Real Science, Real Simple: Tailwind Coaching

Effective Base Building (Podcast #51)

Cycling indoor trainerWhen you hear the term “base training”, many of you think of cycling base training, involving long slogs through frozen tundra and icy winds.  Those of you who are racers or competitive fondo riders may believe that the necessary base miles for competitive cycling are long, boring and low intensity, with little variety.  Other, more recreational riders may think about watching the Tour de France while they spin away on the indoor trainer for a couple hours per week, hoping to get a jump on their group riding buddies.  I’ve got a newsflash for you: those impressions are OLD SCHOOL and couldn’t be further from the truth.

In reality, base training should be taken to it’s most primal definition, one that’s hidden within the term itself.  “Base training” should be the activity done to build a solid BASE for your future fitness, both on and off the bike.  Just like the base of the human body is the core (everything attaches to it, everything works through it, so it’s the true base of the body), the base of your fitness involves the core and everything contained within it, including your heart, lungs and cardiovascular system.  As an extension of your core, your legs have something to do with this too, since they’re the stems that attach your core to your pedals and they are important to build base for as well.  So it’s not just accumulating saddle time that should be your focus (although you really do need saddle time), but what you do WHILE accumulating saddle time.

In this episode of the Tailwind Coaching Podcast, I’ll talk about the importance of base training and how you can be more effectively base training than you are now.

Read more after the jump, including:

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Recover Like A Pro (Podcast #50)

Cyclist quad and hamstring massageHave you ever heard that your body doesn’t get stronger through training?  It’s an odd thing to think about, but it’s inherently true.  Training is the overloading stimulus that (hopefully) pushes your body beyond it’s comfort zone.  Once you’ve pushed beyond the constraints of your fitness you need to allow the body to repair the damage that has been done to it and build it stronger for the next challenge.  But the recovery phase is something that many cyclists completely ignore, opting instead to sit on the sofa or worse, go for a recovery ride that turns into a workout.

In today’s 50th episode of the Tailwind Coaching Podcast, I’ll detail some of the do’s and don’ts of recovery, including:

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Predictions for 2015 (Pro Cycling and Beyond)

2015 BikeEach new year is another chance to start anew.  A chance for reform.  A chance to get done that which fell by the wayside last year.  This year is no different, and in no place is this more apparent than the sport which we all love and regularly attempt to conquer.  From the professional peloton to the local gran fondo, things are set up to change and adapt again this year.  To that end, I’ll make a few prognostications as to the direction of the sport of cycling in 2015: I’ll cover the men, the women, the pros and the joes.  And in a year, I’ll revisit this and see where cycling has actually gone.  Hopefully, some of the things I’ll address will come true, and some won’t….happy 2015, eh?

Without further ado, in 2015 I believe…

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Fat, Fasting and Training Adaptation (Podcast #49)

Butter and MCT CoffeeGetting fat.  That’s the last thing anyone wants to hear over the off season, especially during the holidays.  The simple fact is that the holidays are notorious for being able to pack the pounds on to a cyclist.  There are parties aplenty, goodies in the office (usually in the form of high calorie desserts), feasts with family and the ever present alcoholic beverage, just begging for you to imbibe.

It’s easy to overdo it during the off season and find yourself in a hole come January. But there is a way to start melting off those excess inches that doesn’t involve giving up tasty meals of spending hours per day on the trainer. And that simple way involves putting a little more fat in your gullet.

What?!

You heard me right. If you understand the physiology of how our body processes the fuel it is given, you’ll be able to make some smart dietary choices.  And if you stick with some of those changes for the long term, you’ll realize some performance benefits as well.

In this episode of the Tailwind Coaching Podcast, I’ll get into some of the science behind nutrition and exercise adaptation.  You’ll find the following information discussed in this episode:

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Review: Zipp Tangente Tubular Tires

Zipp Tangente Tubular TiresTubular tires seem to be going out of style these days, but there is still a very loyal following of people who love the supple feel and unmatched ride quality of a tubular tire.  As I noted back in my Vittoria Rubino Pro III review, there’s a huge spectrum of tires, from the “lightweight and supple for racing on smooth roads, durable, high volume and puncture resistent for riding gravel grinders, or somewhere in between for everyday training tires.”  In the case of Zipp’s Tangente Tubulars, we’re talking not about a high durability training tire, but a lighter weight racing tubular.  And after a season of riding (and racing) Tangentes, here are my thoughts on these “aerodynamic wonders.”

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