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Short burst bike v02- does it have a place?
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Just curious- asked my coach this one and haven’t heard back yet but would be curious to see what slowtwitch posters do.

Do short burst cycling intervals, let’s say 15 sec, 30 sec, 1 min on/ off (or even shorter off than the work period) have a place in sprint triathlon? Or any triathlon training?

I know Coggan more subscribes to longer intervals (eg 4mins) or atleast intervals which if they are short, have a shorter rest period to illicit a v02 max type or response. Or something similar I apologise if I have this incorrect.

On the other side of the coin you have people like Friel, wattkg.com which subscribe to short v02 max intervals (eg 30 on/off) which is argued can actually increase ftp, 40k tt times etc.

Does anyone swing either way or have input particularly to the shorter duration intervals? Would they be handy for sprint tris perhaps but not long course? If so, at what stage of your season do you perform these workouts (eg late or early in the build, in season or even offseason)?
Sorry if this has been done.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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IamSpartacus wrote:
Do short burst cycling intervals, let’s say 15 sec, 30 sec, 1 min on/ off (or even shorter off than the work period) have a place in sprint triathlon? Or any triathlon training?

Yes, ITU athletes definitely need it. Though I'm more inclined to over/unders than full gas effort and rest. Anyone else - if it's a session that you enjoy and it yields improvement then it could be done sparingly. But in general - this is an endurance sport and most people will get far more out of more duration/intensity relevant aerobic work. And I find not many triathletes enjoy that high intensity stuff.


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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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I typically do either 1min@125%FTP approx with 1min recoveries (usually 25 or 30 reps), or I do longer intervals of between 2.5 and 5mins at slightly lower intensity. I use a few variations of these to keep things interesting. Some examples would be:
6 to 8 reps of 2.5min@118%FTP on 3min recoveries
5 to 7 reps of 3min@114%FTP on 3min recoveries
5 reps of 5min@110%FTP on 5min recoveries

The 5min reps may be beneficial but I hate them so rarely do them. I kinda enjoy the shorter ones.
I often use hill climb reps on the short hill in Watopia for unprogrammed VO2max efforts. The hill takes me between 2:25 and 2:40 to climb at VO2max intensities so 7 reps makes for a short but tough session. I find that psychologically more palatable than programmed workouts, although I do those too.

Unfortunately non of that addresses your query about whether this sort of training is beneficial.....Sorry!

For me it's beneficial because, as you may have gathered, I like a bit of variety in my training. I find these shorter higher intensity intervals satisfying and I'm confident they contribute to FTP regardless of whether it's better, worse, or equal to longer SS or threshold intervals. Also, in principle I feel operating at a variety of power ranges can only contribute to resilience and ability to recover from short rises in intensity. On rolling courses I'll increase my intensity a little on short rises and I definitely think the VO2max efforts help with my ability to recover from these. Especially as these rises may be tackled in the VO2max range during sprint or even olympic distance races.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [cyclenutnz] [ In reply to ]
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cyclenutnz wrote:
IamSpartacus wrote:
Do short burst cycling intervals, let’s say 15 sec, 30 sec, 1 min on/ off (or even shorter off than the work period) have a place in sprint triathlon? Or any triathlon training?

Yes, ITU athletes definitely need it. Though I'm more inclined to over/unders than full gas effort and rest. Anyone else - if it's a session that you enjoy and it yields improvement then it could be done sparingly. But in general - this is an endurance sport and most people will get far more out of more duration/intensity relevant aerobic work. And I find not many triathletes enjoy that high intensity stuff.

I see so prob more relatable to sprint distance and draft legal itu
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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One benefit would be from a time management persepective. You can do a set of tabata intervals in less than 15 minutes total. They are by far my least favorite workout...never will 20 seconds seems so long or 10 seconds seem so short. For someone who is time challenged, this would work well.

https://www.active.com/...ith-tabata-intervals
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [kdw] [ In reply to ]
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I can’t speak for the shorter stuff, but doing vo2 max intervals @ 3-5 minutes improves my ftp. It also helps to recover quickly at threshold when you have to go into the red for a short punchy hill or getting up to speed coming out of a corner.

I really hate doing these intervals, but you don’t have to do too many of them to cause noticeable adaptations.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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this year I was part of a FB group that did a 12 week program. The coach is Danish who was with a world tour team last year and several worlds podium athletes in his stable

I think every workout had some short stuff, from 6sec on, 54s off all the way to 40s on, 20s off.

