Advertisements

Sport Health & Fitness News

Keeping you up-to-date with the latest sporting health and fitness news in Australia and across the globe.

Tyre Choice – 23 Verses 25

CYCLING NEWS & REVIEW:

By Columnist Genevieve Whitson – Professional Cyclist 

14570525876_6b935449c8_k - Copy

Photo CreditJaguar MENA, 2014 – Chris Froome Team Skyrider & Tour de France Winner is the First Man to Cycle Through the Eurotunnel

There is an ongoing debate in the world of cycling as to whether the 23 or the 25 width tyre is faster. So, let’s explore this concept now.

In more recent times it does feel like people are swaying towards 25 with evidence showing that close to 75% of riders are using the wider tyres. But, then again, is it just personal preference? And just what do cyclists prioritise, is it road grip, ride comfort, traction, aerodynamics or CRR (coefficient of rolling resistance)?

The 23 Width Tyre

As the classic tyre for road cyclists for years, this tyre has always done a good job. It cuts through the road surface nicely. You can pump the tyre pressure pretty high, especially if you just need pure speed for say a TT. But, with large advancements in bike technology, this may not even be necessary anymore. Plus, these tyres are skinny, so you may feel more twitchy in the wet. Consequently,  this means less confidence cornering. So, do you need something bigger?

The 25 Width Tyre

Relatively new on the block, the 25 width tyre is proving hugely popular. In fact, there is a new wave of cyclists saying that this is now the tyre of choice. Simply said, the slightly wider tyre gives you more grip and there is now evidence that it has faster-rolling resistance. Therefore, rotating faster than the 23 – meaning more speed for the same amount of pedalling.

In addition, you can also run the 25 with lower pressure – around 90 instead of say 100, which may make you feel safer – since it’s a slightly larger tyre. Consequently, giving you more grip and control for descending and cornering.

And finally from a budget perspective – durability. A tyre with a larger surface wears out slower so the 25 could be cheaper in the long run. I’ve ridden both and I am finding myself swaying towards the 25, simply because a lot of UK racing and riding is in the wet and overcast conditions so

I’ve ridden both and I am finding myself swaying towards the 25. Why? Well,  simply because a lot of UK racing and riding is in wet, overcast conditions, so I want to stay upright. In saying that, most of the Tour de France riders are now using a 25. so there you go, you make the choice.

But, remember the choice is entirely yours. We’re all different, and have specific preferences.

Thanks to my sponsors at www.genwhitson.com. You can now find me on Twitter @GenWhitson https://twitter.com/GenWhitson.

About Our Cycling News and Review Columnist

Jarlath-Cross-20131-960x576_GenevieveGenevieve Whitson is a NZ born, British/Scottish cyclist, based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Gen has a raced at the highest level for Road, Cyclocross and Mountain biking, have competed in four World Championships, multiple World Cups as well as riding professionally on the road. Gen has raced all around the globe on the road bike and is currently riding for a Belgium team, Isorex competing in all the major spring classics.

Highlights of her career include gaining a top 30 finish at the World Cyclocross Championships, a stage win in a major USA road tour, and winning the 2015 Scottish National Hill Climb Champs. Gen also loves to ride a rickshaw in Edinburgh for strength training on the side and is heavily involved in supporting/mentoring up and coming female/male athletes to ride to their potential. Her mantra on the bike is: Eat the pain…

Disclaimer: The information published in this column is the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

Advertisements

Race Tactics – Get Your Race Brain On Before Race Day

CYCLING NEWS & REVIEW:

By Columnist Genevieve Whitson – Professional Cyclist 

 

 

2562674554_fece844801_b

Photo Credit: Ethan Lofton – Iron Horse Bicycle Race – 2010

 

A lot of cyclists I meet often say on the start line of races, ‘I hope this goes okay…’ followed by a nervous smile. But, racing doesn’t have to be a nerve-racking experience. Not if you prepare yourself.

Often, these cyclists are new to racing and just getting into the swing of things, but as they say, ‘knowledge is power’, so why not get yourself as acquainted as much as you can BEFORE you enter the race with what could unfold and prepare for it.

Whether you love to climb, sprint or time trial you can minimise the risk of a race going pear shaped by doing some homework on the course you are going to embark on, some common traits of a bunch and get your mental state dialled so you have every chance of success on the day.

Here are some tips to ensure you feel confident on race day:

Tip #1 – Figure out what sort of rider you are – If you hate flat circuit races, don’t expend too much of your time on them, unless you want to work on your weaknesses. Find out the nature of a course before you enter and then do some research on it. Strava is an excellent way to get information on a lap, including length, metres of climbing, average speeds and so forth.

Tip #2 – Understand the general protocol of bunch riding – Make sure you know how to lap around in a bunch, as sitting behind a rider can save you 30% and spending all day near the front of the peloton is probably not going to land you on the podium! Do some bunch rides before the big day and practice positioning, especially in the last 2-5kms. Get comfortable with moving through the peloton safely and riding close to other riders. I would highly recommend track riding as a great way to become familiar with riding in close proximity to others; it will also help your leg speed and give you a great short, snappy anaerobic session.

