In this episode of the podcast, Shayne, Chris, and Ken speak about the main cycling training platforms giving “what’s hot” and “what’s not” for each. Our special guest this week is Jeremiah Bishop, Canyon ambassador. Enjoy!
In this episode of the podcast, Shayne, Chris, and Ken chat it up about supplements and which ones are most likely worth your money. And our special guest this week is Shane Miller (GPLama). Enjoy!
Available on iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, and SoundCloud
- Effects of β-alanine supplementation on exercise performance: a meta-analysis.
- The effects of different doses of caffeine on endurance cycling time trial performance.
- Sodium phosphate loading improves laboratory cycling time-trial performance in trained cyclists.
- Effects of four weeks of high-intensity interval training and creatine supplementation on critical power and anaerobic working capacity in college-aged men.
- Nutrition and the Adaptation to Endurance Training .
Ken: Do you want to hear a Dad joke?
Chris: I do. Very much.
Ken: Okay. I warned my daughter about using her whistle inside, and gave her one last chance. Unfortunately she blew it.
Chris: Man. They just get worse. They just get worse.
Ken: Yeah. Well, that’s kind of my job. I’m the designated bad joke lobber.
Chris: So here’s a question, we all hate these jokes-
Ken: Yeah. Lobbing. I would think that’s a word. The person that lobs jokes.
Chris: I think maybe that’s a Southern colloquialism. To lob.
Shayne: Y’all lob.
Chris: I guess you would say that. Lob things. How do you spell that?
Ken: Anyway, guys. Welcome to The Never Going Pro Podcast by Dads Inside Riding Trainers, featuring GC Coaching. It’s a podcast about riding bikes and parenthood, and trying really, really hard at both. I’m your host Ken “The Badger” Nowell, and with me is Shayne Gaffney, owner of GC Coaching.
Shayne: Hello, everyone.
Ken: And Chris Gorney, fellow DIRT teammate, passionate cyclist, and outstanding dad.
Chris: I’m always bothered when we say outstanding dad, because I’m wondering if people are going to be judging me for that?
Shayne: I know I am.
Chris: I mean, I’m sorry. What I meant was, hi!
Ken: Hello, Chris. It’s good to talk to you today. How is everybody doing? You dodging the wildfires in California?
Chris: I for sure could make irreverent jokes, but I think my entire family has Alzheimer’s and I’m not mocking people with Alzheimer’s, but every single day we get a text from the same people in our family asking, “Are the fires near you?” First off, look at a map. They all have our address. Google it. Secondly, we are not worried about the fires until downtown Los Angeles burns. Like where we’re at, compared to where the fires are at. But it’s nice, I guess, that people care. I suppose.
Ken: We just don’t care enough to Google it-
Chris: But it’s every day.
Ken: … to make sure you’re really okay.
Chris: Yeah. What it tells me is that they’re looking at the news, and the news is like, “All of California is on fire.” The fires are serious. There’s huge evacuations. I had a meeting downtown LA on Monday. Man, you see the smoke. You can smell it in your car. It’s everywhere.
Ken: That’s crazy.
Chris: We’re in Long Beach, man. I’m by the ocean. You wouldn’t even know here, even though it’s 30 miles away. Anyway, so thanks family who might be listening. Appreciate it, but look at a map once in awhile. That’s us.
Ken: Well, yep, that’s us. Anyway, we’ve got a great show lined up for you this week. This week we are going to be talking about supplements, and we have a very special interview with Shane “GPLama” Miller. I’m super excited to introduce that to you at the end of the show. But one of the big things in the news since the last time that we spoke about, was this guy that ran the two hour marathon.
Chris: I want to give it a shot, hold on. Ready? Here we go. Crap! Where is it? Kipchoge.
Shayne: Yeah, there you go. Yeah.
Chris: Did I do it?
Shayne: I’ll take that. I think so.
Chris: Okay. Okay.
Shayne: Eliud Kipchoge.
Chris: You guys wanted Shayne to do it, but then I just thought I’d be the first one off the high deck.
Ken: Well, congratulations to Kipchoge. Is that right?
Shayne: Yeah, it’s Kipchoge.
Ken: For the two hours marathon. I saw just some little Tweets about it here, and a news article about it there, but I really don’t understand. What did they do? They had just guys jump in along the route and pace him for a couple of miles here and there?
Chris: It’s called a phalanx. It’s an inverted V.
Chris: I googled this. I’m not that smart.
Ken: Like geese?
Chris: Basically, you remember the movie The Mighty Ducks? They had the Flying V? Okay, that but reverse.
Shayne: Okay. They had people rotating, too, every lap.
Ken: So they did it on a course, a lap?
Shayne: They did it on a course, yeah. That’s why technically this isn’t the world record, because it was done with rotating teams, and they were all out on the same course at the same time.
Ken: Got it.
Chris: You’re not allowed to rabbit anybody. That’s the thing.
Shayne: No. Right. Technically he ran sub-two, but it’s also technically not the world record.
Chris: Can we also say technically no one wants those people at a party? The guy ran. I mean, we can get into it, we’re getting into it. The guy ran a sub-two hour marathon. I can’t do it. Everyone should calm down. I mean, it’s incredible. Okay, the shoe gives a 4% boost because of foam, or whatever. Maybe. They’re saying it does, they think. They’re not sure how. That’s the research, is like, “Yeah. It does something. No one knows why, or how.” It’s not doing what they designed it to do, but it’s doing something else that has the same result and they’re not sure how.
Shayne: Right. I mean, that’s how you and I originally got into this conversation was, I saw an article that said that the shoe isn’t really a shoe anymore, it’s becoming a spring. Some people were a little bit up in arms over that. Is this record an actual record? Or just say another technological advance? As opposed to a physiological one. I like to compare that to cycling, because cycling is obviously very technology-driven, especially with a time trial. Then I sent you the picture of Rohan Dennis, and then the guy who came in last place, I can’t remember his name. I’m sorry. Just the comparison of their-
Chris: That’s probably because he came in last place.
Ken: You’ve got a point.
Shayne: So obviously Rohan Dennis is a phenomenal athlete, but I also can say that obviously the stuff he rode and the technology that was behind him gave him somewhat of an advantage, too, in terms of the time.
Chris: So, three thoughts-
Ken: Okay, go ahead Chris.
Chris: Three thoughts. These are well-formed. One, if we’re talking about springs in shoes, they’ve had Moon Shoes around for like 30 years. I’m just saying, we’ve all played on Moon Shoes. We understand bouncing doesn’t necessarily help everything. Although, I do want to see that now. I want to see someone run a marathon in Moon Shoes. [crosstalk 00:06:08]-
Shayne: [crosstalk 00:06:08] see Kipchoge run a marathon? I think they’re Moon Shoes, yeah. I know what you’re talking about.
Chris: In Moon Shoes. Sure.
Shayne: They’re green and purple?
Chris: Sure. Secondly, did you guys catch that it was sponsored by Ineos? Essentially, there’s one of your cycling connections.
Chris: That’s who did it. Ineos continuing their dominance in sponsoring the endurance sport world. Third, and this was my point to you Shayne, it was like, “Hey, look. I think there’s a difference,” this is a real point, not the other BS points. “I think there’s a difference in running and cycling in that there is a heavy,” and people are going to disagree with this, that’s why it’s an opinion, so everyone can shut up! “But there’s a heavy difference in cycling than to running.” Running has a purity to it that is one of the things I actually like about it, is like, “Hey, you can just go do it. You just need a pair of shoes, you go.” It doesn’t take all the extra tech, and I feel like there’s much fewer opportunities for technological advancements in running, that I don’t necessarily think there’s anything wrong with what they’re doing.
