I just organised a new bike for a friend of mine who spends way too much time driving cars, watching TV, and devouring too many late night Yiros's after a night out. Hopefully this will kick off a new life for him :
Anyway, in the hope of taking him from dsabled war veteran through to participant in a major group ride or 2, I have put together a little training program for him, in language that he can understand.
In that case - please excuse the 'adult' language, and any deliberate simplifications of metabolic processes ... I failed medical school, so please take that into account before entering into any financially disastrous bets with people at the coffee shop (or pub)
The training program, in the form of a spreadsheet, can be downloaded from here : http://4percival.kicks-ass.net/training-template.xls
I am putting it up here for peer review, feedback, and comment.Some notes:
- The subject of the program is untrained, and carrying a few extra Kgs. The base period then is very light on .. and designed only to wake up the otherwise dormant lungs and heart.
- No mention of watts, avg speeds or heart rates. I want to keep numbers out of this as much as possible for a first timer. Everything is based on perceived exertion levels + durations. In fact, I am going to avoid putting a computer or HRM on this bike for the first few months, lest he gets fixated on the numbers.
- I have simplified the Zones down to 4 zones only, based on self assessment of breathing and how the legs feel. I think the zones defined here should be easy enough for a beginner to measure ? Comments on that ?
- I want him to measure Resting Heart Rate every few mornings, which can be done with a simple watch. No special equipment needed for that.
- I have written up a description of the muscle recruitment process, using an easily comprehended analogy. The analogy is not technically correct, but I think it suits the purpose of giving the subject a clue as to what is going on inside his body during training, and why this week's intervals are the way they are. Very keen to hear any feedback on this.
- I have added in some notes on diet. As the training program progresses through different phases, the dietary needs change. If you have been riding for a while, you probably take this for granted as you know what works for you and what doesnt. There are all sorts of theories out there about diet, so Id be keen on getting any feedback on this as well.
- Added in some honest and realistic notes about smoking, drinking, and not getting enough sleep ... because all of that will happen despite the best intentions.
- Although its not directly shown in the spreadsheet, I have built in ramping and tapering into the program, specifically based around 3 Adelaide based events for the 2010-2011 season - being Amys Ride, RLC, and MCCT. If he even ends up doing 1 of these rides this season, I think the new bike idea will have been a great success.
If you like the idea of structured training, and want to get deeper into the numbers side of the business (I know its not for everyone), then I can highly highly highly recommend downloading a copy of GoldenCheetah from here :http://goldencheetah.org/
Its open source, so there is no cost, it works on Linux, Mac and PC, and you can use it to track and plan your training very effectively. Its very usable without a powermeter, or even a HRM. Recommended.