In this episode Shayne, Ken, and Chris speak about advantages of planning out yearly training plans vs going week to week, and how to deal with mental fatigue when the body is still strong – Enjoy!

Show Transcript

Apologies for any typos / weird words or sentences.

Speaker 1: 00:04 Welcome to the never going pro podcast

Speaker 2: 00:06 podcasts about riding bikes and being parents and trying to super hard at both. My name is Ken the Badger Nowell. I’m on team DIRT which stands for Dad’s inside riding trainers and it’s a group of dads that met on the Zwift platform riding early in the morning trying to get our training in and our hustle on before we got our kids ready and go to work and along the way we’ve met some really cool people like Shayne and Chris which I will introduce now. Shayne, would you like to introduce yourself?

Speaker 1: 00:36 Sure. So my name is Shayne Gaffney. I’m the owner and head coach at GC coaching. I’m a level one USA cycling coach, a certified power based training coach and I’ve done a bunch of work for Zwift with their structured training plans and the build me up training plan.

Speaker 3: 00:53 Um, Chris, do you want to go? Yeah, I’m Chris Gorny and I’m pretty much none of those things that Shayne just called himself. Uh, I am just a regular Dad. Um, I got involved with DIRT ends wish because a year and a half ago. Um, my wife and I had a little girl and, um, our time was pretty limited. Our little girl got sick early on, so I wanted to stay home and stay somewhat sit. So I got in his waist and just kind of fell in love with it. Um, I kind of came on as a marketing consultant and kind of a strategic specialist, which is what I do, um, kind of my regular job and just fell in love with it. So that’s it. My role is to kind of be the Non Shayne, the guy who just trying really hard every day and I’m probably taking myself a little too seriously while cycling outside with my friends.

Speaker 2: 01:45 Sounds good. Well, thank you both for joining, uh, joining up night. And, uh, so one thing that we aim to do with the podcast, uh, obviously we all met on with, so, uh, that’s important to us. Um, and I think the biggest thing that we’ve seen that all of us on, um, uh, team DIRT has had in common is time constraints and really find a balance, balance, family, um, balance between our own ambitions and training goals. Um, getting healthy again, uh, which I’ve seen lots of guys come in and lose weight and hit all kinds of fitness records, uh, and also just having a good time and, and uh, and not taking ourselves too seriously. And so what we’ve done is we reached out to some of our members, um, and if you are familiar with these are dads inside riding trainers. Uh, we have over 2000 Facebook members, um, over like about 1500 Strava members and a pretty large roster, well, one of the biggest teams in the world. And so we’ve crowdsourced some questions and we went through our members and we wanted to find out what they wanted to ear. Um, uh, especially from seeing, because he does have a lot of experience coaching and all of us, we have a lot of questions about how we can reach our goals. Um, so, uh, you’re saying if you want to take a look at our questions and, and, and introduced some of them and, uh, we can start to dig in.

Speaker 1: 03:11 Sure. So the first one that got the most kind of upvotes on Facebook was the advantages of planning out our yearly training plan versus going week to week or racing and riding all the time.

Speaker 3: 03:25 You’re saying like racing versus only doing workouts. Right.

Speaker 1: 03:30 I think that’s what the question was about. Yeah. So it was kind of, you know, can I race every day the week or is it better to do more structure and then how far out should they plan that structure?

Speaker 2: 03:42 I mean, I have a slew of questions just around this topic right here. So for instance, what happens to somebody when they race every day then? Because like what I discovered for me was when I started racing, uh, three, four days a week on with like I, for a long time I kept getting faster. I backed up to the power record, but that didn’t last forever. I did that for about a year and kept getting better and better. And then I started to hit a plateau. So I guess the question is, is why? You know like what happens does the body or the mind or the your you know, your system that keeps you from making gains by doing that. Sure.

Speaker 1: 04:25 Once you expose your body to the same stimulus over and over and over again, you’re going to get diminishing returns on that same stimulus. Once you’re doing a lot of intensity, you can get a really good uptick in your fitness relatively early and you can keep that fitness uptick pretty consistent as long as they’re races or challenging you. The problem is once you reach your peak of return on training investment doing races, eventually you’re going to plateau like you experienced. And then you have to change the training stimulus by either increasing the duration, increasing the intensity, again, increasing the frequency, things like that. But if you just, you’ve done the same thing week in, week out, you will definitely make improvements but those improvements will diminish over time.

