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Fitness Theory and Practice. CrossFit's rationale & foundations. Who is fit? What is fitness?

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Old 02-22-2006, 08:24 AM   #1
Michael Homburger
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I'm going cycling at the end of April. Trip profile over six day's is, in miles: 20, 75, 71, 101, 79, 100. Terrain is mountainous with sections reaching 15%+ gradient. (Example: the last day of 100 miles finishes with the last 16 miles gaining 5,600 feet in altitude.)

My current training looks like this:

Sun: CF
Mon: CF
Tues: CF
Wed: Climb
Thurs: CF
Fri: CF or rest
Sat: Climb

I've been CF'ing since late August. Prior to that I was just running, cycling and climbing.

Right now it's too cold to ride outside. (I live in Toronto and though I realize that some people do ride in the cold it’s not going to work for me.) If I'm lucky the weather will be good enough in April to allow 2-3 weeks on the bike outside. In the meantime I thought I'd change training as follows:

Sun: Long run. Start with 12km, increasing to 20-25km by April 9 (include stepbacks)
Mon: CF
Tues: CF
Wed: Spin class @ noon, climb in evening
Thurs: CF
Fri: CF or rest
Sat: Climb or CF

My last long run was a .5 marathon back in Oct. I’ve felt pretty comfortable running a handful of 10K’s since then. I figure I need to get my slow twitch muscles working, hence the shift towards longer runs. If the weather cooperates I hope to get in a couple or three 75 mile rides prior to going on this trip.

Since August I've gone from 185 to 179 while gaining muscle. Not sure of body fat %. Tanita say's 9%, 3 pt. caliper done by nurse say's 20%. I figure I'm somewhere in the middle closer to the low than the high. I'm pretty confident that I can drop another 5 pounds by April. It'll just take a bit more focus. I've been zoneish for about the last 1.5 months.

So, let me know what you think.
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:39 AM   #2
Garrett Smith
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Since your bike trip is seemingly the most important item on your current plate, I would suggest substituting another Spin class. Maybe do the Spin class on Sunday to replace the run, or move the climb day to Sunday and do the Spin class on Saturday.

With the training volume that you've got now, I don't see the running helping with your current goal much. I'd say do at least two Spin classes a week, or one Spin class and one LSD indoor bike ride, max one climb *or* one run, and fill in the rest with CF and *at least* one reserved rest day.
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:52 AM   #3
Chris MacFarlane
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You will have to look at upping the spinning mileage. Or if you have one mount your road bike on the turbo trainer in front of the TV and ride to training DVD's.

Aside from tha there is one big thing to be aware of. Spinning is not a substitute for actuall bike riding. It is usually considered an add on. This is due to all the other factors that effect your riding weather, road conditions, and so on.

You'll hate me for this but every chance you have go ride outside. It only has to be once a week if you can. This way you maintain those bike handling skills you'll need in roughly 8 weeks.

Though you should be able to ride here in TO today. It was almost +1C at 6am.
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Old 02-22-2006, 04:37 PM   #4
Lynne Pitts
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Moving to Fitness.
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Old 02-22-2006, 08:09 PM   #5
Motion Macivor
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The number one most important thing you can do to train for this trip, is toughen the spot where your but meets the saddle. If you've done much riding before you know what I mean. The one thing that will crush your will to pedal is a nasty sadle sore. You can work through everything else. Get on a wind trainer for a couple hours a day 2-3 times a week and just put in easy miles (you can pick one up for about $150) with the crossfit and spin class you're getting plenty of intensity already.
It's really important to get a lot of light spining time in to increase your neuromuscular adaptation, recover from your other workouts, and toughen your *** (I've heard that you will actually develope more blood vessels in your legs through light spinning but I dont know if that's true).
I've never had good cross over from running to cycling I think this is because cycling has no eccentric contractions. I think you'll have better results alround if you drop the running and add more light spinning.
Be carefull about riding too much right before the event I would try to time my hardest training two weeks before the event and then drop off your volume and intensity (that means no crossfit). I would ride every day for those two easy weeks but just enough to work up a light sweat and no longer than an hour a day. This will allow you to super compensate and increase your fittness to a level that additional training will not allow. As these two weeks go on you will feel better and better and you will be tempted to train really hard but dont, this will only knock back the gains you are making.
I highly recomend you pick up the cyclists training bible and look at the section on crash cycles, if you want a quick fix.
hope that helps.
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Old 02-23-2006, 02:22 AM   #6
Eugene R. Allen
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Michael - Motion is absolutely correct. You don't prepare for cycling by doing things other than cycling. I guarantee you that Lance prepared for the Tour by riding his bike, not by doing high intensity CF workouts. The spin class is better than not riding but 45 minutes of spin won't even begin to prepare your nether regions for the rigors of 6 to 8 hour days in the saddle.

