Legs Blowing after 20minutes

Regularly my legs are blowing after 20mins, when I can settle into SST easily. This has happened in time trials this year and criteriums. Todays Crit race was 24k, , after 20 mins my legs were lactic? And I settled into SST, I couldn’t hold my threshold any longer. Is this simply I have done no criteriums specific work yet?

I am week 5 into a general Build then into Rolling Road Race HV before my next events, two three day stages race in November.

Thanks for the help.

sorry, not sure entirely what this means. Are you saying you started hard, like threshold or above, and could only hold it for 20 mins before you could no longer maintain it, but then you could keep going at sweetspot afterwards?

If so, I doubt lack of specificity is the problem. The organism is “mushy”, lots of stimulus / adaptations overlap, and a lot of times specificity to the extent it matters is just icing on the cake, not a critical component.

I’d say you might just be tired, need a little rest, let the top end come back. If you’ve got a strong anaerobic engine you might also have overestimated your threshold (many people do), which can lead you to becoming more tired than you think just executing the normal workouts.

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Correct, started at 4/wkg-5w/kg more like a over and Threshold effort for 20minutes. The under were just under threshold. Is that something that can be worked on? Like doing race starters, sprint then 5minutes at threshold?

I’m definitely no expert on it but when you start a work out you have anaerobic energy over your true FTP. Your current FTP might be too high and contain some of that anaerobic energy; I think some of my 20 minute tests also contained some anaerobic energy :thinking:

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what was your power like in the race vs. your power in training? Is it about the same as in training, or did you feel like you could hold less (i.e. you do overunders at X watts and feel okay but here you could only hit Y)?

I mean sure this is all stuff that can be worked on and you will improve it, the open question is, what’s the best way to go about doing it.

And really I’m asking about this because you’re on week 5 or 6 of High Volume General Build and that honestly should be a decent amount of training stress already. This is why i would broaden your question and first ask, were you rested enough? It’s fine to do racing along with structured training but you need to bear in mind that if you do, you sometimes will not be rested enough to perform well at that race. This is fine if it’s a C race, maybe not so fine if it’s an A.

If you did go into it rested and feeling good, then yeah, maybe some specificity would be helpful. If the overall training stress level is okay as it is, then I would not add the crit-specific workouts on top (because then it’ll be too much), but replace a hard workout with a crit-specific workout and you can be more prepared physically and mentally for the sensations. And for sure, this could be helpful. I personally think that specificity is less important, but of course, even something that adds only, say, 4% could be critical, if that 4% is the difference between hanging on and getting dropped.

The other thing to remember is, racing is very hard. Those starts are pretty much all out as people fight for position, you have to go at an intensity that you know for a fact you cannot sustain the whole time and hope that everyone else gets tired enough to slow down before you pop, and you also have to adjust mentally to not being in control of the pace.

What i’m getting at is, the “specificity” you need might just be more racing. Meaning do more races, make sure you’re rested for at least some of them, really turn yourself inside out, and you will get faster, in a way that’s very hard to replicate in a solo workout. if you have a weekly training race in your area that you can jump into, those can be excellent for this kinda thing.

Sounds like you blew up. The reason they call it that is when it happens, it’s hard to do much of anything, let alone hold threshold, until you really recover.

Stick with the plan but if you want to substitute some over/unders it sounds like those would really benefit you.

@robcumine are you an athlete that’s a real gamer? I mean, do you get mentally really revved up for the race & adrenaline dump? That’d take about 15-20 minutes, too. That’s a real shot in the dark but I’m just bringing it up as something to think about…try finding a calm moment before the race starts.