Speaker 3: 05:08 Well, and I think, I mean as you say that like it kind of blows my mind cause like I might be the crazy person, but when I get on Zwift it doesn’t occur to me to even race. Like I was just the blasted by a bunch of friends cause I, they always wanted to do races and the Times never worked out. And so eventually I just started just doing workout plans. And so my goal became to just get on and basically punish the hell out of myself for an hour. Um, I may have blacked out, almost blacked out on my bike only once, which is what happens when your air conditioning doesn’t work well and your fan stops working while you’re riding. Ouch. That’s a true story. Um, but like I did, I, I started getting really, really bored. Um, and then I even found out, cause you know, if we’re talking about Zwift, like it’s not as simple as just races versus workouts.

Speaker 3: 05:57 The racing on Zwift actually takes like game skill because if you just get on and hammer. So it’s like the difference to me between racing and training is actually bigger than just effort, perceived effort and gains. It’s like you kind of have to practice both and then you know, you only have w what is it Shayne, you said like the average rider, like the average, like a dedicated amateur, which is what I’d consider myself and Ken, like we’ve got what, like six to seven hours a week?

New Speaker: 06:26 Yeah. In my experience it’s usually around five to seven hours a week and that consists of three to four rides per week. Give or take.

New Speaker: 06:33 I heard Ken, Ken does exactly seven hours in one minute per week. And that’s good.

Speaker 2: 06:39 It’s pretty much, yeah. You look at last year, that’s pretty accurate. It’s right around like seven, seven, eight hours. Very consistent. And that’s the only slot that life allow. And if you see on, you know, these weeks I go on vacation, it’s either way less or way more. You know, if I’m at home on vacation, I can, I can get 10 hours then and that might have them once a year.

Speaker 3: 07:02 So how do I take, like how do I pick to do like where, where’s the balance of like, cause you know it outdoors is easy, right? It’s like I’ve got to race on August 15th and so I’m going to throw a training plan on and I’m going to do it. But with Zwift it’s different cause you know like I can race Monday, Tuesday, I can race any day anytime now. Right?

Speaker 1: 07:20 I don’t think the intensity is a bad thing. The problem is if you overdo the intensity you can get burnt out and you know, like kind of was saying, you also will eventually reach their diminishing return point where if you do the same thing every single week, eventually you’re not going to get any return on training investment. And the issue too is if you’re recovered before a race, you can dig a lot deeper during that race and that’s going to create, I think a much better stimulus, and your training response is going to be better as opposed to doing a race fatigued. You’re not going to be able to dig as deep. And that’s going to result in maybe a decreased response. So your hard riding and your easy riding all turn into moderate pace riding. So you’re kind of losing that polarized training approach, which has been proven to be pretty successful for most people. And the less trained you are, the less important it is to do really structured training because you can get a return on fitness just by riding your bike more. So it’s really, once you get to a point where you’re becoming fitter and you’re getting close to you biological potential, but once you’re kind of maximizing whatever time you have available to train, that’s where it’s important to become more structured because that’s when you actually can change what you’re doing. But if you’re not, if you’re kind of, you know out of shape or you haven’t been training for years and years and years, the structure I don’t think is crucial unless you feel like you’re already at that plateau point.

Speaker 3: 08:49 So less is more, so that more is more

Speaker 1: 08:52 kind of, and it’s also important in the to have fun because if you start off and just drill yourself with structure, because structure is very mentally demanding, especially if you’re time crunched and you have other life stress going on, you have to enter a really stressful structured workout pretty fresh mentally and also physically to get the most out of it. So if you have a busy day at work or you have a sick kid at home or whatever, then you’re not going to be able to dig as deep in that workout. And if anything, you’re going to feel the workout, which is going to de-motivate you for the next time you do it.

New Speaker: 09:24 So, Ken, tell me like, so like tell me this can cause like I, you race way more, right? Like what, what’s your, what’s your like best and worst races?

Speaker 2: 09:35 Uh, so when, um, you know, obviously the best race experiences I’m winning is a lot of fun and I have won a handful of races. And so while I started as a Cat C

Speaker 1: 09:46 clean, clean though, right? Like, what did you, did you do inappropriate drug test before this race? I did.

