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Race The Training Thread

Puttering around is where those gains are at though! I guess to use the common sporting anology: cycling is a marathon, not a sprint. But I'm sure you know that. I think it can be frustrating because sometimes it feels like you're just out on the open sea with no wind in the sails. But then one day you get somewhere and you can look back at all the work you did and how it added up over time. And that's just the fitness side. You'll develop so much more comfort on the bike & learn better riding techniques just by spending time on the bike. And at 55 you've still got a lot of good years left! Maybe you'll end up like one of those guys racings Worlds at 80+ haha.

I'm not a coach, but I think if I was my advice would be to focus on just riding regularly. Maybe an hours per week goal instead of focusing on a training plan or a power number. Most of us can see a huge benefit just by riding consistently. 2025 gives you 1.5 years assuming you're looking at doing it in the summer. You can do a lot in that time.
Thanks braddah. Yeah, I know I should be dialing it back in training. It is just so hard to do because going fast is so fun and easy on Arakawa with the lower wind resistance. With a bad cough this week keeping me off the bike I am thinking to spend a good chunk of time this winter riding it on the trainer doing just that.

Those old dudes are something else. Other than the absolute beasts some of the young endurance riders are, seeing an old guy with a beard and tattered gear quietly tailing them on a Suntour clad Huffy is a hoot. Especially since all it would take is 1 mechanical issue to get caught. That is what makes dot watching the races like a good book.
 
Well, we're firmly into 2024 now. Bit of a wild start to the year. I "finished" 2023 on December 30th, hitting an arbitrary goal of 630 on-bike hours, I decided to start my rest week early and take the last day of the year off.

Rest week ended up not being so restful with the earthquake and all. But, we're fine now. Went from our evacuation center to a hotel due to the water damage in our apartment. Broken pipes, fire alarms and no power meant we had to stay away. Remarkably everything came back together quickly. Our town still has areas without water / electricity. There's also part of town with signficant damage. Missing / closed roads, partially collapsed houses. But we're fortunate, and it's nothing as bad as further up in Noto.

Yesterday I went for my first outdoor ride of the year. We took it slow to check and see which roads are open. Back in the spring / early summer we had really bad flooding which knocked out a lot of good roads, they were under repair. But, this earthquake has undone some of that and added to the damage further. Lots of my favorite routes will be changing, and the roads used for the local group training ride won't be open for a long time. Feels like a very minor inconvenience considering everything though!
 
Well, we're firmly into 2024 now. Bit of a wild start to the year. I "finished" 2023 on December 30th, hitting an arbitrary goal of 630 on-bike hours, I decided to start my rest week early and take the last day of the year off.

Rest week ended up not being so restful with the earthquake and all. But, we're fine now. Went from our evacuation center to a hotel due to the water damage in our apartment. Broken pipes, fire alarms and no power meant we had to stay away. Remarkably everything came back together quickly. Our town still has areas without water / electricity. There's also part of town with signficant damage. Missing / closed roads, partially collapsed houses. But we're fortunate, and it's nothing as bad as further up in Noto.

Yesterday I went for my first outdoor ride of the year. We took it slow to check and see which roads are open. Back in the spring / early summer we had really bad flooding which knocked out a lot of good roads, they were under repair. But, this earthquake has undone some of that and added to the damage further. Lots of my favorite routes will be changing, and the roads used for the local group training ride won't be open for a long time. Feels like a very minor inconvenience considering everything though!
I was wondering if you guys were alright.
 
... But, we're fine now. Went from our evacuation center to a hotel due to the water damage in our apartment. Broken pipes, fire alarms and no power meant we had to stay away. Remarkably everything came back together quickly. Our town still has areas without water / electricity. There's also part of town with signficant damage. Missing / closed roads, partially collapsed houses. But we're fortunate, and it's nothing as bad as further up in Noto.
...
Tsuga--sorry to hear about that. It's only in the last couple days that I've seen some pics of Uchinada, specifically Nishiaraya--with buckled roads, leaning utility poles, and so on. We hadn't realized that amount of damage was so close--with you and others there needing evacuation/relocation. I suppose it has to do with the area being a big sand dune? It was certainly a bad quake (the aftershocks, too), and we know some people who know some people on up the peninsula, so that's been the focus.
 
