Cycling Center Dallas Blog
Cycling Center Dallas Blog
Here we talk about all things cycling - training, wattage, group rides, bike rallies, triathlons, weather, coaching, coaches, nutrition, ponderings, musings, and equipment! If you have a topic or a question, send us a note and we'll try to answer for you!
(18) #aeroiseverything (1) #bikemart (1) #CCD (1) #CoachWharton (1) #computrainer (1) #computraining (1) #CycleDallas (1) #cycling (1) #CyclingCenterDallas (3) #cyclingclass (1) #ftdavis (1) #iambikemart (1) #iamrbm (1) #knowyournumbers (2) #leavewithnothingleft (5) #numbersdontlie (2) #trainwithpower (1) % Gain (9) % improvement (9) 15 seconds (2) 2010 (3) 60-60's (3) 75080 (4) 75218 (3) 75228 (2) 75240 (1) 75248 (1) AC (1) action = reaction (1) Adapting to Altitude (1) aero helmet (1) aerobic power (1) aerodynamics (1) Aledo (1) Aledo Ride for Heroes (1) Alexis Penn (1) Almond Milk (2) Alpe d'Huez (1) Alpine Texas (1) Anaerobic Conditioning (7) Anaerobic Work Capacity (3) Ardmore (1) Armando Mastracci (1) Athlete Update (8) AWC (2) bands (1) Baron Biosystems (2) Beat the heat (1) Best Bike Fit (1) bicycle (7) Bicycle Aerodynamics (1) Bicycle Coach (1) Bicycle Education (2) Bicycle Fit (1) Bicycle Rally (2) Bicycle-Stuff (1) bicycle-stuff.com (1) Bicycles (3) bicycling (20) Bike (3) bike adventures (1) Bike Coach (19) Bike Coach Dallas (1) Bike Critic (1) Bike Mart (6) Bike Rally (2) Bike Rally Results (4) Bike Ride (2) bike score (1) bike tire pressure (1) Bike travel (1) BikeMart (4) BikeMS (2) Biking (2) bone heath (1) Bonk Breakers (1) Boulder Park (1) Brian Terrell (1) Buddy Training (5) Cadence (3) Calibrating a CompuTrainer (1) Cambridge (1) Cambridge Triathlon (1) Camelback (1) Camelbak (2) Camp (1) Campagnolo (1) Campbell Road (1) cancellation (1) cardio (1) Casa Linda (1) CCD (2) Cervelo (2) Changing Gears (1) Classes (9) climbing (1) Coach Christenson (1) Coach Craig Fulk (1) Coach Kurt (5) Coach RIchard Wharton (13) Coach Tracy Christenson (1) Coach Wharton (56) coaches (1) coaching (1) Coit Road (1) Coldblack (2) collarbone (1) CompuTrainer (28) CompuTrainer Calibration (1) Connect IQ (1) Core cycling (1) Core function (1) Core stability (1) Core Training (1) Cornering (1) Cornering on a bike (1) Craig Fulk (3) cramping (1) Crit Simulations (1) Critical Power (4) Critical Power Testing (1) Cycle Dallas (4) cycling (54) cycling adventures (1) Cycling and Resistance Training (7) Cycling and Technology (1) Cycling Cadence (1) Cycling Center Dallas (81) Cycling Center of Dallas (2) Cycling Challenge (1) Cycling Class (2) Cycling Coach (16) Cycling Dallas (2) Cycling dehydration (1) Cycling energy management (1) Cycling Equipment recommendations (1) Cycling Fatigue (1) Cycling Hydration (1) Cycling In Dallas (2) Cycling Monk (1) Cycling Posture (6) Cycling Posture Analysis (1) Cycling Power (1) Cycling Power Lab (1) cycling recovery (2) cycling rehydration (1) cycling resistance training (1) cycling rpm (1) Cycling Savvy (2) Cycling Scoliosis (1) Cycling Tips (16) cycling training (2) Cycling Zen (1) CyclingPowerLab.com (1) CyclingSavvy (2) Cyclist Education (1) Dallas (2) Dallas Bike Coach (1) Dallas Bike Coach. (1) Dallas Cycling (4) Dallas Cycling Center (1) Dan Driscoll (1) David Lopez (1) David Rothgeb (1) David Tilbury-Davis (1) Dean Markham (1) Descending (1) Detailed video (1) Dex Tooke (1) DORBA (1) Dorothy Zarbo (1) Drew Hartman (1) Dynamic Bike Fit (2) Earbuds (1) Earbuds While Cycling (1) Emily Penn (1) Energy (1) ErgVideo (12) faster (1) fitness (10) flexibility (1) Friedrich's Ataxia (1) Frisco Cycling Club (1) Ft. Davis (2) FTP (3) Functional Movement (1) Functional Threshold Power (3) Garland Road (2) Garmin (1) Garmin 1000 (1) getting fit (1) Glen Rose (1) Goal Setting (1) Greater Dallas Bicyclists (1) Group Rides (1) Hammerfest (2) Heat (1) HH100 (1) Hills (1) Hip pain and cycling (1) Holistic Training (1) Hotter 'n Hell (1) Hotter 'n Hell Hundred (1) How to Calibrate a CompuTrainer (1) Hydration (3) ice back (1) IF (Intensity Factor) (3) improving power (1) in home (2) Incline (1) Incline Training (1) indoor cycling (2) Intensity (1) intervals (12) Jack Mott (1) Justine Viera (5) KiloJoules (2) Kiwanis (1) KookaBurra Bird Shop (2) Kurt Chacon (4) Kyle Keeter (1) Kyphosis (1) Lajitas (1) Lancaster (2) Lancaster Rally (2) Lane Control (1) Lane positioning (1) Le Tour (1) Leave With Nothing Left (3) LeaveWithNothingLeft (2) long climbs (1) Long Rides (1) Lordosis (1) losing weight (1) Louis Garneau (1) make up classes (1) Make-Up Class (1) Matrix (3) Maximal Power Available (1) Maximum Power Available (1) Meso-Cycle (1) Mesocycle (1) Michelle Beckley (1) mineral wells (1) Mirage (3) Mitochondria (1) mobility (1) Morphology (1) Mountain Biking (1) Moxy (7) Moxy Monitor (4) Moxy Muscle Oxygen Sensor (1) Moxy Sensor (1) MS150 (2) Mt. Locke (1) Muenster Rally (1) MultiRider (9) Muscle Oxygen (1) Muscle Oxygen Saturation (1) NBS Nutrition (1) Newton (1) Newton's Third Law (1) No Country for Old Men (1) north texas (1) North Texas Cycling (1) Nutrition (2) Nutrition Coach (1) OBC (1) Oklahoma (1) Oklahoma Cycling (1) Online Bike Coach (18) Online Coaching (1) Onlinebikecoach (1) Optimal Chainring Position (1) Osmo (3) Osmo Acute Recovery (1) Osmo Nutrition (2) osteopenia (1) osteoporosis (2) PACC (1) Paluxy Pedal (2) Parable (1) Paul Brown (1) Paul Smeulders (6) Pavel Kolar (1) Pedal Stroke (1) Pedal Stroke Analysis (2) Pedaling with one leg (1) Performance Cycling Instruction (12) PerfPro (14) PerfPro Analyzer (3) PerfPro Studio (11) Periodization (5) PerPro Studio (1) Personal Training (16) Plano Bicycling Association (2) Plano Cycling (1) post-ride recovery (1) Postural Analysis (1) Postural Assessment Cycling (1) posture (1) Posture Analysis (1) Posture Analysis Cycling (1) power (4) Power Meter (4) Power2Max (2) powertap (1) Pre-Season (3) Preparation for Elevation (1) Progression (6) Proper Bike Fit (1) Proper Warm Up (1) Q Ring (1) Q Rings (1) Quarq (3) Quarter (4) QXL (1) QXL Ring (1) RaceDay (1) RaceDay Analyzer (1) RaceDay Apollo (2) RacerMate (1) RBM (1) Reagent Strips (1) recovery (4) recumbent tricycle (1) Red Zone Fitness (1) redzonefitness (1) Relative Power (2) Resistance Training (6) resistance training and cycling (1) Resistance Training for Cyclists (1) Resmed S+ (1) Retul (2) Retul Muve (1) Richard Wharton (59) Richardson (6) Richardson Bike Mart (8) richardson location (1) Ride With GPS (1) RideWithGPS (2) ridewithgps.com (1) Riding in Dallas (1) Riding in Texas (1) Riding in the wind (1) rip trainer (1) RM1 (1) Rotor (1) Rotor Componentes Rotor 2InPower (1) Rotor Components (1) Rotor InPower (1) Rotor Power Meter (1) Rotor USA (1) RRC (1) Saturated Muscle Oxygen (2) Saturated Muscle Oxygen at Altitude (1) Scheduling (8) Shimano (1) Shindo Salvo (1) Singletrack (1) Skiba (2) Skiba Scores (1) Skill (1) Sleep Quality (1) Slope (1) SMART acronym (1) SmO2 (4) Somervell County (1) Specialized (1) Speed (1) SPIN (1) Spin Scan (1) SpinScan (1) Sprint Intervals (2) Sprinting (1) Sprints (1) SRAM (1) SRM (1) Stacy Sims (2) Stamina (1) Steve Elliott (1) Strength (1) strength training (6) stress (1) stretching (1) summer (1) summer heat (1) Suspension Training (3) Terlingua (1) Texas (2) Texas Cycling (1) Texas Heat (1) Texas Time Trials (1) ThB (3) Threshold (4) Threshold Power (8) Threshold Test (5) Threshold Wattage (1) Time Trial (1) Tin Butt (1) Tips (1) Tips for Cycling (2) Tire Pressure (1) TMBRA (1) Tom Anhalt (1) Total Hemoglobin (3) Tour de France (9) Tracy Christenson (8) train with power (2) Training (17) training peaks (1) training stress (1) Training With Critical Power (1) Training With Power (6) Training With W' (1) Training with wattage (6) Training with watts (3) Travel (1) travel fitness (1) Trek (1) triathlete (1) Triathlon (3) Triathlon training (1) Tricycle (1) TRX (7) TSS (1) TXBRA (1) Ultra Cycling (2) UMCA (1) Urban Cycling (1) USA Cycling (1) Vo2 (1) vo2 max (1) Vo2Max (9) W Prime (1) W' (2) wahoo kickr (1) Warming Up (1) Warmup (1) watt meter (1) wattage (30) Wattage Training (26) Watts (16) Watts per Kilogram (2) Weather (5) weight loss (4) weight training (1) weight training for cyclists (1) Wharton (3) White Rock Lake (2) Women's Coaching (1) Women's Racing (1) Women's Road Racing (1) Workout Description (10) Workout Review (10) workouts (2) Wunderground.com (1) XC mtb (1) Xert (4) Xert Online (2) Xertonline (2) YMCA (1) YouTube (1) Zen Cycling (1) Zone 4 (1) Zone 6 (1) Zone 7 (1)
Coach Wharton
10:44