Speaker 2: 09:52 Yup. I did, uh, racing clean, uh, got a clean go. My aunt is there, but what I did is I started as a cat. The, and you talked a, you’ve touched briefly on the, the game of vacation and I had a really, really hard time at first thing in the pack. I was shooting for three to pack and then falling behind and shooting for, to fall basically. Yeah. Through the pack on is really exhausting. Now you just can’t do that. But so many times, um, before, you know, I just popped in even in this, the race there. Um, I’d never had a very strong sprint so I could find ways to win by attacking it. Repeated points. And you know, Gavin, Holger, I was never really able to win very many friends. And then in category B, it’s just those competitive on, I’ve only won a few, a handful of like really small races for me. The, the reward comes and being able to be helpful to my teammates because I mean I just, it’s just such a strong and it’s very rewarding to, you know, where on at this board chat channel and we can come up with strategies and my, my role has been, uh, is sort of a long range climber. You know, the climbs that are over five minutes long. That’s where, uh, I really even have the, uh, that’s my biggest strength and being able to make the race hard for other GC contenders. I can do that in those areas. But one thing that I see a lot of is whether it’s comments on with riders or even Reddit, you see people comment on to the platform and they’re like, I’m way out of state if I have an exercise in long time of just getting into this. What training programs should I do?

Speaker 2: 11:37 I think, you know, Shayne touched on this a minute ago. Basically it seems to me and, and I’ve had experience training athletes before as well as you can almost do anything when you’re really out of shape and get in better shape. It doesn’t really matter. You can be very, and what you’re trying to do. And so I think a lot of people that are needed with their putting pressure on themselves to do certain events, certain training programs and it’s just like this, right. They’ll have fun hit the like button on some people, you people some ride ons and make some friends and the friends will keep you coming back.

Speaker 3: 12:11 Yeah. Can you and I met on Zwift and we’re basically best friends now. You can, you should. Everyone should know. Ken Did, we did have a miscommunication and he sent me a used kit to try on and I thought he was sending me a new kit to try on. And so I started wearing it without washing it. Not knowing the amount of sweat that I was just absorbing through my skin. Just Ken’s fun. Um, so I should, so I feel, so I now know we wear the same size kit and I’m closer to, okay.

Speaker 2: 12:41 You know, Shayne, what advice would you have for somebody who maybe isn’t very fit, doesn’t vibe very much and is just getting into with for the first time.

Speaker 1: 12:51 That’s a good question. Sure. So I think my favorite, my favorite kind of national board is a Canadian high-performance sport institute right now. Um, they have a really good longterm athlete development framework that they use that I like to implant with my athletes to few different stages, but the first really for their an active start the fundamentals and then learn how to train and then train to train. So active start in fundamentals are really when you just having fun, getting some awareness of the sport, maybe competing in local organizations or local sports. Once you do that for a few years, get some experience on your belt, enjoy the sport and you want to get more serious about it, then it’s actually learning, you know how to train, which is kind of where a coach may come in at the very ground level and teach you about, you know, progressive overload recovery weeks, how to judge your training, stress, how to involve nutrition and hydration.

Speaker 1: 13:51 Just a real basic, basic stuff. Then once you feel like you have a good grasp on that, then it’s time to train to actually train for a specific event. So I feel like people that are coming in new to Zwift today jump right to level four, which is trained to train or even trained to compete and they miss the fundamentals. They miss learn how to train and they missed, you know, just an actor start just having fun. So I think the first thing is kind of give yourself a little bit of a break and just go in, enjoy the training and joys rift for what it is, you know, make some friends, maybe join a team, get some community. And then once you figure out how to use Zwift if you enjoy it, then if you get more serious about the fundamentals and maybe learn how to train first,

Speaker 3: 14:36 what would you say? Like if I got on his width and I’m just going into hard, like what are some warning signs? If you’re saying like, Hey, I’m listening to this podcast cause I saw the name on Zwift, I’m, this is my third time riding ever. People could probably writing right now listen to a podcast like, but they’re, they’re not sure they’re into it. Like, what are some signs that like maybe you need to kind of chill out, take your time, and not just dive in all the way to racing immediately?

Speaker 1: 14:59 Well, I think the biggest thing is just are you actually enjoying what you’re doing right now? You know, if you’re just going in and burying yourself from the get go, that’s really not good for longevity in the sport. I don’t think that’s the number one. And then number two is if you are enjoying it, you know, are you giving yourself time to, you know, absorb the training stress, time to relax, you know? Or are you just going in day in, day out and just beating yourself up every single day? Because one thing I’ve noticed people do is they kind of get really motivated, but they get almost too motivated and they do, they ride their bikes for three weeks straight and then they burn themselves out and just a month. Yes, that’s true with everybody. You know it especially January, February. And here’s the solution. This is going to be my year. I’m going to go to the gym every single day. This week I’m going to get up at five morning. And you know, that’s awesome. But it also has to be sustainable. So if you’re making changes to your life, they have to ideally be semi flexible. They can’t be so rigid, but they also have to be sustainable too.

