Wednesday, January 31, 2007


Started on the SMSP intervals today. The SMSP intervals are of shorter duration but very high power output.

The idea is to first create the 'capability' to work at high outputs. The next step will be to develop the ability for sustainable efforts. I like the quote from Dean Golich, " If you never go 30, you'll never go 30". The context of this quote is in regards to timetrialing. If you never go 30mph in training you'll never go 30mph in your time trial.

Intervals provide a quantifiable way of look at training. There are a few metrics I'm tracking.

Total work time

The format for an interval is:
Time On at XXX power
Time Off

For example. 3 sets of 7 x 1 ON (at XXX power) / 1 OFF with 3 minutes rest/set
The total work time is the amount of time spent ON.

So the total work time of this workout is 3x7x1min = 21 minutes.

The other metrics that are important are the Power setting that I do the intervals at. I strive to chose the highest power level that I can do the ENTIRE workout at. Not just the first set, but all of them. Usually this means that the first ones feel a little easy and the last ones are just barely doable.

Also important is the work/rest ratio. For now I'm at 1:1 for SMSP (MSP will be 1:.5). Later in the year I'll be doing som SMSP at 1:.5. Like 1min on 0:30sec off. This is a great simulation of what actually happens in mountain biking. Hard effort separated by inadequate rest.

Later in this phase I'll deliberaltely chose a power setting that is too high to force a blow up.

Here is a chart of the progression I'm 'planning' to follow with regards to total work:
smsp 2007

The idea behind all this is to consider how much of a race is actually spent at very high power outputs. So for the course of a 2hr race, how much of the time are you truly above your sustainable power. This is where having a power meter on your bike would allow you to map out a race course, and then design your training around that.

So my goal is to work up to the capability to perform 45mins of work.

This is a question I want to ask Dave about. For a Vet expert XC racer, what should the total work time be that I should be striving for.

The other thing is to try to bump up the power level at which I do these intervals compared to last year.

The workouts now are very short compared to the 3-4 hrs rides I've done recently. It's all over in 50mins. Maybe 1hr+ a few times. But boy does it hurt.

This morning I was a little nervous. I didn't feel that good. Maybe a slight cold coming on. But at the same time there was a measure of resolve walking down to the basement. This is what I have to do in order to meet my goals. That's pretty simple in the general scheme of things. Do or do not. Not a whole lot of hemming/hawing.

I imagine that this is how the pros approach things. They know what they have to do and they do it.


At 7:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love your blog and I enjoy stopping by from time to time to read.

I am curious what Dave Morris had prescribed for you in terms of how many watts to shoot for in your SMSP intervals. I am most interested in what somebody training for XC in sport class would be shooting for in terms of watts during the SMSP block of training.


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