You are making an error that will cause you much pain later if you don't spend a lot of time in the saddle now. In exactly the same way that you would not prepare for a high intensity explosive event with long slow bike rides, don't prepare for a long slow bike ride with high intensity workouts. You have only a couple months at best to prepare so you need to get on that bike for a couple hours at a time several times a week - minimum - until about a week or 10 days before the ride. Then taper with shorter rides for those last few days and then hardly anything for two days prior. The closer you get to your event the less distance work you want. Quick stuff is OK but you need to let your mucles recover.

Your even is long...you must train long.

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Old 02-23-2006, 09:31 AM   #7
Michael Homburger
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Thanks for all the responses. I’m hearing what I kind of already knew: I need to spend more time on the bike. Luckily a buddy is lending me his Tacx trainer so I’ll be able to spend more time spinning than I had anticipated. I’m pretty happy about this, as I don’t think spin classes were going to do it for me. Went to one yesterday. Not a total waste of time but nothing I can’t do on my own. (The trainer did give use a couple of real gems of advice: “eat a couple of bananas before class so you don’t get cramps, and drink gatorade not water. It’ll replace electrolytes.” This for a class that has maybe 30 minutes at best of moderate activity. Umm…thanks.)

Eugene, I have a question for you with respect to nutrition during longer events. In the past I’ve always used GU when doing sessions that took more than 1.5 hours to complete. I’d typically take one packet every hour and hydrate with water or eload mixed at half strength. Would you recommend changing this as one becomes more zone compliant?

Chris, the weather here sure is nice today, and yesterday. Too bad I have to work during the daylight hours. If we get weather like this on the weekends I’ll defiantly hook up with the Donut (that’s a local group ride for you folks who aren’t from Toronto). I just don’t like riding outside when it’s dark and there is the possibility of ice.

Thanks again, I appreciate the help.
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Old 02-23-2006, 10:04 AM   #8
Chris MacFarlane
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Michael, I'm one of those freaks you hear about who can ride in all conditions and do. One of the big advantages to having a cross bike as well as being a MTBer. Personally I have a goal every year to have more mileage on a bike than a car.

Plus I can barely stand 45 min on a trainer.
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Old 02-23-2006, 10:29 AM   #9
Michael Homburger
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My post above should read "definitely" not "defiantly". Damn spellcheck!:blush:

Chris, I hear ya. I haven't spent alot of time on bike trainers, but I have used treadmills a fair bit and I can't stand them either. Last winter I got so irritated with them that I ended up doing 20km training runs in -15C weather after a fresh snow of 15cm instead of running indoors. (I ran in the Mt. Pleasant cemetary as they keep the roads well ploughed.) At least I have a nice carrot at the end of this. It'll make it easier to stay motivated.
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Old 02-23-2006, 05:31 PM   #10
Motion Macivor
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Michael,
I dont want to beat a dead horse but You should really get a copy of the cyclist's training bible. All the info you could need is in there. And I was just thinking I've had really good transfer from speed skating and hockey to cycling. I think the high intensity and focus on allround cardio and leg strength really helps. If you mix it with a lot of easy spinning you'll have a very effective program without having to go outside too much. But I guess that does'nt help if you dont skate.
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