sandtiger steve wrote:
as per this article: http://www.usatriathlon.org/...ast-your-competition
but my read on Friel and Fitzgerald and others with the big books out (and what i have been doing), is they espouse the "do your slow rides slow and your fast rides fast" philosophy (and same goes for the run). For these purposes i consider a "slow ride" Z2. Most tempo/threshold rides i have seen in these plans never really do any significant mileage in Z4.
Is this debate old news? thoughts appreciated
all depends on how much time you have to train. >15 hrs, you have to have lots of LSD as you won't be able to sustain the intensity of a tempo or SST/subthreshold. <8hrs, you better get enough training stimuli in each ride to see some meaningful adaptations. Vary accordingly when you have between 8 & 15 hours.
If my ride is less than 2 hours, i don't do Z2 as i can't get enough training stress in that amount of time. However, a five hour long ride is technically unsustainable at Z3, and i try to nail my LSD at the top of Z2 power. These rides are often solo efforts, and they'll hurt. There will be quite a bit of aerobic decoupling as my HR will drift 10bpm above its usual Z2 levels. Personally, i've turned into a believer. I built base through December and then did threshold work starting in January, but did few long Z2 rides. For all that, I went from 255W to 272W going from November to early April.
I got injured mid April and missed 1/2 of the remaining days in April along with 2/3 of May training days. I thought my FTP would plunge from 272 down to 250. Resuming three weeks ago, all i did were some tempo/SST but i made sure to have a long Z2 ride every weekend. Just this past Monday, i set a new 20' record at 292W despite not being so fresh as I did 243W for 35 min earlier that ride. Without having done any threshold work, I apparently regained all of my previous FTP and then some more. Mark me down as a believer.