A Quick Highlight of Some Features With the Latest Release of PerfPro Studio

It's interesting to see how the CompuTrainer Calibration changes over the course of a workout, whether from intervals or steady-state. Look especially at the beginning and again around minute 50.

Tags:
Coach Wharton
11:21

A Successful Use of W' in REAL-TIME, During a 20 Minute Test at Cycling Center Dallas

This is just a quick video recap of an exciting result we got last night at Cycling Center Dallas. Using a Client's Critical Power Data, we calculated her W', or, Anaerobic Work Capacity, using PerfPro Studio. Then we underwent an 8 week block of MAP/Vo2Max training. We are testing this week, and did some 'Pre-Test' work last week. Using this Cyclist's most recent 3,8, and 20 minute Mean Max Values, we predicted a Critical Power of ~175w and ~18,100 Joules of AWC. For the Test, I had the client focus on keeping W' as 'Full' as possible for the first half of the workout, and to work on increasing the RATE of use, until, at or near the very end, she was either completely spent, or even below her AWC. On PerfPro, this is depicted on the dashboard as "100% down to -X%", and when you dip too far below Zero, it's usually a good weathervane telling you that you've adapted and have a higher Critical Power, a Higher AWC, or both. This client followed my instructions perfectly, and per her 'OLD' Critical Power, set a new 20MMP of 200w, and hit a "-22%" on her W' during the test. When I entered her new 20MMP, and kept the older 3 and 8 minute mean max numbers, her Critical Power jumped up by 10 watts, but her AWC/W' dropped by about 3200 Joules, or 3.2 KiloJoules. However, MORE IMPORTANTLY, when I applied the NEW CRITICAL POWER and AWC/W' values... the AWC values ended up PERFECTLY ALIGNING, and she ended the test at.... 0% W'. She literally "Left With Nothing Left!", which, as you know, really is my motto. I'm more convinced than ever that this model for Anaerobic Work Capacity (W') works, and that we as coaches are on the leading edge of a training breakthrough. We'll be better able to help our clients understand how to handle any ride, any challenge, any hill, any climb, any long endurance ride, and any race condition, if that's where their spirit takes them. NO ONE, and I mean NO ONE, has applied this knowledge and information like we have, and I'm incredibly grateful for Drew Hartman, Philip Skiba, and all the other Scientists and Coaches who have brought us to this frontier. Watch the video for more.

Tags:
Coach Wharton
14:14

Quantifying Sleep Quality, and How That Translates in to a Better, or Worse, Workout the Next Day

I first started following sleep studies when one of my mentors, Dr. Allen Lim, began discussing the issue in his work with one of the teams he was supporting -- I think it was Garmin. Lim used an ANT+ product called the ZEO SleepCoach, which used a measuring device on a forehead, and transmitted that to a bedside clock that had a memory chip in it. The chip recorded...

  • Time required to fall asleep.
  • Time spent in Light Sleep 
  • Time spent in Deep Sleep (helps with muscle recovery and adaptation).
  • Time spent in REM Sleep (helps with mental recovery and freshness).
  • How many times you awoke throughout the night.
  • Total time spent sleeping. 

