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Can You Learn To Suffer Like A Pro? | Ask GCN Anything

Can You Learn To Suffer Like A Pro? | Ask GCN Anything


– Hello and welcome to ask GCN Anything! – This week, we are
answering your questions on mental fitness, smooth pedaling, and why team mechanics sit in the back of the car and not the front. – Good questions, then, and
a little bit of everything. Don’t forget for your chance to be with a free three month subscription to Zwift use the hashtag #ASKGCNTRAINING and for anything non-training
related use the hashtag #TORQUEBACK when you leave a question. Or, just pop it in the comments box. – Exactly. – Yeah. – First up then, we have a
question from Eduardo Lorenzo. Any tips on how to make sure both legs are exerting the same amount of effort other than using a power meter? I often feel my right leg is
more tired than my left leg. – Well, that’s quite a good question. Actually, I think most
people have an imbalance in leg strength and while we would all love to be symmetrical, most of us aren’t. I remember discussing this with some sports scientists on a training camp once and they point out that
everyone is asymmetric and even if you can pedal evenly with both legs at low power,
normally when you’re really at your threshold working hard, one leg is stronger than the other. Normally, the longer leg I think. Yeah, almost no one is symmetrical but if you’re really worried about it, and you don’t have a power meter that shows both sides, what you could do is head to a gym where they have a work bike, or similar, which
could show you both sides. And then if there is a big imbalance that’s giving you problems,
you can work to correct it. For example, if you do single leg strength exercises, you can
work on your core, try and get the right cadence for
you, there’s lots you can do. But single leg strength exercise is the way to correct it and to find out, head to a gym or a local testing
center where they can measure that imbalance for you. – Yeah and whilst you’re at it, you could always check out Si’s
“Pedal Smoothly” video that’s playing in the
background right now. – So when our pro’s
aren’t pedaling in their less smooth way, what they’re effectively doing is putting out more power on the downstroke and then less for the rest of the way around the pedal stroke. Except there is one thing and that is that we can’t differentiate
between positive force and negative force using this test. So effectively, we can’t
split the difference between pushing down and then unweighting on the back of the pedal stroke. Meaning that Marco
Marcato could, in theory, actually be pulling up on the pedal stroke which would explain why there is that great a discrepancy between peak power and average power per pedal stroke. – Staying on the subject of pedaling, Joseph Campbell asks: I keep reading about mixing in high cadence work
into my indoor training. What is the purpose of this? Well, the cliche is “spin to win” Joseph, but I hate that cliche. What do you think Chris? – Well, you’re not wrong, because actually science shows that the most efficient cadence is around 60 RPM and I’m quite sure cranks as well through the oxygen use
and everything like that. But, science also has shown that by including some really
high bursts of cadence, you help make your muscle contractions more efficient and the culmination of everything is, well, it’s more in tune and it’s actually a
really useful thing to do. So, you’re not looking to do load of really long efforts at high cadence but really short ones of really, really high cadence and up towards 170 or more has proven to be really good. – And the thing I’ve noticed anecdotally is that cadence is a very personal thing. So, some people prefer, Yanil Ricks preferred to ride at a very low cadence and I always raced at a very high cadence. I had shorter cranks as well and there’s no correct cadence, you do what’s best for you and
what you do best at. But often people find if they train the limits, so do big gear efforts and high cadence efforts, that that can help your pedaling technique
to improve, basically. So, that’s probably one of the reasons. – And if you wanna see further on this, you can check out the video that James did with Dan in Moscow. – And they’re pedaling pretty fast. – Session number two is
like a micro-interval session that is focused on cadence. So you want to get that same 15 minute warm up in at which point you’re going to start your first block where for the first 30 seconds, you’re at 130 RPM which is really going some and then for the next 30 seconds, you’re down at 90. You can repeat this 4 to 6 times per block and between, a slightly longer recovery of between 5 and 6 minutes. Try to get in 4 to 5 blocks per session before you do cooldown. – Next up we have a question
from Christopher Jenkins: Hi GCN. Can you help with
any tips for mental fitness. In this I mean being
able to suffer and deal with it or manage the
effort you are trying for. Many times this has let me
down over actual fitness. Particularly on a hillclimb
when I didn’t have the mental strength to
cope with a substained maximal effort when I
could have pushed more. – Well I think that’s an amazing question. It’s an absolutely fascinating topic and I don’t know about you but I’ve certainly seen athletes who weren’t necessarily the fittest but they were mentally the strongest and they could suffer the best and win over athletes who were physically fitter. So, it’s a great question and there’s so much interesting theories and scientific evidence out there about this. Basically, your mind
is incredibly powerful and it’s not a muscle but it’s a bit like a muscle in that you can train it to suffer more and it’s something that I notice through the season is that if I do enough hard sessions I get better at the suffering. The thing is though that your brain wants and needs to protect your body from damaging yourself so just in the same way that your brain protects you from putting your hand on a hot stove, it protects you from overexerting yourself and literally training or