Tip # 3 – Research your fellow competitors – What sort of riders are they? What are their past results? Who’s in form and who is great at maneuvering their way through a bunch – find that wheel on race day and stick to it!

Tip #4 – Have a chilled-out, non-stress week building up to the race  This one isn’t easy, as everyone has differing commitments building up to a race. But, if you can find a way to cut out some stress in the week leading up to the race, do what you can to make this happen. I am personally a massive fan of yoga one to two days out from crucial races. It calms my brain, opens up my hips for blood flow and stretches out the legs.

Tip #5 Give yourself plenty of time on race day – In my early race days, I had a couple of close calls where I almost missed races due to arriving late. I hate to think how much energy I wasted stressing and worrying that I’d miss the race. Don’t risk ruining the race due to poor planning!

Thanks to my sponsors at www.genwhitson.com. You can now find me on Twitter @GenWhitson https://twitter.com/GenWhitson.

About Our Cycling News and Review Columnist

Jarlath-Cross-20131-960x576_GenevieveGenevieve Whitson is a NZ born, British/Scottish cyclist, based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Gen has a raced at the highest level for Road, Cyclocross and Mountain biking, have competed in four World Championships, multiple World Cups as well as riding professionally on the road. Gen has raced all around the globe on the road bike and is currently riding for a Belgium team, Isorex competing in all the major spring classics.

Highlights of her career include gaining a top 30 finish at the World Cyclocross Championships, a stage win in a major USA road tour, and winning the 2015 Scottish National Hill Climb Champs. Gen also loves to ride a rickshaw in Edinburgh for strength training on the side and is heavily involved in supporting/mentoring up and coming female/male athletes to ride to their potential. Her mantra on the bike is: Eat the pain…

Disclaimer: The information published in this column is the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

How to Reduce Bike Weight for Lighter Rides

CYCLING NEWS & REVIEW:

By Columnist Genevieve Whitson – Professional Cyclist 

7662275886_594b2f9484_h

 

Photo Credit: David Howard, 2012 – Olympic Cycling – 

Ever worried that you are carting around a couple of extra kg’s on your bike that could be slowing you down?

Then, why not give yourself the best chance ever on the climbs. Lighten the load by making some simple adjustments to your bike to reduce weight. Of course, this then means that you don’t have to cut back on those cakes.

You reduce weight on your bike without blowing the budget too much. It mainly requires a bit of research on the internet. But I can guarantee that the mental edge you’ll get knowing your bike has shed some debris will make it a far more enjoyable ride anyway.

No 1: Use Carbon Handlebars  Switch from aluminium to carbon handlebars/seat post and stem. Out of all the suggestions I am making, this may be the most expensive, but generally speaking, you can get carbon handlebars for around £70.00. If that feels pretty good, then why not also upgrade the seat post and stem? If you are worried about the brand and need some advice, get on a bike forum and get asking! Carbon is also better at absorbing shock and stiffer than aluminium so it will feel like a smoother ride.

No 2: Switch Skewers – Swap your standard skewers for some uber light weight ones – Tune DC14 Road skewers. I only just discovered these seriously cool and uber light road skewers a year ago. They feel like feathers in comparison to your standard quick releases and also look very funky.

No 3: Bicycle Tubes – Bontrager Ultra-Lightweight Latex Bicycle Tubes. They may be green, but they are light and latex is more subtle and puncture resistant. It is, however, worth checking with your local bike shop that your tyres are compatible with them, but you could be saving up to 20 grams a wheel with these.

No 4: Bar Tape – I didn’t even think it was possible save weight here, but yes you can. Try some Lizard Skin bar tape. They say this can take up to 10 grams off in comparison to standard bar tape. The polymar foam is very grippy, even in the rain and also dampens vibrations. Really? Why are we not all using this already??

No 5: Pedals – Try Speedplay Nanogram Zero pedals as these weigh around 130 grams. Riding Speedplay’s myself I can definitely vouch for how great these pedals are and I am not even riding using their lightest ones. Speedplays are also great because they last for donkey years. My first pair didn’t get replaced for 5 years – that is definitely value for money.

No 6:  Bottle cages – This is a very easy quick-fix for weight. Try some king titanium bottle cages. They are pretty light, but they are also extremely durable and they also won’t mark your bottles. After all everyone wants to have bling-bling looking bottles.

No 7: Tyres – If you want to save another 100 grams, swap your current road tyres for some Maxxis Relis TT. The only downside is that the longevity of these tryes isn’t fabulous, but in the meantime, you’ll feel lighter and they are fast. So, it will be a more comfortable ride. There are lots of things you can do to deal with ‘pre-race nerves’ to ensure you can keep your cool (but not too cool) on your race.