Chris: I think this is the beginning of some serious leaps in technology in running. So everyone is kind of pissed about it. I imagine there are similar arguments when they went from composite to carbon fiber bikes. You’re like, “Wow. No, this is too light. It’s too light. It’s too light.” That’s what this feels like to me. I mean, what do you guys think?
Ken: Well, I-
Chris: Good thoughts.
Ken: Those are good thoughts. Ultimately the guy propelled himself. There wasn’t a battery in the shoe. There wasn’t some sort of fuel source in it.
Ken: But what it reminds me of was the 2008 Olympics where they all had those Speedo super suits, and they just smashed every single world record.
Ken: They finally were like, “Hey, listen. Just to keep a level playing field, let’s just ditch the suits, it’s not really adding anything to the sport.” Also, these power lifting guys, they wear these big rubber suits too, and they squat a thousand pounds. People aren’t touching those weights raw. It’s dazzling to see it, but I don’t know. I don’t know. I think it is impressive.
Chris: It’s impressive, man. He ran a sub-two.
Ken: Yeah. It is impressive. I’m not against what he did based on the little I know, which is this conversation right here. It’s just some shoes.
Ken: But I mean, I do think it’s interesting with how technology is a big part of what sells cycling. I mean, people geek out on it.
Ken: It’s part of the hobby. We love reading about it, we’ve got magazines about it. I love going to the bike shop, and I love going to bike demo days and seeing all the small tweaks that they make to mountain bikes every year. To me, it’s part of the fun, is the technology, and the data.
Shayne: Sure. Definitely.
Ken: We get to collect the data. I mean, that’s essentially what you are, Shayne, is a data scientist that analyzes this stuff and then basically gives people a program to follow.
Ken: I think it’s really cool.
Shayne: Yep. Yep. I think running is going that way; especially with the advent of the Stryd Power Meter. I don’t know if you guys have seen that.
Shayne: But I have a couple of athletes that I work with who are triathletes, and they use a Stryd Power Meter and it’s definitely been revolutionary for their training. I think we’ll definitely see more of that going the way of power, and just with cycling. Cycling is almost 20 years ahead of running, in terms of technology. It’s interesting to see Ineos take over, and then all of a sudden the technology is becoming a much bigger component to things now, which is kind of cool. Even they use the Ineos wind tunnel to kind of perfect that flying V thing that they did.
Ken: That’s crazy.
Shayne: Everything they did was kind of cool.
Chris: Well, there’s even a thing about the structure of the shoe, particularly the carbon fiber. Again, it was just something I read. It was maybe relieving a little bit of strain on the calf muscles from lateral flexing that’s required to keep balance, so it’s actually essentially improving long-term efficiencies by not wasting as much as energy. That sounds like cycling; that’s what that sounds like. [crosstalk 00:10:01] transfer.
Chris: How much flex are you losing in the frame? That’s what that starts to sound like, to me. I mean, I don’t know. You can go down this rabbit hole pretty far. Okay, so he was drafting. Let’s call it drafting. Okay. Well, I mean if you run the mile on the track, like at the NCAA’s or something, those guys are in a pack and they rotate out. It’s rarely one guy in the front the entire time who wins it. I mean, at what level are you saying, “Well, okay. You were behind someone for 50% of the time, so now it doesn’t count.” I mean, where is that line?
Chris: Now granted, they did this on purpose. I don’t know. It’s a rabbit hole. I think at the very least you just have to say, super impressive. I mean, he’s the first guy to do it. Let’s see what happens the next couple years. I mean, if somebody could do it in regular equipment they would have done it by now.
Ken: Yeah. Yeah. That is interesting.
Ken: Also, they’re starting to put power meters in everything. They’re starting to put power meter, or the strain gauges, on brakes for bikes so you can start to analyze your braking, and seeing where you can pick up efficiencies there. But, yeah. Really cool stuff.
Chris: Just further making all cyclists the worst person to talk to at a party, is what that’s doing.
Ken: Hey, you’re going to the wrong type of party.
Chris: [crosstalk 00:11:12].
Ken: Hey, the parties I go to only have cyclists. So there we go.
Chris: Wow. Wow. I need different friends. I think we said that in another episode. Man!
Shayne: I say it all the time.
Ken: Well, so check this out. Not quite in the same vein as the technology thing, but still based in performance. We have a focus question this week. It from [Scott Olson 00:11:34], and he asks, “Supplements.” Yeah, you ready?
Shayne: Shout-out. Scotty!
Ken: He said, “Supplements; are there any of them that are actually worth the price? Or is a solid diet good enough?” I see that Shayne has got some science, and a couple of specific supplements that he wants to talk about. The takeaway here is a bunch of them just don’t do anything.
Shayne: Well, at least that haven’t been proven yet by placebo, double-blind kind of studies. I typically like to talk about four; which are beta alanine, creatine, caffeine, and sodium phosphate.
Chris: Sodium phosphate?
Shayne: Sodium phosphate.
Shayne: It’s an interesting one. Beta alanine is probably the most popular one, I would say. Most people have heard about it. It works on the amino acid called carnosine, where it increases carnosine levels in your muscles. The thought is that that acts as a buffer to acidosis that develops once you go above FTP.
Chris: The development of lactic acid.
Shayne: Exactly. It basically buffers your lactate, but again, there’s now studies coming out that say lactate may not be all its cracked up to be. Acidosis may be from non-mitochondrial ATP turn over, which I can link to the show notes too. So that stuff could also be changing, as well.
Chris: I think everybody probably knows what that is.
Shayne: Yeah. For sure.
Chris: Said no one.
Shayne: Anyways, beta alanine works in the one minute to four minute/five minute-ish ranges. The study that I like to refer to is they took a meta-analysis of a bunch of studies, and they found a 2.85 increase in exercise bouts that lasted from 60 to 240 seconds. What that means is they were able to increase their time to exhaustion, in that time range, by 2.85%. They were able to produce more power, but as well as increase the time they could maintain that power for, as well.
Ken: That’s kind of a big deal.
Chris: I would agree.
Shayne: Yeah. It is kind of a big deal. I’m going to link all the studies I’m referring to, to the show notes, like I always do.
Ken: [crosstalk 00:13:47] recommended brands?
Shayne: But anything under a minute or over four minutes… Brands are tough, because it really depends on what is in it. I think Labdoor is probably the best to do it that way, is Labdoor takes a third party approach and they test and basically go through and make sure everything that is in the supplement is what it says it is. They give you safety ratings, and all the stuff in it. It’s actually really cool. We can link that to the show notes, too.
Chris: That’s fascinating.
Shayne: Yeah. Typically people will take 5 grams pre-workout, and you also may experience some tingling and some parasthesia, which is also normal with beta alanine.
Shayne: If you guys have ever taken it before.
Ken: Well, I take pre-workout; so that’s what I’m feeling is the tingling in the skin; almost like a flushness. Okay.
Shayne: Yeah, that’s beta alanine. Exactly. Yep.
Chris: I don’t do that.
Ken: I take something, called Six Shooter or something, I got from Amazon. I used to take [crosstalk 00:14:44]-
Chris: [crosstalk 00:14:44] all of the groceries, Shayne?
