General Discussion Triathlon Talk » Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts? Rss Feed  
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2015-02-09 7:54 PM


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Subject: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?
I'm training for my first Olympic distance and I am following the 16-week Free Olympic Training Plan (run-focused). Some weeks it is difficult for me to fit in one long bike ride at one time. Is it okay to split up the long ride in one day? Or over two days? Not all the time, just periodically. Thanks.


2015-02-09 8:40 PM
in reply to: GertC

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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?
It's not really a long ride if you do that. It's 2 shorter rides.

Which is still better than doing nothing, but it doesn't quite get the desired effect of training your body to go for 2+hours (I assume based on Oly distance) and how to preserve glycogen, utilize fat, etc.

But if your training plan requires 2 hours of bike ride and you can't manage that, go as long as you can, then maybe extend one of your other rides to top out the distance, or do a separate, shorter (more intense) session.
2015-02-10 2:03 AM
in reply to: GertC

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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?
A full long ride > ride split in two > only doing half of a long ride.

This is my take although I guess there is a case to argue that by doing part of the ride on another day, perhaps when you should be resting, may not be beneficial and could reduce the energy you have to complete other workouts.
2015-02-10 6:45 AM
in reply to: tridantri

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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?

Physiologically speaking, breaking up the long ride can be beneficial if the two shorter workouts are done at an intensity higher than the long ride.

Two one hour rides at 90% would result in a TSS higher than one two hour ride at 80%.

2015-02-10 7:00 AM
in reply to: GMAN 19030

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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?

Are you having a problem getting your bike workouts in due to work, weather, or family commitments? If so you might want to consider buying a trainer which would make things a lot easier to work around. I'm probably in the minority that I love my trainer and do about 98% of my training on it.

 

2015-02-10 7:10 AM
in reply to: GertC

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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?

Farther out from the race the idea of long would be to help get in more riding, so breaking it up can be fine. Closer in you would want the adaptations of doing more at one time.



2015-02-10 7:34 AM
in reply to: Catwoman

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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?

Originally posted by Catwoman

I'm probably in the minority that I love my trainer and do about 98% of my training on it.

 

 

I'm with you on that.  I love my trainer and treadmill.  I love the trainer even more now that I'm on Zwift.

2015-02-10 12:44 PM
in reply to: GMAN 19030


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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?
Originally posted by GMAN 19030

Physiologically speaking, breaking up the long ride can be beneficial if the two shorter workouts are done at an intensity higher than the long ride.

Two one hour rides at 90% would result in a TSS higher than one two hour ride at 80%.




True. . . but. . . the long ride isn't about generating TSS and a high IF. Otherwise, I'm doing it all wrong and can hammer for an hour and a half and ditch the three hour snore fest.
2015-02-10 12:53 PM
in reply to: ziggie204

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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?

Originally posted by ziggie204
Originally posted by GMAN 19030

Physiologically speaking, breaking up the long ride can be beneficial if the two shorter workouts are done at an intensity higher than the long ride.

Two one hour rides at 90% would result in a TSS higher than one two hour ride at 80%.

True. . . but. . . the long ride isn't about generating TSS and a high IF. Otherwise, I'm doing it all wrong and can hammer for an hour and a half and ditch the three hour snore fest.

You could be. Context matters. A lot.

2015-02-10 1:26 PM
in reply to: brigby1

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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?

Originally posted by brigby1

Originally posted by ziggie204
Originally posted by GMAN 19030

Physiologically speaking, breaking up the long ride can be beneficial if the two shorter workouts are done at an intensity higher than the long ride.

Two one hour rides at 90% would result in a TSS higher than one two hour ride at 80%.

True. . . but. . . the long ride isn't about generating TSS and a high IF. Otherwise, I'm doing it all wrong and can hammer for an hour and a half and ditch the three hour snore fest.

You could be. Context matters. A lot.

Exactly.

To ziggie... any training is all about the TSS.  Training stress is the whole point of training.  A high IF maybe isn't as big a deal depending on the distance you're training for but it's still part of the equation.

Saddle time is an overrated piece of the puzzle.

The OP was talking about training for an Oly, where a high IF is arguably the most important metric.  A well paced Oly bike ride is just a shade under redline pace.

