Joe Friel is author of the successful "Training Bible" series ofbooks, a regular columnist for VeloNews and Inside Triathlonand the founder of www.ultrafit.com.
This marks the start of Friel's weekly Question-and-Answer column here on VeloNews.com. Friel will answer a selected group of questions each week. Readers can send questions to Friel in care of VeloNews.com at WebLetters@7Dogs.com.Be sure to include "Friel" in the subject line.
Q: I am finding that my biggest weakness is in recovery afterrepetitive hill climbs and being able to respond to attacks before crestingthe hill. Although,
Cyclists are rightly concerned with eating foods that maximize energy and optimize recovery. But eating the right foods can also give your immune system a supportive boost. Unlike your heart and lungs, which are strengthened by training, your immune system may be a bit fragile. Combining training with work and a personal life can often overtax your resources, stress your body, and compromise your ability to fight off infection.
A healthy immune system consists of a defending army, always prepared to protect your body against attacks from viruses, bacteria and other foreign invaders. Your
Beginning two years ago there was a sudden increase in elite athletes testing positive for metabolites of the steroid nandrolone. Many of these positive tests have occurred in Great Britain, where in 1999 alone there were 17. Several athletes, including U.S. Postal Service rider Benoit Joachim, have claimed these positive doping tests occurred inadvertently through the use of dietary supplements.
Experts continue to speculate over the recent increase in nandrolone positives. Is such a sudden increase in intentional nandrolone use likely? Testing techniques allowing the period of nandrolone
If you want to make it simple, the basics of training come down to three steps:
Step 1: Early in the season, gradually increase the weekly volume of training with medium and easy rides while including strength work.
Step 2: Once a solid base of aerobic fitness and strength is established, include a few high-effort workouts weekly, gradually making them more race-like.
Step 3: Significantly reduce the weekly volume starting a few weeks before an important race while keeping intensity race-like.Pretty simple, huh? Even Elmer Fudd could understand it. But perhaps you're the scientific type.
Power. Think about it.
It's what separates casual riders from the elite. You can be a precision bike handler, a wheelsucker extraordinaire, an elegant pedaler - but if you can't crank when the crunch comes, you'll be left behind.
But how can we improve our power rating? And how do we measure it? And isn't power directly rated to out heart rate? Well, no, not exactly.
By focusing on "scientific" training, we've become too wrapped up in our heart rates. Many of us have even come to believe that high heart rates are the reason for training. But when it comes to racing, it doesn't really