Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Putting myself to the test

A little void recently in the blogsphere for me; but it was for a good cause; been training and put to test some thoughts on warming up before a ride.

I know that this question has been posed before "How do you warm up before a ride"; there is plenty of information on the web; there is a structured warm-up that applies to TT and short criteriums; but I've had the question asked of me gave my opinion on what I thought the person should do'. Still I wanted to see how I felt and if my endurance was really different.

I planned for an hour ride on three separate days; the ride would be a high cadence and wattage output on flats/rolling hills; I wanted to hit and maintain my Lactate Threshold (LT) through out the ride.

So here was the plan; first ride I would do both an active/isolated stretch followed by a spin on the trainer for 20 minutes, second ride just stretch, third ride I would do cold with a slow start up. I wanted to gauge my performance and see what worked and what doesn't.

The first warm up I did a set of active stretches for about 10 minutes followed by a 20 minutes on the trainer which is considered to be a endurance/steadystate (SS) warm-up

10 minutes Tempo, 75-85rpm

· 1 minutes Recovery

· 4 minutes ramping SteadyState 90-95rpm at or just below lactate threshold

· 30 seconds Recovery

· 2 minutes PowerIntervals, 105rpm

· 30 seconds Recovery

· 2 minutes PowerIntervals, 105rpm

I started the ride at around 80rpm; and quickly got up to 95rpm and maintained around 95-105rpm a around 300W of output. Legs felt good; there was a burn after the warm-up to be expected; but I didn't feel fatigue nor any soreness in my legs during the ride. Went hard for about an hour; again rolling hills and flat; after I finished the ride; stretched; legs felt good. Next morning; no residual. More importantly I didn't feel fatigue in the legs starting up; nor did I feel that they gave out during the ride; and I did close to 25 miles.

I gave it a day in between; did my stretches; all active isolated; got on the bike and started down the road; same route. Legs felt cold; which was to be expected; I didn't get as much as I wanted out of the ride as the first time; did closer to 21 - 22 miles. Legs felt fatigued the next day though; which became a recovery day.

Third ride; no stretch; cold ride; started slow; low cadence; slow peddle; did some single leg warm ups to get loose. Definitely a completely different ride then the other two; more time taken to warm up the legs; didn't get as much out of them; as the hour was winding down; my legs were finally feeling good. Not as much fatigue the next day though; but I did closer to 20 miles; and didn't get as much wattage out of the legs much closer to 250 - 260; big drop.

This type of interval I found is great for short rides; preparing for crits or TTs; on longer rides (2h>); probably not an issue as you don't want to fatigue the legs early on.

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