racing yourself to death. So, those pain receptors are important but obviously you want to override them to a certain extent so that you go faster and there’s a balance to be had there. And there are lots and lots of tips and tricks for trying to push through that pain barrier. It’s unlikely you’ll kill
yourself so don’t panic. What about you, what tips did
you use when you were racing? – Well, and that’s absolutely right and it’s one of those things
that is trainable, learning to suffer, so the more often that you try and do it, the better you’ll get at doing that and also, actually, it’s been proven that the fitter you get, the better you are at suffering as well. So, I persevere with it and trust in the fact that the more often you do it, the better you’re gonna get at doing it. And I’m actually reading a book about how to suffer, basically, and how to push through in races
and it’s fascinating. There’s loads of
different ways of thinking about it but some people find that goal setting really helps,
you know, visualizing breaking the challenge
down into little chunks and just focusing on the next one. Some people that’s a terrible
idea and it makes it worse. So for some people, they need to zone out from the race and the pain and think about something else, almost. And some people just need to focus on it and almost sort of suck up
the pain and really want it. There are many different techniques. You really need to read up on those techniques and practice them yourself and find out which ones work best for you. – Yeah, everyone has their
own way of functioning and their own coping mechanisms. So, good luck with that and let us know. (dramatic music) – Now we’re going to our
Zwift winner question. Jonathan Evans is the lucky viewer who wins three months
free Zwift subscription and he asks: I ride with mates at the weekend and put in a couple hours training during the week on the turbo. As I don’t have a whole lot of time would my time on the turbo be best spent interval training , or
am I better just having fun chasing PRs on Zwift segments. My aim is to both stay fit and also increase FTP so I can climb hills, and sprint to road signs, faster. Thank you. Well, I share your goals Jonathan. – Well, it’s a good question for a start and if Emma shares your goals then it’s definitely a good one. So, with limited time to
train during the week, you want to make sure that you’re making them effective and you’ll need to include some intensity. And one of the best ways to do that if you’re saying you’ve got two hours available, you’re gonna want to try and split those sessions, so let’s assume that that is possible for you, and then you’ll want to include some really high quality workouts. So, you’ll need one structured session with some intervals and that will give you an opportunity to really push and increase your threshold, which is great for climbing
and things like that. – And there are loads and loads of sessions on Zwift for this. You’ve got a huge choice
which is fantastic. – Yeah, it makes it a
lot easier, actually, to break it down and decide
what you’re gonna do. The second thing you wanna do is then aim to work on the high intensity but with less structure, you know, so it stays mentally a little bit fresher and you can kind of enjoy it more. So things like taking
part in the Zwift races that Emma and I do is a
great way of doing that and we’ve seen James and
Oscar do that haven’t we? – Yeah, I did my first Zwift
race quite recently actually. I got dropped on the last
lap, I was a bit upset. On a hill of all things and I thought that the hill was gonna
be the best bit for me but no, it was really
hard and the great thing is that it was an hour of really quite intense work so it was super intense training but I didn’t feel like, mentally as draining as it does to go out on the road and push hard on your own for an hour. So it’s super time efficient. You know, less time sorting out bikes and stuff and going out on the road and an hour of really good quality workout that didn’t feel mentally as tiring, it was quite exciting and fun, yeah. – That’s neat. And if you met the other session, that really structured dedicated session that’s really goal oriented then you get a good balance
throughout the week. – Yeah, and those two quality sessions with limited time, you can’t do much more than that in a week anyway so that’s actually perfect to balance out with your weekend more fun relating where, you know, if you’re doing a longer ride with your friends you’re not getting as much intensity apart from sprinting for those road signs obviously, so it’s probably quite a good balance even on quite
a small amount of time. – Good luck! – Our next question comes in
from Lorenzo Relia and he asks: #torqueback It is not
hard to see pro mechanics adjust riders bikes in the middle of the race hanging from the car without stopping, so why
are they always sitting behind the passenger’s seat
and not behind the driver? The majority of adjustable things on a bike are on it’s right side? Good question! – Yeah, and it’s true, most of the things are on the right hand side, so with that in mind, it’s actually
easier for the rider to hold onto the car at which point he’s able to maintain the same
distance from the car. A mechanic can reach
up and over whilst also holding onto the rider himself, it’s a little bit ungainly, and then adjust things without pushing the rider away from them impulsively. So that’s a lot easier. You can also sit opposite the driver, so not on the same side as the driver so that you can actually see through what’s going on. [crosstalk] – They always take the headrest off the passenger seat so the mechanic can see what’s coming up as well because it’s very useful for the mechanic to see crashes ahead and