 

 

 

Thanks to my sponsors at www.genwhitson.com. You can now find me on twitter @GenWhitson https://twitter.com/GenWhitson.

About Our Cycling News and Review Columnist

Jarlath-Cross-20131-960x576_GenevieveGenevieve Whitson is a NZ born, British/Scottish cyclist, based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Gen has a raced at the highest level for Road, Cyclocross and Mountain biking, have competed in four World Championships, multiple World Cups as well as riding professionally on the road. Gen has raced all around the globe on the road bike and is currently riding for a Belgium team, Isorex competing in all the major spring classics.

Highlights of her career include gaining a top 30 finish at the World Cyclocross Championships, a stage win in a major USA road tour, and winning the 2015 Scottish National Hill Climb Champs. Gen also loves to ride a rickshaw in Edinburgh for strength training on the side and is heavily involved in supporting/mentoring up and coming female/male athletes to ride to their potential. Her mantra on the bike is: Eat the pain…

Disclaimer: The information published in this column is the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

HIGH INTENSITY INTERVAL TRAINING WHY HARDER ISNT ALWAYS BETTER

ATHLETIC NEWS & REVIEW:

By Columnist Michael Meredith – Athletic Coach:

33389964600_41d62786b1_o

Photo Credit: Transformation Video, 2017 – High-Intensity Training – 

The Trend of HIIT training dates back further than the current FAD we see circulating in modern circles, most notably dating back to 1996 when professor Izumi TABATA conducted research on Olympic Speed skaters with a training method of 20 seconds Ultra Intense exercise followed by 10 secs of rest. The research proved successful in its ability to obtain strong results in such a short period. The trend then caught on and we see many varying versions of the same style using short periods of intense exercise followed by short periods of rest.

The reality of the results is enough to attract any individual to want to do HIIT at every session. But Ultimately this type of training although successful initially will eventually catch up with you. I am a huge advocate for adding this type of programming into any training regime but when I speak to individuals that tell me that this is the only type of training they do, I can’t help but feel they are setting themselves up for disaster.  There are many reasons why HIIT is a great addition to any training program, but you also need to understand why you need to balance your training with other methods.

#1 WHEN DONE RIGHT – HIIT IS HARD. Let’s be honest, if you go into any interval training session with the desire to give it your all, It’s going to be tough, both physically and mentally. And sometimes the anxiety of knowing a tough session is looming can be enough to give any athlete anxiety for days. Tough Sessions require mental focus and preparation and that’s difficult to give 100% if there is little time between those sessions.

#2 ADAPTION: Extremely hard training is fantastic and some of the best results will come from these sessions. But you also need to give your body the time to adapt. To respond to the effort it was forced to give and repair to come back stronger. Training harder and harder even when you are sore and tired is not smart. Your body needs to be nurtured and given time to respond to training. Training stimulus is crucial to progressive results but if you are constantly battling fatigue and muscle soreness are you really able to give 100%.

#3 REST: This goes hand in hand with adaption but in any training program you need rest. Both mentally and physically. HIIT will put stress on your CNS (Central Nervous System). This is what regulates your hormones and your response to stress. When the body is continually under high levels of stress, your CNS will start to lose efficiency. In fact, it will respond oppositely to how you want it to. Your fight or flight response will take over, and the results you desire will, in fact, become difficult to obtain. Factor in a rest day or two, an easy day or something less stressful.

#4 BALANCE: For every athlete, balance is vital for any program. Just because training is perceived as HARD doesn’t not necessarily means it’s productive. There are many other forms of training that can be added into a training program to provide challenging sessions without overloading your CNS and requiring a maximal effort every time you train. Try YOGA, swimming, a long slow run, or even play some sport.

Every coach and Athlete understands the need for tough training sessions in any training program, they are the foundation of both physical fitness and mental toughness. But they also understand the human body is not indispensable. That for every hard session there needs to be an acknowledgement of recovery. That for everything you take, you must give back plus interest if you want to see long term sustainable results.

We all love training hard, but be smart about how you treat your body and remember my number one rule in training, train smarter not harder for better results!

About Our Athletic News and Review Columnist – Michael Meredith

Michael Meredith

Michael Meredith, Master Personal Trainer, Elite Obstacle Racer, Former Sydney A-grade rugby league player, Runner, and all-round health enthusiast, is the Founder of Aussie Athletes Health and Performance. As a coach, Michael’s philosophy is to focus on health and performance. His 12-week training programs for men and women, include strength and fitness, OCR (or obstacle course racing) and recreational running. Micheal aims to narrow the gap between strength training and aerobic endurance so that his clients’ can balance the two effectively to create the fittest, healthiest version of themselves.

“After more than 5-years as a Personal Trainer, I have helped celebrities, recreational athletes make it all the way to an élite level of fitness. In addition, I have annually sponsored two ‘everyday athletes’ as a mentor. This give one male and one female the opportunity to take on certain events throughout the year under the guidance of the #teamaussieathletes community.”