Speaker 2: 16:00 Shayne, one thing I’ve noticed is that I get when I’ve gone to eat and I’ve just had a run that seems like, you know, when you’re on top and everything is clicking, it just seems like it’s never ever going to end. You know? Like I’m just going to be able to maintain this build up of fitness forever. And yes, Mash and Bravo segments and my local English brack and then all this doesn’t, I did to a point where I don’t even want to look at the bike and I feel a depression, you know, like I, I feel great. Yeah. It’s not a favorable feeling. And so that’s something I think this or leads the question two, which is how do you deal with the mental fatigue when the body is still strong? That’s one of the questions that we’re proud stores and our pole. And so how do you get somebody to reset after hitting that? And I’ve seen this happen over and over again, guys like Bob Minder, you know, they’re still excited. Maybe they’re screaming and making videos and just they’re all in with Zwift and then all of a sudden they’re just gone.

Speaker 1: 17:11 So I think, you know, in that case, having some variety to the training I think is important. And then even riding your bike outside, that’s important too. But you know, if you can do, you know, a concept, two rowing machine or an elliptical or go for a run or just do something that’s not riding your bike is still active. I think that’s crucial. And then getting outside, I think that’s an a big one too, because this is, Wifi is so good and they made it so well that it’s very addictive, but sometimes your body just needs to be, and your brain just needs to be outdoors. Just enjoying the sunlight. And it doesn’t have to be brand new your bike, it can be just going for a, or going for a hike. So I think variety and then you know, getting outdoors. I think that’s the two biggest things that seems to work.

Speaker 3: 17:56 And you do, you have times a year with your athletes where you just take them off the program altogether?

Speaker 1: 18:01 I do, yeah. So we do at least a two week transition period after their last, a race of the season and then we’ll do at least a one week transition period after if they have two erases in the season. And then some of them athletes will need, you know, around this time of year when you’ve already been racing for a couple months and you’ve had a pretty long buildup from February, March and April, they may need a week just for doing some kind of athlete choice rises or what I call them. So I’ll basically say, you know, go out, ride your bike, but don’t worry about cadence, speed, heart rate. Just literally put your computer in your cycling pocket and just go ride your bike because they need that kind of, you know, downtime and they need just to feel the wind in their hair and their sun on their face.

Speaker 3: 18:46 Wait, so hold on. You’re saying you’re saying that it’s supposed to be fun?

Speaker 1: 18:49 Yeah, if I can get one thing, I crossed this podcast, cycling should be fun first and foremost. Yeah, title is very tongue in cheek, but it’s also never going pro. And it’s true. Very few people go pro at this sport. So having fun is very, very important. Granted, I think too to be, you know, don’t take it seriously, but don’t take it too seriously either, which is, that’s a hard balance to, to kind of have,

Speaker 3: 19:14 right? Yeah. Yeah. I feel you, I mean I, you know, personally like the mental fatigue thing you talked about can that’s, I mean that’s huge for me. Like I, I would get into these training plans and I used to compete in triathlons and I got up into some of the longer ironman distances and I just like, I got into these rhythms and it was just focus, focus, focus. And I was the buzz kill who, you know, Friday night it was, sorry guys, I’ve gotta go to bed at nine o’clock, uh, cause I gotta be in the pool at five. And like, it seems like I even just naturally, like I only had that level of dedication in me for so long. Um, and then I just, I got to the race and I just didn’t want to do anything anymore. Um, and then even that with like Zwift, like I’ll find that I’ll go through seasons and like, it’s like, it’s like hot or cold.

Speaker 3: 20:01 And so really trying to find that balance of motivation with training, with trying to get productive with still racing. It, it, it’s a really hard balance. Um, and then you throw in like kids and like, my daughter’s going from two naps to one nap and it’s like, I’ll just, just like just right when I get in the rhythm, everything changes. It’s like just a bowlful of chaos and like, you know, if, if somebody can discover a way to continually get stronger on a bike while being a good parent, um, and like not lose your child. Like I, I pay those people $1 million to share their wisdom. And then maybe that’s you, Shayne. You know, maybe, maybe you’re the dude.

Speaker 1: 20:38 Well, I know a little bit, but unfortunately there’s no way to, there’s no way to make a linear increase in your fitness month over month. There’s always going to be ups and downs. Everybody. And you know, like I said in the very beginning, most athletes have five to seven hours a week to train. So once you really get to that seven hours a week training in, you’re having quality training every single hour of that week, then you have to either increase the volume and just make more time to train or increase the intensity further. And a lot of times the intensity is already pretty high on the seven or eight week training plan or the seminar week athletes. So really they have to increase their volume and that’s really hard to do. That’s why pros don’t train seven hours a week. They train 30 hours a week, 20 hours a week. Quitter might be. Sure.