Ken: I used to take C4, but this is cheaper than C4. It comes in the same type of shiny can. Yeah.
Shayne: Okay. I’ve heard of C4 before. Yeah. I mean, it has a ton of caffeine in it too, right?
Ken: I mean, yeah. It does have a lot of caffeine in it. Which, I believe, is another thing that you were going to talk about. Was that one of the things on your list?
Chris: But you skipped two. Yeah, that was number three.
Shayne: Yeah, for sure.
Chris: But he skipped two.
Shayne: But that was number three. Yep. The second one I like to do is creatine. Creatine hasn’t really done much in terms of muscular endurance performance, but it has shown good improvement in anaerobic power, and especially repeated anaerobic power. The study I like to refer to is they took active men, they took through five sets of two minute bouts with a one minute rest in between, on a trainer. Then after multiple testing sessions, supplementing with creatine 5 grams pre-workout, they were shown an increase of 6.72% in power output compared to the placebo and control groups.
Ken: Is this like a max sprint?
Shayne: That’s a pretty decent jump. Yeah, exactly right. Five sets, two minutes, full gas with one minute rest in between.
Shayne: They found that their mean power increased by 6.72% through the five sets, compared to the placebo and the control groups.
Chris: So far both of these are really just top percentage, very specific moments. This isn’t going to help you hold an effort for four hours.
Shayne: No. Nope. I was going to loop it back to his other thing was, is diet the best thing? Diet is the best thing for endurance performance. These things are all going to work on short, anaerobic kind of power efforts, but not [crosstalk 00:16:26] in terms of endurance.
Chris: Hey Shayne, can you say that again, but address is directly to Ken, about diet? We all know what we’re talking about. I’m outing Ken right now. I’m outing him.
Shayne: We’re going to have to start that series eventually, so you might as well start it now.
Chris: The Badger diet. So everyone, we’re starting a new podcast, I’m announcing now, that we might actually do, called What Did The Badger Eat Today? You have to understand, that when we plan these podcasts, kind of throughout the week we’re talking about things, it’s text or it’s on Slack or something. Inevitably we start talking about our worlds, and what we’re eating. It always ends with Ken texting, as if there was an apocalypse, and then he was the last guy at the grocery store, and all the good food was gone, and Ken found what was ever left, he decided to eat that intentionally, and then act like it was a good idea. This is what he eats.
Shayne: We’ll have to link some photos to the show notes. It was a glass jar of gravy with Salisbury steak-
Chris: Powdered mashed potatoes.
Shayne: … powdered mashed potatoes, and there was something else too. Parkay.
Ken: It was liquid butter that you keep in your refrigerator, it sprays out like syrup.
Chris: Oh, what was the butter?
Ken: It’s margarine.
Chris: What was the butter you had?
Chris: Parkay. Who knew that was even around?
Ken: Hey, man. It’s great. It’s really easy to use.
Chris: [crosstalk 00:17:47].
Ken: It goes great on that organic bread that I had.
Chris: Yeah. The third podcast will be Stories From The Badger’s Toilet, which nobody will listen to.
Shayne: I’ll have a Big Mac and large fry, but just give me a Diet Coke. I’m trying to lose some weight.
Ken: Yeah. Diet [crosstalk 00:18:14] time crunch.
Shayne: Oh, Ken. I love you, buddy.
Chris: I don’t know, man. I feel like it takes more effort for you to do that than it would be just to eat more healthy.
Ken: Well, I tell you what. What we’ll do is maybe the next podcast we will talk about what I can do to turn my diet around, and do some tracking. Yeah. We’ll do a little check-in.
Chris: Interview [crosstalk 00:18:33].
Ken: We’ll do a little check-in every week, see how it’s going. I think that could be a lot of fun.
Chris: Do you feel exposed, Ken? Did we just out you to the world?
Ken: No. I think it’s pretty well-known, at least in my small circles, that I have a pretty terrible diet.
Chris: It’s amazing.
Ken: Thank God I ride a bike, or otherwise I’d be 300 pounds.
Shayne: Now all 10 listeners know, too. That’s good.
Chris: I feel like we insult people somehow; gravy manufacturers are pissed at us.
Shayne: Right. [crosstalk 00:18:59].
Chris: There’s somebody out there who works on powdered mashed potatoes, and they’re pissed at us. So Shayne, caffeine huh?
Shayne: Yeah. Caffeine. Good segue.
Chris: Yeah, it was a good one.
Shayne: Caffeine is probably the most abused, I don’t want to say abused, but the most used performance enhancer across all groups; whether it’s runners, or cyclists, triathletes, whatever. Or just people looking to get a little bit more work done at their daily job or whatever. The study I like to refer to, they used 3 mg per kilo dosage, and 6 mg per kilo dosages. Both dosages showed an improvement of 4.2% in power production over a 60 minute time trial. But the 6 mg didn’t show much more than a 3 mg dosage did. My recommendation is to do 3 mg per kilo before your workout.
Shayne: But again, what that means depends on how much you weigh, but also what your tolerance is for caffeine. Where if you’re a really heavy caffeine drinker, you may need to go closer to 6 mg per kilo. If you’re kind of a minimal caffeine drinker, maybe just 3 mg per kilo. But definitely experiment with what works best for you, because there has been some issues with GI upset if you take too much caffeine. Or you get jitters, or that kind of stuff, which I’m sure everybody has experienced listening, that has taken caffeine.
Chris: Every day.
Shayne: Again, pretty good improvement.
Ken: Just to put that in a little more layman’s terms, the delivery vehicle for most of us is going to be coffee, or maybe some sort of pre-workout supplement. But for a 150 pound male, that would be about 210 mg of caffeine. That’s a pretty stout cup of coffee.
Shayne: Yeah. That’s a cup to two. I think it’s 70 to 140 mg of caffeine in a brewed eight ounce cup of coffee.
Shayne: I think probably a Starbucks is probably closer to 140. Then maybe a home-brew, or a Mr. Coffee, whatever, may be closer to 70.
Shayne: Typically they’ll say about 95 to 100 mg per cup, on average.
Shayne: You’re talking about two cups of coffee.
Ken: A double shot of espresso. Yeah. Go ahead, Chris.
Chris: Can I share something with you guys that is maybe related, but maybe just more silly? I drink a lot of coffee. Because of that, I like to go to this website called Death by Caffeine, which will tell you how much of a… This is also getting in trouble.
Shayne: How close you are to death?
Chris: How much it’ll take of a caffeine beverage to kill you, based on your weight. Now, it also tells you your daily safe maximum. I think it’s interesting. First off, all energy drinks are terrible for you. You can pretty much just believe that.
Chris: It says for a 150 pound person, that 2.5 cups of coffee is your maximum for the day. My question for you, Shayne, is: Now if you’re exercising, I would imagine that would go up, right? That’s probably a fairly sedentary number. Is there an affect on energy output versus caffeine use? If I’m going to go ride, does that mean I get to drink four cups of coffee a day? How does that work? Just so you know-
Shayne: I don’t know.
Chris: … it would be 63 cups of coffee, is a lethal dose, at 150 pounds.
Shayne: 63 cups? Wow.
Chris: A cup is eight ounces. I mean, that’s a lot. I’m not worried about telling anyone that. They’re not going to go-
Shayne: You’d probably go hyponatremic before you actually died from caffeine overdose.
Ken: Geez, dude. That would be a bad way to die, man.
Shayne: Would you die from a heart attack?
Chris: I don’t know.
