hah
Sep 24, 2003 12:58 PM
... usually I just have off days. Last winter was an exception. Almost continuous bad weather basically cost me January and February. Meantime, old MB1 rode almost daily in the same ice and snow, on a set of studded snow tires. So this winter I may NOT lose any riding time.
4 thingsvindicator
Sep 24, 2003 12:58 PM
I'm not a hard core racer by any means. Last winter, and my plans for this winter are:

1) 2-3 days a week of weights and no bike (I don't do any weights at all 8-9 mos. of the year).

2) 2-3 days a week of indoor riding (rollers/trainer) and no weights (except when weather allows number 3).

3) Ride outdoors when temps and conditions allow, but this is obviously far fewer days than now.

4) More days off than now.
Not sure, not sure....hrv
Sep 24, 2003 1:07 PM
This is my 2nd year riding/racing. Slight improvement from last year, not much though. Rode all winter last year (not too bad, cold/snow wise, here in Oregon), lifted weights religiously, mtb, run, snowboard. Thinking of taking a couple of weeks off, haven't done that since I started. Didn't race much: 1 road race, 5 TT's, about 12 crits. Don't know if that qualifies as a tough season needing time off the bike. If nothing else, my bike needs maintenance, big time, as I've done nothing to it in 2 years except clean the chain/drivetrain, and I have ridden it many times in wet,gravelly conditions.

Recently read that if you allow your body to 'de-train' you will get stronger when the training starts up again, compared to riding constantly. Might be worth a try. Will keep you posted.

Not much.....TWD
Sep 24, 2003 2:00 PM
....of an offseason that is.

There isn't much reason to quit riding in the Northwest in the winter. A little rain never hurt anybody. Cross season runs to Mid December, and the road season starts up at the beginning of February.

You still need somewhat of a break though. I will continue to commute every day. Will probably average abuot 100 miles a week commuting with a fair bit of climbing since my commute is now longer and hillier since I moved.

I will however, lay off the intervals, and in general decrease my intensity, and just put in more easy to moderate base mileage. I'll do a little bit of running in support of cross racing, then maybe and continue that around the holidays to keep the weight down (especially if traveling without the bike).

I used to live in a much snowier part of the Midwest (upper Michigan and WI)so XC skiing was a staple of my off season there. You have to be careful with that though, since XC skiing is very physically demanding, and it's easy to make your off season harder than your riding season. I started to dabble into XC ski racing and training for that 6 days a week. My next riding season went down the crapper since I burnt myself out skiing then tried to carry that fitness over into my early season training and racing. I ended up burnt out and fighting illness all year.

I think the key to the off season is to remain active and somewhat fit, yet keep your intensity low enough not to overstress your system. Give yourself some rest.

That's all I think I know.
Funk the Ponderer, KEEP ON RIDING!Mike P
Sep 24, 2003 5:54 PM
Just put on a couple more layers and get some HotHands-2 packs for the feet and hands.

I don't ride the road if there snow or ice accumulation though. Use the winter ride time to just take it easy and look at stuff.

re: Pseudo-Poll...your "Offseason"BikeViking
Sep 25, 2003 6:52 AM
I am actually going to take one this year. I have been hammering a majority of my lunch rides and my weekend rides for the last 16 months and I have finally hit "the wall". Riding wasn't fun anymore, so a pace/scenery change is needed

I am going to change things up a more maybe train for a marathon in the spring, get some longer sub-20mph rides in and do some weights/stretching.