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viva la v-brakes!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all, I'm in a bit of a whole.

I signed myself up for the Leadville 100 back in February or so when I was in half decent shape from winter riding. Then I started my own business, and spent the better part of two months developing business plans, creating marketing materials, setting up bank accounts, meeting with clients.... etc. I have been slowly getting back on the bike for the past month, but progress is slow. I feel I have the base now for big miles and intense efforts, but my legs are weak and if today's ride is any indication I'm lacking in upper body strength too.

I am not very good at keeping to clockwork precision routines, so my plan was to include about 2 hard days a week with 2 long days a week and try to work out so that there are at least 2 days a week on the MTB (so 4-6 riding days a week). I am also putting a bike back together so I can do some urban/trials type riding to build up the upper body strength. Any suggestions for work-outs that will give me the most bang for the buck to get ready for an event like Leadville in just 7 weeks?!? And the last week will be mostly rest, so that makes 6 weeks. Did I mention that I'm also pretty bad and dealing with elevation.

Christ, I'm screwed.
 

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Dude......your best bet is to start a build phase right now. You need to spend time climbing and being in the saddle for long periods of time. Go for quality not quantity at this point. I'd push for two hard days (1-3 hrs) at your lactate threshold, one long day (4-7 hrs) at a sustainable heart rate, and one or two recovery rides depending on how you feel. Push hard for 3 weeks, then take a recovery week, limiting your ride time and doing only recovery and/or endurace rides (low heart rates). You have time for one hard build phase, one week of recovery, and one more week of hard training before you have to tapper. Your fitness is only as good as your recovery.

Two weeks before the race should be your last hard effort, and make it a good one! Try and do a ride that is 75% of the distance and time of the Leadville 100, the next week should be a rest week, then the week of the race should be a couple of short quality efforts and some recovery rides. The day of the race you need to lay it on the line and give 'er hell.

Good Luck!!

BFE
 

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Stayin' Puft
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If you are talking about doing urban/trials type riding, with the limited time you have to prepare for an endurance/climbing focused race, yes, you are screwed.

ED's advice is good.
 

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Occasionally engaged…
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Been there, done that...

Intervals twice a week for the next four weeks -- say Tuesday and Thursday -- with fun, mtb rides on the weekend. Do some work in the gym on your non-riding days to built upper-body strength. (I don't mean to be flip but if you look at primary research literature, nothing gets you fitter faster than about a dozen all out max efforts for about a minute with about a minute recovery in between -- with appropriate warm up and cool down.)

Then distance rides for two weeks that culminates with a nice long one. The week before, do a couple of tempo rides of around an hour each.

Can't help with the altitude thing...

Good luck!
 

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viva la v-brakes!
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the input so far guys. First a bit more reality for the equation:

I am planning on 2-3 (depending on if I can get out of my cousin's wedding!) 100 mile/12-hour races here in WI leading up to Leadville. The first is this weekend. This will definitely let me see where I stand, and will help get me re-tuned on the logicistical/nutritional fronts.

We are heading out to CO 2 weeks before the race to acclimate and do some great riding. So no chance to rest 2 weeks before the event, we will be going as hard as ever. Though we do have the really intense stuff focused towards the beginning of the trip and things get more low-key (though perhaps epic) by the second weekend of the trip. The last 3-4 days before the race will primarily be rest, with just casual riding or pre-riding the course. BIGfatED, do you really think I have time at this point to take a full recovery week? I mean, I will have recovery periods of 2 days or so after intense races/rides and I am sure that I will get a few unscheduled recovery days due to work and weather. I think I will have to get by with that.

Also, I have some weight to loose. I started at 166 lbs, and my racing weight is usually between 140 and 150lbs. Over the past month or so I have lost about 8 lbs, so if I loose 8 more I am in good shape in that regard, and anything on top of that is frosting on the cake (but sadly, not literally). I am really cutting back on my food intake. I am eating a slighly smaller then normal breakfast, and a normal (but very healthy) lunch to fuel afternoon efforts. For dinner, I often just eat a post ride snack after an afternoon/evening ride or a modest salad, or if I do sit down for a real meal I limit myself to 1/2 my normal portion. I got to bed hungry each night. I am seeing good weight loss results, but I am worried how this will effect my energy to train hard and my muscle building ability.

Third, I'm really not one to be very good at keeping a schedule of things, with assigned periods or what not. And couple to that the chaos of starting/running ones own business and my schedule becomes very liquid. I like PeT's suggestion of focusing on intervals. I rarely have issues with my endurance, but my strength and cardiovascular are sub-par, partially due to lack of training focus, partially due to bad genetics (I was always the last kid picked for teams in gym class). I am trying to attend local practice crits and practice short tract MTB races. This helps a lot because I am not great at motiviating myself to the point of suffering on my own. But if I can't make those due to scheduling I will go out for road rides and do hill sprints or intervals on the local TT course and give it all I got.

Canyonrat, I'm not feeling that I have a whole lot of upper body strength right now. I am not working the bike, the bike is working me. I don't have access to a weight room and I have a very hard time motivating myself for this sort of mundane work, even just stuff like push-ups and sit-ups. I am a lot more motivated to hop and jump around on a bike and build upper-body strength like that. And, after-all, those are the exact same muscle actions we use when we're riding right? I don't think this can hurt at the end of a hard ride or on a rest day when the legs can get a "recovery" effort in while the upper body works a little harder.
 

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Stayin' Puft
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Yeah, good luck FishMan. If you are doing Urban stuff in addition to your endurance training, then whatever it takes, just don't endo or break anything... ;-)

Have fun in CO and enjoy yourself riding. At this point, I would train hard and eat whatever you can, don't cut back on whole meals while you are trying to recover from epic rides. Fast-path to overtraining and exhaustion.

Week before LT100 I would plan on a couple of short, high intensity rides, but not too long of epics so you are not depleted going into the race. Focus on your hydration while you are at altitude in Colorado, Hydration and Fueling are very critical riding all day above 10,000 feet.

Look for me out there in Pbville...Full rigid SS One9. Cheers...
 

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Good luck FishMan. May you recover quickly and build endurance for the long haul.

Just remember, your fitness is only as good as your recovery. Give your body a chance to build from your training efforts and you will be rewarded come race day.

Keep the rubber side down and rolling.

Cheers,
BFE
 
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