see what’s happening. Also probably so they don’t get carsick. And because it’s very boring sitting in the back of a car in a race if you can’t see what’s
happening in the race. – And finally, normally
you would pull over to the right hand side of the road if you stop so when the car opens you don’t want to be opening your car door into moving traffic. – Or into the race, which would car door a rider which is really bad form. So yeah, it is actually a really, well obviously, its a really hard job being a race mechanic. They basically have to be sprinters and amazing mechanics as they have to you know, when they see a rider holding up they really have to be able to dash out there as quick as possible. – And don’t panic. – Yeah, and don’t fall in a ditch. I’ve seen mechanics injured
by falling into ditches. It’s a bloody hard job, yeah. And if you wanna see more about being a mechanic in a race, you can check out this video here which
is a day at the tour – In the Mavic Neutral Service car. – Which is very exciting to a
cycler to sit in with Mavic. (upbeat rock music) [mumbling] – God! Fuck this shit! – Izzytdi: Just finished my first summer of easy coffee run group rides and want to train hard this winter to come back much faster next year. I’ve gotten my VO2 max estimate from garmin and its a rather
disappointing low 47. Is it low because I have not done much hard training in the past or will I expect that it will go up this winter, and how would I
best go about doing that? – Well, first of all, don’t panic. Your VO2 will probably have dropped if you’ve spent a whole summer doing easy rides and not
doing any hard training. Don’t worry there is good news, but also kind of bad news. The good news is that you can improve your VO2 max 2 training up to a certain limit but if you haven’t been training hard, you definitely
haven’t reached that limit. So there’s loads of scope for improvement. Bad news is, it’s gonna
take some hard, painful training sessions to
make those improvements but that’s okay, because we’re butt riders and we love pain, right? – Apparently. Anyway. – Sometimes. – Yeah, sometimes. On a good day. We’ve got a good video
though. With Dan and Si telling you exactly the sort of intervals that you wanna be doing. So, probably worth checking that one out. – Check that out, I
probably should as well. – Our second session is a little bit simpler but no less painful. We’re doing 4 minutes almost at max. So, power meter uses, that means again, about 120% of your FTP. Either way, when you get to the end of your first 4 minutes, you should feel like you have a little bit left in the tank, but not very much. – Now we’ve come to the quickfire round so, hold on tight, it’s gonna be fast. First question is from
disgruntledtoons who asks: What’s a good strategy for introducing children to cycling? #torqueback I suspect this might be
worth an entire video. Chris, how do you introduce
your children to cycling? – Well, I had a brilliant answer until you said what you
thought was the best way to do it and that was just ban them from cycling. – Yeah, I reckon kids love a little bit of rebellion, especially if it was teenagers, I’d say forbidden to cycle and then they’ll really want to. – Yep, failing that though, you could just introduce them to the shiny pictures and videos that we have on the channel because, well that’s what everyone likes is about cycling isn’t it? Originally? Beautiful sunshine. – Yep. – Stunning bikes, that sort of thing. And then take them out
on the bike perhaps, somewhere quiet like a park. – Yeah, I think the key thing is it’s gotta be fun hasn’t it? You don’t really want to be forcing your children to take up cycling. I think a lot of my friends’ kids who see their parents loving cycling they automatically want to take up cycling because they see how fun it is. But I think that pressurizing children to do a sport or anything else for that matter is probably not great, unless it’s homework which everyone has to do. But give them the opportunities and let them enjoy it and make it fun. – Yeah, kids did exactly that. They took up cycling because they saw that I enjoyed it so they wanted to do it as well. – Yeah, there you go. You just have to be a perfect role model. Next question comes from Aaron who asks: I am relatively new to
the world of structured bike training and was wondering if it was reasonable to do various months long structured training plans year round until I can get as fit as my physiology and mental commitment will allow? Should there be a couple of weeks break in between plans? Love the show! – That’s a great question Aaron and the answer is quite simple: you can’t continually train
without taking rests as it’s those rest weeks that allows your body to adapt and
actually get stronger. So two to three weeks of building an increased load or
intensity and then a week to recover and kind of
absorb those efforts. – Yep. – Easy. Next up we have Erik Matonickin. How do your years, say your age, have an effect on cycling? Does age matter in cycling?
Thank you for your answer. – Well, yeah, age does matter I’m afraid but less than you might think because cycling for most of us, road cycling, is an endurance sport and your endurance gets better as you get older so there are actually some very successful pros still
racing into their 40s. For example, there’s plenty of men but there’s also, for
example, Kristin Armstrong who won the her last gold medal in the Olympics in her 40’s. Quite a good example. And there’s plenty of 60 year olds, 70 year olds, still
super strong on the bike. What you might find though is that balance of your physiological
strengths changes. So, people normally, their sprinting gets weaker because your muscle strength generally tails off as you get older but your endurance gets better so older athletes, older cyclers should try and do more strength
