On Saturday I returned to Tempe Velodrome for some club racing. By chance I was able to borrow a car and dust off my track bike that has been looking at me with disappointed eyes for so long. It was the first time I'd raced in 6 months and quite a revelation for me in terms of accessing my own fitness. Since moving over to the socalled 'wrong' side of the bridge in March, I hadn't been out on any hard sunday morning training rides with Dulwich Hill BC. It was too early, too far, and too cold! I had however ridden to Melbourne in 5 days, I rode around Tasmania in Feb, I'd done many sunday rides around the Ku-ring-gai NP, and I'd commuted to work and every other errand around town for the last 6 months (I don't own a car so I'm always riding). So how much fitness could I've lost??? Plenty, it would seem. I'd gone from being a 'fastie' to a puffed out slowie and came last in every race.

So whats the lesson of this story? Riding heaps of kms doesn't make you go any faster or get any fitter. Riding heaps of fast kms, will make you faster and fitter.

Views: 108

Comment by Josh on July 13, 2009 at 8:02pm
Hmm. Riding fast (even if not big kms) will make you better at riding fast. Riding heaps of kms makes you better at riding heaps of kms. That could include fitness. Although, as you have found, there is more than one type of "fitness".

But did you have to share that photo?
Comment by Neil Alexander on July 14, 2009 at 11:27am
The pic is DaveW (just kidding, Dave :-) )

And as for the wrong side of the Bridge, Adrian you have come into the light. The other is the dark side.
Comment by Kim on July 14, 2009 at 11:55am
That's interesting because I have always believed that my regular riding isn't exercise but merely just getting around. The problem is that your body gets used to what you are doing very quickly and you always need to extend yourself to increase your fitness.

I have always been told that the best way to increase your cycling or running fitness is to do interval training which is the same as your finding that you need to do fast kms to increase your fitness.
Comment by Kim on July 14, 2009 at 12:22pm
That's my understanding too, slow twitch are for endurance and fast twitch are for speed.
Comment by DamianM on July 14, 2009 at 3:34pm
You motivated me Adrian, I've been doing mainly commuting of late and I've gotten very relaxed (i.e. leisurely and slow) about it all. I decided to smash myself around a bit on the way to work this morning and thought I was gonna puke :)
Comment by Ma Dame Vélo on July 14, 2009 at 5:44pm
Although I agree with everyone above, I must say I cannot cope with that photo, Adrian. Dave W posted that photo last year along with an item about wearing knicks with bibs (as in that photo). Although I can't find his post now (probably went away when he did), he purposely gave the impression it was a photo of himself. Although I didn't trully believe him at the time, I have never been able to get the notion out of my mind that that is a photo of DaveW himself.

Can't control my brain-linkages.


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