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Race season training question(21 posts)

Race season training questionwillin
May 8, 2003 6:39 AM
I am almost 44 years old, back into riding for almost eighteen months after a 20 year lay off. I am beginning to race Masters 40+ and Cat 4/5 and I am confused. I have abut a 7500 mile base.

Ive read a lot of books, and have been riding my 170-200 mile weeks, have over trained, undertrained, over extended, bonked, been dropped, finished strong, finished the hammer rides well with the fast guys, somtimes blow up, sometimes feel very tired, etc.

Now that its racing season, how do you experienced masters racers train, assuming you already have the appropriate base and power?

My goals for this season are to learn how to train and race well enough to have a chance at top five in the State point series next season, when I will be racing the 45+ group as a "youngster". Currently I race in the very cmpetitive 30+ or 35-44 year old group. Sometimes I do better than other times...

Clean living, rest, and disciplined workouts, meaning that youbill
May 8, 2003 6:47 AM
have to have a bit of a plan (am I going hard or easy today?), and stick with it. Your body is very capable of getting into great shape, but is less forgiving of your sins.
I'm sorting it out for myself, too, and I'm not exactly a success story quite yet, but I'm 44, and I usually can hang with the better 4's and some of the 3's. I am spending more time on the bike these days, but more time at nice, happy, aerobic levels, making sure that I save myself for no more than about 2-3 hard efforts per week.
what I have learned......CARBON110
May 8, 2003 7:00 AM
I'm 27 but the same training regimin goes for all. Rest, it takes your body up to 6 weeks to adjust to getting up early. So start going to bed before or around 9 all the time so when you wake up in the morning you feel strong. Core strength, nothing improves climbing and suffering like alot of core strength. Find a local YMCA they should have core classes. If not start slowly building up crunches and get a power ball (big plastic ball) Rest on and off the bike, when not on your bike take it easy the week before races. Don't move furniture,mow the lawn, etc.
Don't go hard when you don't need to on your bike, be specific in training, sets goals everyday and know before you leave your house what kind of ride and where you are going....but have fun. Have at least one rest day with no bike and no activity every week. Have a rest week every 3 weeks where you only ride-7-10 hours easy easy easy. Practice your handling skills in a parking lot with cones....this is a huge benefit and can save you from a crash. Bike with as many women as possible for motivation :D
Eat well, and listen to your body....alot of people don't know how to do this but its very important. Be patient progress takes time to show
Quotes from the board: "Train Hard, Race Easy"...Spunout
May 8, 2003 7:14 AM
that was the best.

Also, remember that it is great to be over-rested, but terrible to be over-trained.

Intervals: Go harder than you've ever thought, but recover easier than you'd ever thought.

Recovery rides: Try riding at 22km/h for an hour.
re: Race season training questionMcAndrus
May 8, 2003 11:02 AM
Finally, a racing question up my alley. I'm 51 now and started racing last year. I've done several 45+ races and a few Cat 5s. I ride regularly with 2s and 3s on training rides and a local Tuesday night championship of the world crit.

So here goes - discipline: train to a plan, eat right, sleep right, and rest when you're supposed to rest. Overtraining is the easiest trap for me.

Your base miles seem good to me, I don't count miles but I do count hours - and I get 10-12 hours on the bike a week. I also use Friel's bible for training guidance but I don't follow that bible religously. He has speed and strength drills in there that I'd need a coach in a car driving alongside to be able to follow. I do use him for scheduling peaks, hard, easy, and rest rides and periods.

Some races I'm sucking wind and in other races I do very well. I've finished as poorly as DNF and DFL and as well as 5th in a Masters 45+.

I've learned that as I age I can still get in decent shape but I can also lose that edge real, real quickly. Last October I took two full weeks off of the bike and wish I hadn't. I lost gobs of form and I was well into February before I felt like I'd gotten it back. So now I may take a few days off the bike but I try to keep it down to four day breaks - usually caused by vacations or business - and nothing longer.

Your overall racing background seems better than mine. I'm still learning tactically and consider myself a real dunce in a race. I have learned this, Masters 45+ can be tough as you've got a lot of seasoned veterans who still love to rip off the legs of others. But they also have great bike handling skills and are pretty courteous to each other, even in a race.

A couple of weeks ago I did a Masters 40+ race where a lot of the older 35+ crowd slipped in. It was different but the difference wasn't speed it was aggressiveness. I don't think the kids ride faster but they do seem to have sharper elbows and I had to fight hard to stay on wheels.

If I can think of anything else, I may post another comment. You're only young once but you can be immature forever. Welcome to the world of guys who never really grow up.
The 35-39 setshirt
May 8, 2003 8:15 PM
We're f&*1ng bastards, aren't we?