It also had a great alarm system that allowed a certain window, so you could get those extra minutes of sleep, in certain states of sleep, in order to wake up refreshed. 

Sadly, they went out of business several years ago, and no one has purchased the company out of receivership. So, I used it for myself, and except for the realization that the clock was not atomic, and drifted out of sync with the real world every few weeks, it did a pretty neat job of measuring things. All of the information could be sent to a database, and you would receive a score, based on a scale of 1-100, compared to age and gender, along with coaching to help raise the quality of your sleep. I started going to bed earlier, quit watching Television so late at night, quit drinking caffeine after about 3pm, and tried not to eat so late. Sadly, my schedule of getting up around 4am really affected the quality of my days, and when combined with the breakdown of my first marriage, I began gaining weight. Ironically, the sleep was an indicator of bigger things going on in my life, sort of a "Canary in the Coal Mine". My REM sleep was inadequate, my Deep Sleep was inadequate, and my mood was chronically shot, along with most of my workouts and fitness. It wasn't until I got divorced, and moved in to a tiny apartment for about 6 months in 2012 that I was able to reset everything and move on. 

But fast-forward to late 2014. I got a random feed on Facebook about the Resmed S+ sleep monitoring device, and when I looked in to it, it really did seem to provide accurate measurement and record-keeping over time. It uses a subsonic system to monitor your sleep, and in conjunction with a smart phone, it's noninvasive and does everything that the ZEO SleepCoach system did, including the smart wake-up alarm. Resmed has a long history of sleep research, and for $130, it was reasonably priced. I started using it, but I never got in to the whole sleep/diet/alcohol/exercise connection until just recently. The results have been fascinating, and here's what I've learned!

Far too often, we look at our day in terms of a routine that centers around meals, work, exercise, and sleep. But what we don't tend to do is think about that circadian rhythm as to how it works in terms of PRE-paration for the next day, as well as RE-paration from the day's activities. I think modern Western Society is arguably in a bad spot, as for the most recent 10,000 years of our history, we tended to go to sleep with the sunset, and get up with the sunrise, more or less. Eventually, candlelight was replaced by electrical light, and now, we have all these extra stimuli around and jobs that never seem to end with the traditional 9 to 5, or 8 to 6, or whatever kind of working tradition we as a culture were used to. Heck, we didn't even celebrate weekends for several thousand years, and we never had days of rest, or vacation. I think that word may even be a modern construct, but that's beside the point. What IS important is that we need to probably RE-THINK our Circadian Rhythm. Instead of looking at bedtime as the END of the day, look at bedtime as the BEGINNING of the NEXT day. How you SLEEP will actually determine the QUALITY of the upcoming 18 hours, and the 1-3 hours that most of you may dedicate to your exercise routine! I THINK I can now quantify what an evening of food and recuperation through sleep can offer for an upcoming day's exercise, and I THINK I can do it using the Moxy Monitor, of which I've become a real, true fan, as well as the traditional wattage and heart rate measuring devices. I THINK that proper recovery can show lowered heart rate, raised power output, and less strain on the muscles and blood. It's still early, and it may be hard to explain or elocute, but I'm going to try. I may have to follow this up with other posts or rework it from time to time, so bear with me. 

Here's the example:

Feb 6 SMo2 and ThB 10 minute sub CP

Click on the image to go to the more detailed link of the Analysis on PerfPro's website. 

On February 6th, I performed a couple of 10 minute efforts to try and burn off some kilojoules, and also to try out some different CompuTrainers that had just been calibrated. I set the WASP devices in the studio (ANT+ mega-transceivers), to pick up the data off of my Rotor Power Meter, while also receiving the HR data off my chest strap. Here are my average Muscle Oxygen values, as well as my average Hemoglobin values for each interval. If you look closely, you'll also be able to see my average recovery values as well. 

Now - here's the data from the ResMed S+, recorded the night before...

Feb 5 Sleep Score Image 1

This first image shows that I honestly had a pretty good night's rest. REM is represented by the battery on the left, and Deep Sleep is represented by the battery on the right. Total Sleep was almost 7 hours, and it took me just 8 minutes to fall asleep. However, I spend about 40 minutes throughout the night awake, and that happened three separate times. 

Here's a more detailed look at the night, broken down in to roughly 5 minute intervals...

Hypnogram from Feb 5 2015

I've highlighted and tagged some of the important stuff.

  • Blue is Deep Sleep.
  • Green is Light Sleep.
  • Yellow is REM Sleep.
  • Red is Disrupted time when I was awake. 

The red dots represent the ambient room temperature, and the yellow dots represent how much light pollution was present. We DO have a pretty dark, quiet house, but there are times when the neighbor behind us may leave the back light on, or a charger is left on in the room somewhere, and that can pollute the darkness of the bedroom. I also like to use an included white noise generator to put me to sleep, and that's the lavender colored column near the 10:30 mark. The rest of the night was pretty quiet, and I really DO sleep better with the bedroom a little bit cooler.

Anyway, despite the good Sleep Score, I think it was the disruptions, specifically where they were placed, and the generally less-than-optimal Deep Sleep, that led to the next day's results. Go back up to the workout values, or click on the link so you can see it on a separate web page. Basically, with a decent but not optimal night's rest, I got muscle and ThB scores that were the following:

  • First Interval: 244w for 10 minutes, 35.1% Smo2, 11.75mmol of ThB, HR 161bpm.
  • Second Interval: 246w, 36.0% SmO2, 11.72 ThB, HR 161bpm.
  • Third Interval: 247w, 36.6% SmO2, 11.73 ThB, HR 167bpm.

Now - what does that mean? 

Generally, for a sub-Critical Power workout, when I warm up, I can get my SmO2 on my left lateralis, to read between 86 and 90%, and my ThB peaks around 12.25. For this workout, given that I felt rested, I was minimally dehydrated, and I had eaten, I think this was actually, MUSCULARLY, a kind of tough workout. How do I know? Well, let's look at another workout, a few NIGHTS and DAYS later...

Here's the workout from Monday, February 9th...

Feb 9 6 minute intervals

Click on the image to go to a detailed analysis of the workout, via PerfPro Analyzer's website. 

This was a couple of 6 minute intervals with 3 minute recoveries, and again, my own goal was to stay below Critical Power. It happened to be the workout of the day for everyone else, though, so their goal was to get as close to 105-110% of Critical Power as possible. If you look closely, you'll see that while my first interval was about 91% of Critical Power, as was my second, and even my third, but by the time I got to my fourth and fifth intervals, I had to dial it down. The GOOD news, is that my Muscle Oxygen rate was higher, which to me is an indicator that I may have actually adapted and built some mitochondria, and my ThB values were a little bit higher, indicating maybe I was better hydrated, but why did I back off for intervals #4 and #5? Well, once again - let's go back, to the night before!

Hypnogram Feb 8 2015_copy

While the workout 'Felt' good, looking at my sleep pattern from the night before indicates that it really was NOT the best rest I could have had, and while my mind may have been ready, my legs certainly were not. Here's the second part of the report.

