Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Get the most out of the time you spend on the bike

In order to see improvement on the bike, we need to challenge all the bodies' energy systems.

This means working at different intesnisty levels, for different durations and allowing very specific amounts of recovery to optimally tax the body leading to the adaptation (and improvement) we are looking for.

Bioenergetics 101:

  • We have 2 means to manufacture energy: with O2 (Aerobic) or without utilizing O2 (anaerobic).

  • We can acquire energy from 3 sources: Carbohydrates (Glycolysis), Fats (Lipolysis) and Protein.

  • Protein is the least utilized substrate and Carbohydrates the most used.

  • Fat is the most abundant source of energy in the body.

  • We can train the body to be more energy efficient with how it uses the limited Carbohydrate energy it has stored, and help it to become more effective at using the stored fats.
It is in fact a fairly simple process: ensure your training hits all the energy systems of the body:

  • Aerobic Lipolytic & Glycolytic - Long, Slow distance training.

  • Aerobic Glycolytic - Longer intervals (Table 1)

  • Anaerobic Glycolytic - Intermediate length intervals (Table 2)

  • ATP - PC - SPeed and Explosive Power - Short intervals (Table 3)

Table 1

Table 2

Table 3

By introducing a variety of different training stimuli not only will you become a more energy efficient athlete, but you will see a far greater improvement in all aspects of your riding.

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