Real Science, Real Simple: Tailwind Coaching

Strength Training For Cyclists – Part 1: Podcast #42

WeightLifting wallpapers 26 300x120 Strength Training For Cyclists   Part 1: Podcast #42Want to be a stronger cyclist without touching your bike?  Did you ever wish there was a way to build cycling prowess without sitting on the trainer for hours on end during the dark and cold winter?  Do you dream of a lean, muscular physique like the sport’s top rouleurs?  Well, there’s definitely a way to go about making that happen, if you’re willing to put aside some bias and start hitting the gym (or the home gym if you’re motivated enough.)

For years, many coaches thrashed the idea of strength training when cycling was the primary sport.  But those attitudes are (thankfully) on the way out.  Frankly, a coach who doesn’t believe in strength training is either not well versed in physiology or is just not interested in developing weight based workouts for his/her athletes.  In fact the recent success of numerous former track athletes in the professional road race ranks should have people clamoring for some weight lifting (most trackies are avid weight trainers during the off season.)  Think of guys like Brad Wiggins, Michael Morkov, Jack Bobridge and Geraint Thomas if you want a few examples of trackies who took to the road successfully.  So what’s your reason for not hitting the weight room?

With that in mind, today’s podcast will discuss some of the components of strength training and exercise adaptation, including:

  • @8:34 – Definition of power, components of power, where strength plays into this
  • @16:56 – Endurance exercise adaptation pathways (CaMKs and AMPK)
  • @32:32 – Strength training adaptation pathways (mTOR C1 and C2 pathways)
  • @42:28 – Summary of pathways and effects

In Part 2, I’ll talk about specific strength training protocols, how to integrate strength training into your cycling (how to get that adaptation to “stick” once you start pedaling again) and nutritional and exercise timing tips and tricks to maximize your cycling fitness after spending time at the gym.

As always, if you enjoy what you hear, head over to the Tailwind Coaching Podcast on iTunes and rate it 5 stars.  Don’t forget to post any questions to the Tailwind Coaching Facebook page, and don’t forget to support our sponsors and help to keep this podcast free, and help me to get this information to more people and help grow the racing community.

Now that we’re winding down the competitive road season, you might want to think about reloading for the fall cyclocross season!  Check out my modular training plans in my online store and get running on the way to some killer cyclocross fitness.  And don’t forget to save 10% with the coupon code in this week’s podcast.

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Century and Gran Fondo Training – Podcast #41

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Gran Fondo New Jersey 300x225 Century and Gran Fondo Training   Podcast #41Last time on the Tailwind Coaching Podcast I talked about how to get started with road racing.  So far, I’ve received a lot of positive commentary on it, but a number of people felt that I was leaving some things out.  Comments were made to the effect of “What about gran fondos?” and “What about centuries?”  I realize that the majority of cyclists out there aren’t racers, but still find joy in searching out tests of their endurance, climbing or overall fitness.  Many of those ways involve planning for a century or gran fondo.  Do you want to complete that event, or do you want to CRUSH that event?

In today’s podcast, I’ll discuss what you need to know to not only be successful in pursuit of that goal, but to shatter your expectations.  I’ll cover:

@9:56 – What is a gran fondo?  What is a century?

@23:34 – What skills do I need to be successful in gran fondos and centuries?

@44:26 – Tips and tricks to ensure you have the best century or gran fondo possible.

As always, if you enjoy what you hear, head over to the Tailwind Coaching Podcast on iTunes and rate it 5 stars.  Don’t forget to post any questions to the Tailwind Coaching Facebook page, and don’t forget to support our sponsors and help to keep this podcast free, and help me to get this information to more people and help grow the racing community.

Now that we’re winding down the competitive road season, you might want to think about reloading for the fall cyclocross season!  Check out my modular training plans in my online store and get running on the way to some killer cyclocross fitness.  And don’t forget to save 10% with the coupon code in this week’s podcast.

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How to Start Road Racing – Podcast #40

P5251428 300x225 How to Start Road Racing   Podcast #40Every year, the Tour de France comes around, being brought to the masses through Eurosport, NBC or various Twitter or internet tickers.  Concurrently, there’s always a spike in cycling interest around the tour, and I get plenty of questions about racing and starting to race.  I guess watching people turn themselves inside out on TV is inspiring for those among us who are inclined to pin on a number.

Regardless of your motivation, it’s always awesome to see riders thinking about jumping into the deep end of the racing pool.  Many times, your average cyclist doesn’t really know how to “go about getting involved in racing.”  Well, I’m going to put some of those fears to rest with today’s podcast.