Sunday Feb 9 Sleep Report

Deep sleep was just 12 minutes. As a result, my body just wasn't ready for much of anything over Critical Power. Instead, I kept it in the 90% range of CP, got some calories burned, and used the workout as a way to get some rest on MONDAY night, so I could try the workout again. 

Here are the results...

Monday Feb 9 Sleep

Look at how much extra time I got to spend in DEEP sleep, and in REM sleep! Now - here's the EXACT SAME WORKOUT, ONE DAY LATER. Specifically, I want you to look at the Average SMO2 and ThB values for the ride. Monday I averaged 74.10% and 12.13, respectively. On Tuesday, the values were 77.90% and 11.75, though in fairness, I didn't get the Moxy on until after a few minutes on Tuesday. But if you tease in to the data, what impresses me most about this thing, is that I spiked a freaking 12.72 ThB Content, and a whopping 91% in recovery. 

Tuesday Intervals

Click on the image to get the detailed analysis. 

The point I'm trying to make in this whole endeavour is this: If you want a good workout, if you want to improve, you have to look at everything. Sleep, Diet, Hydration, Intensity, Calories on the bike, Calories pre-and-post workout, fatigue, all of it. The discussion about sleep is prescient, because, honestly, I don't think I get enough of it, and I think that MAY have something to do with some recent weight gain and poor performance. After the "No Country for Old Men" event in Alpine, TX, I completely refocused on the business, and pretty much stopped cycling at any volume. Well, that led to a drop in energy output, a rise in stress, and a corresponding rise in body weight. A lack of consistent, deep sleep, contributed as well. Now, however, with the ResMed S+, combined with what I'm learning about Muscle Oxygen and Hemoglobin, and how that might relate to the quality of a workout, I'm more convinced than ever that the most important first step in any workout, to get that quality out of an hour or more, is to get a solid night's rest the night before, and the night after. Even now, I'm starting to realize that most Sunday nights are just a bear for me, as I prepare for the upcoming week. SO, I probably shouldn't try to get too hard of a workout in on Mondays, as I'm already handicapped by a lack of quality deep or REM sleep.

We'll keep investigating the Sleep/Moxy/Wattage connection as Spring hits, but for now, think about adding these tools to your arsenal of performance, and monitor your sleep as well as your power, hr, cadence, and even Specific Gravity. It all helps, because it's data, and data can translate to knowledge. Think about your training as a journey, and each piece of information that you collect will help you piece the map of performance together.

Until later - RIDE ON!

Tags:
Coach Wharton
15:31

More Ways to Use the Moxy to Interpret A Workout at Cycling Center Dallas

Leonardo Spencer - 2015-01-29T09-56-33 - Snapshot

I keep finding out more and more about this Moxy Muscle Oxygen Sensor, and I can't wait to share it!

Here's an image of a longtime client and his workout from a few days back. He's always good about getting in early, getting a solid warmup, and he drinks his hydration like a saltwater fish. The squiggly red line is his Hemoglobin count, and the light blue line is his Muscle Oxygen. This workout consisted of six 5-minute intervals at 107% of Critical Power, with just 2.5 minutes of recovery. He. NAILED. IT!

How so? Well, first, I'm not showing his actual wattage line, but we did not need to, because it was so consistent. Every interval was 107%. The consistency of the wattage is also reviewed in the consistency of the Muscle Oxygen. See the green line hidden beneath the light blue? That's W', and after the first 15 minutes of warmup, you'll see that the value stayed rather static, and actually remained above 60% reserve after the first interval was completed. The ONLY trouble I see with this workout is that after interval #4, Leo's ThB values began falling. I'm interpreting this as a sign of fatigue, and maybe his dehydration was outpacing his rehydration. He is an incredibly heavy sweating individual, and I suspect that he loses maybe 2-3 Kg over the course of an hour. But here's my takeaway from this image...

If we looked at this, and it repeated itself in other workouts, it would be a sign that Leo had adapted to his CP value at 209w, and a retest might be worthwhile. How so? Well, look at his SmO2 in light blue... it was consistent. REALLY consistent. My analysis leaves me believing that he can successfully handle this load, and while his RI (Relative Intensity) was at 93%, which signifies a pretty hard 60 minutes, we need to 'Go Up'. Had SmO2 dropped significantly, well, that would have indicated that maybe he wasn't ready for six intervals at low Vo2 range. 

If you want to get a different look at the file, here's a link... http://ppst.co/18CzDsv

Here's another example, taken later that night. 

Jim Porter - 2015-01-29T19-16-48 - Snapshot_copy
Jim has been coming in consistently now for several weeks, and while we're still about four weeks out from an official Critical Power test, it might be time to RAISE THE NUMBER! Once again - look at his SmO2 values in light blue. They were rather consistent. Now, look at the white line, which indicated Critical Power. We raised his numbers about 5%, and the SmO2 values didn't change. In the middle of interval #4, we raised the CP again, and Muscle Oxygen still didn't decrease! You can't get as good a look at the ThB values because of scaling, but they did not change all that much. But again, the important thing is that, as he raised his intensity on the intervals, metabolically speaking, nothing much changed. He hit his wattage goals, and while he was highly fatigued, did NOT lose much else. Here's the link to his file: http://ppst.co/18CzHsq

I'm starting to believe that this little product is going to really help my athletes and myself as we continue to focus on ways to help THEM improve their performance through proper intensity. Moxy allows me to see what's going on intrinsically, while wattage reveals what's going on extrinsically. If we get consistent wattage results, but SmO2 begins to drop, well, I read that as strain that is adequate to affect a response from the body. But if it's static or within a range, well, then we need to test, because the subject has adapted to the load. The result? MORE POWER and more POWER-TO-WEIGHT. 

This device could be revolutionary. Let's see what else it can tell us over the next several months! If you're interested, Moxy monitors can be purchased through Cycling Center Dallas for $1000, and we'll help you with setup. 


Tags:
Coach Wharton
17:39

Increasing Intensity in PerfPro Studio to Get The Proper Training Effect With Moxy


Moxy and PerfPro at Cycling Center Dallas

This is a GREAT example of why I'm so excited about the Moxy Monitor, and what it can do to help cyclists at Cycling Center Dallas get MORE out of every training session. 

Take a look at the image above. The blue area is the load, and in this case, these are 3-minute intervals at 110% of Critical Power. The white line is Critical Power itself, and if you own PerfPro, you know that you can raise or lower the intensity of a workout just by increasing or decreasing that value with the "+" and "-" keys on the handlebar controller. The smoother red line is Paul's Heart Rate, while the squiggly red line is Total Hemoglobin, or "THB". The Green line is W', or a rider's Anaerobic Work Capacity, and the light blue line is the rider's Saturated Muscle Oxygen, or SMo2.

If you recall from my previous post, I mentioned that we can use Moxy information to learn a lot about warmup, bonking, fatigue, dehydration, etc. And we're still learning more EVERY SINGLE TIME WE USE IT. This morning's ride is a perfect example. 