“My major focus as a trainer is to complete an exercise science degree and turn my Aussie Athletes business into a community based-group that operates out of its own head-quarters. Aussie Athletes Health and Performance is now operated via two of Australia’s premier Fitness First Platinum Clubs in Sydney Australia, these being in Park Street Platinum and Bondi Platinum.

Disclaimer: The author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion form the basis of this column. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

Dealing with Pre-Race Nerves

CYCLING NEWS & REVIEW:

By Columnist Genevieve Whitson – Professional Cyclist 

230810670_497021f267_o

 

Photo CreditAuðunn Níelsson, 2006 – Cycling – 

Feeling nervous before a race is absolutely normal and actually healthy and should not be feared. The body needs a certain amount of adrenaline to get it going and turning up to the start line with no butterflies in the stomach will probably make you a bit lethargic in the race.

However, the issue that many cyclists/athletes face is too many overconsuming nerves and not being able to relax in order to get on with the job at hand – having fun and placing well. There are lots of things you can do to deal with ‘pre-race nerves’ to ensure you can keep your cool (but not too cool) on your race.

There are lots of things you can do to deal with ‘pre-race nerves’ to ensure you can keep your cool (but not too cool) on your race.

No 1: Get yourself organised before the race – a lot of worry about how you are going to get on in a race can be minimised by just getting a bit more organised for the day. If you are worried about getting ‘dropped’ on the course, go do a pre-ride and get to know the course well. Ride it with someone experienced whose advice you trust. Find out where the best wind shelter is, the best and safest lines.

No 2: Get your bike serviced and clean it – knowing your bike is in running order on race day will settle a lot of mechanical worries. And did you know you can usually get around an extra 10 watts by just giving your chain a good clean?

No 3: Have a good breakfast before you head off – It’s easier to stay calm and feel focused with a full stomach. Ensure you eat properly on race morning and have some gels for the race so you don’t  blow up.

No 4: Take 3 deep breaths on the start line and remind yourself that you have done all you can up to this point – now you just have to ride and let the race unfold No 5: If you struggle.

No 5: If you struggle sleeping the night before racing try a 10 minute guided meditation – There are loads available on Youtube, or do some light yoga to help keep the worry niggles at bay.

No 6: Treat the week before the race as normal as possible – No need to over stress yourself out by living your life around one race. If you usually meet friends for a wine during the week, go as you normally would. The body loves routine and the more you keep to its standard routine, the calmer it will be.

No 7: Visualise having a great race and then let it go and chill out, relax – Visualising will help you to feel less nervous and it will boost your confidence.

Thanks to my sponsors at www.genwhitson.com. You can now find me on twitter @GenWhitson https://twitter.com/GenWhitson.

About Our Cycling News and Review Columnist

Jarlath-Cross-20131-960x576_GenevieveGenevieve Whitson is a NZ born, British/Scottish cyclist, based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Gen has a raced at the highest level for Road, Cyclocross and Mountain biking, have competed in four World Championships, multiple World Cups as well as riding professionally on the road. Gen has raced all around the globe on the road bike and is currently riding for a Belgium team, Isorex competing in all the major spring classics.

Highlights of her career include gaining a top 30 finish at the World Cyclocross Championships, a stage win in a major USA road tour, and winning the 2015 Scottish National Hill Climb Champs. Gen also loves to ride a rickshaw in Edinburgh for strength training on the side and is heavily involved in supporting/mentoring up and coming female/male athletes to ride to their potential. Her mantra on the bike is: Eat the pain…

Disclaimer: The information published in this column is the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

MASTER CLIMBING ON A BIKE

CYCLING NEWS & REVIEW:

By Columnist Genevieve Whitson – Professional Cyclist 

Up Hill Cycling

Photo Credit: Paul Dobson, 2010 – Fred Whitton Challenge 2010

You do not need to be a natural to master climb. The biggest myth out there is that you are either a ‘natural’ or ‘no hope’ on hills – and its just not true. Learning to climb takes a bit of patience, but anyone can take their climbing ability to a new level.

How to Climb

The first step is to actually train on hills, or if you don’t have access to hills to replicate hills on a turbo trainer or gym. Climbing well requires strength and endurance and that is something that not all riders are born with.

So, if you’re currently struggling with hills, then I would suggest getting some good endurance rides in. Therefore, increasing your practice stamina and strength together. For instance ride for at least 1.5-2 hours over mixed terrain, which requires you to change your gears a lot and get in and out of the saddle. This makes your muscles more adaptive to changing power output and will make it easier when you target specific hills in a few weeks time.

Hills Sessions

Once you have some stamina in your legs, then it’s time to some specific sessions on hills. I would suggest, over the winter, doing some low cadence strength work on hills. This includes repeat efforts going up at around 60-70rpm for 5-minutes at a time and then spinning back down the hill around 90-100 to flush the legs out. This is quite an old school way of building strength in the legs and has been commonly used by Tour de France riders for the alpine stages.