Tsuga--sorry to hear about that. It's only in the last couple days that I've seen some pics of Uchinada, specifically Nishiaraya--with buckled roads, leaning utility poles, and so on. We hadn't realized that amount of damage was so close--with you and others there needing evacuation/relocation. I suppose it has to do with the area being a big sand dune? It was certainly a bad quake (the aftershocks, too), and we know some people who know some people on up the peninsula, so that's been the focus.
I think so, I read that in areas with a lot of damage it was due to liquefaction, which is the sand and water separating from the earthquake's vibrations? The damage was surprisingly localized here. My building would have appeared relatively "normal" if it wasn't for the pipes breaking. And now you can only tell because the elevator is out of service and the internet is out. But, maybe a 5 minute bike ride from my front door there are buckled roads & collapsed houses. https://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/15109955 - This article has more information about Uchinada.

My wife and I had just worked on some Ishikawa tourism projects in November centered on the Noto Peninsula & Wajima itself. One was to promote cycling in the region. There had been a photoshoot with the morning market. None of it had been released yet, and it's wild to think now that I doubt they'll use any of it.

Editing to add that if you ever ride over to the Kahokugata Lagoon area, that's an area that was heavily damaged. In some locations the land was elevated nearly 1 meter, so the road is completely broken. It used to be home to a few different group rides, plus one of the prettier stretches of cherry trees. It's hard to imagine how long it will take to repair.

IMG_0413.JPG
 
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@Tsuga
Wow, that's impressive and terrifying.

My last training block went alright: since late November, I have been trying to go to the gym twice a week. Turns out, that's too much at the moment, and my hard workout, especially the first workout of the week, was impacted quite severely.

I have scaled back to one workout per week, mixing exercises from my leg + core day and my core + upper body day. But spending some time in the gym actually helps with my leg imbalance, makes me feel better. Plus, according to my Whithings scale I lost 600 g of fat and gained 600 g of muscle …
 
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Normally on Tuesdays / Thursdays I teach at a night school, but they're having exams so they asked me to visit my day school instead. The day school doesn't change their schedule based on my availability though... although I'm here, I have no classes. So, I just spent my morning editing my TrainingPeaks calendar from now through October.

Last year my favorite event was the Mt. Ontake HC, and I saw it's happening again this year on May 19th. Plus there's a well scheduled ~30-35 minute HC in Ibukiyama 5 weeks before Ontake on April 14th. I think that those will probably be my A & B goals for 2024, so it looks like I do have something to train for now.

2023 Ontake I was 67.4kg and averaged 322W for the 54 minute race (4.77w/kg). I was 2.5 minutes behind the winner, 25 seconds outside the top 3.

Currently I'm 65.6kg, power output is approximately the same compared to this time last year. I've got 15 weeks until Ontake 2024. I think it will be a fun challenge to see how much I can improve my time compared to the previous year. In 2023 I was focused on JPT "Road Races", my training will look pretty different if I'm only focused on these 2 hill climbs. But, my all time favorite efforts are Tempo / Steady State so it's something I'm looking forward to.
 
Jeezus Tsuga! 4.77w/kg is SMOKIN'!

Last time I checked I was 3.4w/kg. I can only imagine that if my 78kg and 210w gets me just under 41kph on the flats on virtually windless days that your 322w and 67kg would get you pretty damn close to 50kph on my bike without the need for wind OR drafting :flip:
The only time I get to see 50kph is in small segments with massive tailwinds. Good luck on both rides if you can do both.

As for training, I am going to need to start doing Zone 2 training for endurance rides. Every time I go out I tell myself that is the plan, but it takes almost nothing to make me step on the gas. I'd be dead if I had 4.77w/kg legs haha.
 
Normally on Tuesdays / Thursdays I teach at a night school, but they're having exams so they asked me to visit my day school instead. The day school doesn't change their schedule based on my availability though... although I'm here, I have no classes. So, I just spent my morning editing my TrainingPeaks calendar from now through October.

Last year my favorite event was the Mt. Ontake HC, and I saw it's happening again this year on May 19th. Plus there's a well scheduled ~30-35 minute HC in Ibukiyama 5 weeks before Ontake on April 14th. I think that those will probably be my A & B goals for 2024, so it looks like I do have something to train for now.

2023 Ontake I was 67.4kg and averaged 322W for the 54 minute race (4.77w/kg). I was 2.5 minutes behind the winner, 25 seconds outside the top 3.

