Today - August 2011

japanviking

Speeding Up
Jul 13, 2010
279
6
38
Shinjuku
#1
Went for a nice 150km ride around Stockholm on Sunday. The route included 2 ferry crossings and a lot of sunshine. I have managed to ride 1100 km's during July and might try and join the local cycling club for a group ride soon.
I hope all this trainign will pay off when I hit the Tokyo hills again in September.
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#2
Totally agree. I just look at the start time and then bail until then. As a former sailboat racer I'm very comfortable and used to timing my way out, then back again. Just plan to arrive back at the start sometime close to the official start. Unless they are live timing it it doesn't matter anyway - your chip is the timer.

Also - the better you get in condition, the faster you come up to functional race mode. Most elite athletes can go from zero to full on within 20min. As you get older you may need a little more time to warm up properly. (I'm finding). Just hit a few intervals before the start as part of your 'out and back'. The endless roller / trainer stuff you see is basically bullshit. All those guys are doing is posing and wasting their surface energy. Unless you are prepping for a 100m sprint - it does nothing. HC performance is based on starting hard and finishing harder. Endure the pain and dig deeper until you puke. Attack at every possible chance in these short events and keep your cadence high as possible so you can drop a gear to do so. Vary your position and attacks to keep alternating muscle groups and wear yourself down equally so nothing is left by the last 100m except for a last sprint.

Word of advice..... walk away from bitching about the organisational skills of the event. Not even worth worrying about. I've racedall over Japan and the world and its touch and go in every country and every event. :D
 
May 22, 2007
3,571
1,390
143
Kawasaki
halffastcycling.com
#4
Nice and cool today, so I did my 40 km northeast loop home via Nerima and Mitaka. Not fast but nice to stretch the legs.

Really feeling the benefit from Norikura and the training prior to it. I was able to spin all the way up the hill past Thomas's house to the top. Normally that's a total grind. Yay!
 

Sikochi

Maximum Pace
Sep 13, 2010
1,141
43
68
Kochi
#5
Totally agree. I just look at the start time and then bail until then. As a former sailboat racer I'm very comfortable and used to timing my way out, then back again. Just plan to arrive back at the start sometime close to the official start. Unless they are live timing it it doesn't matter anyway - your chip is the timer.
Hi GSAstuto, I think this is in response to my July post so to add some more information. Anyway, thanks for the comments.

As mentioned, this was my first hill climb so not quite sure on procedure and not being able to understand much Japanese didn`t help, so didn`t want to do anything out of sync with anyone else (I was the only non-Japanese there). It was also the organisers first event (I believe), so think they were trialling everything for the first time as well. Basically, the start was 300m (ascent wise) below the registration point, so what they wanted was for us to ride down together to the start. This was supposed to be at 9:00 (so was planning 15-20mins tempo before then with maybe some short sprints – I don`t warm-up more than that) but they started doing it at 8:30, as soon as the opening ceremony finished. Once down the hill, they had us line up in rows of 10 according to our start number (the rows departed every 20 secs) and someone came and did a check to ensure we were in our rows. Then they moved us up, and we had to wait til 9:25 (I was able to find some shade) and they re-checked us again ready for the start. We were timed off an electronic chip, so whether we could have set-off when we wanted or whether they would have cancelled our time for not starting at the correct time, I don`t know. Presumably you could have warmed up between the first check and the second line-up, but each row blocked the whole road, so woud have been difficult to shift the bike and maybe one of the organisers would have come and had a word! Non-cycling aerobic warm-up was a possibility.

As for the warm-up comments, I am with you completely. There were people on rollers from 7am and I was like...what???...why??? I`m fine starting cold, as that was what I used to do when I was younger – we lived half way up a hill, so no choice, and even now, I often do the first or second interval, stop at the vending machine at the bottom for some drinks, cross the bridge and kick-off again. Again, I agree full-on warm-ups are irrelevant unless you need to attack from the start, and as I said, I wasn`t planning on pushing the first half, so wasn`t that concerned. Again, agree with your `mode de racing` but was riding defensively after blowing up last week – my fault for not trusting mapmyride more than my computer - so didn`t attack the hairpins like I would have if I had ridden the course before. Normally would do the same with the cadence, but as I said, was worried the 34-28 wouldn`t be low enough to maintain cadence, whereas in reality it was fine, as barely used it, and never felt an urge to reach for a lower one.