Paul came in this morning after having done a hard interval workout the night before. He also said he had not had much sleep (he has four kids, and his wife had been out of town). But, Paul is one of those perfect clients that is rare in our world. He's consistent, he loves the workouts, and he's hungry to understand. He wrote us something a while back about how we literally saved his cycling soul, and I felt like getting it framed. But after a quick chat, we both agreed that he should just take today's workout one interval at a time, and see how it went. He lowered his Critical Power by 50 points, continued his warmup, and we installed the Moxy Monitor on his left Lateralis. 

If you follow the red squiggly line, this is the fascinating part. Throughout the warmup and first interval, Paul's Total Hemoglobin remained low, and his SmO2 was at or near his 'Active Resting SmO2' level. But, predictably, after the first interval was over, both ThB and SmO2 both rose, indicating that the muscles were relaxing and opening up for wider flow of oxygen and nutrients, and purging of waste materials. 

We raised CP about 10 points and did the next interval....

SmO2 dropped, down to a level normally associated with his Vo2 or Maximal Aerobic Power plateau, and ThB, which had dropped immediately during the beginning of the interval, began to RISE over the course of the three minutes, while SmO2, again, plateau'd. Watts were perfect, and the rise in HR, which is certainly predictable, was not as high as possible, nor was his 'range' of HR. Immediately after the interval, however, ThB and Smo2 both rose, but NOT to the levels that I was expecting. I racked this up to his fatigue from the night before, and we discussed leaving the CP intensity at that level, and just turning the workout in to a less intense, more aerobic ride. But Paul, himself a PhD and a scientist, wanted to study more. 

We raised CP another 10 points, and did the NEXT interval!....

SmO2 dropped to about 30-35% of saturation, in line with the previous intervals, and ThB again plopped, then rose steadily, just like HR. Watts were perfect. He felt better throughout the interval. His head was in it, he knew his numbers, he was watching and listening, as was I, and he nailed his third interval at this 'new' level of intensity.

But it was what happened after that really wowed us. 

Look at the ThB and SmO2 levels after interval #3. Paul's now 20 minutes in to the workout, plus the extra 15 he did at low intensity, and NOW, his ThB and SmO2 levels spike to NEW HIGH'S! MORE Oxygen and MORE nutrients, and a BEAUTIFUL little Skateboard-ramp of an HR plot after the interval to show that NOW the Heart is Ready, NOW the legs are ready, and NOW the VASCULAR system is adequately dilated and prepared for the challenges to come. 

WE RAISED CP ANOTHER 10 POINTS, to near his original Critical Power, and did the FOURTH Interval....

BOOM! GREAT WATTAGE PROFILE! GREAT HR PROFILE! GREAT SmO2 Profile revealing a floor at an appropriate level of intensity, and BOOM! A great ThB profile that mimics the previous two intervals, showing a rise in ThB throughout the three minutes, as if the blood was pushing GOOD STUFF in, and BAD STUFF OUT. And just after the interval ends? Check out the new high's on that ThB!! 

What does it all mean? Well, I can't emphasize it enough, but I REALLY believe that this is telling us good information about proper warmup, proper interval dosing, and psychosomatically, proper ways to get the most out of every workout, and interval. I LOVE wattage and power meters, but the power meter is the LAST BIT of information you're going to get, because it's OUTSIDE the body. It's the RESULT of the brain telling the muscles to GO, and the heart responding after a period of time. IF we had just relied on HR, well, we'd be missing a bit of the picture. IF we just used watts, or cadence, or energy expenditure, it's all just slices of a pie. But NOW, we've got ANOTHER PIECE OF INFORMATION! TWO, REALLY! And we just used that information to help a fatigued cyclist properly warm up, properly dose his intervals, and properly approach those intervals once he had the confidence of knowing that he was READY. 

Don't leave anything to chance. Your time, your life, your passion, is SO PRECIOUS. Micah McKee, my first ever cycling coach, gave me a quote that I'll never forget.... 

"Enthusiasm Without Knowledge Is Like Running In the Dark!"

ENJOY your CYCLING, but ENJOY IT MORE when you train with us. KNOW YOUR NUMBERS - THEY DON'T LIE. Let US do the Analysis, you just perceive and focus, based on what we reveal and learn together. I'm convinced that this will be the next paradigm shift in cycling and coaching. I can't WAIT to learn more.

If you'd like to try out any of our services, please feel free to register for a class at either of our locations. We have Moxy's at each studio, and they are for sale for $1000, or roughly 2/3 to 1/2 the price of a power meter. Integration and Awareness will help us, help you, enjoy your body and bike to a higher degree. That's a promise. 

Tags:
Coach Wharton
11:52

Using Saturated Muscle Oxygen and Total Hemoglobin to Measure the Need for Calories

A few days ago, I posted about all of the things I think I'm seeing when I put a Moxy Monitor up on a client's leg. Well, here's an example.

Mike Brandley is a client who focuses on mountain biking, so his season and schedule can be a little bit different than others. He came in early one morning this week, and while excited to be working out, during our warmup and bike prep, he revealed that he'd forgotten to eat on his way over. I told him I wanted to try the monitor on him, and that it might tell us some things that he and I might not otherwise know. 

Here's a cut from his workout. Unfortunately, we still need to get a broader range for the red line, which indicates Total Hemoglobin, but I'll provide several images to enforce my point, with details...
Mike Brandley - 2015-01-14T06-45-28 - Snapshot

Now, if you look first at the warmup, the green line is the SmO2, and the red line is ThB. Follow the red line out to about the beginning of the third green spike, and notice the little red notch. I was looking at the rider's dashboard, and I noticed this immediately. Also notice - the Rider's SmO2 was NEVER that high to begin with during the warmup, and it began to crater in to the SINGLE DIGITS during the first two intervals!

But wait - there's more. Notice how each time the rider recovered from an interval (Remember, the green line when it's low indicates the interval, and high indicates the recovery) at a HIGHER level? This is where my two terms from the previous blog post come in to play. I believe that Mike's "ACTIVE RESTING SmO2" level is pretty low - around 35-38%. However, IF WE HAD PROPERLY WARMED UP, USING A LONGER PROTOCOL AND SOME SHORT, SHARP INTERVALS AT HIGHER INTENSITIES, then we would have found that his "MAXIMAL SATURATED SmO2" would be around 60+%. This would have made for a BETTER WORKOUT, because we could have combined what we know about his SmO2 levels, with his wattage intensities, and adjusted things accordingly. 

BUT WAIT - THERE'S MORE!!!

Remember that little knock in the ThB Red Line that occurs around the recovery time after the third interval? Here it is in a close-up. 
Mike Brandley - 2015-01-14T06-19-54 - Snapshot

THAT, my friends, when combined with a LOW SmO2 during a Vo2-themed 2-minute interval... IS A CALORIE-RELATED BONK!

Look back up at the first graphic. After that little knock in ThB, it never really came back up. HOWEVER, after feeding him a BONK BREAKER, around 300 Kcals, and forcing him to drink a water bottle with an appropriate amount of OSMO Active Hydration in it, here's what happened....