Currently I'm 65.6kg, power output is approximately the same compared to this time last year. I've got 15 weeks until Ontake 2024. I think it will be a fun challenge to see how much I can improve my time compared to the previous year. In 2023 I was focused on JPT "Road Races", my training will look pretty different if I'm only focused on these 2 hill climbs. But, my all time favorite efforts are Tempo / Steady State so it's something I'm looking forward to.
By the way, do you have a new team this year, or are you not doing JCBF races?
I saw you weren't on the Igname JPT squad.
 
Normally on Tuesdays / Thursdays I teach at a night school, but they're having exams so they asked me to visit my day school instead. The day school doesn't change their schedule based on my availability though... although I'm here, I have no classes. So, I just spent my morning editing my TrainingPeaks calendar from now through October.

Last year my favorite event was the Mt. Ontake HC, and I saw it's happening again this year on May 19th. Plus there's a well scheduled ~30-35 minute HC in Ibukiyama 5 weeks before Ontake on April 14th. I think that those will probably be my A & B goals for 2024, so it looks like I do have something to train for now.

2023 Ontake I was 67.4kg and averaged 322W for the 54 minute race (4.77w/kg). I was 2.5 minutes behind the winner, 25 seconds outside the top 3.

Currently I'm 65.6kg, power output is approximately the same compared to this time last year. I've got 15 weeks until Ontake 2024. I think it will be a fun challenge to see how much I can improve my time compared to the previous year. In 2023 I was focused on JPT "Road Races", my training will look pretty different if I'm only focused on these 2 hill climbs. But, my all time favorite efforts are Tempo / Steady State so it's something I'm looking forward to.
im on a similar weight, still chasing a similar power output 😵‍💫
usually, how many hours per week are you on the bike?
 
Jeezus Tsuga! 4.77w/kg is SMOKIN'!

Last time I checked I was 3.4w/kg. I can only imagine that if my 78kg and 210w gets me just under 41kph on the flats on virtually windless days that your 322w and 67kg would get you pretty damn close to 50kph on my bike without the need for wind OR drafting :flip:
The only time I get to see 50kph is in small segments with massive tailwinds. Good luck on both rides if you can do both.

As for training, I am going to need to start doing Zone 2 training for endurance rides. Every time I go out I tell myself that is the plan, but it takes almost nothing to make me step on the gas. I'd be dead if I had 4.77w/kg legs haha.

3.4 is still really good! I think I read somewhere that the "average" cyclist sits somewhere around 1.5-2. Sticking in Z2 is as much mental training as it is physical. But, both definitely pay off in the long run.

By the way, do you have a new team this year, or are you not doing JCBF races?
I saw you weren't on the Igname JPT squad.

There's a local team I may join, they race in E1. I'm really just interested in doing a couple of hill climbs with the JBCF. I enjoyed the racing that I did last year, but I found I wasn't as excited about it this year. Probably won't be doing any of the "road" races. Fun experience and I'm glad I did it for one season though.

im on a similar weight, still chasing a similar power output 😵‍💫
usually, how many hours per week are you on the bike?

Recently 10-15 hours is my target. Last year I totaled 630 hours. But, in a year like 2022 when we moved to Japan I only rode 456. If you'd like you can look at my Strava: https://www.strava.com/athletes/377840

I guess some background for me is that I started riding in 2011, and I raced a lot in the US. In 2015 my FTP was 302w, so in 9 years it has only increased 8-9%. Not exactly huge gains. My weight has fluctuated between 64.4 & 70.3kg over the years. I have always thought of myself as a relatively competitive amateur cyclist. I could always be more dedicated, spend more time on the bike, eat better, etc. I think I just benefit from consistent mediocrity over the years. Never really had burn out, etc. Just kind of keep plodding along. Hoping to really apply myself this season, at least until Ontake.
 
Hope everyone's training is going well! I'm finally into my rest week after my first block of training for 2024. In the past I have almost always stuck to a 3 on 1 off format, but this year I decided to give 4:1 a try.

Only caught a few breaks with the weather... I think that 3 of these rides were outside. The rest indoors (longest trainer ride was 3.5 hours). Far from ideal, but my motivation was there so I took advantage of that. Even considering that, I think 4 weeks in a row isn't too bad. Although I'm excited about some easy riding, I'm sure I could do another week of structure. I think I'll take Monday - Friday very easy, and then see how the weekend goes. Saturday and Sunday's forecast looks really good.

2024 - First Block.png

My secondary goal is on track too, so that feels good. Shooting for another 600+ hour year of riding.
 
