Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Coach's Challenge

A friend was tasked with meeting this goal by her coach, and this simple challenge is turning out to be quite a good one. The challenge is to ride for 1 hr at an average HR at or above 86% of max, defined as ( 100 * (HR / 220-age)), with no stops, on a trainer (or outdoors), at a cadence of at least 100 rpms.

I have come close to the HR goal on several occasions, but would not even attempt it at the goal cadence, as mine has slowed from the mid-80s to the mid-70s since my calf tear. However, I have exceeded the goal HR for 30-40 minutes, which Friel's Cyclist's Training Bible forecasts should be at a HR of 102% of a 1hr/40km HR.

42 minutes at 92% of max HR implying 90% for 1 hr
Using these two traces, I should be able to meet the HR goal with a little cushion, but it will not be easy, as my LT is ~ 145 BPM. I often ride in the 148-152 range on 2 hr rides, but don't average that.

Obviously, speed, nor terrain nor wind conditions have much of an impact on this test, which is entirely focused on your 'engine', not it's effects. However, it is much easier to manage your body's resources on a flat, straight course or a trainer. To that end I have some advice. Listen to your body, and ride your own race.

While it's best to peg your HR right at the target rate and not change it, as that makes max use of slow-twitch muscles and minimizes fatigue, your body makes insulin on a 3-6 min cycle, so when you are sagging a bit, take it in stride. If you have some gas in the tank you can push a little harder the last km or two, and recover off the clock. I did this at the end of the first trace above, cranking out about 95% of max for the last 2km.

I am using the very cool feature of RideWithGPS that allows you to drag your mouse inside the ride profile box at the bottom and pick off any segment you want, with full stats. (except the Avg Watts is always for the entire ride)

That said, I am going to try to meet this goal by extending a ride with the SBH to one 1 hr leg from Gold Country, past Guy West Bridge, terminating somewhere along the golf course.

10 mi/30min ride at 90% implying 89% 1hr/40km possible
On the ARPT the section from Hazel down to Del Paso Blvd can usually be done without having to stop for traffic, and that should be enough to get 1 hr in at the prescribed pace for me. Let me know how you do!

1 comment:

Gotta Run..Gotta Ride said...

Oh... somehow I knew you would be up for this! Can't wait to hear the result!!

I have an extra prize to throw your way...so get moving! :)