SmO2 did NOT really recover to near the previous 'Maximal Active Saturation' level, but the "MINIMUM SATURATED SmO2" level, or the 'Vo2' Plateau that I believe leads to the best biological response for the rider on THAT given day, bottomed out at a HIGHER level for each interval, around 10, then 12, then 14 percent. Now, let's add wattage back in to the picture. 
Mike Brandley - 2015-01-14T06-45-41 - Snapshot

Mike's Critical Power, on paper, is about 255 Watts. These were two-minute intervals, based on slope, and I wanted him to finish the intervals with an average over the two-minutes at 110-120% of Critical Power. I don't have the CP/FTP line on the chart, but you can see that he was able to rally, and completed the entire workout, performing rising-intensity intervals, at the appropriate training dose. 

What's the moral of the story? 

Sometimes, the wattage doesn't give us the complete picture. Having onscreen Muscle Oxygen and ThB gives the smart coach an extra tool to determine what's best for a cyclist on any given day. In this case, we were able to more quickly determine that Mike's fasting from the night before could lead to a failed workout. Had we been using wattage alone, we may have collectively ended up beating our heads against a wall as we tried harder and harder to accomplish something that just wasn't feasible. Instead, we rectified it immediately, got him fed, watered, and salted, and he was actually able to IMPROVE the quality of his intervals, and later, ACHIEVE THE GOALS SET OUT FOR HIM, without throwing in the towel. His Muscle Oxygen range helped him get the proper training dose, in conjunction with wattage, and the ThB values gave us a really good clue about how much was in the tank, and how quickly it was depleted. It's hard to show in this blog, but for the savvy reader, if you download and purchase a copy of PerfPro Analyzer, the 'Analyze' tab includes max,min, and average Smo2 and Thb PER INTERVAL. I've taken the liberty to export the chart to Excel, where I made a simple graph. 
Mike Brandley ThB Lap Averages

What you see is that after the initial 'Bonk', he ate and drank, and had a ThB Rebound. Later, it tapered off again, AS HIS POWER CAME BACK UP, and for the last 10 minutes of the workout, which was two, separate 5-minute intervals AT CRITICAL POWER, well, the ThB continued to rise. 

I'm convinced that this tool, in the right hands, can complement our goals of helping recreational cyclists accomplish their goals, each and every workout, through the combination of watts, heart rate, and now, muscle oxygen and total hemoglobin. Here's my takeaway from this client and his workout, some of it's simple, some, notsomuch. 

  1. ALWAYS show up for a ride or training session properly rested, fed, watered, and salted. That's what Grape-Nuts and Greek Yogurt is for. 
  2. EAT and DRINK throughout the workout. I don't care if you're trying to lose weight. Training to raise your Critical Power will help you burn more KiloJoules, ergo, KiloCalories, and you'll end up losing the weight anyway. Eating and Drinking a light-sugar solution like OSMO, will help keep the ThB Levels and SmO2 levels higher. I THINK having a higher value in both, is optimal.
  3. IF you know an athlete's SmO2 levels for "Maximum Active Saturation", you can then modify a workout and train for DOSE, instead of training for a wattage output goal. We know more about Mike's Max Saturation, and per the later intervals, his appropriate minimum saturation. We'll train for DOSE, and use WATTS as the resistance, while setting a general FLOOR for SmO2. We'll also track his HR, which I bet, I bet I bet, will drop as he gets back in to his training regime. 
  4. ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS WARM UP! Starting a workout cold or unprepared can hurt you physcially as well as mentally, so ALWAYS give yourself 20-30 minutes to warm up, and ALWAYS include several 20-40 second pick-me-up intervals at high intensity, with adequate recoveries, so that you will begin the intervals with the highest SmO2 and THB levels possible.

That's it for now - I'll try to write more in the upcoming days, but until then, don't forget - if you haven't come in for a first ride, download the App and let's get you in. The upcoming season is nigh upon us, and in Texas at least, it won't be cold for long!!!

Tags:
Coach Wharton
14:43

Looking at the PerfPro Dashboard, Part Two.

PerfPro Shows Watts, Goal and FTP

Okay - when we left off at the last posting, we were learning that for John Cyclist, 107% of 150 watts equaled 161 watts. So, if the CompuTrainer is giving you a LOAD or TARGET of 161 watts, well, you need to GENERATE WATTS at, or near, 161 watts. 

Now, if looking at numbers just isn't your thing, well, you're in luck, because Drew Hartman, the developer of PerfPro, has made it even easier to understand just what you need to focus on. Take a look...

A Full PerfPro Lap Dashboard
Here's a dashboard from a recent ride. Take a look. There is a LOT of STUFF going on!!!! But if you look on the LEFT side, you'll see "LOAD", which is the Power pushing AGAINST you, and you'll see "WATTS", which is the Power you're pushing back. LOAD or TARGET Wattage will never change color. BUT... "WATTS" can and will. Furthermore, if you look FURTHER DOWN, you'll see a HORIZONTAL BAR that is the SAME COLOR as the "WATTS" value. Do you see the Copper colors? 

PerfPro's Horizontal Bar is another way to display WATTS.
WATTS are displayed on the dashboard in both NUMERICAL and BAR CHART FORM. Depending on how far ABOVE or BELOW you are in terms of RANGE or PROXIMITY to the goal wattage, it will change colors. For kicks and giggles, here's an image of the range itself. 

PerfPro Cadence and Wattage Bar Colors and Ranges

So if it's GREEN, you're close enough to the goal. If it's COPPER, you're a little too hot, and if it's YELLOW, you need to pick up your effort a bit. BUT HERE'S A LITTLE SECRET...

IF YOU ARE TRAINING AND THE WORKOUT IS JUST BASED ON LOAD, WELL, THE POWER WILL TAKE CARE OF ITSELF! IN OTHER WORDS - JUST PEDAL AT BETWEEN 17 and 25 mph, and the WATTS will MORE OR LESS equal the LOAD. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO THINK. YOU JUST HAVE TO PEDAL. 

PerfPro Horizontal WATTS bar in Copper or ORANGE.

Now - there's a little bit more to look at here, so bear with me. Do you see a small triangle on this image? That's the LOAD or GOAL wattage, identified by the pipper. 

PerfPro has a Pipper to symbolize LOAD or GOAL

As LOAD changes, the pipper will also move around. When the Horizontal bar is GREEN, it's right on top of the pipper. So as you go through your intervals, watch your power bar as it fluctuates near the pipper. As you become a better cyclist, your ability to hold wattage, and "STAY GREEN", will improve!

Average Watts per Interval is HERE.

Continuing down the list. THIS is something you should look at, because it displays the cumulative average power PER LAP or INTERVAL. In this example, the rider is generating 189 watts, but her LAP or INTERVAL average, is 175 watts. This HAPPENS to be 119% of FTP, which you can see in WHITE at the bottom. Furthermore, if you look to the right, you'll see...

PerfPro also shows average wattage per lap as at % of FTP.

SO... Going back to the countdown timer, if we look at the GOAL in terms of % of FTP.... 