Speaker 1: 21:25 But that’s actually a good segue to go back. I’m sorry we keep going back and forth. But the first question, the kind of main question was, you know, what’s the advantages of planning a yearly training plan versus going week to week and I think you just hit it on the head where if you can plan out your training on a yearly basis, you’ll know when the recovery periods are coming. You’ll know when that transitions are going to be, you’ll know when the hard weeks are going to be when these weeks are going to be. And I think that’s a great way to keep yourself motivated through the hard times. Cause you know there is a vacation coming or you know these are easy to becoming instead of kind of going week to week, which is a little bit helter skelter where some weeks may be hard. So it makes me be easy and you might have a month of hard workouts, which is thankfully to burnout on the fifth week. Sure. So that’s why I training on a yearly basis, even just not a yearly basis, but at least having some period as approach to your training. I think that’s important for a lot of reasons. And I think the motivation and not having to deal with the mental fatigue is one of those big things. So where do you get an athlete

Speaker 2: 22:29 started with the annual thing, like where I want

Speaker 1: 22:33 the square one. Well as kind of counting backwards. So ideally they’ll have a goal event that they want to do well in and then I’ll count backwards from there to whatever day that we started with two working together. So some athletes, you know, they kind of wait to the last minute, they say, Hey, I have six weeks before I’m competing in x-rays. I say, well I hope you did your training cause I’m not going to help you much in six weeks unless they’re willing to write you a really big check. Well, even then on the pelvis, cause my six weeks, the, the Hay is in the burn, but it’s pretty much there. You really can’t cram too much more for that test. Um, so ideally it’d be like a four to six week builds. So it’ll be, you know, the, the very traditional base builds, you know, peak transition base build, peak transition approach. Um, where will do, you know, progressive, you overload in the body during the base phase and then we may continue that progressive overload in the build phase. But usually we’ll do a block approach where we’ll hit x tss three weeks in a row, have a fourth week of each of lower tss and then do the same thing for building number two. All right, so defined, defined tss, you just said of words that

Speaker 3: 23:46 make sense to me. But like I’m also a super geeky bike guy. So like explain tss, talk about like peak, talking about overload. Even like, like base phase like that. Cause we’ve got a lot of guys and I ride with, some of them were just brand new, all this, they bought a bike two months ago. Yeah.

Speaker 1: 24:02 So bass phase, I looked at define as the period where you increase your aerobic capacity. So basically improving your aerobic ability to generate energy and power the bike. A tss is training stress score. So that’s a way to objectify the training load on your body. And it’s also a great way to plot it out on a chart over the course of a week over the course of a month. And to see what your trends are and how to keep everything balanced or really quickly

Speaker 2: 24:33 just about the dress for how’s that tabulated, these, um, thought. Um, and, and, and again, like I kind of know some of these things, but um, what software do you use and what metrics are you, are you looking at to calculate the yet?

Speaker 1: 24:52 I use training peaks when I, um, plan all my trip. My athletes training up, but tss can be found in a lot of different things now. And if it’s not, yes, that’s might be called something else on Strava. Um, I think Strava cause a training load and then today’s plan I think may call it something else, but everybody has a way to measure the load on your body.

Speaker 3: 25:17 See. And, and I’ve, and I’ve got an, I’ve always had like a bit of a problem with that cause like you get on, and I’m not saying the whole world needs to get on one boat, but like, you know, I think a lot of people out there are gonna uh, they’re going to be on Swiss if they’re going to be on Strava. Um, I also, you know, I’m not trying to like say a DIRTy word amongst Zwift people, but I also love trainor road. Um, and I know, I know Mister Frosty Badger likes trainer road as well. So like each of those things has a different score. And I know they’re each accurate to themselves, but you know, like it’s always been, I’ve been always kind of trying to figure out. So do you have any like super specific experience with some of those programs to kind of help us navigate looking at across to Kinda like translate the different language? Cause I know for instance, Strava has and um, Zwift are super different. Like you know, if you’re Scott the Strava pro, you know, they kind of show you your weekly progression and those scores are, they’re

Speaker 1: 26:11 just like ludicrously different than the west. Right? So I would think the best way to do it would just be to see what your power is producing. Where if you use two power meters, you never know exactly how much power you’re producing. Cause the two meters are always going to be different. Just like I met with two watches, never knows what time it is. It’s kind of the same thing. So I would pick one program and use that program. Don’t you know, you can use other ones. Like I use Java for the social component for the pretty pictures, things like that. Um, but training peaks is what I use for the actual data, the actual analysis to communication, things like that. And same thing, this is, we have this mind training platform but training peaks is my actual analysis platform. After the base phase is called the build phase.

