Need more straightline speed

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  • Need more straightline speed
  • RealMan

    First thing that springs to mind is hill reps (nothing to steep) @ 60rpm in zone 3, working on a 10 minute climb. Good for building strength. Could also do hour long flat out sessions (basically a 25 on a turbo), or 3 x 20 mins with 10 minutes zone 2/3 between.

    However, what’s your positioning like?

    I’d always recommend a proper coach as opposed to STW too. for example.


    I need advice about hill work. Yes you get strong, but do you get fast for the flat. On the ups I can make my way past other riders.

    Position is messy, but when I get down to it I can sort it.


    training rides on a rolling course – 20 mins just below threshold, recover for 10m go again & again if you feel like it. Would be my advice, but I’m not a coach 🙂


    It’s hard to know without seeing you race. One of the main reasons people seem to get dropped is they waste energy. You say you’re taking people on the hills – are you doing this just because you can, then getting dropped on the flat? Every pedal stroke has to be for a reason.

    Holding a wheel properly is going to do you a lot more good and a lot quicker then an extra training session, maybe just need to focus more on it during?

    What’s your riding position like? You as aero as you can get?

    When you say you want more speed on the flat, you’re just asking for more watts really. Lots of different ways of getting that, so I suppose it depends on how long you need to do it for – are you able to hold them for 20 minutes before getting dropped?


    Climbing, handling, sprinting, attacking recovery all good.
    I’m falling down seriously on the long high speed flats. In my last two road races I’ve eventually gone off the back, I should say that a handful of Elites and 1st were pulling it along, but I know I can’t make the jump to the next level without improving here.

    What I’d like to know is, do you think this could be sorted with further weight loss, weights and heavier resistance training on the Turbos? Rather than working on the road anymore than I do already. After all these moments when I go off the back are usually only maintained for a few minutes.
    I do max HR sessions already, but I wonder if should worry less about HR and work on strength?

    Right now I’m thinking about making the step up, which would require a lot of extra hard work. Or staying where I am, pretty good in regional LVRC.

    Also I’m on my feet all day for about 9-10 hours 😕


    It might be worth assessing this tomorrow after my next open road race. It’s regional, but well loaded with good riders.
    It’s shorter at about 50+ miles.

    I tend to climb through as more often than not the bunch slows at the tops for a rest. And if it doesn’t I’m a few spaces ahead.
    In crits I constantly chase breaks and work on the front. The consequences of that means I usually drop off the top five riders, and end up soloing ahead of the main field.


    I constantly chase breaks and work on the front

    I know quite a few people who ride like this, it’s not smart. Got to ask yourself, why are you doing it? If you’re working on the front, then you’re working for a team mate, or you’re just disadvantaging yourself 80% of the time. Either get in the break, or wait for the sprint, but don’t expect yourself to pull back breaks, stop attacks going, and then winning the sprint. Entire teams struggle to do that, so unless you’re an absolute monster, it’s not going to work.


    You need to remember how to grovel.
    Never let that wheel go, never, ever, ever let it go.

    Focus on the rear derailleur in front of you and keep on keeping on.

    It’s a mind game, and you can learn how to fool yourself.


    I know quite a few people who ride like this, it’s not smart.

    I know, but it’s circuit racing. There’s no points or prizes, or in fact anyone that gives a dam. So I have a hoot. Can’t see the interest in turning up for a race to never race and just be able to finish. Every now and then I’ll be rewarded with a win, usually in the cold wet and pouring rain.


    It’s a mind game, and you can learn how to fool yourself

    Thing is I am a fool and not smart 😐


    Is winter training on a fixed/free old hat? I usually do my big miles over winter. How about big miles on a singlespeed road bike?
    Got one part built in the garage

    Premier Icon vondally

    weights to strengthen power and stamina, and possibly cross training with another sport swimming/running/rowing. This is always the balance between sport specific training so bear that in mind, so some gym work with free weights and low weights to start with (free weights with good style encourage better balance and increase core strength) plus press up and other wonderful things that increase your heart rate and build strength.

    Do not forget the arms otherwise T Rex here we come 🙂

    Premier Icon trout

    Do all your winter training on a fat bike carrying a bag of coal.
    then when spring arrives get on the road bike and ditch the coal .


    Do not forget the arms otherwise T Rex here we come

    I’ve just started on free weights for my arms, upper body and core strength.

    Soon, when the road race season quietens I’ll be attempting to lose 1/2 stone (lost 1 stone last year)5’8″ 11.5 stone want to be nearer 10.75

    I think a shift from max HR turbo training to resistance training might help.

    Edit; slightly worried about reducing calories in case I lose muscle, or won’t that happen

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog

    Edit; slightly worried about reducing calories in case I lose muscle, or won’t that happen

    I would do a search on losing weight on this forum, you’ll rapidly conclude that you main danger is losing brain cells rather than muscle…

    Serious business this club racing. Are you Wiggo in disguise? 🙂

    Premier Icon vondally

    add some
    calf presses
    thrusters….google crossfit thrusters or herecrossfit

    build up to this one!

