's Forum Archives - General

Archive Home >> General(1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 )

Producing more power (training)(11 posts)

Producing more power (training)laffeaux
Jan 13, 2004 11:10 AM
This winter I've been trying work harder than normal on increasing my fitness and power output. The gym that I go to has a stationary bike where I can select a heart rate and the bike will vary resistance to keep my heart rate near the target value (in my case 146 bpm). The bike displays the watts produced. Other than being an uncomfortable bike, it seems to work okay.

My natural spin in about 100 rpm. I've found if I intentionally spin slower, around 90 rpm, I maximize my power output. I produce about 200 watts at 90 rpm. At 100 rpm (my natural cadence), my power output drops to 175-180 watts. If I spin up to 120 rpm and hold it, my power drops way off to 140-150 watts.

In order to train to produce more power where should I be training? Do I train where I produce the most power (i.e. 90 rpm) hoping that my power across the rpm range will go up? Or do I train at my natural cadence since that's where I'm most comfortable while on the road?

Any help is appreciated.
What I found to work best........CARBON110
Jan 13, 2004 11:30 AM
First of all I find those bikes to be inaccurate and would not gauge much according to their info except HR.

Outside that: Alot depends on your goals. You left out alot of info but if its just where to train to produce more power then I found that 4-5 days out of the week I lower my cadence and ride bigger gears. I start out easy slowly increasing my gear ratio AS LONG AS my HR doesnt go into zone 3 for more then 25% of my ride. So if Im climbing a 4 mile climb (20 minutes)and Im riding a 12-23 I will keep the gear big (hard) even if my cadence drops to 80 and my HR doesnt go above 160 on the climb. I do so until it actually HURTS my leg muscles but no so that it effects the rest of my ride. The first couple of times your HR will got hrough the roof...but that's ok its just adjusting tot he workout

For example with a rested HR and feeling good: On my trainer... 4 hour ride I break down like this-

-first 45 minutes 23 gear spinning up faster but starting off slowly. Zone 1 and 2

-Then pick up gears and keep cadence high but HR under 150-155 depending on rest.

-Then I will include sitting 2x 30 minute climbs with cadence around 80 and HR 160 -/+
I give a 15-20 minute break between climbs where I keep cadence at 90-100 to recover but still try to mimic small hills

-Then I might add a standing 20 minute 80-85 cadence hill with HR around 165+ cause Im standing

-Then I just screw around with cadence so I don't get totally board and stay in Zone 2 for prolonged periods of time. As I get closer to race zone 2 will become intervals of zone 3,4 to make ready for crits and my time in zone 1,2 will be very easy.

There are days where I modify this according to how I feel. Sometimes I want to hill climb for an hour but I don't since that would be mental and take strength away..other times I don't want to ride that trainer at all but I do cause that would piss me off even more =P

So to increase power deligently decrease cadence and shift to harder gears but keep HR down this time of year unless your prepping for a sweeping spring series.
Follow up........CARBON110
Jan 13, 2004 12:46 PM
By the way the easist way to increase power is lifting weights. keep you bike workouts LIGHT on days you do to avoid over training and potential harm
that's good newslaffeaux
Jan 13, 2004 12:58 PM
I've been lifting two evenings a week and then riding the stationary bike for about 35 minutes afterwards. (That's about as long as I can stand being on that bike.) In addition I'm riding both weekend days, and running one day during the week.
You were right in the first post....Tri_Rich
Jan 13, 2004 1:10 PM
IMO (and that of other coaches) on the bike power work as outlined in CARBON110's first post is effective at producing power gains. Weight work will have a small effect but is not specific enough to the speed and motion of cycling to be of much use. I advice using the weight room to make yourself "injury proof" by correcting some of the strength imbalances which arise during cycling.

Is there strong evidence for the benefit or lack there of of weight work? No, but sports science tells us that specificity is a key part of any training regimen. Therefore if you want to become more powerful on the bike, train power on the bike.

However there is less than total agreement on this subject. I just felt I would let you know about this side of the arguement.
Follow up........asgelle
Jan 13, 2004 1:12 PM
CARBON110 wrote, "By the way the easist way to increase power is lifting weights."

Yes, unfortunately, that won't make you faster on a bicycle or increase your sustainable power output while riding. See, for example,
Not trueCARBON110
Jan 13, 2004 2:21 PM
Yes the best way to increase anything on the bike is simply riding the bike correctly.

However, lifting weights will add a huge measurement to increasing your sustainable power and power base. Your increasing muscle strength over time. You can reduce muscle fatigue and increase power output/sprint kicks. I think unless you are doing it inappropriately or over training, which is easy to do, you can't go wrong. The difference in my performance between my first year watt numbers without weights and my 2nd year watt numbers with weights were big. But then I had to go and get hit by some crazy broad. Grrrrrrrrrrrr
RE: Not trueCARBON110
Jan 13, 2004 2:24 PM
Not true for me that is. In my experince for my body and my training. That's what worked to produce the most performance. I wouldn't suggest it is true for everyone and I agree there is a big descrepincy over the issue. I dind't mean to imply it will work for all. But it's certainly worth looking into if your interested :D
Nail on the head, C110hrv
Jan 13, 2004 3:05 PM
You tried weights, it worked for you, I tried weights, it worked wonders for me, others might have different results.

Without weight training my big gear work would be a pale imitation of what it is now. I'm on track to being able to ride/spin a cog(maybe 2) overall harder than last year. The basis of this has been weight training phases, immediately followed by on the bike strength phases. There are those who don't need to do weight training first, but I am not one of them.

Nail on the head, C110Woof the dog
Jan 13, 2004 8:18 PM
there are so many variables in you two's subjective replies!

n = 1

It does sort of boil down to "ride lots," doesn't it? With thebill
Jan 14, 2004 7:17 AM
necessary corollary that, if you've ridden to much to be rested to ride again, you should cut back. That's what it boils down to, really, isn't it?
One of the most successful guys in my club, who went to Cat 2 after, I believe, his third season, I don't think ever did regulated workouts. He basically raced three or four times per week with aggressive group rides, some focussed on hills, some on speed, and then just rode the other days. He's a monster.