Nice going Tsuga. I hope the 4:1 format works out well for you. Virtually all of my rides are outdoor, and I tend to push really hard for shorter rides lately, and since we are on the tail end of Winter the weather should be even better to be outdoors. With that said, and knowing I should be slowing it down and increasing the distances, I am just not feeling it this month. No goals, no training plans, and running into snags on literally every step of my streamliner project, which is frustrating because it is not really more complicated than a bike with a body. I either need a break or some motivation. Not sure which yet.
 
I just did x5 100km rides in a row over the last 5 days. Ride yerself fitter!

My focus has been strength work this winter (73 gym sessions so far) so it's interesting for the cardio to be the limiter for the first time in several years (I raced through the winter for the last 5 years or so).

The first couple of group rides had me Z4 just sitting in the wheels but I was more comfortable in Z3 on Saturday.

Video here:



J PRO riders are on new Giant Propels. I'm on a 15 year old (?) titanium bike with 10 year old (?) wheels.

The guys fight the climbs in February but I still need to rebuild the engine. Despite most of my rollers being 110rpm, I still follow the wheels with muscular strength and a heavy gear around 70rpm.

I'm looking forward to the spring sensations of the legs becoming fluid again, they felt better today.

As for racing, I plan to do Gravel as this is probably where I can get the best results/satisfaction at this stage in my "career".

I was hoping to contest all 3 stages of the "Gravel Rally" event but stage 1 in April is a bit of a trek deep down in Shizuoka. But maybe...

Keep up the training everyone!

Andy
 
That's awesome Andy! Interestingly, I'm Andy and I have a 10 year old titanium bike. That sounds like an AA meeting introduction hahaha. I like your gumption and wish I had it now :warau:
 
That's awesome Andy! Interestingly, I'm Andy and I have a 10 year old titanium bike. That sounds like an AA meeting introduction hahaha. I like your gumption and wish I had it now :warau:

Haha I like a pint as well, though haven't joined AA just yet.

Another group ride today. Slowly getting the fitness back. Even took the first two uphill primes by going above 180HR for the first time this year.

I have a race in Gunma next Sunday which will be interesting as we are going to Tokyo for a 3 day bender from Thursday! 🍺〰️💣💥

Andy

Today's ride:

 
Apart from disc brakes, wider tires and perhaps deeper wheels, I don't think road bikes have changed that much. The Ti bike will be a tad heavier, too, but the impact of weight is overrated in most scenarios.

Just my 10 yen, but the biggest difference is in the stiffness of the carbon. I'm riding a Dogma like a Strider in that video but if you ride it properly (even several sizes too small) you notice how much faster a Pinarello is in terms of power transfer ie. speed for your effort.

Similarly a stiff steel frame like a TOYO is also fast.

Titanium is great at cruising speed and a super comfy ride.

Today that Dogma had Gokisos on it which also add speed to your bike if you ever get the chance to try them. They are heavy but the speed is in the hub which feels like it is reaccelerating after braking.

Andy
 
Just my 10 yen, but the biggest difference is in the stiffness of the carbon.
How come you haven't switched back then?
I haven't ridden a Ti bike and I don't think it'd be fair to base my impression of steel on the last steel road bike I have ridden (which weighed 12.5 kg, going from memory).

I plan to keep my current road bike for 10+ years. I couldn't come up with something I'd like to change to be honest. Do you feel the same about your Ti bike?
 
How come you haven't switched back then?
I haven't ridden a Ti bike and I don't think it'd be fair to base my impression of steel on the last steel road bike I have ridden (which weighed 12.5 kg, going from memory).

I plan to keep my current road bike for 10+ years. I couldn't come up with something I'd like to change to be honest. Do you feel the same about your Ti bike?
This bike is great for what I need in terms of training and the types of event I will enter. It wouldn't be good for a crit but I don't have that physiology anyway.

All the carbon road bikes I've ridden have cracked so I don't think I'd ever ride one again. The longevity and lightweightness of titanium is what appealed to me in the first place. It actually cracked (after being hit by a car) but Lynskey repaired it under their lifetime warranty.

The gravel bike is aluminum so it will die eventually at which time I'd like to go titanium, lightweight steel, or aluminium, in that order although money and what's on offer at that time usually takes preference!

Andy

PS, the Dogma is being ridden by high school student Gen as a present from Yamada san. Gen also has my TREK Speed Concept, and sponsored wheels from Gokiso, so he's arguably the luckiest boy in Niigata!
 
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