Gym Sessions

The key is to not do this session all-year-round as it’s really taxing on the legs, but over the winter it’s perfect for lifting the power. If you don’t have access to good hills, then head straight to the gym for squats and deadlifts. Squats, in particular, done properly (I suggest getting supervision for anyone new to lifting weights), will also build up the muscles in your quads, while the deadlifts will focus on the calves.

After a few months in the gym, you’ll notice a considerable difference climbing. To get the ‘jump’ for climbing, for example, when the bunch goes up and someone attacks or cracks up the gears, you need to practice pure speed on hills. Find a hill which you can tear up at max effort for anywhere between 1-3 mins which will help prepare your body for the pace changes in groups. You can even incorporate 30-seconds on/30-seconds off amongst this or in alternative reps to help your lungs and muscles adapt to the changing pace of group rides.

Climbing should not be feared! Go find a hill and go forth!

About Our Cycling News and Review Columnist

Jarlath-Cross-20131-960x576_GenevieveGenevieve Whitson is a NZ born, British/Scottish cyclist, based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Gen has a raced at the highest level for Road, Cyclocross and Mountain biking, have competed in four World Championships, multiple World Cups as well as riding professionally on the road. Gen has raced all around the globe on the road bike and is currently riding for a Belgium team, Isorex competing in all the major spring classics.

Highlights of her career include gaining a top 30 finish at the World Cyclocross Championships, a stage win in a major USA road tour, and winning the 2015 Scottish National Hill Climb Champs. Gen also loves to ride a rickshaw in Edinburgh for strength training on the side and is heavily involved in supporting/mentoring up and coming female/male athletes to ride to their potential. Her mantra on the bike is: Eat the pain…

Disclaimer: The information published in this column is the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

WHY TURBO SESSIONS AND CYCLING MIX

CYCLING NEWS & REVIEW:

By Columnist Genevieve Whitson – Professional Cyclist 

Turbo riding

Photo Credit: New England Fitness District, 2009: Spin Bikes

The majority of athletes I know, ride and train with – HATE THY TURBO and will do almost anything they can to avoid it.

But let’s face it, come winter time, you are going to have to find a way to embrace turbo, or endure riding for hours on end in the cold, rain, snow and sleet. While this is tolerated for a few weeks, most of us won’t ride over the whole winter. That is unless you decide to take a holiday with your bike and head for somewhere tropical. We can dream, I know. So, for the rest of us without unlimited resources – you need to learn to LOVE THY TURBO.

Turbo is Beneficial

Riding on a turbo is just as valuable as riding outdoors. Of course, this is providing you do it properly.

Another benefit of turbo riding is the ride is better controlled, especially when training by power. It is not easy to stay within 10-15 watts on a bunch ride. The reason most people loathe turbo is because it’s believed to be boring. You aren’t going anywhere, and you can’t measure your progress if you don’t seem to be moving beyond the rug under the turbo.

The Biggest Turbo Mistake

One of the biggest mistakes people make using a turbo or rollers is pedalling away with no variation. So, while you tell yourself you are going to do 1 hour steady on the turbo – just riding away with a healthy heart rate, to compensate for not being on the road – then at the 20-minute mark, you’re already looking at aborting.

Turbo Tricks and Tips

The trick to using the turbo is to try and replicate what you would usually when riding outdoors. Therefore, set-up your environment to stimulate and motivate yourself.

Here are seven tips to get you started:

• Setting up your turbo in front of a blank wall – staring at a wall for 30 minutes to 1 hour is sure to make you crazy. I don’t know who suggested this – but it’s a terrible idea.

• If you are going to turbo in front of a TV, at least pick an uplifting DVD or TV program to watch

• Get your music dialled in before you start. Make a unique turbo compilation that will encourage you to pedal

• Do not set up the turbo in the living room unless you have complete space. Trying to turbo as your wife, husband or flatmates come home will most likely see the whole session derailed or you will be banned from ever bringing a bike in there again

• Turn off your phone, or have it on silent mode. It’s very tricky to speak on the phone or send a text while you’re sitting at maximum heart rate!

• Have something to measure time. I once lost my watch, had no mobile and was turbo-ing in a room with no clock. It was the most horrid hour ever. I had to wait for someone to tell me it was time to stop.

• Avoid doing sessions on your own. Get a friend over and turbo together – time passes a lot faster with someone else there.

 Turbo Sessions to Try

If you need to do a say 30-minute to 1-hour session or even worse, 2-hours on a turbo, or the dreaded, 4-hours. Then, I’d suggest the following exercises to make it worthwhile.

Simply riding at a leisurely pace on a turbo for any period of time, will not do much for you. Not unless you’re having a super easy recovery ride and simply want to get the legs moving and the blood flowing. So instead, try riding a little faster and doing the 30-minute session.