training, basically. – Yup, there you go, that’s
a good answer to that. Tommy Tom writes in: Do cyclists carry on shaving their legs in the winter, over the winter months when they wouldn’t be wearing shorts? – Well, I do, I don’t know about you. What do you do Chris? – Yeah, I do, I don’t think my wife would let me in
the house if I didn’t. – If you didn’t shave your legs? – Yeah, it’d look so weird where you shave them year round and then all of a sudden you grow hairy legs. – Well personally I think that if I can be bothered to shave my legs then my partner should as well. So, I hope he’s listening. Next question from Dennis Sujik: Is it better to buy a pre-build
bike or build your own? – That’s a really good question and one you should probably ask the tech channel but you’ll probably get a better value for money if you buy a pre-built one however you can completely customize it if you build it yourself. – Yep, and you also have to
have the skills obviously – Well, yeah. – To build it yourself. – If you enjoy the project it’s a good way to spend your time. – Next question, Dan
Bates: is e-tap worth it? – I would answer that one with simply surely it is because
imagine life with no cables. – Yeah, I find electronic shifting for all reverences it doesn’t make you faster, I definitely prefer it. Small hands, less force needed, love it. – Yeah, especially in the winter when you can’t feel your fingers anymore. – Yeah. – Alright then, Nick Bonne: I have an old set of rollers and I’m looking to use a smart trainer on the cheap in the Spring. Is it possible to train on basic rollers? – Well, yeah, you can
definitely train on them. People did for many, many decades. It’s especially good for
high cadence work and trying to train your
smooth pedaling technique. They’re also kind of
a bit more interesting than a static trainer because you’ve got that added thrill of
“am I gonna fall off”. The only thing is of course, that you can’t really add resistance to rollers so you can add a little
bit more resistance by reducing the tire pressure but basically you’re stuck to spinning and if you want to do intervals, you’re doing super high cadence intervals ’cause you can’t add any resistance. – You ride with rollers Emma. – I have done, I’m not saying I can now. But I had to at certain points. – You just don’t strike
me as a track rider. – No, I’m not a track rider. I had to in Beijing before, between road racing and time trial we didn’t have any turbos for some reason and the mechanic, bless him, held the back of my bike while I got going and promised he would hold
it for the whole session. And so I could do my training
session on the rollers. And then I look ’round about halfway through and he’d gone and I was balancing all on my own and I was so freaked out I fell off. – That sounds like everyone’s
introduction to rollers. – Alright then, Cyclone Fruitbat, I’m guessing that’s not your real name: After rides, the muscles in between my shoulder blades are always tight. How could I fix this? – Well, you can do some stretching and check your position, it might be that you’re holding your shoulders funny on the bike and if you’re also carrying too much
weight on your arms, if your handlebars are really low and your seat’s far
forward, then that’s gonna really stress the muscles in your back but likely it sounds like you’ve got a funny shoulder position
so I definitely look at your position and then to loosen the muscles off once they’ve got sore you could try using a tennis ball and putting it between your back and a wall and rolling it around. That works pretty well for
easing off tight back muscles. – Yeah, definitely. – HappyPhace asks when riding over 5 hours how important is it to use electrolyte replacement tabs in one of your bottles? Similarly how should I be using? – Well, that is a really question. Answer is quite dependent though. So, it depends on how much you sweat personally, but also how hot it is where you’re riding,
and the intensity of the ride you’re doing, more so
than the duration of your ride. You can test all of those things, or you can certainly test how far in intensity you’re riding but you can also test your sweat rate so it’s worth researching that
online and having a go. TV ZERO writes in: How can I balance my training with school? How can I make sure that my
training is actually enough? – Right, well unless
you’re a teacher, TV ZERO, the chances are that if you’re still at school age you don’t really need to be doing much more
than 6 to 8 hours a week because you’re still
growing and developing so you don’t want to overdo it. But it is a great age to build cycling skills and a base for later. So, skills on the bike, comfort, pedaling technique, all these things, sprinting, but you definitely don’t
need to be doing many hours. I think there’s a danger if you do too much too young that you can actually do some of a bit of harm. So, concentrate on high quality but also having fun and those skills that I wish I had learned as a kid but I didn’t ride a bike as a kid so I can’t do a wheelie,
can’t do a track stand. – It’s a great time to be getting comfortable riding in a group as well. Most kids, most of the pros that you see were great bot riders when they were kids and that’s because they met up with their mates and they went out and they pushed each other’s limits, not just physically but
technically as well. – You learn to ride on a peloton, on a wheel, all that stuff. – Hopefully you found some
of these answers useful and if you have any of your own questions remember to drop them in the comments below and use the
hashtag #ASKGCNTRAINING for that chance to win
three months subscription to Zwift which is pretty
awesome or you can use the hashtag #TORQUEBACK if
it’s not a training question. You can give us a thumbs up, share it with your friends, and if
you’d like to see a video about why power to weight is actually rubbish, you can click down here!

