Latest Race. Died early just like last race and then made up time. Fat cant be the whole story

So I am 50 years old and still about 40 lbs overweight. I realize I cant outride a fat body ;).
I’m working hard and following the program. Even cutting back on my riding and doing more to become well balanced (far from it). My ftp is 272.

Here is yesterdays race.
[Blackfalds Road race.]
Tempo 0:14:38 13.2% 207 240
Sweet Spot 0:12:12 11.0% 240 259
Threshold 0:21:10 19.1% 259 289
VO2 Max 0:25:21 22.8% 289 330
Anaerobic 0:17:16 15.5% 330

And the previous race.

Tempo 0:11:59 12.2% 207 240
Sweet Spot 0:07:07 7.2% 240 259
Threshold 0:12:50 13.0% 259 289
VO2 Max 0:15:07 15.3% 289 330
Anaerobic 0:22:09 22.5% 330 3,000

It seems that I need about 20 km to get my body and breathing under control. After that mark it seems I can put up with the effort and do some catching up.

What does concern me a little is that on these races I pin aerobic training effect on garmin at 5.0 and that is over reaching. Anaerobic this race was 2.0 and the previous was 4.3.

I realize the first and obvious is to just lose the weight. It is a struggle. I’m looking for suggestions and guidance.

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Did you get a chance to warm-up before these races? If these races always go hard from the start then that could be an effective way to keep you from going into the red quite so soon.

Also, hello fellow Albertan :slight_smile:

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I did petite at home before the race. Around 50 minutes and dropped the intensity for the last part of the workout. From stopping the ride to the race was about 1 hour. I was able to do a little of riding beforehand for last nights race but nothing intense. The week before I had no warmup at all as I was coning from Edmonton and just barely had time to change before the race started. Maybe a ride 1 hour before is not close enough to the race?

And hello to a fellow Albertan back!

22min In anaerobic and 17 vo2max?

I’d be #%^**^ too.


Personally for me, Pettit wouldn’t prime me for a race. When I was doing club races, I’d try to get out to the start early and ride on the course with some harder efforts thrown in; of course if you’re travelling to and fro this might not be possible. Also, it doesn’t look like you’ve got a lot of corners but hopefully you’re keeping in touch off the corners and not being pinged off the back - you can burn a lot of matches that way.

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your races on TR look normal to my eyes (including time above threshold). Keep in mind those are races and not a workout on your periodized training plan… so I wouldn’t pay much attention to training effect on Garmin. Take the recovery you need, and stay on your plan.

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Makes complete sense in the context that the first race has over twice the elevation gain of the second.

With 890m of climbing, it forces you to spend more time at threshold and at vo2, meaning you’ve got less left in the tank for the anaerobic efforts you need to follow attacks.

With 371m of climbing, you’re able to spend more time working in the anaerobic zone.

Don’t assume you’re the only one who’s suffering! Races often go off hard then calm down.

If losing weight was easy…well the multi billion industry wouldn’t exist for a start. I think the key is eating good, quality food, which naturally supports health and training and the excess should come off. I haven’t shifted anything in ages though.

What program are you following?

How consistent are you?

What’s your recovery and sleep like?

How’s the fibre/protein/carb intake?

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Well on thinking about it Ive come to some conclusions.

  1. After riding I foam rolled for about 45 minutes before the race. May not be the best of ideas.
  2. I’m 8 weeks out from hernia surgery, my body still needs time to heal.
  3. I did not really warm up at all. That’s why I needed 20km each race to get going.
  4. I did not get dropped on corners. I got dropped on the first climb. I ended up passing 4 of 8 riders but I didn’t really start going to about 20 km in and got 4th.
  5. The first 3 guys worked together pretty much the whole race. I raced about 50 of the 62 km on my own. It was certainly harder but also a better workout.
  6. Ive done base one and two back to back and now I am on Mid general build program.
  7. Im very consistent, However some rides are cut a little short as I am in P T every day getting ready to go back to work. PT is working on weak glutes and hips, loosening tight leg muscles and reducing scar tissue from the surgery.
  8. Two weeks ago I had a bike fit done. Turns out my road bike saddle was 1.5 centimeters to high and my gravel bike was 3 cm to high. I used my calf’s a lot and pointed my toes severely like Nate. I’m slowly getting used to this new position.
  9. Recovery is ok and sleep is shite. A good nights sleep is 6 hours, but I am working on it.
  10. Very little carbs. I get inflamed quite easily.

