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Zone 3 training(18 posts)

Zone 3 trainingGall
Dec 2, 2002 4:24 AM
Hello again,

I saw on that some are saying that training in the zone 3 doesn’t really help your training. They are saying that its too hard to benefit your aerobic capability and not hard enough to benefit your anaerobic capability.

So this year instead of doing any zone 3 training between my base training and my LT training I was just going to skip the “tempo” zone 3 and head straight to zone 4.

What are your opinions on zone 3? Does anyone not train zone 3 and just concentrate on zone 2 and 4?

I dont know what those & things are from???? ... nmGall
Dec 2, 2002 4:27 AM
I've heard that too, zone 3 = 'No man's (or woman's) land' nmSpunout
Dec 2, 2002 5:14 AM
The man says...hayaku
Dec 2, 2002 4:49 PM
on page 115 under Mucular Endurance Workouts that they are worth doing.

I think that they are worth while, even if only used as a bridge to the higher levels. A little anatomical adaptation after so long without any really hard, on the bike work. The periods that these M1 Tempo workouts are intended for (Base 2, 3)seem so support my theory.

I'll be doing them.
Define Zone 3Kerry
Dec 2, 2002 5:51 PM
My reading says Zone 3 = 85-90% of AT, and also defines it as hard aerobic training. In the old days we called it LSD (long steady distance) and it was considered the base for your interval work. Depends on what you're after, but if you want to do long, fast rides, this is key training.
re: Zone 3 trainingJames OCLV
Dec 3, 2002 11:14 AM

I know the thread on that you are talking about. I think that the point of the discussion was that Z3 is important, just make sure that you do it at the correct point in your season.

If you are planning to peak in mid-spring, now is not the time to focus on Z3. Z3 offers no benefit in developing your cycling economy over Z2, however, it will take you longer to recover from your workouts and will bring you towards your peak sooner (because it's higher in intensity).
good answermtber
Dec 3, 2002 11:29 AM
I learned this the hard way last year. Did most of my base miles in Z3. Peaked very early. Then crashed big time. Never did get my early season race fitness back. Oh well. Live and learn. Z2 this winter!
Same hereChunky
Dec 3, 2002 5:28 PM
This is a sorry story. I started training for racing last winter, with only 6 months of experience in road riding before that. Rode w/ guys in the club through fall and winter. While they were in their Z2, I spent most of the rides w/ them in Z3 or up. Came out flying early this season. Everyone thought I'd have a great I spend a lot of time on the couch and am still recovering from overtraining. *sigh*

There's benefit to train in Z3 (75-85% max HR according to this sports clinic I went to). It greatly improves aerobic fitness and fat burning (so I heard.) But not a good idea to do it in the early part of winter.
re: Zone 3 trainingLactate Junkie
Dec 3, 2002 11:16 AM
Here is a good rule. If you are going to go fast (hard), go very, very hard. If you are going to go slow (easy) go very, very easy.

The problem with L3 is that it tends to be too hard if you are trying to recover from a race or other hard workout and too easy to amount to a hard workout in and of itself.

You will always end up spending some time in this zone no matter what you do, but IMHO you should try to limit this as much as possible. Recovery rides should be L2 or lower--you probably cannot go too slow on a recovery ride. Intervals and of course races, are going to be L4+ and you really cannot go too hard during intervals and races .
Its definatley not no mans landBigLeadOutGuy
Dec 4, 2002 8:58 AM
From what I understand zone 3 develops your bodies ability to metabolize lactate from your muscles. You train in this zone to make your body more efficient at getting rid of unwanted lactic acid. Just as you train in zone 2 to develop your aerobic fitness by making your body use oxygen more 3 does the same except in repect to lactate acid.
Its definatley not no mans landLactate Junkie
Dec 4, 2002 11:22 AM
Your body always metabolizes lactic acid, it is a normal byproduct of cellular metabolism even at rest. When you are in Z3 you are producing more lactate than when you are in Z2 but less than when you are in Z4. Training in Z3 doesn't stress the aerobic pathways sufficiently to raise your LT like training in Z4, thus it is too easy. It also isn't easy enough to allow proper recovery like Z1 and 2, thus it is too hard. Result, no-mans-land. Go hard, go easy—avoid the inbetween.
Its definatley not no mans landBigLeadOutGuy
Dec 4, 2002 1:20 PM
and your body is always metabolizing oxygen, even at rest...yet it is still crucial to maximize your bodys efficiency at doing so...Its also as important to maximize the efficiency that your body displaces lactic acid as well. Training in each zone has its respective place in a well rounded training plan.
Its definatley not no mans landLactate Junkie
Dec 6, 2002 10:08 AM
The flaw in your logic is this. If Zone 3 is good at teaching you body to metabolize lactate, Zone 4 is better at it. No matter what you do, you are going to end up spending time in Z3, it cannot be helped, you just shouldn't make this zone a focus of a workout. IMHO, rather than doing a workout in Z3, you are better off doing an interval session where you are spending as much time as you can up in Z4 and then do a recovery ride the next day in Z1 and 2.

What the heck, you are intitled to your opinion, but after 28-years of racing at Cat 2 or above, my opinion is that most people who end up trying to work out specifically in Z3 end up overtrained without ever really getting as fast or as strong as they could be or need to be.
Its definatley not no mans landBigLeadOutGuy
Dec 6, 2002 1:02 PM
yeah, I was thinking about the zones while shoveling snow the past couple of days and after looking at the numbers it does make sense, I didnt realize it but when I thought I was training in z3 I was actually in z4.
Cool Beans
Down with Zone 3!!!
The purpose of Z3 trainingJames OCLV
Dec 9, 2002 8:12 AM
If you follow the periodization model for training, as your season progresses, your workouts should get progressively harder.

The way that I apply this with myself and the athelets that I coach is at the point in the season when I start to include LT training, I will spend 2-3 weeks training in Z3 (long intervals) before moving into training in Z4. This allows the body to adapt to metabolizing lactic acid progressively rather than just jumping into Z4. I think of Z3 as a transition zone. Once I make the transition to training in Z4, I will phase out any Z3 workouts.
The purpose of Z3 trainingLactate Junkie
Dec 9, 2002 2:50 PM
That is probably the first good use of Z3 I have ever heard. Although it still adheres to the go hard or go easy concept. It is just that your hard isn't quite as hard as later in the year.
The purpose of Z3 training - Side noteJames OCLV
Dec 10, 2002 6:55 AM
On a side note, something to think about with regards to Zone 3 is that alot of time during a Road Race is spent in this zone...
The purpose of Z3 training - Side noteLactate Junkie
Dec 10, 2002 9:57 AM
Then you should attack.