Beginner Cyclist Diary - Is it possible - Strong AND fast - all rounder

Mid block update.

3 weeks down on SSB LV1 and im feeling ok. I’ve lasted longer than last time and i put that down to recently increasing fueling. After reading through a very long thread about fueling, a few comments stood out as relevant to me - Beginner, strength sport background, decent amount of muscle and poor aerobic fitness. All of these pointed towards needing to fuel more with carbs. And i must say it feels like its helping.
A little during the actual workout but mostly during subsequent workouts. I feel like i rebound faster and am more ready to hit the next session, be it weights or bike.
I believe Alex Vaida mentioned the need to fuel well to maintain work across both disciplines.
I thought i was fueling enough, it seems i wasnt.

The next 2 weeks will no doubt be tougher but im here for it.

I’ve asked a few questions on the forum regarding training on rollers and the accuracy of virtual power as i feel the workouts a pretty tough given my my FTP is showing as. Based on how some of the sessions feels i am amazed that some people have 2x my FTP and a 3/4 of my weight.
Training is all relative so it doesnt matter much but it would be nice to know what my actual FTP is. I have a left side power meter on its way so we will see. I really hope virtual power has been under representing my FTP due to my weight, bike weight and tyre choice lol.

Whilst on the subject of rollers, im actually really enjoying using them for sessions. Keeps me engaged, i can focus on my pedal stroke as well as core stability and control which i hope will give more overall benefit to my cycling (im still pretty new so the better I can pedal…the better).

Listing is going well, with my strength on par with where it usually sits, which i am happy with given my knee injury towards the end of last year.
Lets see how it goes as i keep pushing.

Curious to see how the next two weeks go. This SS intervals are getting longer…eeeeek

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Finally got myself a power meter. Its a simple 4iiii Left side only as i am on a budget but it’ll do for now.

Apparently my FTP is 280 now. Up from 225 using virtual power on the rollers. Not sure how that happened. I have read about 4iiii left cranks overreading and im pretty sure my FTP is not that high lol.
If i was to guess id say 240 ish but we’ll go with the PM as thats whats tracking my workouts.

RPE and HR seem to match threshold efforts from previously so…
At least i have a baseline that is hopefully more consistent that virtual power.

I’ve also finished building up my eBay Frankenstein bike.
Its basically a collection of bits i got from eBay at good prices over the past few months.
Allez Comp frameset, Tiagra groupset, 105 brakes, Sora cranks lol. Cables were new :slight_smile:

It came in at 9kg which is 2kg lighter than my old bike (if was a gift from a friend that started this cycling malarkey).

It feels great on the rollers and now with a power meter im hoping to get out on a ride when the weather warms up.

Its a little less reach, and whilst i thought my bike was perfect, this actually feels a little more comfortable. Bars are down to 400mm which feels tiny but again, more comfortable.
Gear shifts coming from Tourney 7 speed to Tiagra 10 speed is great. Click and it goes in. Tourney has horrible downshifters on the inside of the hoods. Its so much better to click down now. I can only imagine Di2. Plus i have bigger gears now so i can do harder efforts on the rollers.

Really excited to keep training and have a new motivation to be as good as the bike is now haha.
Tempted to skip the weight training and ride more…but only tempted.


Base 1 lv almost done, with just the easy week left.

I’m certainly ready for it :joy:

Lifting is going well, not lost any strength yet but not really pushing for big increases either.

Body weights still 86-87kg even with 3400-3700 calories a day. Not looking to reduce it yet if ever. Certainly not while I’m still progressing.

I’ve been pushing out the 60 minute sessions to 75 or 90 minutes if I know I have more time, or just tagging on 10-15 mins of zone two if I’m not sure I have additional time when I begin the workout.
Sunday mornings have been 90-120 mins of z2.

Eating very well and fuelling EVERY session with 75g carbs has helped I think.

Moving into base 2 I’ll be jumping back on the track bike & pursuit bars on my Lemond for the vo2 sessions.
Using gearing to put me at about 105-115rpm to hit the interval targets. I’ll go up an inch or two for the next one if I nail the workout.

I do a 15 min progressive warm up on the track bike and rollers when lifting so I’m still fairly familiar with the position.

Really looking forward to base 2 and seeing where that takes me.


My final work ride of SSB LV 1 (before the easy week) was a 2hr Z2 ride with 3x10 tempo efforts.

Given it was the last ride before the easy week i pushed it a little, probably shouldnt have. I rode at the upper end of Z2 with the tempo efforts in the second half.

I feel knackered now. I think the work/fatigue has caught up to me. In two minds to take an extra day off and miss the first easy ride of the easy week. But my stubbornness wont let me.
Petit is still a bit of work and im wondering if i’d be better just skipping it to rest a little more.
Rest more and be ready for Base 2, or still ride but lower the workout level and still ride, hmmmm.

I’d do a 30 minute recovery ride way down at 40% instead. You’re still throwing your leg across the bike and maintaining your training rhythm, but also recovering.

YMMV, but I very usually feel better if I do a midweek recovery ride rather than taking the day completely off the bike.

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Done. Extended the warm up, actually felt ok once the legs started moving.

Stuck to the prescription

Happy I did it

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