2 of 12
Visit us at:
of the month
In this edition:
1. Why is it important to find a qualified coach?
January 1st, 2006 (Happy 2. The Three Energy Systems: Aerobic Training Defined
New Year) 3.
Why is it important to find a qualified coach?
HERE ARE SEVERAL GOOD REASONS!
Individualization: Coaches use their expertise to create individualized training programs that meet
your specific needs.
Feedback: Coaches provide experienced feedback and evaluation of your training and racing.
The start is sooner than
Measurement: Coaches can measure improvement in your performance through physiological and
Be ready. Be patient!
Quote Of The
Month……………… Motivation: Coaches provide the guidance and advice that are necessary to maintain confidence and
Perspective: Coaches offer a trained perspective that may be different than your own.
Improvement: For all of the above reasons, a coach can take you to a higher level of performance.
Take your cycling to the next level!
Coach Lee Cherry
Services offered at the
THE THREE ENERGY SYSTEMS & AEROBIC TRAINING DEFINED
by Robert Taylor
▪ Fitness Station (12th and
Speer) From a racing standpoint, we all want to be able to ride as fast as possible using our aerobic system.
▪ Push Fitness and ▪ If you are riding aerobically and others sucking your wheel are riding anaerobically, it will only be a
Physical Therapy (5th and matter of time before you drop them.
▪ DU Ritchie Center ▪ The energy for muscle contraction in the human body is derived from ATP (adenosine triphosphate).
Cycling Team (where When ATP is broken down it releases the energy used in muscle contraction. There is only a small
bikes are ridable) amount of ATP available in the body for muscle contraction (about 2 seconds worth). So to keep us
▪ Out and About going ATP must be restored or re-synthesized. The body has three biochemical pathways or energy
systems available to do this. Two of these are anaerobic (they produce energy without the need for
Phone: oxygen) and one is aerobic (oxygen is required for ATP to be restored).
The 3 Energy Systems are:
1) The ATP-PC system - which produces the energy used in maximal efforts of 5 to 10 seconds (i.e.
2) The Lactic Acid (glycolysis) system - which produces most of the energy used in all out efforts
lasting from 10 seconds to a few minutes (i.e. attacks, bridging gaps, riding at the front of a
3) The Aerobic System - which produces most of the energy used in events lasting longer than 5
We have to train all 3 energy systems for racing, but the aerobic system requires the highest volume
of training to develop. The deeper your base of aerobic training miles is, the faster you will be able to
ride before you reach your lactate threshold (the point at which we produce more lactic acid than the
body is capable of removing) and the greater the volume of more intense training you will be able to
tolerate later in the season. The aerobic system is trained by doing long rides at an aerobic pace.
Rides in Heart Rate Zones 1-3 are for training the aerobic system.
Aerobic System Training Guidelines:
1) Length of the longest ride should be about 115% of the length of your longest race.
2) Intensity should be no greater than 83% of your Lactate Threshold and predominantly Zone 2 if
you are using a heart rate monitor.
3) If you have to stop for a breath in the middle of a sentence or between sentences you are riding too
fast (go to the back of the paceline - you are working too hard).
4) If you can, do these long rides with a group that rides at near the same pace as you & let the
stronger riders take the longer pulls.
5) If the group you are riding with is riding too fast allow the stronger riders to go on ahead and stick
with a group that will ride at a pace that is aerobic for you.
TRAINING IN WINTER CONDITIONS:
The winter athlete has several potential tactics for sustaining body temperature in the face of severe
cold. An increase in the intensity of physical activity may be counter-productive because of increased
respiratory heat loss, increased air or water movement over the body surface, and a pumping of air or
water beneath the clothing. Shivering can generate heat at a rate of 10 to 15 kJ/min, but it impairs
skilled performance, while the resultant glycogen usage hastens the onset of fatigue and mental
confusion. Non-shivering thermogenesis could arise in either brown adipose tissue or white fat.