100 comments on “Can You Learn To Suffer Like A Pro? | Ask GCN Anything

  1. I did that shit literally a couple hours ago, got a bunch of PRs, improved my times by several minutes… Leo Paez team is closely beating Stirnemann/Frishcknetch team, the race is the Baja Epic

  2. On the subject of cadence, i always rode at about 70rpm until recently when i realised my watch had a run cadence feature. Turns out that my run cadence averages out to be 88 spm. So i aim for 88 – 90rpm when cycling now, and have done for the last year, and it is far more comfortable and manageable than my old lower cadence. This would suggest that the 60rpm is a general average, like max hr being 220 – age.

  3. #AskGCNtraining #torqueback Hi GCN. One of my favorite things to do is ride in the hills. I want to improve and train for this type of riding. But I was wondering if my genes could hold me back and actually I could be a better sprinter than climber and not know it. Am I training for the wrong discipline because i find it more desirable, or can your body adapt to either equally with correct training.

  4. #askGCNtraining will incorporating high intensity intervals in base training season benefit performance or will it cause you to peak too soon.

  5. I can't do anything like a Pro mainly because I have no interest. The life of a Pro doesn't seem like a load of fun to me. In fact it seems like a very lonely career choice. I think forcing myself through pain would make me not like cycling eventually and I would most likely quit after a while. Lets face it, I have no chance of ever riding at the Pro level for a Pro team in a Pro event. So that said, I guess I just wasted 20 minutes of my life watching this video.

  6. If you want to learn how to suffer it might be worth asking people with chronic pain and not just the pros. It’s a different approach as there is no end to the pain after the finish for them, but their experience might be invaluable.

    Having chronic pain myself my issue is almost reversed, I need to know when to stop ignoring the pain to prevent me from overdoing things.

  7. #torqueback How would you train for a 12.2 km ride with an average grade of 12 %? That's what Ill be doing when I attempt the Mt. washington ride next August in New Hampshire, USA. Thank you for any advice you might have!

  8. #torqueback oops, I forgot, how would you train for a 12.2 km ride with an average grade of 12% and complete it in 1 hour 15 minutes. I forgot to add that.

  9. #askgcntraining – How do the presenters structure their workouts year round? Do you use periodization and if so, how? Also do you favor weight training in the fall/winter or do you keep up with it year round?

  10. To Cyclone Fruitbat with their sore back, tennis balls work but honestly, depending where you are in the world, look into a lacrosse ball. They are super easy to find in North America, but not sure about worldwide. They are the size of a tennis ball, but are solid hard rubber, and are the best cheap solution for rehab on sore muscles. I keep one at home, one in my gym bag, one in my truck, and one in my race bag so I am never without.

  11. If your roller drums are aluminum you can add resistance by installing a bar with magnets on it close to the drum… search the net/youtube for instructions. It worked for me!

  12. Suffering isn't only a mental thing. No body is the same. Where one person his lactate never gets high, with an other it's always high, for others they can only sustain high lactate for a short period of time. What type of muscles do you have, how fast can your body break down lactate. If it comes easy for you to get high lactate it also comes natural to learn and deal with the pain….. I think

  13. Plan to win……run the race through your mind.. picture those corners, attacking, and winning. The muscle/mind connection is very real and powerful.

  14. Thanks, Emma and Chris! I would really like to check out that suffer book you are reading, Emma. Mind sharing the bibliographic data?

  15. I've recently changed work locations in the last year, and am now working across a very large river. There are no options for me to ride across the river, I have to use a ferry. This hasn't been an issue until the weather started getting cold. I find myself standing around more or less outdoors for 20-30 minutes for the ferry and by the time I get back on my bike I'm quite cold again. Is there anything I can do in the cramped confines of the ferry to keep some of the warmth I got on may way to the boat? Thanks. #torqueback

  16. #askGCNTtraining What is the best way to start training? Im a relatively unfit 27 year old and have just bought a bike to commute to work a couple of times a week (its only 8km but my legs are so sore for a day or so after) and want some tips on improving my fitness, speed and comfort. Should I invest in a smart trainer + cycling computer, just a cycling computer and do road training, or forget the techno and just go out and ride?

    Thanks!