Of course there was also a lot of strength work, VO2, sub CP, CP.....

The group has not finished testing but so far the gains have been substantial.

At first I was sceptical but after the first test the results were obvious
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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For me, doing this kind of stuff is more off season or pre-season to help get the FTP up heading into the season.

I'm roughly following a plan that includes a ladder set of VO2 intervals at around 130% done every 2-3 weeks as:
10" on, 50" easy
20" on, 40" easy
30" on, 30" easy
40" on, 20" easy
50" on, 10" easy
then descend in reverse

Over a ten minute period that equates to around 5 minutes on - the 10" easy after the 50" and then right back into 50" ain't fun!


Blog: http://262toboylstonstreet.blogspot.com/
https://twitter.com/NateThomasTri
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [marcag] [ In reply to ]
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interesting, curious to see the end result to
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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IamSpartacus wrote:
interesting, curious to see the end result to

Several of the people had never trained in a structured way so just structure and proper pacing helped. But so far

One guy (newbie) went from 200 to 227
One veteran went from 247 to 270
One experienced guy went from 275 to 290, but I suspect he tested low. He just did a race with a 1hr NP of 294.
One from 275 to 291 and he has been around the block for a while
One went from 280 to 307, not a newbie, (this is Virtual power so absolute numbers are probably off)

Most of the the ladies have not tested yet
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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I am also curious to know what the utility of a workout like The Wringer on Zwift is, with 30 second 205% intervals. There is also a Lionel Sanders Intervals workout that I've been curious about.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [bluto] [ In reply to ]
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bluto wrote:
doing vo2 max intervals @ 3-5 minutes improves my ftp
They will improve FTP but not as much as long threshold intervals @ FTP.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [mpquick] [ In reply to ]
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I avg year round about 5 hours a week and about 330 TSS/week. In 2 years up to 300 for 20min and now working on 320.

I can't do that with spending 4 of those hours a week on Z1/Z2 stuff.

This forum topic is the answer to how I do it. Then again, I don't consider pursuit length VO2 efforts as "short burst". There's nothing short about spending 3 to 5 minutes all out. I consider 30/30's and shorter "burst".

I think for someone who doesn't really truly need a crit-race engine, you could get by with "randomized burst HIIT". Basically ride at SS power for 8 to 10min at a time and you toss in a 15, a 30, and a 45 second all out effort and immediately back to SS.

The bursts aren't 800w all out, but enough to make you "recover" while in SS. Kind of like cresting a hill in a TT or short duathlon or sprint tri or something.

I've done a personal version of that weird 200% workout before. I could see it being helpful getting your crit sprints up to par, but you've still gotta suffer in between.

Usually on a local A or A+ ride, you'll hit 200% for 15 to 30 seconds a couple times a week anyway. Bridging up or swinging back on after a failed break as the group storms past trying to drop you. No need to have a workout only for that. Not for me anyway.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [RichardL] [ In reply to ]
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RichardL wrote:
bluto wrote:
doing vo2 max intervals @ 3-5 minutes improves my ftp

They will improve FTP but not as much as long threshold intervals @ FTP.

Didn't Seiler show that the largest improvements in FTP came at intensity higher than FTP ?

https://static1.squarespace.com/...al-work-duration.pdf
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [marcag] [ In reply to ]
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marcag wrote:
RichardL wrote:
bluto wrote:
doing vo2 max intervals @ 3-5 minutes improves my ftp

They will improve FTP but not as much as long threshold intervals @ FTP.


Didn't Seiler show that the largest improvements in FTP came at intensity higher than FTP ?

https://static1.squarespace.com/...al-work-duration.pdf


Didn't Hunter Allen show that in order to reach the next level, you will need to "Focus on doing longer intervals at or very near your functional threshold power (FTP)"?


https://www.hunterallenpowerblog.com/2010/12/next-level.html
Last edited by: RichardL: Apr 5, 19 12:59
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [marcag] [ In reply to ]
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marcag wrote:
Didn't Seiler show that the largest improvements in FTP came at intensity higher than FTP ?

https://static1.squarespace.com/...al-work-duration.pdf

"Cycling 4 x 8 min intervals at 90% HRmax yielded the highest gain for the pain". Note the 8 minute duration. Not sure what % of FTP here.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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According to my time spent at 95% vo2 max chart on WKO4, short intervals don't give as much accumulated time above 95%, even when doing them at 100-105% vo2 max. For example, 20 mins (dong 2x10 mins) of 40/20s only gave me 7:12 above 95% vo2 max, versus 4x4 mins giving me 12:33.