4th sounds very respectable all things considered, not sure what your expectations were?

Carrying an extra 40lbs you are always going to be dropped on any significant climb. If the field is big enough then there may be enough other big guys to work with to bring it back together after a climb (or to stay in contact during the climb), but with a small field like this your race is basically over on that first climb. No way you are going to bring back a group of 3 riding solo unless they completely fail to work together.

Your options are to lose enough of that weight to be competitive on at least the shallower hills, to enter races with less elevation, and/or to enter races with a bigger field so that you’re not working solo for the majority of the race. Congratulations on the 4th and on a huge effort, if I was carrying 40lbs and recovering from an op I’d be very happy with that! And you clearly have the competitive streak to push yourself deep into the red, that will serve you well when you’re able to put yourself in a better position to challenge for the win.

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Just on Training Effect. This is heavily dependent on having your maxHR and HR zones set up correctly within Garmin Correct. The default 220 minus age formula for max HR is close to the population average, but rubbish at predicting the maximum for any one individual.

How are you calculating your max HR?

Having a one hour break after your warm-up ride will completely cool down your body. When the pro’s are warming up for a TT, they only allow themselves 10 minutes from the end of the WU to the start of the TT.

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I believe I used 220-50(age) to come out to 171 ish.

Yes. Warm up was an epic fail both times.

I really need to get back to work and lose the weight. The first 65 seemed easy compared to whats happening now.

Having though hard about it, this seems to be the major issue on a race. I’d be thinking about what your strengths are and choosing races to suit. Don’t stress too hard about it. Look for flatter races and keep doing what you’re doing. It’ll come good😊

If possible, I would take your trainer with you and just set it up in the parking lot and warmup there. If it’s not raining, it’s better than riding around in circles. Doing a 50 min warmup an hour before the race is probably not the best for your legs. Ideally you would want to finish your warmup 10 minutes or less before the race starts. Also, for a longer race, you don’t need a long warmup, perhaps 15-20 minutes starting with 5 min easy, then progressively harder (5-10 min) until do one minute of high rpm at FTP, then 5 minutes of cooldown.
Also, the hilly profile of the course probably doesn’t suit you right now, so you might want to look for flat races so that you can spend more time in the pack.

Use Best Bike Split, should improve your pacing.

You’ve identified multiple factors and I think all contribute, but I the one that you could change the easiest is the warm-up. I do a 20-30 min warm-up depending on the event. The shorter and more intense the event then the longer and harder I warm up. My most recent race was 50 miles (80K), one lap around a lake. That’s long enough that I know I’ll have a bit of time to warm on the bike so I only did a 20 min warm-up. I try to finish about 15 min before the race. I use that 15 min to go to the restroom one last time, change from my warm-up bottle of nutrition to a new full bottle, any last minute clothing changes based on how temps felt while I warmed-up, then as I roll to the line I take an SIS gel. Many of our races are in the 35 mile (56K) range so the attacks are earlier and harder. For those races I like to warm-up for 30 minutes, typically I use that extra 10 minutes an extra 7-8 min of gentle spinning and a couple more 30-60 second efforts. Overall warm-up ends up looking similar to the workout Pahrah.

It’s a race, not a time trial. If best bike split tells me I should be going 280 watts, but I could get on my rival’s wheel if I do 350 watts for 20 seconds, I know what I’m going to do.

I’ve never seen so many excuses. Train harder and the results will come.


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Good point. Bottom line is I am carrying an extra 40 lbs. Im working on it and failing. I’m 50 years old and a lifetime of trying has probably damaged my metabolism. But then that’s just another excuse. I put in a lot of effort ! But they’re is always room for more.

It never gets any easier. You just get thinner! :smirk:

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