Speaker 1: 27:02 And that’s where you start to get into more specific training and specific intervals for the goals and the demands of the event. So this is really where the training starts to become more individualized to the athlete. Where at the base phase it’s a little more general, a little bit more again, just about improving aerobic capacity. The build phase is where you start to get into skills work and you know, criterium specific skills or cross specific skills, even Zwift specific skills if the athlete is doing as if to race. So after you go into, you know, he called your taper or your peak or your whatever you want to call, usually it’s a week or two weeks depending how long they build up to it was where you decrease the volume. But maintain intensity. That way you kind of keep your legs feeling good, but you allow the fatigue to drop off, which allows your form to rise up and you might’ve here heard it on the Twitter, France or whatever, you know he’s on good form this year.

Speaker 1: 28:02 He has good form Tay or whatever form is essentially when you have high fitness and low fatigue, which is what you want to have on race day. That’s it. You just changed my life for good form is high stiffness and low fatigue. You got it. That’s, that’s what foreigners man, that’s it. That’s my new tattoo. And then most importantly you go into your transition phase, which is when you have a one or two week athlete choice ride, whatever you want to call it, where you don’t do any structure. You just go out and ride your bike or not. You can go and just, you know, eat donuts and Bredos all day long. Just kind of decompress a little bit and enjoy life for awhile. And then you start back again, either with a build phase, if your events come close or if you go into the winter, you can do your, you know, a strength phase or power development phase or whatever it might be can, I don’t know about you, but the more he talks, the more I realize, I know absolutely nothing about trading that I’ve been doing my whole life.

Speaker 2: 29:04 Well, you know, one thing that, uh, that I’d decided to do, um, is I was very confused about frank and especially diet and, uh, like I feel like I can get on my trainer and do this dry and follow a tiny, uh, our, you know, a train of live program or I can follow, um, with training program and do the work. Uh, but those workouts usually stop it no more than two hours. It’s easy to, you know, eat a granola bar and a couple of Gatorades and I’m fine, but we’re doing a three hour bike race in the middle of the summer. Keith, you know, I was really struggling. I was falling apart. And so, um, I reached out the same and we went over my diet, we went up on my training, reading a little bit of direction, um, that been going and got me going in the right direction and we talked about like proper feeling and there’s still a lot of room to grow there. Um, but just having somebody who does it for living give me some directions really helpful.

Speaker 1: 30:12 I appreciate that. Anyone else? So let me put a giant Asterix right now where this is my opinion and what’s worked for me. It’s, it’s based on science as well, but this is my opinion. So other coaches may have complete opposite opinions and I will. So I would take that with a grain of salt

Speaker 3: 30:29 that’s says why I actually think that. I mean that’s like a huge point too, is that the end, you know, we’re talking about like the good, the bad and the ugly is like, I’m surprised that when I talk to people how few people actually eat while they’re ons with like, it’s like, it’s like, cause they’re not outside, they think I don’t need to eat. But if you’re on a trainer doing something for an hour and a half, like there’s no way. I mean, at least for me, there’s no way I can’t, I can do that with any sort of, I dunno, quality if I’m not eating something.

Speaker 1: 30:57 Sure. Yeah. And it really depends on, you know, how, how long the ride is and how intense the ride is going to be. So as long as you have enough glycogen storage in your liver and in your muscles, you can get through a pretty strenuous 90 minute workout without too much need for, you know, extra calories or food. Once you get over that 90 minute mark or if you answer the ride and a nutrition deficit, that’s when you have to start to supplement earlier. So that’s where like position isn’t, you know, a breakfast, lunch or dinner kind of thing. Your attrition is like a 24, seven kind of thing.

Speaker 3: 31:37 Okay. So let’s, let’s, let’s get specific. So we were talking about doing stories. I can, I asked you earlier, like your funny race stories or your biggest race stories. My worst one was, um, I had a friend who is, I had a friend from a city I won’t name, and another guy who they became kind of arch rivals on Zooey list and their existences did, they became just to like beat the other guy. They never even met. But like, I guess everybody needs a dragon to slay. So this, this guy was like, I guess it’d be funny or if I just name names so we won’t do that. So he, for the very last race of their series on Zwift was like, hey man, you’ve got to get up. You’ve got to help pull me up this mountain, like I need, you know, etc. Etc.