I’ll cover the following:

  • @13:46 – What is road racing?
  • @23:09 - What are the different types of road races?  What are road races, criteriums, time trials (TTs) and stage races?
  • @39:08 – What do I need to bring with me to my first race?
  • @46:03 – What should I wear to my first race? (Hint: it’s not a ProTeam jersey or National Championship jersey…)

As always, if you enjoy what you hear, head over to the Tailwind Coaching Podcast on iTunes and rate it 5 stars.  Don’t forget to post any questions to the Tailwind Coaching Facebook page, and don’t forget to support our sponsors and help to keep this podcast free, and help me to get this information to more people and help grow the racing community.

Now that we’re in the second half of the competitive season, you might want to think about reloading for the fall!  Check out my modular training plans in my online store and get running on the way to some killer cyclocross fitness.  And don’t forget to save 10% with the coupon code in this week’s podcast.

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Biohacking Lactic Acid

LacticAcid 1024x587 300x171 Biohacking Lactic AcidBiohacking Lactic Acid or “Hacking The Burn”

Lactic acid.  The burn.  The chemical that Phil and Paul always talk about “filling up the legs” and “making the legs scream in agony.”  It gets a bad rap, one that it perhaps doesn’t deserve.  Little do most athletes know, it can not only be a key way to enhance your performance, but it may very well be required by the body to fuel your brain and contribute to various chemical reactions within the body.

How can this improve your cycling performance?

Easy.  For simplicity’s sake (as an overview) here’s the gist of it: The more time you spend creating lactic acid, the more of it your body will be forced to deal with.  That causes a cascade of metabolic changes in the body.  But how does dealing with lactic acid get you further?  How does your body do it?  How can we use those lactic acid idiosyncrasies to be faster cyclists?

We’ll look at a couple of ways to hack lactic acid after the jump, and after we understand how it’s produced and cleared.

How it works (warning, sciencey, geeky stuff ahead):

Continue reading “Biohacking Lactic Acid” »

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Podcast #39 Addendum: High Fat Diets and Performance

photo 169x300 Podcast #39 Addendum: High Fat Diets and PerformanceI‘ve got to say, there are some really smart listeners out there.  Boy did you guys respond to my last podcast (Q&A number 2), especially regarding the last segment on fueling for a century.  Specifically, I referenced a study that found a 2% improvement in cycling performance/power output following glycogen depleted training.  A couple of you rightly questioned my analysis of that study.  Rather than write a lengthy post on the topic, I’ve decided to create an addendum podcast (originally designed to be the first segment of my next podcast, but after realizing the length, I decided to make it a stand along podcast) in order to address the issue.

Below I’ve included the study I reference in the podcast:

Fat adaptation followed by carbohydrate restoration increases AMPK activity in skeletal muscle from trained humans

Our results demonstrate that AMPK-α1 and AMPK-α2 activity and fuel selection in skeletal muscle in response to exercise can be manipulated by diet and/or the interactive effects of diet and exercise training.

This essentially relates that we can sort of “eat ourself into fitness.”  Cool, huh?

SHORT-TERM (<1 WK) MANIPULATION of dietary macronutrient intake is associated with marked changes in skeletal muscle gene expression (1524), substrate stores (36), metabolic flux, and fuel oxidation (102223). Exercise training also results in striking modifications in muscle gene expression (14), energy reserves, and the relative contribution of fuels to the energetic demands of muscle (9). Accordingly, the extent to which acutely altering substrate availability might modify the training impulse has been a key research area among exercise physiologists and sport nutritionists for several decades (for review, see Ref. 19). Indeed, evidence is accumulating that nutrient manipulation can serve as a potent modulator of many of the acute responses to both endurance (15) and resistance exercise (711).

So basically, if you eat well and train intelligently, you can turn yourself into a monster.  However, it also shows that if you eat poorly (I.E. a carbohydrate laden diet that promotes free radical production and inflammation) you can probably do more to hinder your performance than help it.

As always, if you enjoy what you hear, head over to the Tailwind Coaching Podcast on iTunes and rate it 5 stars.  Don’t forget to post any questions to the Tailwind Coaching Facebook page, and don’t forget to support our sponsors and help to keep this podcast free.

With the summer here, it’s time to get serious about your summer fitness!  Check out my modular training plans in my online store and get started on the path towards killer criterium fitness today.  And don’t forget to save 10% with the coupon code in this week’s podcast.

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