We have no generation (too old for Gen-X, too young for the baby boomers), and have held a grudge ever since high school. We're still taking it out on whomever will hold still. Kind of like a generational middle child syndrome. Deal with us.


ps: We do ride faster. :-D
Tell me(35y) about it! Generational no-man's landSpunout
May 9, 2003 4:13 AM
means that we're willing to eat each other alive.

So obvious around here, in fact, that I have taken an Elite 3 license instead of the Masters license. Now, I'll pick on 19 year olds ;-)
1968 was a bad year...lonefrontranger
May 9, 2003 6:14 AM
and we're still taking it out on everyone else, as shirt noted above.

Me, I'm going for an Elite 2, that oughta teach them. Speaking of picking on 19 year olds, I've done both a Collegiate and an ACA Men's 4 race this year and spanked a lot of 'em, especially last week. The only thing worse than cynical middle-aged men beating up on them is a cynical middle-aged woman.

I think I'll go listen to my ripped copy of "Take the Skinheads Bowling" now...
What is it with the cynicism of 1968? What a load of cr...Spunout
May 9, 2003 8:08 AM
So funny! There was a big cultural vacuum created between Disco and hair rock; I'm stuck right in it.

Punk? I remember the B52s from the first time around. And, unknownst to many I was the sixth member of Duran-Duran!
But how do you cryptic, cynincal, elbows out folks train now?willin
May 9, 2003 8:45 AM
But how are you bad dudes and even badder dudettes training now that race season is here?

(Remember "Whip it?")
Ya Devo! On training, I think you have to be smarterSpunout
May 9, 2003 8:50 AM
in working harder, resting harder, and stop putting in junk miles. I'm thinking of starting a new thread, realizing that home/work/learning duties are cramming my bike time.

Is it possible to race Cat3 and be competitive on four/five days of training per week? I'm starting to leave out endurance/recovery rides and lengthening my intense rides. Sorta like three races per week. That way, Monday and Fridays are sure bets off the bike.

Not that I am a competitive Cat3, but I have aspirations.
1968 ?!?filtersweep
May 9, 2003 8:59 AM
I was thinking of all the "oldsters" posting here and then I spot the year of my birth?! What happened?

Generation? Consider the Reagan/Bush years (the 80s) taking me from Jr High to college graduation... it explains a lot ;)
1968 was a bad year...Ironbutt
May 9, 2003 4:24 PM
If you think that it really ticks them off to have you spanking them, you should see how they react when it's done by a 55 year old guy with a white beard! I may not be all that fast, but I'm sneaky! By the way, 1968 was a smashing year, I married my favourite riding partner in August of that year. She's still my best riding partner
Rider her on...I mean 'Ride On' I.B., fast silverbacks here too.Spunout
May 9, 2003 4:47 PM
a minor request to the 35-39 set...spacemonkey
May 10, 2003 8:38 PM
...would you guys please stop blasting Steve Miller Band while you are on your trainers warming up at the races.
no idea what you're talking about, can't abide roots rock like that (nm)lonefrontranger
May 10, 2003 8:46 PM
That's from the 40-44 set, palshirt
May 11, 2003 9:02 AM
We're blasting Ministry, Minor Threat or Crystal Method.
re: Race season training questionJon Billheimer
May 9, 2003 8:44 AM
Perfect commentary, Mick. I'm 58 and can attest to every word! Except I'm not near as fast as you. But the training, planning and recovery advice is spot on. I think you, like a lot of the rest of us, has discovered an important diversion from Friel's ideas of periodization though: the older you get the more important it is probably to be "always fit," without overdoing the intensity of course. To back off completely from interval and aerobic power work in the off-season is a mistake. It takes too long to come back in the Spring. This winter I kept about 10% of my training hours at subthreshold to threshold intensity. It didn't burn me out at all, and I'm feeling better than I ever have this time of year as a result. The build periods have been far easier and recovery is better. FWIW from a really old guy:)-
Great idea. Key to find rest and recovery though, IMHO.nmSpunout
May 9, 2003 8:52 AM
Billheimer, you're really freaking oldshirt
May 9, 2003 12:51 PM
but I'm glad to hear that it's possible I'll be doing exactly what I'm doing now in twenty years...
You think I'M old!!!...Jon Billheimer
May 9, 2003 2:44 PM
You should come out and ride with the fat old farts club I'm a member of, otherwise known as Edmonton Masters Cycling Club! There are guys there so old they're upgrading their wheelchairs from stone wheels and pulleys to full-blown Dura-Ace:)- Seriously, the "old" book has been completely rewritten. Bottom line? Keep hammerin' dude!!!