Speaker 3: 32:15 And he’d asked me for weeks and finally I relented. And it ended up with me getting up at three 45 in the morning, central time to be warmed up and ready to do like a five 30 race, um, for eastern time. So I was on my bike at 14 and I understand, I hear the laughter, but like I was dead man. I like, I got it to try to eat and it just, it didn’t matter. Like we started the climb and I was just done. Like it was, I might as well just, I might as well have logged onto Zwift and then laid back down in my bed.

Speaker 2: 32:45 Yeah. I think that I, you know what, I think I was in that race and, uh, and uh, and I think I knew the guys that you’re talking about

Speaker 3: 32:55 cause you, you, you, you know who I’m talking about. Yeah.

Speaker 2: 32:57 With or without us getting into, to me inside your, so we had a 12 week long theories and it was the closest battle between the two B guys I’ve ever seen. I mean, the way it played out was beautiful. Well, and uh, yeah. And uh,

Speaker 3: 33:13 let’s call it, let’s call it, let’s call the first guy, just Dustin, you know, just, just, you know, let’s just call and Dustin might not be his name.

Speaker 2: 33:20 Yeah. Um, I don’t remember the other guy’s name, but it was, it was a really close race. But, um, yeah, I mean, you know, I have definitely seen people take it seriously. It point their rage. Grange is like in touch with, you know, like angry teenagers. Um, nothing on the Mike down throwing the controller down. I’m walking out the room and I’m just like, God, if you ever get a year, it might be time to unplug for a little while.

Speaker 3: 33:49 So, so Shayne like tell me like, okay, let’s, let’s say I’m gonna race like an idiot at five in the morning, which I’m never doing again. By the way, this is my first and last ever again. I want to race it like 2:00 PM with only retired people. They still beat me, but like at least I’ve got lunch in me. So like what is is, I mean is there even like nutritionally like is there even a way to get your body like primed and prepped, do something that early that doesn’t require like getting up at two in the morning or something? Like how does that work?

Speaker 1: 34:20 Yeah, so it’s basically, you know, you have to kind of fold your clothes the night before where you want to have a really cover, hydrate dense dinner. That way your body will replenish the glycogen stores in your muscles because you may wake up in a fasted state, which means you’re out of glycogen in your liver and not out of biogen, but your liver is low on glycogen, but your muscles should still have glycogen in them if she will, like I said, is 60 to 90 minute workout depending on nutrition status entering the ride. And then you can easily top off the kind of blood sugar just by you know, drinking some orange juice or you know, eating your quick Bagel or something like that. Typically the the earlier or then the sooner you have to race, the less you want to eat and the more simple the sugar should be. And then vice versa. The more time you have, you can eat more actual, you know, kind of food where you have two or three hours before an event.

Speaker 3: 35:16 So if I’m, if I’m going to read it, so I’m going to get up at five and race at five 30 I should just eat like six spoonfuls of sugar

Speaker 1: 35:22 or you know, a honey on a English muffin. That’s a really good one. Yup. Um, uh, class juice, things like that. Something that’s really, really simple to digest and something that you would ideally practice. So kind of the old saying nothing new on race day. Even though it’s a virtual race, it is still a race. So you want to kind of have practiced what you, what your body can tolerate once you can stomach before, but it’s really important to enter it recovered. So what you eat for dinner or for dessert or whatever is a more important than before as you want that that’s when you have the time to actually make an impact and how you enter the race. You guys did not think my spoonfuls of sugar joke was very funny. Okay. We’ll uh, we’ll edit in some laughter after. Um, your Mike is so loud over there. Um, I’m going to have to mute. Yeah. I’m going to have to mute your mic. I keep hearing the gate opening. Maybe. It sounds like you’re still walking out of the top just screaming. What are you doing over there? I’m literally, I’m like sitting down. I, I, I’m literally doing nothing. Maybe it’s maybe I’m a mouth breather. All right.

Speaker 2: 36:37 Jane, I guess one question that I do have is if you are one of these people that is, um, you’re, you’re waking up and you’re on the bike within 30 minutes of your feet hitting the ground, are you just going to have to accept that you’re making some performance sacrifices that you’re never going to be 100% at that time? Or is it possible that, I mean, do you find that some of your athletes do performed that first thing in the morning?