PerfPro clock and timer

Well, in this case, the rider's AVERAGE POWER per LAP or INTERVAL, is about 3% above their goal. As a result, the HORIZONTAL BAR is COPPER colored, which means that they're a LITTLE HOT, and the CompuTrainer will be doing stuff behind the scenes to help the rider keep their wattage closer to the target. 

OH yeah - remember RRC? Well, when you calibrated... it saved the information, and it's presented, HERE.

In PerfPro if RRC: is GREEN, then it is GOOD!

Finally, take a look at this workout profile. It shows the workout, and the intervals as they rise and fall. LOAD or GOAL wattage will rise and fall for you, based on percentage of FTP, and it will be based on YOUR FTP. 

PerfPro Workout Profile
As the red line moves from left to right, your LOAD will increase and decrease, and you'll need to generate an equal number of WATTS, in order to achieve the training effect. 

That's about it for now - all you really need to remember is that MOST of the time, you just need to pedal. The CompuTrainer and your Coaches will do the rest. You'll be challenged like you wouldn't believe, but you'll also be able to literally watch your fitness improve in real-time, and you'll get the feedback you need to continue your improvement. When we revisit PerfPro, we'll talk about some of the other dashboard screens, and how you can use them to check on your results, progress, and reasses your goals as you raise your ability to pedal faster, pedal harder, and pedal longer than ever before!

Watts per Kilogram! 

-Coach Wharton

Tags:
Coach Wharton
14:41

What To Look At, and What We Look For, on the PerfPro Dashboard, Part One

When cyclists come in to the studios, they're often quickly overwhelmed with the information they get, what it means, and how it affects their workouts, current, past, and present. I'm going to take the time today to show you one or two of the dashboards, and help you understand what's going on. 

First, remember - the workout is almost always PRE-PROGRAMMED. This means that most of the time, all you have to do is just warm up, calibrate (see previous post), and then PEDAL. As long as your speed is between 17 and 25 mph, which is where the Load Generator tends to work best, then the computer is in control, and soon you'll be breathing harder, pushing the pedals, and working to keep up. In fact, this is a GREAT place to start!

PerfPro Load Described
When the workout begins, you'll see a LOT of numbers doing a LOT of things. Let's try to Simplify them in order of importance. In Column 1, Row 1, below your name, you'll see EITHER the word "LOAD", or "GOAL". This is the WATTAGE that is being placed against the tire. It's the amount of POWER that you'll need to overcome. This is the LOAD or GOAL Wattage of each Interval.

PerfPro Watts is the Power that you Generate Against the Load.

One Column over, still in Row 1, you'll see "WATTS". This is the Power, or WATTAGE that YOU are Generating AGAINST that "LOAD" or "GOAL". Think of it this way: When "LOAD" is 100, you've got 100 watts pushing against you, and then you'll have to generate 100 watts. When "LOAD" goes to 150, YOU have to go to 150. 200? 200! It's a 1 to 1 ratio, and it ALL hearkens back to Sir Isaac Newton, and the THIRD LAW OF PHYSICS....

Which is....

"For Every Action - There Is An Opposite, and Equal, RE-Action!"


So when the Load Generator Generates a LOAD.... YOU must Generate POWER!!! 

Now, don't be upset if your "WATTS" end up fluctuating here and there. Humans are really NOT that great as engines, and keeping your "WATTS" in the "GREEN" Color, is not that big of a deal. Beginning cyclists will be a bit high, a bit low, repeat ad infinitum, until they become more adept as cyclists. This is ONE area where the cycling training that you do at Cycling Center Dallas, can give you an advantage. The LOAD is the same, all the way through the pedal stroke, and you can learn how to ride with a steadier power output, with fewer surges, over time. 

So remember - "LOAD" or "GOAL" is the Challenge, and "WATTS" shows you that you're meeting that CHALLENGE. 

Let's continue....

PerfPro Works best between 17 and 25mph.

I'm going to pass over RPM and HR, which stand for Revolutions Per Minute (or "Cadence"), and "Heart Rate". Those have their importance, but it's harder for us to get that information on the dashboard all the time, and they're such individual values, that I'd like for you to leave it up to us coaches to help you better understand what they mean and how to use them.

Instead, let's look at "MPH", or "Miles Per Hour".

I've said before that for a CompuTrainer, the Load Generator tends to work best between 17 and 25 MPH. To get to that speed, all you need to do is make sure you're in your BIG chain ring up front, and you're somewhere in the MIDDLE of the REAR CASSETTE in back. Remember - COMPUTRAINER SPEED IS NOT INDICATIVE OF THE REAL WORLD. IT MEANS NOTHING IN REGARDS TO YOUR FITNESS. WE DO NOT MEASURE DISTANCE TRAVELED OVER TIME. WE JUST USE MPH TO MAKE SURE YOUR LOAD AND WATTS ARE CLOSE TO 1:1, AND YOUR CADENCE IS RIGHT FOR YOU!!!!

Sorry to use all caps, but this is important. GEAR SELECTION is what determines SPEED in the studios at Cycling Center Dallas. Furthermore, for those of you who really think you're HOT DOGS and that RULES don't apply to you, well, we have a TRAP to ENSURE that you'll comply!!!! 

If MPH gets above 27mph..... well, no matter what your LOAD said the moment before.... the PerfPro Software get's ANGRY, and ADDS A TON OF WATTS to your LOAD!!! It will KEEP THIS LOAD ON THE WHEEL until you drop your WATTS back down a good bit, and to DO THAT, you'll need to SLOW DOWN. It's a GOVERNOR, to keep you compliant. GOT THAT? 17-25mph is best, and anything over 27 means you'll end up dragging cinderblocks until you break down and start weeping. 

Now - let's take a moment to look at another part of the Dashboard...
PerfPro FTP means "Functional Threshold Power"
Look to the RIGHT of the area where your name is. Do you see that acronym "FTP", it stands for "Functional Threshold Power". FTP is the ESTIMATED power that you can generate over 60 minutes. FTP is the UBIQUITOUS value that we focus on raising when we train. The more fit you get, the more watts you can generate over different and varying periods of time. Wattage Intensities that are ABOVE FTP, can, over different durations and levels above FTP, RAISE FTP. So ---- where are most of our intervals at Cycling Center Dallas performed??? You guessed it - AT or ABOVE FTP!!! If you don't know your FTP, well, don't worry. We test for FTP about every 2 months or so, and like the guys at the State Fair who can accurately guess your body weight, we've developed a keen eye for determining fitness and FTP. 