Shayne: Or would you die from, like we were saying, just hyponatremia?
Chris: 128 cans of Red Bull.
Chris: I know.
Shayne: That’s a lot of fluid.
Chris: Yeah, it might be more than coffee. That’s weird.
Shayne: That’s a good question. I don’t know that. I wouldn’t assume, because it’s not like calories, where if you work out more you can eat more calories. Because you’re talking strictly about an actually neurotransmitter. I’m pretty sure the brain is the brain. I don’t think it changes too much, in terms of exercise. But I think the main thing is, if you drink a lot of caffeine, then you need to drink more caffeine to get that same caffeine buzz, and then vice versa. The less caffeine you drink, the less you need to have to have that buzz feeling.
Chris: There’s also some hydration issues there too, right?
Shayne: Yeah. That’s been a little bit debunked. If you’re a new caffeine drinker, then you will become slightly dehydrated. But if you’re a frequent caffeine drinker, then there hasn’t been too much, in terms of dehydration. As long as you take your normal dosage of caffeine.
Chris: All right. So I’m okay to drink my coffee before I go ride? Just make sure I don’t poop myself. That’s basically what-
Ken: If you do, at least don’t wear your shammy underneath your clothes all day.
Chris: Look, man. I did that again last week, and I almost texted you guys.
Shayne: That’s so gross, dude.
Ken: You’re going to get some kind of weird taint rash, man. Ugh!
Chris: Yeah. It actually-
Shayne: That’s nasty, man.
Chris: I’d be lying. I’m being vulnerable here. I’d be lying if I wasn’t worried about a little saddle sores from that.
Ken: Yeah. Well, you probably, yeah.
Shayne: Yeah. That’s what happens. Folliculitis, for sure.
Ken: What did you call it?
Shayne: Folliculitis. It’s inflammation of a hair follicle, and then that hair follicle can get infected.
Shayne: That’s what causes the sore.
Chris: I don’t have that.
Shayne: Saddles sores are typically folliculitis.
Ken: Yeah. Well, that’s because you-
Chris: We could do a whole episode on shammy butter; pro or con.
Ken: Yep. Well-
Shayne: Pro, as long you use tea tree oil.
Chris: Fourth supplement. We’re drifting.
Shayne: Tea tree oil. Well, actually that was not a bad segue because-
Chris: You’re welcome.
Shayne: … caffeine has been show to mobilize more free fatty acids. If you can combine a low carbohydrate state, so not fasted, but a low carbohydrate-state ride with caffeine pre, it’s actually been shown to increase more fat metabolism. I can link that study to the show notes, as well. I hate the word biohacking-
Shayne: … but it’s kind of what you’re doing. If you eat a low carbohydrate dinner, get up in the morning for, it has to be low intensity, it can’t be high intensity-
Chris: Oh, okay.
Shayne: … as you found that out this week, too.
Shayne: When you almost blacked out-
Chris: Look, man. It only happens [crosstalk 00:25:21]-
Shayne: So low intensity for a long time. That’s been shown to actually increase more free fatty oxidation, which is kind of cool too. So weight loss, stuff like that, is good. Or just becoming more fat-adapted per se.
Chris: Hey, my [crosstalk 00:25:34]-
Shayne: Yeah. The last one-
Chris: [crosstalk 00:25:36] really fast. Have you guys ever tried Pre:Play? P-R-E play.
Chris: All right. So Re:Play/Pre:Play, it’s a type of hydration. Pre:Play has a ton of caffeine in it, and if you want something that hydrates you and has a ton of caffeine, it’s slow-slow release. Normally if I just have to get up, right on my bike, and get on, I’ll throw that in my bottle. It hits you by about the time you meet up with people. Anyway, moving on. Product placement. They’ll sponsor us soon.
Shayne: I’ll check it out. The last one is sodium phosphate. This is kind of a wacky one. The study I like to refer to with this one is elite cyclists, again, and they did a 16.1 km cycling time trial. Then they broke it down again into control group, placebo group, and sodium phosphate group. They took one gram, four times a day, for… I should know that. For 14 days. One milligram, four times a day, for 14 days. They did the test again. This is crazy the difference they found, but they found that the mean power output increased between eight to 9.8%-
Shayne: … and the time decreased by 2.9 to 3%.
Shayne: That’s crazy.
Chris: Does that come in tablet form? What form does it even come in?
Shayne: You can get tablets. People usually just get it in loose form. It looks like-
Shayne: … table salts, yeah. Sodium phosphate, it’s table salt. But, yeah. Again, kind of crazy. The study, it seems to be pretty legit. People have referenced it before. It comes from 2008. Like I said, it’s 16, they said elite cyclists, so you’re not getting a lot of newb gains there, with some other studies you may be getting, just as an FYI. Yeah, that’s kind of interesting. But I’ll link that one to the show notes, as well. That was from the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sports, and Jonathan Folland is the author of that one. It’s a kind of cool one. Yeah, that’s my three. It’s beta alanine, creatine, caffeine, and sodium phosphate.
Ken: Very cool. All right. Well, thanks for that.
Shayne: [crosstalk 00:27:50].
Chris: [crosstalk 00:27:50] great.
Ken: You said, just to sort of recap what you were saying, is these four have some pretty good data behind them to back them up. But a lot of the other stuff, there’s just not anything that shows that it works.
Ken: Yet, at least.
Shayne: Yet. The number one thing is a good diet, by far and away.
Chris: I was going to say, to summarize some of these things work specifically in some instances, for some people, sometimes. But eat well.
Ken: Okay. Got it.
Shayne: Correct. Eating well, being consistent, getting your sleep, checking off all the low-hanging fruits, that’s the most important part of any training. Then once you have that stuff all [macked 00:28:29] down, then you can move on to this supplementation.
Ken: Got it. Got it.
Chris: Did you hear that, Ken? Cans of gravy and mashed potatoes; that’s all you get to eat.
Ken: And instant grits; you’ve got to let me have my breakfast, man. Yeah.
Ken: With country ham.
Shayne: Oh, yes. I love instant grits.
Ken: Yeah. All right. Thanks for that. Today’s interview is really, really cool. Many of you know Shane Miller, as known as GPLama. He’s our guest interview this week, and many of you know him from his YouTube Channel where he does product reviews. He was an early adopter of Zwift. He loved doing time trials, that was his jam. He started off with a blog, and it got more and more popular. He just sort of got into this universe of cycling, and product reviews, and Zwift. Now that’s what he does full time. One of the reasons I wanted to reach out to him, not to go into a bunch of gearhead stuff because he could geek out on that all day, but just to find out what is it like for him balancing being a new dad, he’s got a son named Maxwell who is probably about 11/12 weeks old now, but he also has a thriving career and he’s very interested in his own fitness. We caught up with him. I hope you will enjoy the interview. We are going to bounce over to that right now.
Ken: Okay. We have a very special guest this morning for me, and this evening for him. We have Shane Miller, also known as GPLama. Many of you know Shane from his videos, and his YouTube Channel, where he does lots of equipment reviews. Everything from power meters to these new indoor bikes that are coming out. Let’s give an introduction. Shane, how are you doing?
Shane: I am very, very well. The sun is now shining here, the days are longer. I’m just back in from a very short little ride in the sun at 6:00 pm at night. I’m super happy.
Ken: That’s great. You have good roads to ride on where you are?
Shane: Oh, absolutely. They’re long and empty. They’re not too bad, quality-wise. But it’s all about correct tires and correct tire pressure and things like that; which again, it’s the bike nerd in me that makes it all good. But no, it’s brilliant. It’s a really good place to be.