The Town Ride Session

• 30-minute session – Warm up for 5 minutes, to get your cadence up to at least 85 rpm, and then spend every 2-minutes at a slightly different pace. Let’s say the first 2-minutes in a higher gear – 2 speeds up. Then, over the next 2-minutes – 1 speed down. The next 2-minutes – 1 speed up. Next 2-minutes – 2 gears down. This will be similar to a town ride with constant changes in pace and speed. So, before you know it, 25-minutes would’ve passed, and it will be time for the cool down.

• 45-minute session – Get some leg speed going. Warm up for 10-minutes and then alternate your cadence. Speed for 3-minutes at 90 rpm. Follow this with 3-minutes at 95, and then 3-minutes at 100, 3-minutes at 105 and 3-minutes at 110. Then, roll backwards through the rpm speeds until your reach 90 rpm. Recover for 5-minutes and then do it again. But, make sure you up the cadence a little. This session is excellent for building leg speed and can also be done as a recovery session, provided you keep the power or heart rate low and just work on the rpm.

Step Ups and Downs Session

• 1-hour session – Warm up for 10-minutes. Then, every 5-minutes move up a gear. After 4 gear changes, reverse the order and move back down. Lastly, cool down for 10-minutess. That’s it, session done.

Time Trials and Hills Session

• 1.5 – 2hours – Warm up for 10-15 minutes then it’s time to hit some hills. If you have resistance on the turbo, put it up and get into some low cadence hill sessions, or put a few books under the front wheel of the bike. Then pedal for 5-minutes at 70 rpm, 5-minutes at 60rpm and then 3 -minutes at 50rpm. Follow this with an easy 5-minute spin. Then it’s time for some high cadence repeats – 5-minutes at 85rpm, 5-minutes at 95 rpm, and then 5-minutes at 105 rpm. Ride easy for a bit, then hit some time trial efforts – 5-minutes on and 5-minutes off – repeat three times. Lastly, cool down 10-15 minutes.

If you or your coach has set you a 3-4 hour road session, and you feel you must do this on the turbo, then break this into chunks and shortening it a little. Why? Well, it’s important to remember that 3-hours on a turbo are more like 3.5 on the road as you never get to stop pedalling. So, it’s important to break up the session – ride for 1.5 hours in the morning and then 1.5 in the evening.

There are literally a zillion sessions you can do on the indoor bike to mix-it-up. Be creative, think about riding outdoors and our constant changes in speed, then apply this to the turbo. Also, remember the value of being able to totally control the speed, cadence, heart rate and/or power. You never know, you might actually start to enjoy the turbo.

About Our Cycling News and Review Columnist

Jarlath-Cross-20131-960x576_GenevieveGenevieve Whitson is a NZ born, British/Scottish cyclist, based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Gen has a raced at the highest level for Road, Cyclocross and Mountain biking, have competed in four World Championships, multiple World Cups as well as riding professionally on the road. Gen has raced all around the globe on the road bike and is currently riding for a Belgium team, Isorex competing in all the major spring classics.

Highlights of her career include gaining a top 30 finish at the World Cyclocross Championships, a stage win in a major USA road tour, and winning the 2015 Scottish National Hill Climb Champs. Gen also loves to ride a rickshaw in Edinburgh for strength training on the side and is heavily involved in supporting/mentoring up and coming female/male athletes to ride to their potential. Her mantra on the bike is: Eat the pain…

Disclaimer: The information published in this column is the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

INTERVAL TRAINING AND BIKE FITNESS

CYCLING NEWS & REVIEW:

By Columnist Genevieve Whitson – Professional Cyclist 

5044111293_24a147bc90_b

Photo Credit: Tejvan Pettinger, 2010: Cycling

Most people think that in the winter months, you don’t need to do any interval training – it’s all about the base miles apparently with just a little bit of top end. But, you still need to keep the engine ticking over and keep your mindset in the off-season and throwing in some time trial efforts, and some short interval bursts into your endurance ride can make all the difference.

What Type of Interval Training is Ideal?

Generally, I recommend getting some intervals into your winter training regime at the end of Autumn onwards. These training sessions do not need to be at your max heart rate (it’s definitely too early for those). But, get in some functional threshold power (FTP). For example, train at around 70-80% of your FTP power output for 5 mins at a time. Do this a few times in a week. This regime will help keep your anaerobic engine ticking over so that your body and muscles don’t forget how to fire. Plus, this training will make it easier when you start racing again – your body will be more conditioned to the racing environment. Also, combining this training with an endurance base through the off-season, will give you a recipe for success and possible podium finishes.

Other Types of Interval Training

Another interval I’d recommend trying over winter includes a few efforts when you are climbing. You can do this in the bunch. Just move yourself to the front of the peloton when it’s time to go up a hill and dig a little deeper. It will give the rest of the bunch a workout, and after a few repeat efforts of this, your legs will be ready for the harder more intense intervals as the season starts. It’s also an excellent way to remind your ‘head’ that hills are your friend. Many cyclists loath climbing, but it really is just a matter of getting conditioned – maybe you are the next mountain goat waiting to be unleashed 🙂

Lastly, you can also have fun around town if you are limited time wise – sprinting to traffic lights is excellent, just remember to be safe and sensible about this! You can also sprint to markers around your local block, this will help to keep that anaerobic engine ticking over in the down time months.

