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I am going to start my base 1 training in a couple of weeks roughly following the Friel plan. When doing base miles, what is the best way to structure the rides? My base weeks range from 12-20 hours a week. For example, in a 15 hour week, should I do 3 five hour rides, 5 three hour rides, 1 five hour ride and 5 two hour rides? Does it really make a difference in base training? I know I need to get in the low intesity miles, I just don't know if I should try to spread it out evenly or do big blocks. Since most people just finished base training, I was curious what worked well for you? This is my second year as a senior expert in the South Fl area, so my race season is in the Winter instead of the summer. Any thoughts would be helpful.
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Andrew
 

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Hard question to answer...

because everyone reacts to training differently, based on things like age, training history, and genetics.

Long slow miles are kind of a wierd animal, because many people (including Friel, I think) seem to ignore the connection between volume and intensity. Getting the right mix for you takes some experimentation.

My experience:

Last year I put in huge base mileage--something like 5k miles for the season. Because of the extremely high volume (I was riding 6 days per week) my intensity was necessarily low--generally toward the bottom of my aerobic zone.

This year, I made a change. In Base 1, I lowered my volume and am now riding only 4 days per week. However, I'm doing those rides toward the top of my aerobic zone. No more chit chat with my training partners (breathing just hard enough to make conversation inconvenient) but I have a lot more free time.

Yesterday I did an all-out 16 minute climb and was surprised when I averaged only 3 watts lower than at the end of last season when I had huge mileage on my legs--so the plan is clearly working.

Not sure this helps, but maybe it gives you something to think about as far as quality vs. quantity. As a general rule, I'd say that no matter what you do, try to make sure you're fully recovering during your base period, and try to do at least 1 really long ride per week.

I think Friel's book has a section recommending how you split your hours in every training period. Perhaps start with that?

Good luck...
 

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amex420 said:
I am going to start my base 1 training in a couple of weeks roughly following the Friel plan. When doing base miles, what is the best way to structure the rides? My base weeks range from 12-20 hours a week. For example, in a 15 hour week, should I do 3 five hour rides, 5 three hour rides, 1 five hour ride and 5 two hour rides? Does it really make a difference in base training? I know I need to get in the low intesity miles, I just don't know if I should try to spread it out evenly or do big blocks. Since most people just finished base training, I was curious what worked well for you? This is my second year as a senior expert in the South Fl area, so my race season is in the Winter instead of the summer. Any thoughts would be helpful.
Thanks
Andrew
I'm following the Friel Plan with a bit of customization for my weaknesses. The book says if you have a fifteen hour week, then you rides should be 4, 3, 3, 2.5, 2, 1 and one day off. I've heard that consistency is really the key for building endurance. I like saturday and wednesday to be the long days. Usually seek disciplined groups to do this with.

Base 1 is supposed to be mostly in Zone 2 on flat roads with some hills done seated to increase strength in the hips; speed drills for pedaling efficiency. Base 2 is mostly Zone 2 with some Zone 3 (tempo) thrown in; form sprints as well. Base 3 is mostly Zone 2 with some Zone 4 thrown in as long intervals (8 minutes or so) to work Lactate Threshold power. Currently in build 2 and loving the progress.

I've stuck with the plan and it has been pretty tough; need lots of discipline. But my personality really likes the structure (I know people who absolutely hate it). I'm riding the best I've ever ridden; sticking with guys who used to drop me like a sack of potatoes. Still haven't reached the podium in sports class 30-39 but am getting closer. Ponch.
 
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