I was hoping my driver would drive the course before the race, but he didn`t want to as had practiced the course 3 times before - really need to practice before-hand but from here, was over 90K and 1,700m of climbing just to get to the start-line. Also, my fault for not adjusting during the race, as thought about it with 2K to go that if I hadn`t struggled by then, I had mis-read the hill, but I think the lack of sleep got to me – had to be up by 3:30 to cycle to meeting point. So was a solid 95% FTP ride (maybe fraction more), but then I approached the hill-climb as like another training ride, so that was what I got. I`ve never puked from riding, just degrees of stomach discomfort, and I felt none, which is why I knew I had got the ride wrong. Thinking it would take maybe 50 mins messed up the effort level as well: also, my fault, as never done 40 min intervals, so unused to the pacing effort - 3-8 min VO2, 15-20 min, 25-30 min, 55-70 min but not 40-odd!

Anyway, there is another one in October, but already full-up so only on waiting list. So if I get that, will definitely practice before-hand (should have Japanese driving licence by then) so can rent car, and also won`t have to be up so early on race-day.
 

StuInTokyo

Maximum Pace
Dec 3, 2010
1,662
62
78
#8
Drowned again. If I'd known it was going to rain, I would have ridden the rainy-day bike to work. Happy Soggy Birthday to me.
I got hit on a delivery towing the trailer, soaked to the skin, but by the time I came back to the L shop, the bloody sun was peaking out from the clouds:rolleyes:

Happy Birthday Mike, I hope you get some cake!:D
 

Ludwig

Speeding Up
Oct 9, 2008
871
0
36
Setagaya-ku, Tokyo
#10
Happy birthday, Mike!

I suffered the same fate. Thought I can ride the 6km from Shinjuku station to my home in nice sunshine as I stepped out of the station - no need to get onto Odakyu Line. A few hundred meters down Koshukaido, I hit a wall of thick rain. Flooded roads. Amazing. And the traffic just does not care about cyclists in the rain and risk they run in slipping. Maybe they won't even notice the dead body in the rain...
 

snoogly

Maximum Pace
Oct 14, 2007
695
48
48
Machida, Tokyo
#11
Curses ...

My summer break starts today, and I was planning to trundle over to Sagamiko area - but the forecast here in Machida is crap for the next two days. But will it really rain...?

I wonder what philosophy others are using to help them decide if they will ride or not on these unseanonal days. Last weekend Tim took a risk, which paid off, and had a great Tomin ride - but Tom and the Positivos headed through my part of the world recently, and got drenched ...

Maybe I should just toss a coin - or ride my MTB, and ignore the forecasts.
 

snoogly

Maximum Pace
Oct 14, 2007
695
48
48
Machida, Tokyo
#14
So I did risk the rain, and like FarEast had sun, rain, rain, sun, and also hail and wind. I got lost, and amazingly filthy. 109km of pleasure and pain ...

The pain was around my head, as I was trying a sweat Gutr (thanks to Mike for the tip) for the first time. It worked well at keeping the sweat out of my eyes, but I just could get it to fit right under the back of my helmet. It seemed OK, but after 3 hours it felt like I was in a torture device :eek:uch: It's either the shape of my head, or I haven't got the knack of it yet ~ but I would still recommend people to try it. Dirt cheap, and easy to find on Amazon Japan.

The pleasure was a gift from my new tires, which were a joy. 'Jack Brown' (Blue) tires, from Rivendell.
http://www.rivbike.com/products/show/jack-brown-green-blue/10-092

Just as fast as 28mm Gatorskins, and superbly plush and comfortable. Even if I am a tad slower, the pleasure and comfort of riding on these tires makes up for it! :D

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okayamaPaul

Speeding Up
Jun 18, 2011
72
1
28
Okayama
#17
Took the day off yesterday and up at the crack of dawn. Headed off from Kurashiki, though Yakage and up to Takahashi. Sunny and hot at sunrise, but thankfully slightly foggy and overcast with a cool wind when I crossed over the mountain into Takahashi. Headed up to a road called Kagura Kaido, which is an agricultural road (広域農道)and climbs up to about 500m. Absolutely struggled, but somehow made it through to the other side. Need to get a smaller front sprocket, but which one I'm not sure. Came down the other side and back round to Nariwa, then in a friend's car to an onsen. 117km and 6.5 hours. Any tips for better climbing welcome. Route link below.

Route map. Route map. (Route Map)


Up early again today and headed up in a car with a work friend to Hiruzen, where there is a 30km bike track. Ended up going around twice and loosening up the legs from the day before which was good.
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#20
Agreed! Grit your teeth and dig in! That's the only way. You can always improve your speed and endurance up a hill with practice and technique - but the pain is the same. The person next to you hammering in a 44x20 is feeling as much agony as the struggling in a 34x34. It's just about sitting on the razor.

Lies, Lies, Lies....... it doesn't get any easier....just faster.