    Kettlebell swings
    and the best of all

    box jumps linkjumps

    weight will increase as you lose fat and increase muscle potentially but pay off is strength and stamina if you use light/moderate weight and reps…. think reps as 5 rounds x 8reps.

    Also reduce rest time between rounds you see lots of folks chatting away, no keep recovery short so you work cardio.

    Also try skipping and if nearby boxing class or kettlebell classes.


    Serious business this club racing.

    It is. Though it’s a love/hate thing. After seeing the older guys at the nats I thought there could be another ten years in me i.e racing til I’m 65. Another year of shaping up, and I’ll decide.

    The rewards are pretty good though, did just one XC race this year and got 3rd in age, and TBH it was lack of off road skills that let me down.
    Constantly finishing top 10 in the regional crits, won one. But was totally outclassed at national level.

    When does your season end out of interest? From experience, i did lots of power work in the gym and nothing but z2 over autumn/winter, it stripped my legs of speed (by that i mean RPM) so be careful as i’ve been spending time working on it as its not helped my climbing this season.

    Tactics and positioning. Sounds like you do too much work on the front (unless this doesn’t apply in the elite/1st races you are doing?) Yes training benefit from doing this, but waste of energy unless you can get into a break. Probably loads more to say but don’t know enough about your training, nutrition etc to comment 🙂


    Probably loads more to say but don’t know enough about your training, nutrition etc to comment

    Hmm training and nutrition, right here are the excuses.
    First I work a physical 10 hour day excluding any breaks, so I get tired.
    Nutritional intake is piss poor. My job makes me hungry, plus training and I eat a lot.

    Training – the basics that are never ever missed.
    60-120 miles Sunday 18-20mph
    Monday rest.
    Tuesday evening crit
    Wednesday or Thursday, days can switch, but one will be a rest day the other a very fast XC.
    Friday hour plus turbo session
    Sat rest or morning coffee ride

    Racing slots in depending on dates i.e one week alone I had a crit, a 3 hour MTB enduro and an open road race.

    My road season starts May and fizzles out early September. I have a chill out then start the cross season begining of October ( came 4th in age overall last year)
    Cross finishes January, then I pile on the miles.

    Nutrition and recovery vital, esp as you are working so long. Nothing wrong with eating a lot, as long as its all good stuff, including fuelling well during races.

    I assume that’s a typical week and you have a 3 week build / 1 week easy? How many hours per week is that? Starting in May might not be the best – i started at the beginning of March and pace by May has ramped up by then, and pace by end of the season chalk and cheese to start of season. You’ll be on the backfoot from the start if everyone else started racing in March (again, just imo!) I know you can’t do much about that though if you need base / race cross. Just a thought.

    Finally, if you are serious, you might want to think about a coach. I have been coached for 2 seasons now, no way would i train myself. My current coach is just amazing, so much support, nutrition advice, tactics help etc on top of my training plan.

    I love racing, got the british national womens series this weekend, just coming off a big endurance block so hoping i recover ok for it! Can sympathise with the need to make the step up – i raced against Lizzie Armistead / other pros in the National RR champs. A real eye opener!

    I found winter training on the track made me much faster, I doubt its a strength issue. Spend some time drafting some seriously quick guys.


    Can’t afford a coach really.
    And my racing is with the LVRC which tends to start a little later. That said I might race BC as well next year, as you can be any cat in LVRC that’ll mean a earlier start.
    I think the better guys in LVRC are top end of 3rds upward, that might be the key?
    So who do race with?

    Edit; just looked at your profile ERC, you’ll know Jack? I trained with him a fair bit.

    Yes i know Jack, he’s flying this season. 🙂 He saved my sorry ass on a hilly 100miler, towing us back home at 20-25mph in dusk. Don’t think i spoke a word for the 2-2.5hours he was on the front!

    Training with people faster than you will help, but i rarely ride with others these days, proper training is lonely! 🙁

    I do max HR sessions already

    what sort of things? i do threshold, sprints, hills, some chaingangs but never any max HR work. Is it a legs or lungs thing that you get dropped in at top end speed?


    Any chain gang rides nr you? In Bristol they are really good for improving speed on the flat. You can choose to doa turn or some hang around at the back for a bit and recover

    Found it really worked for me as I tended to go a lot harder than i would on a turbo/ on my own. Faster than a lot of road races i’ve been in


    Have you thought about getting a bit more aero with your riding position?


    Chaingangs aren’t a problem, most good ones are so well oiled it’s quite easy for me to sit in.
    I broke away from the club to train alone, that’s worked to a degree. I will work myself that’s not an issue.
    I think its leg strength, and deffo some excess weight.

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