  17. does age matter ? purely depends on what you are doing at my age ( 58) trying to out sprint 20somethings is only going to end one way,
    but I can usually hold my own over longer distances and long draggy climbs. Age only limits you if want it to

  18. #AskGCNTraining i listened to a podcast about muscle soreness and the opinion of the author was the if you train hard enough for muscles to be sore then you have trained too hard. The idea being that if you train to 70-80% you can repeat the training almost every day making for a larger quantitative volume of training rather than say 1 day training 2 days recovering. The podcast was regarding combat sports, would you say this is a good rule for cycling or do you think high intensity interval training would out do larger broken up volume, i.e steady(ish) commuting? I'd love to hear your opinion, thank you.

  19. #torqueback – Which of the GCN crew can do bike maintenance from basic “puncture” to complex “replace loose bearings”?

  20. ~ 14:50 – I shave my face … I don't expect my girlfriend to do the same. Don't expect us to shave our legs 😉 Truth be told, of the A-group around here, many male riders have given up on shaving their legs. Trimming them is one thing, but shaving them ever again? No, thank you.

  21. Just ride your bike in any major city. You experience every type of training during your ride. From nice easy tempo riding, to sprinting for your life!

  22. How to get kids to cycle? Ride your bike for ice cream. My kids see that bikes can be fun and effective transportation, they get some exercise and I get ice cream! Win-win!!

  23. #torqueback I have hereditary haemochromatosis, which means my body can store large (dangerously so) amounts of iron. If a pro had this condition, would the UCI allow them to race with an elevated hematocrit (as it is naturally occurring), or would they be required to undergo treatment to bring the value in-line with UCI regulations? Emma's mentioning of iron supplements in the video earlier this week had me thinking about this.

  24. I realy enjoy your videos. I was watching this and saw the part of VO2 max. In a normal week i would do 3 interval sessions, one easier ride on the smart trainer using zwift. Weekends we normally do a 3-5 hour ride on saturdays and an easy spin on a sunday. What confuses me is that during the really hard interval sessions during the week my VO2 max will drop on the Garmin. If I do easier sessions in the week it seems to pick up again. Is this normal? I do not have a power meter on my bike so I assume that only the training sessions on the trainer counts towards the VO2 max calculations. My understanding is that the hard sessions should improve your VO2 max, not decrease it. Am I doing something wrong? #ASKGCNTRAINING

  25. I find myself in a happy place in life at the moment and that seem too lessen the perceived suffering. When really tired I don't feel sorry for myself the same way I did just " normally" content with life. This is a revelation! I know people with various degree off depression and the worse they are, the less suffering through training they can take down to none at all. Happy = Fast!

  26. Hi GCN.

    Recently I started to commute and train on my RB.
    I always use cycling short, and after an hour of riding, I notice heat on my crotch, seems result of friction between thigh, and pubic area. Got any advice? #gcntraining #torqueback

  27. #torqueback if my saddle ends up in the same position relative to the bike, does it matter if i use a setback seatpost?

  28. #AskGCNTraining My son is 12 years old. He enjoys racing but struggles to hold the bunch when the bunch accelerates hard. I tell him not to worry and enjoy riding but he really wants to do better. Are there training sessions suited to someone of his age ? We race in France and he regularly has pelotons of 50 riders.

  29. #ASKGCNTRAINING Hei, wanted to ask what´s your training advice for the winter. During the season I built up form and don´t wanna lose it almost all during winter just doing endurance miles but also don´t want to smash in the intervalls to hard so I will be toast at the beginning of the new season. Any good advice?

  30. #torqueback #AskGCNTraining Love the show! I'm a bit struggling to keep my heart rate low and steady, especially on climbs. If I hold a steady pace, my heart rate is still slowly increasing, even if I use my easiest gear (34-28) on a 6% climb. I want to go to the Dolomites next year, but I'm a bit worried that I can't keep my heartrate down. Is there a way to train this?

  31. #torqueback Why do stars not fall out of the sky, why do we exist, why do castelli not make cycling shoes? 🤔 Some questions just can't be answered.

  32. Everyone knows the right leg is stronger because that's the drive-side leg. Just like everyone knows a bike with more gears goes faster. And so I'm thinking I'm ready to be the Ask GCN Anything guest host, maybe when Dan takes all the presenters to a certain festival in Munich.

  33. #torqueback hi gcn, my time on the bike is limited, so would having a 90 minute session where I go full gas up one or two Strava segments keep me making improvements?

  34. #AskGCNtraining I am 66, been riding 3 months, and want to do my first century ride over a very hilly course. I’ve done several 50 mile rides through hills but am intimidated by the prospect of doubling that. Given my age, what training regimen would you recommend versus someone who is 20 or 30 years younger?