2015-02-10 9:19 PM
in reply to: GMAN 19030


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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?
Originally posted by GMAN 19030

Originally posted by brigby1

Originally posted by ziggie204
Originally posted by GMAN 19030

Physiologically speaking, breaking up the long ride can be beneficial if the two shorter workouts are done at an intensity higher than the long ride.

Two one hour rides at 90% would result in a TSS higher than one two hour ride at 80%.

True. . . but. . . the long ride isn't about generating TSS and a high IF. Otherwise, I'm doing it all wrong and can hammer for an hour and a half and ditch the three hour snore fest.

You could be. Context matters. A lot.

Exactly.

To ziggie... any training is all about the TSS.  Training stress is the whole point of training.  A high IF maybe isn't as big a deal depending on the distance you're training for but it's still part of the equation.

Saddle time is an overrated piece of the puzzle.

The OP was talking about training for an Oly, where a high IF is arguably the most important metric.  A well paced Oly bike ride is just a shade under redline pace.




Shrug, I'm generally following the the Trainerroad sweet spot base right now with some modifications. 6 sessions a week, 7-8 hours a week, with a 3 hour ride on Saturday, just short of 400 TSS a week. Middle of the week rides are higher on the IF side with a 60-70% FTP long ride on the weekend. Given those numbers, your thinking I'd be better off doing something harder for 2 hours instead of a longer 3 hour ride on the weekend?


2015-02-10 10:14 PM
in reply to: ziggie204

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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?

Originally posted by ziggie204
Originally posted by GMAN 19030

Originally posted by brigby1

Originally posted by ziggie204
Originally posted by GMAN 19030

Physiologically speaking, breaking up the long ride can be beneficial if the two shorter workouts are done at an intensity higher than the long ride.

Two one hour rides at 90% would result in a TSS higher than one two hour ride at 80%.

True. . . but. . . the long ride isn't about generating TSS and a high IF. Otherwise, I'm doing it all wrong and can hammer for an hour and a half and ditch the three hour snore fest.

You could be. Context matters. A lot.

Exactly.

To ziggie... any training is all about the TSS.  Training stress is the whole point of training.  A high IF maybe isn't as big a deal depending on the distance you're training for but it's still part of the equation.

Saddle time is an overrated piece of the puzzle.

The OP was talking about training for an Oly, where a high IF is arguably the most important metric.  A well paced Oly bike ride is just a shade under redline pace.

Shrug, I'm generally following the the Trainerroad sweet spot base right now with some modifications. 6 sessions a week, 7-8 hours a week, with a 3 hour ride on Saturday, just short of 400 TSS a week. Middle of the week rides are higher on the IF side with a 60-70% FTP long ride on the weekend. Given those numbers, your thinking I'd be better off doing something harder for 2 hours instead of a longer 3 hour ride on the weekend?

My thoughts are still in the context. It's not actually all about accruing more TSS, but getting the most out of what you do (or can) put in, as in the greatest adaptive response. Many people only ride just a couple or a few times a week, in which case getting more TSS is generally going to be a good idea. Since you're already at 6 rides a week and 7-8 hrs, you'll really want to be thinking of how the various workouts fit together. There isn't really enough info yet to say if a hard 2 hrs would be better than the easy 3. If the TR plan already has 2 or 3 solid rides in the week you're probably fine as you are. Unless you have a long course race coming up fairly soon, in which case the entire plan could need some reworking as it sounds like five ~1-hr rides plus the longer one on the weekend.

So that's where I'm kind of wondering about the OP, where in the plan are we looking at and how much breaking up would there be?

2015-02-17 8:22 PM
in reply to: GMAN 19030

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Subject: RE: Can I sometimes break up my long bike workouts?
Originally posted by GMAN 19030

Physiologically speaking, breaking up the long ride can be beneficial if the two shorter workouts are done at an intensity higher than the long ride.

Two one hour rides at 90% would result in a TSS higher than one two hour ride at 80%.




I'm going to disagree here.

Yes while you may be able to get more TSS from 2 rides, the actual physiological goal of a 'long ride' is to train the body to utilize fat as a fuel, preserve glycogen, etc. You CANNOT do this while working at a higher intensity, as carbs are the preferred fuel, not fat.

High TSS is good, but not the be all and end all. The HOW of generating TSS is important too. But that is our challenge, balancing the various physiological adaptations and training stress.
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