About Our Cycling News and Review Columnist

Jarlath-Cross-20131-960x576_GenevieveGenevieve Whitson is a NZ born, British/Scottish cyclist, based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Gen has a raced at the highest level for Road, Cyclocross and Mountain biking, have competed in four World Championships, multiple World Cups as well as riding professionally on the road. Gen has raced all around the globe on the road bike and is currently riding for a Belgium team, Isorex competing in all the major spring classics.

Highlights of her career include gaining a top 30 finish at the World Cyclocross Championships, a stage win in a major USA road tour, and winning the 2015 Scottish National Hill Climb Champs. Gen also loves to ride a rickshaw in Edinburgh for strength training on the side and is heavily involved in supporting/mentoring up and coming female/male athletes to ride to their potential. Her mantra on the bike is: Eat the pain…

Disclaimer: The information published in this column is the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

SUPPLEMENTS: ARE THEY REALLY NECESSARY?

 

ATHLETIC NEWS & REVIEW:

By Columnist Michael Meredith – Athletic Coach:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

In short my answer to the question, “Are supplements really necessary?” Is YES, they are. But there are few things we need to think about before going out and spending your fortune on the latest “Body Building stack.”

First of all, supplements need is based on the requirements of athletic performance, so you get the most out of your body and your training. Secondly, you need to understand what the word supplement means, what you are taking and why you are taking it.

Supplements

The word supplements means “to add an element to something else to complete or enhance it.” But generally speaking, all the energy, nutrients and minerals we need for our body to function will come from our food. Ensuring not only we eat enough energy to perform, but that we eat the best quality and type of energy to get the best results from our training. The world of supplementation is a profound and diverse one, therefore we will take a look at the best supplements to help improve performance.

Considering that we get all of our nutrition from the food we eat, then we will only look at taking supplements if we cannot fulfil our nutritional requirements from our daily intake of food or if our body is producing inadequate amounts of a particular hormone. For example, many individuals will struggle to maintain their desired daily intake of protein through their food. Therefore, a protein supplement would be necessary to ensure they reach their required daily goal.

Below are my recommendations on supplements that support general physical performance, and increase results in all forms of training to improve your fitness.

Fish Oil

We all hear about this supplement, but do we really know why we need it? Our bodies are able to make most of the fats that we need, but this is not true for Omega 3 fatty acids (DHA – EPA).We need to supplement these fats through our diet (eg.eating fish) or a good quality Fish oil supplement. The studies are broad and varied on this supplement, but the benefits include improved brain function, increased weight loss, as well as better joint health, and the list goes on. Knowing we must supplement our Omega 3s, then it is highly advisable to obtain a good quality supplement and start using it as soon as possible.

BCAA

BCAA stands for Branch Chain Amino Acids, which are essential for all athletes who wish to preserve valuable lean muscle tissue, especially when working in high-intensity environments or endurance events where muscle breakdown is a huge factor. BCAAs are the building blocks of lean muscle tissue (L-Leucine, L-Glutamine, L-Isoleucine, and L-Valine) so taking a quality BCAA supplement both INTRA-WORKOUT and POST WORKOUT can assist in preserving muscle and improving recovery for all your workouts.

Protein

Protein is an essential part of our Macros daily caloric intake, and it is proven that many individuals struggle to meet the daily intake required to both sustain strong, healthy muscles and continue to grow stronger. Although there are many protein-rich foods on the market, it is sometimes difficult to obtain the required amount. Therefore, a wholesome good quality organic protein supplement can be vital in your supplement plan. This product ensures you maximise results in your training, specifically relating to strength and building strong, healthy muscles.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a supplement that we don’t usually regard highly in supplement plans. But, it is critical in the maintenance of strong, healthy bones. As an athlete, this supplement is vital to maintaining a healthy bone structure and ensures you grow stronger. Plus, Vitamin D ensures your skeletal makeup can sustain muscle mass, it is also very useful for injury prevention and to reduce your risk of serious injury (broken bones).

Magnesium

Magnesium is another supplement with various benefits including stress relief, improving muscle and nerve function and improves relaxation, i.e., better quality sleep. Magnesium is crucial in regulating electrolytes which can be affected by large training volumes through sweating etc. A good quality magnesium supplement can be essential in any athlete’s supplement plan.

Electrolytes

Electrolytes include sodium, potassium, and calcium. Muscle contractions require these three essential electrolytes to function. Therefore, low electrolyte levels will lead to weak muscles and rapid fatigue. Using an electrolyte tablet in your fluids during and after exercise can ensure adequate replenishment and hydration during and post workout.