  35. Help me understand how an aging cyclist get better at endurance, as Emma says, when every cycling performance metric is in decline? Thanks, I am 57 yrs old. https://youtu.be/7SzWBsBBJyA?t=840 #TorqueBack

  36. #AskGCNTraining Hey there, love the channel. Thinking of starting to use energy gels during my rides. Have not used energy gels before and don't know where to start or how to go about introducing them. Thanks for the advice.

  37. #torqueback Hey, when I go aero on my road bike, either on the drops or in the TT position with elbows on the tops, I use to hit the torso with my knees, sometimes my elbows. Is it normal or am I doing something wrong?

  38. Emma Jane Pooley hmmm. more like Emma "yeah/yep" Pooley.

    hahahaha damn 7:21 onwards hahahaha especially 7:32 and 8:12
    i admit i do that often too

  39. Question: I commute 40km roundtrip to work everyday. The terrain is varied between smooth tarmac all the way to gravel. My back tire is worn so I'm needing to replace it. I ride a gravel steel frame bike with 36x700c tires on 29ers. I'm a heavier rider (83kg 170cm), so my question is what is the best tire combination for a heavier rider on long commutes? Should I use 36x700c gravel tires? Or should i opt for narrower tires?

  40. #askGCNtraining Embrace the suck!! It only hurts a lot for a long time

    #torqueback I have been watching a few videos on winter-proofing the bike. I intend to keep riding as it gets colder, except for those icy/snowy days. If I were to commute to school (about 20 miles) and the weather turns sour, would it be better for me to have switched to MTB shoes and cleats for the winter? I'm new to the sport, and found your channel in the first few days of riding. Love your library of useful stuff!! Thanks for all the great tips, and keep up the good work.

  41. is there a big difference in comfort on an aero bike compared to lightweight bike been thinking of buying an aero bike for sometime now? and what kind of aero bike can you recommend? #torqueback

  42. Thanks for taking my question. I was actually asking because I intend to get my grandson (now 2) into cycling. Now how do I get grandma into cycling?

  43. My question, as I set on the turbo hating life, is whether indoor training is genuinely harder than outdoor training. I'm trying to ride a similar power to what I know I could do on the road quite comfortably but here on the turbo I'm slowly fading in to oblivion.

    I use the same Stages powermeter on the road as on the turbo.

    My question is… I know watts are watts but are they? In this case is 320W (my failed planned indoor wattage for the day) on the turbo harder than 320W on the road? If so, should I adjust to a lower wattage indoors? If I do this, am I gaining the same performance benefit? I'm fairly certain, I don't really want to try, that I couldn't even get close to my 20min power on the road, on the turbo.

    Does the type of turbo make a difference? Mine's a run of the mill Kinetic (I think) where pop in the wheel.

    That's more than one question, I recognize, so you can paraphrase if you like.

  44. Regarding pain between the shoulder blades… it happens to me when the reach on the bike is too short. Maybe Fruitbat needs to get a longer stem, move his seat back or both. Of course everyone is different, but maybe this will work.

  45. #torqueback #AskGCNTraining Can anyone offer any advise on how to train for a two day/ multiple day long distance charity ride? Specifically advice on building stamina, recovery, and (since my event in question will be in October of next year) clothing related choices? Love the show!!!

  46. #AskGCNTraining I'd love some advice about carb loading, specifically repeated loading. I have a month coming up where I have about 4 races, spaced about a week apart, each of which is an endurance event, which would see a significant benefit from carb-loading. However, I'm worried about the effects (if any) of carb loading repeatedly. Any thoughts?

  47. #AskGCNTraining Hi guys, I'm incorporating some mobility and stretch sessions to my training program and I'm wondering how often and when I should do those sessions. Before/after a workout or on a rest day? Thank you very much.

  48. #Torqueback I have a Ridley HELIUM SLA, with 105 groupset and Fulcrum Racing 5 LG wheels and would like to know what the best way to lose weight from my bike is with about $800AUD (£430GBP)?

  49. #AskGCNTraining Hi GCN! Season has come to an end and I want to plan next season. What is the best base training I can do to build up fitness for next season. Thanks!

  50. #AskGCNTraining I am brand new to cycling and have only been riding for a month now to lose weight (about 30kgs overweight) and get healthy. Every ride so far I have really struggled with any incline, no matter how small. I seem to just run out of breath and end up grinding no matter what. Is this a case of being too heavy or just not strong enough? What exercises could I do to combat this if any? Thanks GCN Team for the inspiration.

  51. #askGCNtraining I get so frustrated getting dropped on climbs I've almost accepted it, how can I get better…lose weight, leg strength work, hill reps, intervals?

  52. Emma. If YOU got dropped on Zwift, I suspect you were honest with your weight and some of the others werent’.

  53. #askGCNtraining I am always put off by riders with a tip toe Foot angle when moving through the bottom of the revolution. A numbers of pros do it e.g. Peter Sagan. It looks bad to me because it looks like the saddle heigh if wrong.
    Does it cramp the calf mussel?
    Does it increase aero drag?
    Doesn't look cool to me, apologies to Peter S and Oscar P in this video. Heaven forbid they may be able to go even faster !

