Thursday, February 17, 2011

Inflatable Legs

One of the unspoken powers of Bikeman are his inflatable legs.  Only when pushed to the limit will the legs of Bikeman grow to be as wide as the widest redwood.  It is this secret power which overthrows the darkness within the peloton....

First of all, can you picture someone with legs as wide as the widest redwood?  Talk about chaffing....

In other news, training is going extremely well in that there are noticeable improvements since the implementation of the new training schedule.  Having a plan certainly makes a difference when compared to "just winging it."  Having a plan allows you to map out your time in the most efficient manner.  Plans will also give you something to do when confined to the distance of your trainer or rollers (which are stationary...).  Starring into the grains of the basement wall (as entertaining as that may be) are bested by starring at the crystals in a digital watch and counting down the time which your legs can return to a spin and your heart cools 60% of your max BPM.

While the benefits of a training schedule are well known and better felt, equally as beneficial is being able to completely scrap the plan and change it to something else.  "Carpe Diem" or "Sieze the Day" as some would say it, but in the case of training, I say "Sieze some Wheel."

All in all, have a plan, but be ready to scrap it.  You'll benefit from the unexpected change just as much, if not more, than your regular routine or timed intervals.

Arc hard, ride fast, go plaid!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Training for Super Strength Part II

This is a rough outline of what my current training schedule looks like.

7-Day Training Schedule
Day 1: Timed Intervals X3
Day 2: "Climbing" Intervals X4
Day 3: Ultimate Intervals X6
Day 4: Recovery Ride
Day 5: "Climbing" Intervals X8
Day 6: Ultimate Intervals X6
Day 7: Timed Intervals X2

Workout Descriptions:
15 minute warm-up on bike before each interval type
Follow each workout with core and flexibility target stretching (ex: groin, quads, hamstrings, calves, back, shoulder, etc)

Recovery Ride: Used as a day of recovery (easy ride or other movement), or a make up day if another day has, or is going to be missed.  No more than 1 hour.

Timed Interval:
10 minutes at 70% max heart rate
1 minute at 80% max heart rate
30 minutes at 60% max heart rate

"Climbing" Intervals:
4-8 minutes out of the saddle high cadence at 80% max heart rate (increase by 1 minute for every rep)
8-10 minutes of recovery at 60% max heart rate

Ultimate Intervals:
2 minutes 30 seconds hammerfest at 80% max heart rate (either in sprint or TT position.  Switch between in and out of the saddle, but still in the drops)
5 minutes of recovery at 60% max heart rate

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Training for Super Strength

It's a bird! It's a plane!  It's a snowplow?  Bikeman retreats to his Fortress of Solitude within the depths of his humble abode.  Little do the neighbors know what stews beneath the streets....

Snow covered roads outside the Fortress of Solitude
With Vermont currently under what seems like endless amounts of snow, outdoor training has seemingly been delayed by the white evil which has covered and inhibited safe transportation by way of the Vermont roadways.  To compensate for this evil, training has been taken into the dungeon... or basement as many would call it.

With just over three weeks remaining until the opening race weekend at Rutgers in NJ, I have decided to try a new method of training.  During this time I will be incorporating a variety of different training methods which emphasize the strength of the core and legs.

More specifically, six sets, twice a week of 2:30-minute intervals at 95 to 100 percent of max heart rate (the point at which you cannot speak), followed by recovery to 60 percent of max, or until you full sentences are able to be formulated and you no longer resemble a loony toon who's heart is nearly leaping out of it's chest.  

On days between interval workouts, general core sessions and recovery of bike specific muscles will be the emphasis of applied workout time.  Recovery will be consisting of 1 hour spinning rides which will still utilize riding muscles, but at a relaxed pace with only one interval of 4:00 minutes (starting at the 30:00 minute mark) at 80 percent of max heart rate.

I have found it is important to consider a balance of biking and school.  While both take a large amount of time to themselves, it is important to balance both while leaving time to relax and mentally recover.  The best found method for myself is time spent with friends during which time school is not the topic of conversation.  I have also found that riding with a friend makes the tedious and boring chore of sitting on a trainer for 2+ hours much more enjoyable.  

Is it schadenfreude, or just good company?

Arc hard, ride fast, go plaid.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Bikeman vs. The Snowstorm

A massive storm has wreaked havoc on the state of Vermont.  Cyclists everywhere are being forced to retreat to their dungeons and lairs for the day.  Those brave enough to step outside look like giant marshmallows amongst white cotton clouds galavanting down from the sky.

In all reality, minus the comic book nonsense, Vermont is currently getting hammered by a huge snowstorm.  My classes have been canceled and the plan for the day is a 2 hour trainer ride, followed by some secret snow fort layer building.

If you're one of the lucky ones who is experiencing warm weather and clear roads, I only envy the clear roads part...  you don't need warmth to bike, just a road to no where.

Arc hard, ride fast, go plaid.