So there you have it, some of the foundation supplements that can assist you in your training to improve performance. Remember these are only recommendations due to deficiency or inadequate amounts consumed through your diet. Always prioritise your nutrition to be of the highest quality to get what you need. Also, consult your local doctor if you believe that you may be deficient in any of the above minerals or electrolytes. A simple blood test can determine just exactly what that looks like.

Lastly, remember health comes first, and to train smarter, not harder for better results.

About Our Athletic News and Review Columnist – Michael Meredith

Michael Meredith

Michael Meredith, Master Personal Trainer, Elite Obstacle Racer, Former Sydney A-grade rugby league player, Runner, and all-round health enthusiast, is the Founder of Aussie Athletes Health and Performance. As a coach, Michael’s philosophy is to focus on health and performance. His 12-week training programs for men and women, include strength and fitness, OCR (or obstacle course racing) and recreational running. Micheal aims to narrow the gap between strength training and aerobic endurance so that his clients’ can balance the two effectively to create the fittest, healthiest version of themselves.

“After more than 5-years as a Personal Trainer, I have helped celebrities, recreational athletes make it all the way to an élite level of fitness. In addition, I have annually sponsored two ‘everyday athletes’ as a mentor. This give one male and one female the opportunity to take on certain events throughout the year under the guidance of the #teamaussieathletes community.”

“My major focus as a trainer is to complete an exercise science degree and turn my Aussie Athletes business into a community based-group that operates out of its own head-quarters. Aussie Athletes Health and Performance is now operated via two of Australia’s premier Fitness First Platinum Clubs in Sydney Australia, these being in Park Street Platinum and Bondi Platinum.

Disclaimer: The author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion form the basis of this column. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

WHY CYLISTS SHOULD DO YOGA AND MEDITATION

CYCLING NEWS & REVIEW:

By Columnist Genevieve Whitson – Professional Cyclist:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

If you want to become a better cyclist, then do yoga and meditation.

This is still a relatively ‘new’ concept to a lot of cyclists, but I can assure you that your legs/body/mind will feel the goodness that both can bring to the organs, cells and nerve system within just a month of practice.

The Benefits of Yoga for a Cyclist

I started doing regular yoga in 2009. This time was in my early years of bike racing, and I was curious as to what yoga could potentially do for my mental state, my well being and my body. It was subtle changes I noticed that over the years have resulted in dramatic changes on the bike. The weekly routine of yoga, including deep breathing and stretching the body out aids the body. Firstly, the organs are aligned and used to their full capacity. Plus, yoga quietens the brain from the ‘chit chat’. Yoga has done wonders for my general state of well-being on a bike and has increased my body’s ability to recover off the bike.

Increased Cycling Flexibility

Cyclists are notorious for their lack of flexibility through the hips and yoga/stretching is an excellent way to unlock the hidden resources of your hips. I regularly do a ‘Hatha’ yoga sessions, that involve holding deep hip openers for up to 8 mins at a time. Opening the hips supports better blood flow and that, in turn, helps the legs push the pedals. It is not uncommon to rocket up hills the day after a yoga session as the body has a renewed sense of energy.

Strengthening of a Cyclist’s Immune System

Yoga and meditation also strengthen the immune system. A 20-minute meditation a day has been proven to support health in the body. Why? Because when we sit still, breathe deeply and let the body relax it quietens the sympathetic nervous system (often referred to as the fight or flight mode). This practice, in turn, can help support better blood flow to the brain, indicating less constriction of blood vessels & lower respiration rates and heart rates.

So go look up your local yoga/meditation studio or do a class on YouTube for free. Chances are you might like it. Plus, you’ll begin to understand that all those hippies/bohemian types are actually on to something pretty good.

About Our Cycling News and Review Columnist

Jarlath-Cross-20131-960x576_GenevieveGenevieve Whitson is a NZ born, British/Scottish cyclist, based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Gen has a raced at the highest level for Road, Cyclocross and Mountain biking, have competed in four World Championships, multiple World Cups as well as riding professionally on the road. Gen has raced all around the globe on the road bike and is currently riding for a Belgium team, Isorex competing in all the major spring classics.

Highlights of her career include gaining a top 30 finish at the World Cyclocross Championships, a stage win in a major USA road tour, and winning the 2015 Scottish National Hill Climb Champs. Gen also loves to ride a rickshaw in Edinburgh for strength training on the side and is heavily involved in supporting/mentoring up and coming female/male athletes to ride to their potential. Her mantra on the bike is: Eat the pain…

Disclaimer: The information published in this column is the author’s own professional and personal knowledge, and opinion. This information and opinion are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any manner. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical condition and consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any nutritional program or exercise program. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on InShape News.

Follow us on Twitter for more news, tips and inspiration.

Explore our Pinterest boards.

Don’t forget to leave us a comment.

We like to hear what you have to say🙂

%d bloggers like this: