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Confirming Long Course Power

Posted By: KP
Date: Monday, 21 July 2008, at 5:46 p.m.

Awhile back I wrote an article about Racing Long:

http://www.gordoworld.com/alternativeperspectives/2007/12/racing-long.html

One of the points I wanted to make was that specific % of FTP determined by 30-60min testing doesn't always translate to correct IM efforts. However, it does help to lay the ground work for what we should be testing on long days. I think it is important to do some long rides that are mostly flat and in aero to realistically correlate % of FTP to ability in an IM. Even the hilly courses are mostly flat. Some athletes can sit up and climb quite well for a long periods of time but have trouble holding wattage on the flats. You _must_ find out if you are one of these athletes. Don't wait until race day to discover you can't stay aero and generate power.

One of the methods I use to test the ability to go long with correct power is to do a Big Day of swim, bike, run; something that simulates the first 70-80% (or more) of your Ironman race day duration. A second way is what I am doing right now; ride longer repeatedly at or near a given % of FTP (say 70-73%). I am doing it on mostly flat to rolling terrain and I am working to hold steady power with bits of mod-hard all ride long. No freewheeling, no crazy power spikes and one stop mid way. Just solid riding like I would on race day. Thursday was 4hrs, NP 196 // Saturday was 5hrs near 193 // Monday was 5hrs, NP 200w, VI 1.03, avg HR 116 (1st half NP 195 // AP 191 // VI 1.02 // avg HR 113) (2nd half NP 205 // AP 199 // VI 1.03 // avg HR 126). Nice way to confirm numbers and I am sure to get a bump in fitness here as well.

coach KP

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