Ken: That’s really great. Around here, once you get out to the countryside and outside of town, it’s pretty good. There can be some angry drivers, though. When I have to train, I have to do it in the morning, and this time of year it’s so dark and cold and wet. It’s just not worth it. I’m really grateful to have Zwift as a tool to ride on. I do some TrainerRoad, as well. This time of year is when things really open up for you. What about in the wintertime? Do you spend more time inside?
Shane: Absolutely. August is the worst month here, because everything has been so cold for so long, and then the rain comes in, everything is dark, and the shorter days. That’s where I think indoor cycling just takes over, because you can do all the riding. Now, your social rides, just going for a ride, or your training. I’ve been indoor cycling for years and years. It’s good that everyone else is filing on board, too.
Ken: Yeah, that’s awesome. Tell us a little bit about how you developed your passion for bikes and bike racing. What’s a little bit of your background?
Shane: I could go on for hours and hours and hours. I like too, as well. I like talking about this, but I’ll try and keep it short. I got into it really, really late. My background is IT and IT security, and just nerding out on all the old tech stuff, if anybody listening is into the old certification sort of thing. I’m a CCNP for Cisco, MCP in Windows 2000, when that first came out, but I haven’t renewed any of those certs. Back in the day I was into IT, but I started riding to and from work because I love riding bikes. I’ve ridden a bike since I was a kid. Coming from Country Victoria, that’s how we got to and from school. Then I got a little faster, and a little faster. I met somebody on a bike path, and he said, “Maybe you should come down and race the crits.” I’m like, “Really? Do you think I’m good enough to race crits?” About this time Lance Armstrong was winning the 2003 Tour de France.
Shane: I got hooked. I’m like, “Oh, this was super cool.” Jumped on, jumped on a bike, won my first crit, and then just went from there. Fell in love with bikes. Then my passion of both IT and technology, as we’ve seen in the last 10 or 15 years, technology is moving the bicycles like nothing else. It combined my two passions, and the rest is history. I was blogging for awhile. I raced a lot, and raced full time for awhile. Ticked all the boxes there. I was sort of looking, “What do I do next? I’ve won the two big races that I wanted to win. I’ve got those yellow jerseys, the national championship stuff for the age groupers. What now?”
Shane: Then Zwift came along; so without Zwift, I would have hung it up long ago. But Zwift has just renewed my passion for the tech, and I think the rest of the industry has come along as well, and just said, “Wow. There’s something here we can all be a part of.” We’ve seen trainer companies, yeah, accelerate through this time, which has been great.
Ken: When Zwift came along, if I remember correctly, you won a big time trial, or some kind of King of the Mountain. There was only one route, is that right? Is my history right here?
Shane: Yeah. I guess it was the beginning of the eSports on Zwift.
Shane: When Zwift went from, it was private beta, you had to submit your email address and say what kind of hardware you had. I had a KICKR at the time, and I got onto the private beta. Then the announcement of public beta was done in Northern Australia, my hometown. Well, my hometown at the time.
Shane: That was done at an event at a bike shop, and they had an event there that night with a time trial around Watopia; it was the hilly route. The hilly route we all know and love. 9.1 kilometer, I think, in one direction. I knew the course so well that I went there, and I was time trialing at the time outdoors quite a lot as well, and it’s just a big time trial. I went there and won that. I think I set the fastest lap time, at the time? I mean, there’s a lot faster guys now, and guys and girls coming along. I got in early; just like real estate, you get in early, you get out, before the big guys come along.
Ken: Right. Right. Exactly. Yeah.
Shane: Eric Wynn was there, as well. It was really good to be part of the seed of Zwift, when it was just so very young, and it was still beta at the time. My history goes back a long way with Zwift.
Ken: That is awesome. Once you did this Zwift event, is that when you started recording your own content and started doing your reviews? Or when did that come along?
Shane: Well, yeah. Funny you should mention. It came along a few months after that. I’ve got a blog, it’s still up there, gplama.blogspot.com. I’d been blogging for years and years about my race reports, because we would race in a place, like all around Country Victoria, Country Australia, and people wouldn’t know where to go. This was before Google Maps was around.
Shane: It was sort of word-of-mouth, or Yahoo Groups back in the day. People would say, “Okay. There’s a race at [Beliang 00:35:24] this weekend.” People are like, “Where Beliang?” No one could ever figure out where Beliang was, because [crosstalk 00:35:29].
Ken: Because there weren’t any maps. Wow.
Shane: Correct. We would be driving to Beliang, and we’d see cars going the opposite direction, and this was probably 2003/2004 when I first got into it. I’m like, “Hang on. Nobody knows where to go. No one knows what these events are about.” They’re sort of, a bit of, some guy in a boot, literally opens the car boot, or the trunk of the car, writes down your name, he takes your $2, and off you go and race.
Shane: So I started blogging about where the race was, putting maps up, I put race reports. I was doing pretty well, so there was a few photos there, some winning shots, and other success stories I guess, as well. And how things panned out. So the blogspot has been around for ages and ages. Then I started being more and more into technology; I was ordering things online, ordering things from The States, and from the UK, and then people were asking me about them. Being in tech, and being in tech support, and sort of the engineering side of things, you’re always answering questions, or making things easier for people. So that went into text. I was sort of blogging away, blogging away, blogging away. That did okay. Then Cycling Maven was a YouTuber in Melbourne.
Ken: Oh, sure. Yeah.
Shane: Now, I’ve raced Mark awhile. I know I raced Mark, because he kept beating me in sprints. I remember when we first raced at a sports track. Anyways, I’ve been good friends with Maven for a long time. He had his Channel going really, really well. We’d hung out at the Tour Down Under, here in Adelaide. He’s just like, “Mate, just get a camera. Just turn the camera on, because what you’re doing is interesting. You’ve got access to all this stuff, you’re blogging about it, but just turn a camera on.” I’m like, “Well, look. I’m pretty ugly. I speak too fast. People will hang on my accent. Is that really going to work?”
Shane: I started, and I stumbled a little bit at the start. I told my story about where I came from, because I guess depending on what phase of life you’re in, you become that person for the last six to 12 months. I’m known as a YouTuber, but for me, I’m still the IT guy. Then I was also known as the time trialer. I’ve also been known as the championship chaser. It sort of goes in phases. People know me as a YouTuber, I guess. I’ve told my story about where I come from, my background in cycling and what level I got to. Then someone said, “Shane. You’re done telling your story. You’re not interesting anymore. Turn the camera around more, and keep it about the products. They’re interesting.”
Shane: Ever since then I’m like, “Easy, done.” There’s non-stop content. If it’s about me, I’ve got to keep telling stories about me, and I get boring pretty quick. There’s non-stop new tech hitting the market. There’s just no end of new trainers coming out, new power meters, or innovations on Zwift, Zwift updates, firmware updates. I’m just excited by it all. Because any product is only ever one firmware update away from being awesome, or even better. If I can share that with people, and people get the same experiences I have, because I still love this stuff. I’ve ridden, I was going to say hundreds of thousands of k’s, probably hundreds of thousands of k’s. But I’m still out there like a kid; on a bike, the sun is up, flying along on the bike, looking down at my left/right balance, and thinking, “How cool is this?” I just want to share that. I think it’s working.
Ken: Sure. When you’re riding it sounds like you sort of get into this meditative state, where sort of your mind, and the numbers, and the experience of having the wind go over your body, just all sort of melds into one almost like an atmosphere.
Shane: Oh, yeah. You’ve just described time trialing like nothing else. In time trialing I was so focused on that, so focused. This is every single little detail we looked at, and you’re in full control. Time trialing, you never miss a breakaway, you never have an unlucky or a bad day, unless it’s equipment. But if you focus on your equipment, everything is perfect. That’s what I love about that. You can’t predict the result of your competitors. You can always predict your own result, though.
Shane: I love a good time trial.
Ken: Yeah, it seems like it. It seems like it really sort of fits that core personality trait that you have of just being a numbers guy, and a data geek.
Shane: It works really, really well. I started off with a PowerTap Hub. Funnily enough, thinking back to it, I should do a video on it. My first power meter didn’t work, it broke. Which is still happening to this day. The troubleshooting of that was, I couldn’t figure out what was making it drop out, and I was racing and all of a sudden after an hour it would drop out.
Shane: Or I was riding to work, and I’d pass a certain point of my ride to work, and it would drop out. I’m thinking, “Oh, what could this be?” It was actually temperature-related; anything over 16 degrees Celsius, it would drop out. It took me months to figure that out. That was a bit of fun. How many years later down the track, I’m still doing the exact kind of [inaudible 00:39:56]; just with a lot more tools, a lot more power meters.
Ken: Right. Well, speaking of PowerTap Hubs. When I was looking for my first power meter, I was like, “Man. I don’t have a whole lot of money to spend on this thing. I don’t want to spend thousands of dollars. I want to spend hundreds of dollars.” I also was looking for a good set of wheels. A friend of mine sold me a pair of Reynolds Assault PowerTap wheels, and that’s still what I use now.
Shane: Oh, nice!
Ken: I mean, they’re probably eight years old?
Ken: Yeah. It still works.
Shane: Did you start off with a yellow server with two buttons?
Ken: No, I didn’t. The one that I have, it would just sync up to my Garmin. But I remember the original PowerTap Hubs; these big ugly aluminum-looking things. Yeah. I think the G3 is the one I’ve got.
Shane: Oh, that’s nice. It’s a smaller one. Yeah. The originals were like soup cans, I guess you’d call it. You’d ride along behind someone, these big silver things spinning around, it was like a soup can hub. But I guess we sort of both started in PowerTap. Yeah, excellent.
Ken: Yeah. Yeah. Definitely. When I first started deciding to get into Zwift, I had been thinking about it for awhile, but I didn’t think I had a computer that I could run with it, and I didn’t know much about trainers. Your videos, and of course DC Rainmaker and his blog, those were the two spots where I really went to learn about the equipment that I was going to need. Finally, winter of 2017 started setting in, and I had been hit by a car a few months earlier. I didn’t get hurt, but it was just like, “You know what, man? This is sketchy out here, to try to ride alone in the morning before work. I’ve got a kid now. There’s just a lot on the line.”
Ken: So anything that I could do to make sure that I’m getting in more training, and averting some of the risks, that became really important to me. Also, the only fitness tracker that I was using at the time was Strava Summit had the fitness fatigue thing, and you could look at it over all time, and that winter it just went up and up and up and up. It was the first time that it didn’t take a big dip. I came into the 2018 season and signed up for a mountain bike race, and I won it. I was like, “What in the heck is going on?”
Ken: It was funny, because I’d get out in front of the pack and I was like, “You’re doing something wrong, man. This isn’t right. You’re overcooking it.” Sure enough, 90 minutes goes by and I’m still in the front; two hours, two and a half, three hours. I’m like, “Oh, man.” It happened, it worked.
Shane: Hang on one second.
Shane: Sorry, my audio has just dropped out to my headphones. [crosstalk 00:42:47].
Ken: Oh, okay. Yeah, you can take a minute to fix that.
Shane: Oh, come on Bluetooth. You can do better than this. Do I have a plug? I have a second… Sorry about this.
Ken: No, do your thing. We want to make sure that we’re having a good conversation, free of any technical issues. If you need to grab some other headphones, go for it.
Shane: Okay. Are you there? I’m on speaker, just one moment. What is this doing? This should be off right there. Okay. Where are we at? That is camera, page is accessing your microphone, that’s cool. Continue. Okay. You there?
Ken: I’m here. Can you hear me?
Shane: Yeah. Sorry about that. I don’t know what happened. My Bluetooth has just dropped. If it happens again, I’ll go get some wired headphones.
Ken: Okay. Yeah. That sounds good.
Shane: It just did, damn! Okay. Hang on one moment. I’ll grab those headphones.
Ken: Oh, sure.
Shane: Okay. I have wired headphones. Let’s go with wire. It’s like my trainer this morning dropping out.
Ken: I saw that you follow Zwiftalizer. That was really helpful for me, because I could not figure out why my amp plus kept dropping out. It didn’t seem to ever drop out on workouts. It would only drop out in races or events. It was weird. Once I sort of figured that out, and they released that where you can Bluetooth your phone through the companion app, that fixed the problem. That was a really nice feature, because Windows Bluetooth just never seemed to sync very well with my trainer.
Shane: Yeah, game over for Windows Bluetooth. It still is a bit of a problem. Okay. Now I have wired headphones in. Is my microphone still coming through okay?
Ken: Yeah, you sound fantastic.
Shane: Excellent. Excellent. Sorry about that. I’ve got a good story about, your mountain bike one, as well, where you were super fit after your winter training. I’ve got another one that works really well.
Ken: Yeah, let’s hear it.
Shane: Speaking of training through winter, and not quite realizing how strong you are. I had the same effect over in Perth. Now we were living in Perth for three months. My wife Veronica had a project over there. I just tailed along. I’d been riding Zwift indoors a lot, and I’d been doing green jersey sprints. But for me, I didn’t remember doing them. They were just part of Zwift. When I was out racing on the weekend, I was coming into a sprint. I’m like, “Oh, I’ve got no hope in hell here, but I’ll open up a little earlier than normal and see if I can get the jump on them.” Boom! Blew their doors off, and I won it. I had to think back, “Where have I been doing sprint practice?” It was all the green jersey sprints. It was one of those cases of-
Ken: That is awesome.
Shane: … the Zwift effect, where you’re doing this training indoors, but it takes you so far away from what you’re actually doing, I didn’t put two and two together. Yeah. The Zwift effect; it is real, indoors and out.
Ken: It certainly is. On Team DIRT, we call it the DIRT effect, that’s our hashtag.
Ken: Because we get to see all these dads that are like, “I can’t believe it. This is crazy.” They post their screenshots of their FTP increases. The thing that I like is when they show podiums in real-life races, of the thing that they’re doing outside. Or some guys, they’ve lost 30 or 40 or 50 pounds, those are the awesome stories. It’s great to win, but also just seeing these people, these guys, and some moms too, and some other people, that have joined our club, just making fitness breakthroughs that they never thought possible. I think that’s been one of the great things. It’s such an injury-free thing to ride a stationary bike. It’s about as safe as you can get, and still push really, really hard.
Shane: Yeah. There are some inspiring stories out there. A lot of people say thanks to me, for covering the technology they’re using. I’m saying thanks to them, for showing us what you can do, what the applications are, of what I’m covering. People are out there running KICKRs, or NEOs, or Hammers, and becoming stronger, or losing that weight, or getting 5th place rather than 15th place. That’s what inspires me to keep covering this, as well. I love seeing those posts.
Ken: Yeah, it’s awesome. You told me that about 10 weeks ago y’all had a kid. I’d like to hear a little bit about how training evolved for you, as your wife was pregnant, and then what it has been like over the last 10 weeks for you.
Shane: Yeah. Well, it has been a whirlwind. I guess everybody can relate. Up until Maxwell was born, everything was normal. Even Veronica, my wife, she’s a Zwifter, she’s a competitive cyclist, I think she was doing some groups rides or group races, I don’t think it was Zwift Academy at the time. But she was on there doing her rides and races. We had to put the steering up a lot higher, because she couldn’t reach over the bars, little Maxwell was too [inaudible 00:47:54] at the time. Even myself, I was training all the way through, we’d gone over to Amsterdam to catch up with DC Rainmaker, we had an open house over there. We went to the Tour de France, the Giro Rosa. We went down and saw Elite’s. This was when she was 32 weeks pregnant; just borderline of not being able to travel.
Ken: On the border. Okay.
Shane: The CEO of Elite, when we were there at the factory in Italy, he was pushing Veronica around on a chair. He says, “No, no, no. You don’t walk. You don’t walk. I will push you around the factory floor on a chair.”
Ken: Oh my God.
Shane: It was just brilliant. People were just giving up seats for Veronica, because she was pregnant. It has been a really good journey, because we were hoping for a family for awhile, and to see that society accepts pregnant women, having their own car parks. It’s been really good. But anyway, to the story about little Maxwell’s birth. I had just stepped off a Zwift ride. Now, it’s pretty common that I step off a Zwift ride, it’s nearly every day, but it was 8:30 at night, just on the Australian Ozzie hump day, on a Wednesday, with 400 of my friends. I’m just sort of recovering, shaking the legs out, and Veronica has walked in, and this was still three or four weeks early. Veronica’s going, “I think it’s time.” I’m like, “No, no. It’s not time. I’ve got to have a shower. I just stepped off Zwift. Yeah, it’s not time.” She goes, “Oh, no. It’s time.”
Ken: You didn’t even get a shower?
Ken: Did you show up in the hospital in the [crosstalk 00:49:18]?
Shane: No, no. I got changed. We were trying not to get on that, because we’d done all the classes, and we went through everything, just trying to do the best we can, and learn up as new parents first. This is our first. We’d done all the classes, everything. A lot of the classes say, if you go to the hospital and the contractions aren’t between a certain time period, they’ll send you home. You’re only five minutes down the road. I’m driving there going, “You know what happened today? Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.” [Von’s 00:49:42] like, “I’m having a baby here.” “Okay, but let’s just keep things normal. So this happened, and this happened, and then I got 26th place, because I think that…” Then Von’s like, “I’m having a baby here.”
Shane: I finally calm down, and realize I was about to become a dad. We got in there, and it was an emergency c-section. We were booked in for a c-section a few weeks later, anyway, because little Maxwell hadn’t spun around. He was still riding the reverse Watopia course, I think is how we referred to it.
Ken: Yeah, that’s good.
Shane: It was an emergency c-section. I mean, I’ve got a million and one stories, and I’ll keep reeling them out until you tell me to stop.
Shane: I get into the theater, and the doctor looks at me, looks at Veronica, but looks back at me and goes, “You and DC Rainmaker…” I’m like, “You’re a cyclist, aren’t you?” He goes, “That’s right.”
Shane: I’m like, “So what sort of bike do you ride?” He goes, “Oh, I ride a Bon.” I’m like, “Right. I’ll talk to you more about my bike, but my wife is having a baby.” “Okay, cool. I’ll take care of that.” 45 minutes later I was a dad. Super healthy.
Shane: I didn’t want to interrupt my cadence, so to speak, with the Channel on YouTube, and effectively my work, so I wanted to keep doing things. The next video that I did, I think was a day or so later, the very last bit… People knew, because if they follow me along, and follow my personal side of things, they knew Veronica was pregnant, but I hadn’t made a big thing of it. And in the very second of the video, it’s Maxwell’s very first scream that I recorded, just after he was born. He let out the scream, and I look sideways, and I look back at the camera, and I cut it so it was the end of the video. So it was a little Easter egg in there, of Maxwell’s very first noise that he ever made. Ah, just thinking back to that. Just that very first scream. If anybody is a parent, I’m sure they can relate. You’ve finally got a healthy baby, and my life changed at that moment. It’s been unbelievable ever since.
Ken: Well, I guess he was really little when you brought him home.
Shane: Well, he was one day off being prem.
Shane: But he was ready to go. It was his time. He was straight out, 3.386 kg, 7.7 pounds.
Shane: Super healthy. He was back to birth weight in about two or three days, because they lose a bit of weight and they put it back on.
Shane: He was straight on breastfeeding within 24 minutes, I think.
Shane: Textbook baby, which is good, because being a geek into all the tech specs, I’m like, “Okay. The baby should be this, this, this, and this, and this. And tick, tick, tick, tick, tick.” He matches the specs, that’s what was written on the side of the pamphlet. It was all good.
Ken: That’s great. You getting some good sleep?
Shane: Well, last night, and I don’t want to brag or anything, but it was 8.5 hours last night. He’s 10 weeks old, and he’s sleeping for 8 hours.
Ken: Oh my goodness.
Shane: Veronica is like, “Let’s just think about this for awhile. It’s not going to keep like this all the time.” He was up feeding, obviously, on and off for two or three hours and things, but he’s just slowly dragging that out. Funnily enough, part of my IT course, I did childhood developmental psych, as a non-contributing elective.
Shane: So knowing the cognitive development, and seeing that take place with my very own child is just amazing. You can just see them becoming more and more conscious every day, and aware of their surroundings. It makes them cry, because realizing how big the world is, and that they’re not connected to the mother. Again, I could talk about this all day. It’s just amazing. Just amazing.
Ken: Yeah. As a matter of fact, I got a psychology degree, and my senior research was in developmental psych, so I love that stuff.
Shane: Oh, wow. Man! Awesome!
Ken: Well, that’s really cool. I guess I’m curious, how do you train? Do you follow a program, or do you just ride Zwift? You just try to hit a certain number of hours a week?
Shane: It’s changed since I’ve stopped competing, because I competed to the level where… Well, we all know, the thing that people don’t talk about in bikes, at sort of the high level, things hurt. You’ve got to push yourself so far, so far, into these zones. If you’re comfortable with that, it’s about training the body, training the mind, but training that threshold of pain. If you can’t tolerate that, you just can’t cope.
Shane: A lot of people just can’t push themselves to that level. With the time trial stuff, that’s purely about pain, especially the shorter 20 km time trials, or the 10 or 13 mile time trails that we were doing for master’s level stuff. My training for that was fun. I enjoyed that, pushing myself. But then I think there was one hill I was riding in preparation for a tour that we were doing. Now, I had already won the tour. It was masters one, two, and three, categories; and then masters A, B, and C. I had won both versions of this race over the last few years. I was riding up a hill called Tawonga Gap, if anybody knows that in Australia, and it’s a 20 minute hill, you’re doing like 380 watts for 20 minutes up this hill. I got halfway up and went, “There’s a really nice coffee shop down in town. I’m training for something that I’ve already achieved.” So I spun around, and I don’t think I’ve competed much since then; only in the eSports side of things, but not much outside.
Shane: Since then, my training has changed. I do it because I want to do it, and because it’s fun; not because I want to push myself to levels that I’ve pushed before.