Maybe if you can hit the shorter duration intervals much harder it'd be better, but for a specific vo2 max interval, my experience suggests longer is much better.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [rubik] [ In reply to ]
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I'll also add that I do quite a bit of stuff like 30 secs on at FRC+ with 60 secs off at z2, but that's for FRC purposes and neuromuscular improvement, rather than specifically vo2.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [RichardL] [ In reply to ]
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I'm pretty sure it was as hard as you can evenly go for 4x8 min.

I did a lot of them last year above threshold on the bike and run.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [jaretj] [ In reply to ]
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jaretj wrote:
I'm pretty sure it was as hard as you can evenly go for 4x8 min.

I did a lot of them last year above threshold on the bike and run.

Did you find an improvment in power? I was reading the link above and it seems 4x8mins is bang for buck. Trainerroad usually prescribed them at 105% ftp


Many contrasting studies out there - I know there’s one floating around with purely 30 sec on/off as improving 40k tt the most.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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IamSpartacus wrote:
jaretj wrote:
I'm pretty sure it was as hard as you can evenly go for 4x8 min.

I did a lot of them last year above threshold on the bike and run.


Did you find an improvment in power? I was reading the link above and it seems 4x8mins is bang for buck. Trainerroad usually prescribed them at 105% ftp


Many contrasting studies out there - I know there’s one floating around with purely 30 sec on/off as improving 40k tt the most.

I think the 30-30 were studied by Veronique Billat. I think they mostly raise your VO2max.

Your 40kTT will improve by improving your Vo2max, you ability to hold a high % of VO2max, your ability to suffer and other things.

All these are trainable different ways. At least that's the way I understand it.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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IamSpartacus wrote:
Trainerroad usually prescribed them at 105% ftp
I do these at 105-106% FTP also.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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IamSpartacus wrote:
.

Do short burst cycling intervals, let’s say 15 sec, 30 sec, 1 min on/ off (or even shorter off than the work period) have a place in sprint triathlon? Or any triathlon training?.

I'd not focus on that necessarily but I wouldn't shy away from the occasional workout like that 3-4-5 weeks before racing season starts. What I'd probably do is find some road with a ton of :10-:20 second rollers on it and nail each one of those vs specifically doing intervals around that.

ymmv

Brian Stover
Accelerate3 Coaching
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [marcag] [ In reply to ]
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marcag wrote:
IamSpartacus wrote:
interesting, curious to see the end result to


Several of the people had never trained in a structured way so just structure and proper pacing helped. But so far

One guy (newbie) went from 200 to 227
One veteran went from 247 to 270
One experienced guy went from 275 to 290, but I suspect he tested low. He just did a race with a 1hr NP of 294.
One from 275 to 291 and he has been around the block for a while
One went from 280 to 307, not a newbie, (this is Virtual power so absolute numbers are probably off)

Unfortunately it doesn't mean much, since we don't know what condition the subjects were in at the beginning, and what their prior training regime was and what they had achieved. Sure, if you aren't in peak form then some variety of "going hard" will result in gains. What we really want to know is if well trained cyclists who have peaked in ability are able to hit new PRs by trying a different training regime.

I went from 190 to 300 in 4-5 months by riding really hard every other day, and that doesn't mean anything either.

My advice for triathletes would be to do high intensity intervals once a week for 3 weeks, ending at 2 weeks before your race. That would be pretty close to optimizing the positive effects without over doing it.
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Re: Short burst bike v02- does it have a place? [IamSpartacus] [ In reply to ]
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I found the biggest improvement in threshold power, better than the 8X5, 4X10, 3X15 and 2X20 did for me.

I found, compared to my training partners, that I was much stronger as the rides got longer and harder, I was strong on long climbs and flat roads but when the road turned into short rollers I fell behind.

When I needed power at 125%+ of threshold I didn't have it.

Most triathletes would be pleased with that result but since I was racing Xterra I needed to shift my focus to higher power work.

I bought a training peaks plan from Fascat to work on power required by mountain bikers. It had a lot of efforts to stimulate abilities at VO2max. Since it was a pure mountain bike plan I had to scale it back so I could train my run and swim as well.

I did well with that and improved my ability to put out the power required to race on my mountain bike.
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