Brown adipose tissue generates heat by the action of free fatty acids in uncoupling mitochondrial
electron transport, and by noradrenaline-induced membrane depolarisation and sodium pumping. The
existence of brown adipose tissue in human adults is controversial, and although there are theoretical
mechanisms of heat production in white fat, their contribution to the maintenance of body
temperature is small. Acclimatisation to cold develops over the course of about 10 days, and in
humans the primary change is an insulative, hypothermic type of response; this reflects the
intermittent nature of most occupational and athletic exposures to cold. Nevertheless, with more
sustained exposure to cold air or water, humans can apparently develop the humoral type of
acclimatisation described in small mammals, with an increased output of noradrenaline and/or
thyroxine. The associated mobilisation of free fatty acids suggests the possibility of using winter
sport as a pleasant method of treating obesity. In men, a combination of moderate exercise and facial
cooling induces a substantial fat loss over a 1- to 2-week period, with an associated ketonuria,
proteinuria, and increase of body mass. Possible factors contributing to this fat loss include: (a) a
small energy deficit; (b) the energy cost of synthesising new lean tissue; (c) energy loss through the
storage and excretion of ketone bodies; (d) catecholamine-induced 'futile' metabolic cycles with
increased resting metabolism; and (e) a specific reaction to cold dehydration. Current limitations for
the clinical application of such treatment include uncertainty regarding optimal environmental
conditions, concern over possible pathological reactions to cold, and suggestions of a less satisfactory
fat mobilisation in female patients. Possible interactions between physical fitness and metabolic
reactions to cold remain controversial
Some cyclists just don't believe how easy it is to cycle outdoors in the winter. If you're such a
disbeliever, think back to your first long ride as a cyclist. You probably thought twenty-five miles
was a long and hard distance to ride. It can be until you have worked up to that distance, but once
you've covered the distance the next time it is much easier.
Cycling in the cold in similar. It seems difficult until you do it. Then it gets simpler every time. The
winter season isn't a frigid torture chamber; it's just another season in your yearly training program.
And training isn't a fair weather activity: it's just something you do on a regular basis, week-in and
During the first few days of very cold weather, you will be bothered more by the cold than after a few
weeks. Your body acclimatizes to the lower temperatures by producing increased amounts of heat.
But to become accustomed to the cold, you must exercise in the cold. Early research has shown that
after six weeks of exercise in the cold, exposing fingers to the cold for four hours results in less
temperature drop, less numbness, and not as much reduction in blood flow as occurs without such
Never push yourself to exhaustion. While you may to exercise at a high enough intensity to maintain
your core temperature, you don't want to overdo it. If this happens, there may be undesirable
outcomes. You may, for example, have to slow down your effort while far from home and end up
getting chilled quicker. It is best to conserve plenty of energy for emergencies and unexpected
Watch the wind. Exercise into the wind on the way out, and with the wind at your back on the way
home. The wind will help you when you are tired at the end of the workout, so you won't slow down
and get chilled.
Clothing is of crucial importance to the cyclist in a cold environment. Wear a knit cap under your
helmet. The best kind are those that convert into a face mask and can extent down to your neck. You
can lose up to 40 percent of you body heat from your head and neck if not properly protected. If
riding into the wind, pull the cap down over your face for extra protection. Lastly, wear a helmet
cover to keep the wind off your head. By dressing in layers (of fabrics that wick moisture away from
the skin and provide insulation) and "breathable" outer garments, you should be able to stay warm
and dry on even the most miserable day.
One of the most common, and serious, cold weather injuries is hypothermia, in which the body's core
temperature starts to drop. It is brought on by a combination of fatigue, damp clothing, and wind
chill. It needn't be very cold for hypothermia to set in, either. Many times cyclists who are wearing
inappropriate clothing, and then slow down or stop working for some reason due to riding into the
wind or while climbing or descending begin to lose heat rapidly; at this point, hypothermia can
occur. Early signs of hypothermia are shivering, muscle weakness, and loss of coordination.
The best thing you can do to avoid hypothermia is to keep cycling and get the wind to your back. If
you stop riding, get indoors. As soon as the ride is over, head into the house, take a warm shower,
and put on dry clothes.
A useful mnemonic to use during winter cycling is VIP: Ventilate, Insulate, and Protect. Ventilate
excess water perspiration. Insulate, particularly high blood flow areas such as the neck and head.
Protect from wind and wetness with appropriate clothing. Don't wear cotton; rather, look for
synthetic materials or wool that will wick the moisture off your skin and keep you warm. Wear
mittens, not gloves. Mittens are much warmer than gloves for the simple reason that they trap all of
the hand's warmth in a single compartment. Wear a pair of full-fingered thin liner gloves underneath
your mittens to promote extra warmth. If you like to have greater finger mobility for shifting or
breaking, try wearing a pair of "lobster"-style gloves while cycling.
Wet shoes mean cold feet. Shoe covers are essential to the comfort of the cyclists in cold weather and
also keep your feet dry on wet and damp rides. In addition to the covers, wear heavy socks and try to
use all-leather mountain bike shoes with clipless pedals.
Exercise during the mid-day. The sunlight will help you stay warmer, it will be easier for you to
watch the surfaces you are riding on for snow, ice, or puddles, and drivers will be able to see you
more readily in the daylight. Your hat and helmet cover may also cut down on your hearing and
visual acuity, so be more cautious to cars approaching you from behind. So ride defensively and
Lastly, tell yourself that you are tough. It may be easier to stay indoors riding the rollers and watching
an old movie or football bowl game. But, embrace the winter for its beauty, and you may find winter
the most enjoyable season of all.