Monday, August 31, 2009

Indoor Training

Wow, it's September already. That means fall is around the corner and it will start to get alittle wet in Oregon. Folks are starting to discuss indoor training alittle in the cycling forums. Unfortunately for me, I end up doing ALOT of indoor training no matter what time of year. I like to spend time with my son when I get home for work, so that means I'm on the indoor trainer in the morning before he wakes up. Luckily, I'm a morning person.

Recently, I enhanced my indoor "experience" by purchasing a pre-owned set of E-motion rollers (check out the videos on this link). Turns out they are built at a machine shop just west of Portland (big town of North Plains). They are on the pricey side - took me about a year to find a used set. However, they are worth it.

I ride these things at 5 am, so it was important to find something I wouldn't be falling off. The bumpers on the sides really prevent that. I actually don't use the bumpers too much when I'm riding a constant speed, but at the end of a hard interval when your gasping for air and a lower gear - they come in handy.

Benefits of indoor training include: 1) easier to fit into schedule, 2) very focused workouts, 3) keep your bike cleaner than riding in the rain.

Problems with indoor training include: 1) difficult to do high end intervals, 2) can't reach same power levels indoors as outdoors (many reasons), 3) definitely not as fun as outside

Here's a couple other handy ideas that make the indoor training better.

1) You must have a good fan. I place mine in front of an open door for cool air.
2) Some video distractions can help. The fellow at the SufferFest provides some excellent videos with bike racing to music.
3) I'm trying on this new application for the I-Phone. Should be out of beta testing soon. You can assign music selections to different effort "zones" for intervals - very cool feature. Make your own workout, pick existing workouts, etc.
4) Setup alittle "trainer cave" if you can. Near the garage is always good - cooler, quiter for others in the house, and OK if you sweat on the floor.

Best of luck keeping the bike rolling even when it gets nasty outside or your schedule forces you inside.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Cross is on the Horizon

I've neglected this blog for awhile, but now that cross is on the horizon there's lots to discuss. The bike community is buzzing about cross clinics, cross training, what are the best tires, etc. That's a sign August is here and September is quickly approaching. Where did the summer go?

Well, I spent most of my summer road racing. My results weren't fantastic, but none of the races were considered an A race for me. It's important to define the importance of a race before you do a race. Otherwise you can set yourself up for some disappointment. This year I focused on stage races. I knew they would be solid base training and they might fit my riding style better. I completed 3 this year, and I enjoyed them a bunch. I believe they will give me a good solid base for cross season.

I took a few weeks "off" after the Cascade Classic at the end of July. It was hard and hot race, so a mental/physical break was necessary. My plan is to do some "base" training for 4 weeks in August/early September (I'm in the 2nd week) - continue with "build" training for about 8 weeks in September/October and then peak for the end of Crusade and see if I can maintain it for Nationals (in Bend OR). Here's some good links on training for cross that I found.....

Intervals for Cross

Train Plan for Cross - this is a new Iphone App I'm trying out - very cool!

Next entry, I'll review some stuff about getting my "steed" ready for battle. Only ~9 days to the first test of the legs at CrossOver Race.