Speaker 1: 37:03 I think athletes tend to perform better in the morning, but not first thing in the morning. So they tend to perform better after they’ve had, you know, 90 minutes to drink a cup of coffee, have an actual breakfast, kind of wake up a little bit and then ride. I don’t think anybody feels great after, you know, waking up and then getting on the bike and hammering 30 minutes after they wake up. And then the other issue too is, you know, we’re not going to bed while typically I can’t speak for everybody, but we’re not going to bed at 8:00 PM and waking up at 5:00 AM we might be going to bed at 11 live and 30 waking up at four 30, five o’clock so you’re not getting 10 hours of sleep. You might only be getting six or seven hours of sleep. And we’re also, the sleep we’re getting isn’t usually, you know, may be quality, but there’s always one eye open or one ear open listening for the baby monitor, making sure that, you know, there’s no coughing and there’s both still breathing and you know, all those things that go through a parent’s mind all the time.

Speaker 1: 38:05 Breathing children are crucial to a strong’s with race. Absolutely. Yeah. And I will say, I say this,

Speaker 2: 38:11 you know, when I looking back, um, when I first started, when I first had, uh, our daughter and I didn’t have a shed yet, is it’ll be cold and dark. And you know, my wife needs the personal trainers is you leave really early. I would have the baby monitor and watching GCN videos on my iPad and I would set my trainer up in the carport in the freezing pole and a, a wood frame until she would wake up on our here on the baby monitor, one year old, two years old. And it was visible. Yeah, I could maybe do that two days a week. It’s my, my fitness in the winter time just from going through euro. Sure. A is the best I could do. And then, um, you know, I got my stead and uh, and, and got with and even with the most basic laptop set up and a space either next day.

Speaker 2: 39:08 It was a world better than I had ever experienced before. And so one thing I think is important to acknowledge in this, um, uh, podcast is that we’re really in the golden age of, uh, indoor training on the various options and finally get this across to my cycling buddies. He’s been at it for decades. When I’ve got to speak to them about amen size with it’s fun. He just cannot be bothered because they’ve always done traditional rides on a train and using a heart rate monitor and they just don’t know better, you know? But it’s a that start up investment spending $1,000 on the trainer or a power meter and you know, downloading the software and making sure you have the equipment to run it. It’s, it’s daunting and uh, it’s, it’s hard to say. Yeah. And it’s, it’s a hurdle. Yeah, it’s a hurdle. It’s a hard to say like, Hey, listen, you know, training on an indoor trainer does all this stuff. You’re not going to get me to pay 1000 bucks to start doing it more.

Speaker 1: 40:08 Right. And I can also say that same thing for, you know, cycling coaches and triathlon coaches that side. This is just going to be kind of a fad and it was never going to last. And you know, why am I involved in Zwift so heavily and why am I involved in it since the Beta is, well, look at it now. You know, what are their cycling team or whatever. The cycling program got $120 million, you know, round B valuation or investment. Right.

Speaker 3: 40:36 Well, and from my perspective, like, I mean if you’re, I mean I used to just like watch Netflix and beyond like just a stupid SLU and trainer and I just, I hated lice but like I didn’t, I really felt like I was just trying to hang on to fitness. Um, I wasn’t like growing at all. But then like I started using Zwift through this last winter and I came out of the winter strong and I’m out riding with my buddies and it was, you know, let’s be real. It’s more fun when you’re the guy causing people to suffer versus the one who’s at the back of the train suffering. And like that was just Zwift, like doing races and doing some, you know, even soft training plans. Like I came out of the, I came out of the winter, not tired, but I felt strong. So it’s worth it. I think it’s worth the investment.

Speaker 1: 41:21 100% present free free infomercial.

Speaker 2: 41:26 Yeah. Hopefully my friends will listen to podcasts and say, you can get with it.

Speaker 1: 41:30 Oh yeah. Absolutely.

Speaker 2: 41:32 Thank you for taking the time to join the never go improved podcast about a riding bikes band, parents and trying super hard at both. Thank you both wrists and Shayne for joining and joining today. And, uh, for all of the folks that put forth questions, we really do appreciate it. And hopefully they’ll come back and listen tomorrow. So that’s it for tonight and thank you for joining and we will see you next time.

Shayne Gaffney

About the Author Shayne Gaffney

Shayne holds a bachelors degree in Health Science in Professional Development and Advanced Patient Care, is a licensed physical therapy assistant in Massachusetts, a USA Cycling Level 1 (expert level) certified Coach, a USA Cycling Power Based Training certified Coach, Precision Nutrition Level 1 certified Coach, a US Military Endurance Sports (USMES) affiliated Coach, and USA Olympic Committee Safe Sport certified. He is the owner and head Coach of GC Coaching, Workout Content Editor at Zwift, the creator of P2 Coached Computraining, and the creator of Zwift’s “Build Me Up” Flexible Training Plan. He has been published in Bicycling Magazine, the TrainingPeaks blog, and Zwift Insider. He can be contacted directly via info@gaffneycyclingcoaching.com

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