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bicycle commute helps/hurts training

Posted: Sun Aug 10, 2014 2:22 pm
by SpecialGreen
My commute is about 40 minutes of bicycling, mostly L1, with touches of L2 when I stick-it-out in a lower gear for a brief climb. It's not a long-enough duration to be a normal L1 "long slow" session. I've tried stretching it past an hour, by running before the commute, and taking longer routes home in the evening. But I don't have enough spare time to really make it longer than about 70 minutes, each way. I'm wondering if it's too brief to be L1, and not hard enough to be a short workout... maybe even detrimental to summer/fall training.

Re: bicycle commute helps/hurts training

Posted: Mon Aug 11, 2014 6:10 am
by enevala
SpecialGreen wrote:My commute is about 40 minutes of bicycling, mostly L1, with touches of L2 when I stick-it-out in a lower gear for a brief climb. It's not a long-enough duration to be a normal L1 "long slow" session. I've tried stretching it past an hour, by running before the commute, and taking longer routes home in the evening. But I don't have enough spare time to really make it longer than about 70 minutes, each way. I'm wondering if it's too brief to be L1, and not hard enough to be a short workout... maybe even detrimental to summer/fall training.


If you plan it out as a workout, you can get some good value from it. Try mixing in some of the following from time to time:
1. Low gear spinning: shift all the way down and spin as fast as you can in low gear for 2 minutes, rest for 1 min, repeat 5 times.
2. One leg pedaling: Unclip one foot and pedal with the other for 1 min. rest, switch, repeat.
3. Stop sign intervals: Go like hell from one traffic control to another, rest for the next segment, repeat.

There's more to be had than just straight L1/L2......

HTH

Eric

Re: bicycle commute helps/hurts training

Posted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 7:20 pm
by MN Hoser
I think it all helps, to a point. I used to ride 3 miles to school/work. I think it was 25 min round trip, but that let me know it I was tired or feeling good and I could plan evening workouts accordingly. I would sometime take a scenic route home (1 hr), and one year I really worked that, but I found that junk hours (just adding time) didn't help my conditioning. So you might want to plan one day to "nail it" or do some interval work (or something) on the way or from work.

Jay

Re: bicycle commute helps/hurts training

Posted: Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:11 am
by enevala
MN Hoser wrote:I think it all helps, to a point.


Agreed, I ended up working from home for most of the summer, and my mileage for the riding season dropped considerably--and I'm feeling it going into ski season this year. While all of the miles may not be of the "highest" quality, they do make a difference.

e.

Re: bicycle commute helps/hurts training

Posted: Tue Nov 13, 2018 4:41 pm
by JeffOYB
i don't know why one cdn't add any structure they might like to a 40min commute. ...power, intervals, speedwork. unless you don't wanna get sweaty? heck, since it's both ways it's an awesome way to get 2-a-days. For older less serious skiers I'd think this is an awesome source for huge fitness maintenance as well as gains. ...Legs and cardio only.

I used to have a 20 min commute and sometimes i'd swap in rollerskiing or rollerblading, usually w a backpack. sometimes i'd hike it or run it. dang, those were monster fit years for me as a Fun Skier and that commute was a HUGE help. i could still finish near the top of local races for ski, bike, run -- thanks to the fun on that commute. sure, it's not pro team science but heck what is?