Pain is an interesting, often elusive and sometimes debilitating creature. Almost always negative in connotation, it denotes a kind of suffering, either physical or mental, as a result of some assault upon our body or mind. As human beings, we associate pain with misery, with suffering, with disability and typically strive to avoid it wherever possible. However odd it may seem, athletes in general (and cyclists in particular) seem to live for the rush of agony that often accompanies competition.
But why? What is it about this universally negative condition that drives some of us to seek it out while the majority of the population tries to escape it?
What, really, is the nature of pain?
Continue reading “The Nature of Pain” »
Perhaps you've seen the oft repeated "New Year, New You" headline on the cover of Bicycling Magazine. It's so predictable that even Peloton Magazine said "you'll never see this on your cover."
While you may not be able to completely transform yourself into a new person, you can always improve on what you've got, and that's what today's podcast focuses on; taking your successes from last year and building on them. What do you want to be? Stronger? Faster? Leaner? A better hill climber? All of the above?
While nobody is going to become a "new you" unless you're suddenly reincarnated as a ProTour rider, we can certainly make you a "better you." Learn which facets of your body and fitness are trainable, which you're just going to have to live with, how to turn your weaknesses into strengths and how to maximize your strengths.
Podcast: Play in new window
At a time of year when the leaves are flying, centuries are calling and fondos are in full swing, many cyclists struggle with holding their hard earned summer fitness in the waning daylight of the fall. In the past couple weeks, I've seen (and received) a number of questions about maintaining form and fitness "for just a few more weeks." I'm going to let you in on a couple of secrets for your end of season woes.
Continue reading “Coaching: Back to Fundamentals” »
Start thinking about next season
For those of you who are ending your season soon and haven't thought about the next one, all I can say is:
You should be reviewing the successes and failures of your current season and thinking about your goals and aspirations for next season. If you're contemplating hiring a coach to help you reach those goals, now is the time in the season to start thinking about it. I've been hard at work refining my training plans and building new workouts for my athletes. Of course, one-on-one coaching is extremely focused and for that reason I limit the number of athletes I'm able to coach one-on-one. Check out my coaching services if you're thinking of recruiting a little help to ensure you meet your goals. Hoping to race Battenkill? Want to PR at Gran Fondo NY? Have a crit series on the calendar? I've got the tools to make you leaner, stronger and faster, if you've got the drive and commitment.
As some of you may have seen from my Strava uploads, I've been busy testing a number of different High Intensity Trainer (HIT) workouts recently. These workouts are specifically designed for indoor trainer use (and with the shortening days and the holidays not far off, that's where you'll find most of us very soon) and are designed to build fitness and fundamental skills in very short times. I've made the first few of the available on my Training Plans page, and keep your eyes open for more and more of them. As a bonus (or an incentive, depending upon who you are) I'll be including ALL of my HIT workouts in my one-on-one coaching programs at NO extra charge! That means you'll have access to these killer workouts as part of your customized training plans, giving you even MORE improvement in your speed, strength, skill and endurance.
Keep your eyes on this space for future coaching announcements and new workouts.
You've all heard about anaerobic threshold, lactate threshold, threshold, red line, Zone 4, "the burn" and plenty of other terms that relate to the upper limits of your aerobic engine. But what a lot of people don't seem to understand is how to find that magical number, and what to do with it.
In this article, we'll examine the physiology behind anaerobic threshold and then you'll learn how to figure out what it is. I'll also discuss (very briefly) how you can use it to train towards becoming a stronger cyclist.
So without further ado….
Continue reading “Coaching: Finding Your Lactate Threshold” »