Now - here's one thing you need to know. If we're in Fixed-Gear mode, and shifting is not necessary, but you feel that an interval may be too hard or too easy, USE THE PLUS "+" or MINUS "-" buttons on the LEFT SIDE OF THE CONTROLLER, to RAISE or LOWER your FTP. FTP determines the intensity of each interval, and you can modify that value with those buttons. Now, you may ask... "What are we really changing with the raising and lowering of the FTP?" Well, that can be found, right HERE:

On the PerfPro Clock, % of FTP is what determines your "LOAD" or "GOAL" wattage
This is going to require a little juggling with the eyes, and maybe a little math, but have a look at this image. If Joe Cyclist has an FTP of 150, and the interval that he is performing has a "LOAD" set at 107% of FTP, then he's got to GENERATE... 161 WATTS for 2 minutes. The option for cadence is also there, but remember - Cadence is a bit personal, so we'll look at it on a more individual basis. Instead - look at the % of FTP, look at the remaining time, and then look at the "LOAD", and watch your "WATTS". As long as the "WATTS" color stays GREEN, more or less, you're ACCOMPLISHING the GOAL set out for you by the coaches. If the interval feels too tough... press the "-" button on the Controller, and DROP YOUR FTP a bit. If you want to challenge yourself, FIRST TALK WITH THE COACHES, but sure, go ahead and hit the "+" button a couple of times, and RAISE your FTP. 107% of 165 is... 177. Try THAT for 2 minutes, and then see how you feel!?

There is a LOT more information that I'll be sharing with you over the next few days and weeks, but let's call it a day for now. Remember that "LOAD" is the resistance the generator is placing against your rear wheel, "WATTS" is what you're generating against the generator :), and "LOAD" is based % of FTP, which you can control with the "+" and "-" keys. If your "WATTS" are more or less colored GREEN, then you're doing the workout properly. And remember - if you speed PAST 27mph.... the program will lay down some serious punishment until you back off. 

Until then, have fun, enjoy the workout, and don't forget to download your own copy of PerfPro Analyzer, which will give you the ability to keep your files on your own PC, and look at them in different ways, so you can assess your progress independently, or with the help of your coach. WATTS UP, GANG!!!!

Tags:
Coach Wharton
16:06

Why We REALLY Want You to Show Up about 30 Minutes Early...

Everyone has been there before. You make a commitment to an appointment, and then something gets in the way that makes you run late. Traffic sucks, the lights are always red, there is an accident or a re- route, or you forgot something and had to turn around. But at Cycling Center Dallas, there are several important reasons why we schedule our classes when we do, and ask that you arrive as close to half an hour early as possible.
 
First and foremost, let's face it: getting a bike out of your car, putting the wheel back on, rolling it into a studio from a distance, and then getting it properly installed on a trainer, always takes time. While our coaches do our best to help cyclists with set up and tear down, it is important to remember that there are others who are attempting to do the exact same thing, and space is limited from the door to the back wall. Proper setup usually involves pumping up tires, making sure that you have enough water in your bottles, getting your shoes on, and if you are coming in from work, sharing our small space for bathrooms and dressing rooms. There's also the issue of our request that you purchase or use a steel skewer when you train with us. Those take time to install properly, and they must be checked like all bike equipment to ensure that they are properly fastened. So arriving 30 minutes early, allows us to account for many of the time delays that can pop up from the time you leave your car, to the time that we hit the start button.
 
Perhaps more importantly, however, is the fact that we really want to give you the free time necessary to successfully warm-up and prepare for the workout. Our intervals are never easy, and it is important to be ready for the efforts. If you arrive 30 minutes beforehand, take about 10 minutes to properly set up and arrange your bike and gear, and then throw a leg over and begin to warm up, this is an ideal opportunity to burn a few extra calories, and prepare both physically and mentally for the upcoming workout. It is also a great time to chat with other cyclists, make new friends, review some of the outside rides, and speak with your coach about questions or issues that you may have had either in the studio or on an outside ride.
 
The purpose of a warm-up is to raise the body's temperature, mobilize the joints, and raise the heart rate. Ideally, it will allow you to raise your heart rate to roughly 70 or 80% of Max, and in our studios, we do this through raising and lowering wattage. It's best to start low, and use the time to relax your mind, rotate your shoulders and neck, focus on some deep breathing, and really get into the flow of pedaling. If you have not yet had something to eat or drink, this is a great opportunity to consume a few calories so that they are absorbed and enter into the bloodstream prior to the workout. This is also a great time to check everything from the bike, to the body, to the mind, to the spirit. This is all connected and can help you get the most out of the upcoming intervals.
 
Finally, a proper warm-up is necessary for us to get proper calibration on our CompuTrainers. If you warm-up both machines (the body as well as the bike), you will ensure a better workout. We also calibrate twice in our programs, a few minutes apart, so that the temperature of the load generator as well is the temperature on the tire, stabilizes. You don't need to worry about this too much, our coaches will take care of it for you, but it always helps when you show up early enough that you can get a good warm-up in.
 
When we fly out of an airport, we always allow for ample time, just in case something occurs en route. Think about your goals at Cycling Ctr., Dallas, and think about your fellow cyclists. Let's all make sure that we show up early enough to properly help with set up, and then properly warm up, so that we can all get the most out of every ride!

Tags:
Coach Wharton
17:19

Knowledge is Power, and Power Gives You Knowledge

Cycling Center Dallas Gives YOU the Power.
More than once I've heard the criticism that cyclists don't need to know that much about power, because they can feel there way through a ride, and if they are fit enough and strong enough they can perceive their way over Hills and Dales. Beginning cyclists will tell me that they don't need to know about power", because" all they want to do is just ride their bike." Well, I'll respectfully disagree. Because knowing what you can do over different and varying periods of time, in terms of power generation, how you can recover from those intervals, how many of those intervals you can perform, and just how hard each of those intervals is and what it does for your body, is the key to improvement. I used to teach spin classes on a regular basis, and those spin bikes were intentionally built without much in the way of hardware that could give you knowledge. Spin bikes remain high on MPower meant, in terms of the feelings that they leave you with when you have completed a session, but they remain vague on just exactly what it is that you can and you do accomplish.
 
The studios at Cycling Ctr., Dallas, give you all of the perception of empowerment, but also give you the instant feedback, the updated analysis of your ride, and the on site help of coaches who know exactly how to help you get through that quantity of intervals, the quality of each interval, and the overall volume required to help you get an effective training dose. When you train with a power meter or an ergometer, the knowledge gained can tell you exactly how hard you need to work to accomplish a goal. Now, writing outdoors is a fairly stochastic event. But when you have trained for myriad and multiple intervals in the anaerobic, maximal aerobic, and threshold training zones, your capacity to do work grows, while your perception of that intensity declines.
 
At Cycling Ctr., Dallas, we are adept at studying wattage and power output not just on a per interval basis, we study it on a per stroke basis, per workout basis, as well as empirically, which means all of your past workouts and how they build upon each other. We are also looking at cadence, speed, cadence on slope, posture, hydration status, and even heart rate, which you will notice I did not mention first. Heart rate training is just to broad and to individual, and too dependent upon too many factors, to properly establish precise protocols. Furthermore, we are also studying fatigue, energy output, power to weight ratios, etc.
 
But the bottom line here is that as a cyclist in my studios, you do not need to obsess over this if you do not want to. If you are simply looking for a convenient, safe, effective workout, this is the place. You will be challenged, and the music will be kicking, and the coaches will be tickling your chin, and helping you get through the workout, which will leave you spent but on the road towards improving.
 
All of this training with power gives you the knowledge necessary to improve. The knowledge that you gain can give you the power to become a better cyclist.

Knowledge is Power, Power Gives you Knowledge

Tags:
Next