Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Done wrong...

on the training side.  Just a short post on how cycling and running are different.  I remember running track in college and training for races post college, and rest days were important.  A rest day in running though was completely off your feet, on the couch, hydrating and rolling out the legs with "the stick".  I don't think this translates well to cycling training.

Towards the end of the season I've taken more days off, but gone harder on my days on.  Some very rough and unaccredited research leads me to believe that a "rest" day on the bike is going out and spinning the legs "easy" for an hour or so.  There are no actual days off, as in sitting on the couch, just easy days where you don't decide to kill it.  I think I knew about this in concept, but just was never able to implement.  So what have been my findings?  I feel like my legs are stiffer, I'm not recovering as quickly, and I'm not as loose as I felt I have been in the past.  Funny though, I do feel great on the Sunday ride when I've ridden Thursday, Friday, and Saturday....what does that tell you?

So what does that mean?  I think this past Sunday's performance may have been hindered by not riding the bike between Wednesday through Saturday (travel and stuff kept me off the bike)...a little bummed by this realization as it just means more time on the saddle...which is fun, but is tough when balancing everything else in life.


Kyle Jones said...

I know exactly what you are talking about. It is said to be because of residual blood flow in your system causing you to feel primed on sunday. As an experiment try an hour ride saturday with some hard jumps and maybe a 4 minute effort. Try this without riding thursday and friday. I would be interested in how you then feel.

Jesse said...

So the secret is to keep residual blood flow...Would doing that workout on Saturday and riding Wednesday through Saturday do the same thing?

Who knows...bummer that it is so late in the season and I'm just figuring this stuff out, right?

Kyle Jones said...

Well Probably residual blood flow and opened muscle capillaries. I wish I took Exercise Physiology as a major now. I am sure thats why it those rides are called leg opening exercises. But do not take my word on it, I am just a cat 4(I am going to use that as an excuse of ignorance).

AndyJ said...

I agree with Kyle (at least on this issue). I’ve noticed I’m stiffer two days after an effort (hard on Sunday, okay on Monday, sore on Tuesday). With that in mind, try taking a rest day (off the bike or going for an easy spin) two days before an event and then doing a moderately intense ride the day before. You get the benefit of the recovery from the rest day while you also get your legs primed for the effort on event day.

Another thing to consider about last Sunday is that you went from training at just above sea level in DC to racing at an elevation of about 900 ft in MI. Not a huge diff but maybe enough to make sticking with the brake that much harder.