  54. #torqueback I have quite a long commute, usually a 2hr round trip. I can fit my intervals in on my way home, but struggle to hold the power over rolling terrain and round sharp corners. If I split my intervals, e.g. 2x10mins on way to work and 2x10min on the way home I could keep my commute 2hrs and perform the intervals over more suitable terrain (uphill drags/climbs) meaning I hit my target power. Is there any disadvantage to spliting the training session in half?

  55. #torqueback What happens to all the pro-bikes when they "upgrade?" Do they get sold on eBay or something like that? I would sure love to get my hands on a "used" Team Sky Dogma F10!

  56. #AskGCNTraining #TorqueBack I'm 176cm, 108kg and 46yo. I have the stamina to ride some longish sportives (160km+, even a 2-day 300km event) but I'd really like to use my cycling to lose some weight (about 30kg would be nice). I know that diet is part of the mix, and I know it needs to be gradual but what do you recommend training wise to help me shift the kgs, please? Current ride efforts just seem to be counter-balanced with carbohydrate calories… I've promised myself a new bike and a cycling holiday when I lose the weight but until then there's no point saving weight on the bike when I weigh so much.

  57. #torqueback – I've just ordered my first tubeless wheelset and matching tires (tyres). I store my bike securely in my unheated garage, but I wonder if need to worry about the tire sealant freezing when temperatures drops to below 32 F (0 C) consistently during January and February.

  58. #AskGCNTraining Hi Guys, Regarding FTP testing, I see that various testing methods exist: TrainerRoad has a step test, Zwift's 20 min FTP test, Coggan 20 min FTP Test (especially the warm-up protocols are different) and Even Elite has a step test-like protocol developed by Mapei sport. How do the methods compare in the sense of which test will give the most reliable FTP that won't make your training too hard and demotivating or too easy and produce minimal gains? Maybe you can test them to see the comparison? Thanks for the great content!

  59. #AskGCN. #TORQUEBACK.
    Hi Jon, I just bought a new Giant TCR Adv. 2 and my brakes seem to be very gritty. I can distinctly feel about 5 small sharp steps as I pull the leaver. Do the breaks need to be 'worn in' or is there a problem.

    P.S. If I had to describe the feeling, it would be like lightly drawing a bread knife over a piece of wood.

  60. #torqueback I'm a heavier rider around the 120kg mark, pursuing weightloss through the sport. I'm in need of a new road bike, would you recommend carbon fiber or ally for us bigger folk? Or is the emphasis on the wheelset more than the frame?

  61. If i wanted to do an everesting, mathematically is it better to do a long but gradual slope repeatably, or shorter but steeper climbs repeatably? #askgcntraining #askgcn

  62. #torqueback I have always used flat bar bike with cross/hybrid bike frame. I recently want to change my current bike to road bike with drop bars and the biggest concern of mine is feeling comfortable in the long rides. That’s why i am also hesitating to buy brand new bike if i will be uncomfortable to ride with. Do you think i should buy second hand bike to try myself out if i can be comfortable with drop bars or I should go for brand new bike with proper bike fit? Thank you for your answers in advance! Love the show! Hoşçakalın! (Goodbye in Turkish) 😀

  63. #AskGCNTraining I know you guys are big fans of Zwift, I'm thinking of buying my first trainer and trying it out myself this winter. I'm wondering what you think about wheel on v/s direct drive and the brand choices – Wahoo or Cyclops.

  64. #torqueback With indoor training season upon us in the Northern Hemisphere, I was wondering about the efficiency of carbon vs steel on a direct-drive trainer. I have both a steel road bike and a carbon road bike and they are similarly geared. At the moment, I'm using the steel bike on my direct drive trainer with Zwift as my training platform and while I'm able to drive quite well during harder efforts, is there anything to gain by using my stiffer carbon bike on the trainer? Perhaps this could be a future GCN Tech show?

  65. The Sufferfest includes a 10-week mental toughness programme with their app subscription. Easy to use techniques that work: https://thesufferfest.com/pages/learn-more-mind

  66. I've been thinking about getting back on the rollers — Especially to improve my pedaling stroke. I'm thinking about these Crown Rollers. I actually work with the guy who developed them, and all I can say is, when he does something, he does it right!

    https://www.crownroller.com

  67. #torqueback Why do some people (read: GCN presenters) pronounce derailleur as "deraillier" when it could be pronounced "derailer" very naturally?

  68. #askgcntraining

    Is it beneficial to train on a substantially heavier bike or just stick with the race bike all of the time?

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