Shane: As for cramming it in, well, if it’s my work and I can go for a ride and test something at the same time, it’s a double win for me. This afternoon I was testing a new head unit, and a new power meter, but it was just an afternoon ride. So if I can cram it in for two things and create content around that, it’s a double win. This morning was a new trainer firmware, that was 45 minutes. Veronica went off to the physio, and had some her time, and little Max was next to me. But, yeah. It has changed a lot with Max around. It’s about making sure that the trainer noise is white noise for him. We have the Nest Cam set up at home, so I could keep an eye on him.
Shane: Yes, things do get interrupted now. It’s not all about me.
Ken: It’s true. It’s funny, because we do this podcast as sort of a side hustle, really just a hobby for us, the three guys that do it. We’re all dads, and we’re all trying to balance out complex schedules, and we just get together when we can, which is why they’re not here right now. One of them is on the West Coast, it’s probably 3:30 in the morning for him. The other one, Shayne Gaffney, I don’t know if you know Shayne, but he’s got a daughter that’s not a whole lot older than Maxwell.
Ken: He’s trying to sort it all out. I guess this is all you do. Now, this is your career.
Shane: It is. Yes, it is. Slowly moved over. I was at one company for 10 years, and then I took a year off, because the company merged and got bought out and then I took my share and went and rode bikes for awhile and ticked all the boxes there in 2014, had a heap of fun doing that. Then yeah, things just got busier and busier and busier. Then YouTube came along, and then we could monetize YouTube, which is really handy. That’s sort of going up and up and up, and to a point where it’s now sustainable. There’s a bit of consulting in the background; if a company is making either a new product or wants some feedback, sort of away from the YouTube, or away from the public facing stuff. Yeah, we can get some of that as well, in the Lama Lab.
Shane: Because the Lama Lab’s not a bad looking setup. There’s a few things that we’ve found in the Lama Lab. A few things creep out into the public space, if I don’t have an agreement with the company. Let me think back. INPEAK come to mind. They sent me a power meter, and just said, “Look, just do whatever you like with it. Just let us know how good it is. Publish whatever you like. It’s a great power meter.” And it wasn’t. Then I sent back a whole list of things to fix. They sent me another one, and then it still didn’t fix it. They sent me a third one, they nailed it. Absolutely nailed it.
Ken: No kidding.
Shane: I’m like, “That’s the influence I want to have.” People call me an influencer online, you see the Instagram influencers, the social media influencers. I really don’t care what people buy. Buy a Garmin Varia Radar, though. Those things are just game changers. In regards to trainer brands, or technology, just make an informed decision with our content, and then choose whatever you like.
Shane: I’d rather have influence over the companies making better products, and that’s a perfect example. If I can be more involved in that aspect, yeah. Happy days.
Ken: You’ve definitely seem pretty, sort of platform agnostic, and that’s the feeling that I get from watching your videos, is that you’re not really married, or too influenced, by any particular brand. You certainly seem to have the brands that you like, or respect, like Wahoo for instance. I see that you really like to use the Wahoo products.
Shane: Yeah. It depends on the relationship I have with the company. If a company is releasing products across the board, that I use every single day, it’s easy for me to do content on them. That usually sparks a good relationship with the product manager at the company. I was thinking the other day about Wahoo, and I knew this was going to come up at some point. Someone goes, “You do a lot of Wahoo content.” That’s because I think every time I ride a bike, either indoors or outdoors, I’m using something from Wahoo. That’s why. I’m always looking for firmware updates for this, or how does this work? Or now it’s got radar integration with their ROAM. Then we can customize this. So Wahoo take care of indoors and outdoors, which is a really good position to be in. Garmin are very similar because you’re using Garmin’s almost all the time as head units and power meters, the Vector 3’s. There’s old Vector 2’s floating around, as well.
Shane: But when it comes to software, though, it’s mainly Zwift. Because it’s just there, and it’s just what I ride, and I can interact with people at the same time.
Ken: That’s really cool. I guess there’s one more thing I wanted to talk about before we sign off, and ask you: What is the thing that you are the most excited about? I know you’re coming into your summertime there, but I would say the majority of human beings live in the Western Hemisphere where it’s coming into wintertime, and unfavorable weather conditions. What are the things that you’re the most excited about in indoor training as we approach the winter months?
Shane: Oh, that’s a tough one. That is a tough one.
Ken: Your top three, maybe?
Shane: Smartbikes are good, but they’re not going to replace direct drive trainers, because the competitive cyclist wants to ride their bike. For me, I want to ride my time trial bike.
Ken: Okay. Okay.
Shane: I don’t think it will replace the market there, but I tell you what. The smartbikes are a pretty good experience, especially if you saw my video on configuring the KICKR bike, and how you can reconfigure the gears. If you want to go do a climbing workout, or you want to climb out the Zwift, you can effectively just put on a climbing cassette with a few clicks of a button. If you want to do a time trial, and have a straight block cassette, or a virtual straight block cassette, again, a few clicks, done. That’s super cool. It’s almost too realistic, it’s almost too smooth, and the gear changes are almost too perfect.
Shane: I said in my video, it’s kind of like the gearing system you want on your outdoor bike, because you can slam down through the gears, you’re not going to throw a chain, it becomes a little bit artificial, I guess. Because you don’t want to jump on your indoor bike, or let’s say your indoor smartbike, and start smashing through gears, getting outside and forgetting you have to nurse the chain from the small [inaudible 01:00:52], and vice versa.
Ken: Right. Right.
Shane: The smartbike tick is really cool, but I guess the rabbit hole from that would be I’m hoping it’s going to open up this world to more people. Because the more people on indoor training platforms, or indoor cycling, the more monies these companies will have to make awesome products for everyone else. The more races there will be on Zwift, or other platforms. It’s just good for everyone. It’s like the rising tide with tall ships. I’m trying to think what else.
Shane: I mean, I’ve been blown away by the Garmin Varia Radar. The radar spec is an open [crosstalk 01:01:25]-
Shane: … so it’s not just the Garmin. It’s only Garmin who make them for riding. You were talking earlier on about going outdoors and training, and about the safety aspect, and feeling a bit spooked by cars, and just your surroundings, and it happens to all of us. The radar, which sits on the back of your bike, and just gives you a little beep. Is this a car coming, or an object coming behind you? Or you can see if there’s multiple ones coming behind you. That is the biggest game changer, hands down. I’ve ridden nearly every single new smarttrainer out there, every platform, every power meter. If you’ve seen the Channel, I’m [crosstalk 01:01:55]-
Ken: Yeah. Yeah, we have.
Shane: The radar is the one thing that I will tell people, if you do riding like I do, solo, empty roads, or even on a busy road it’s going to be pretty useless, it’s just going to beep like a Christmas tree. But it is an absolute game changer. If I could sell those things and make a commission, I would, and that’s all I would do. Trust me, they are just the best things ever.
Ken: That’s very good to hear. Well Shane, thank you so much for joining us today. It was really special for us to have somebody that has been so popular in the circles that we run in, and hearing about your experiences as a new dad, and how things are with Maxwell. It’s just been a real pleasure. I wish you, Maxwell, and Veronica the best. It’s been a lot of fun this morning.
Shane: Thanks so much for having me on, and where do I sign up for Team DIRT? Do I have to submit an application? Or do I just become part of it now that I’m a dad?
Ken: I tell you what, now that you’re a dad, what I’m going to do as soon as we’re done, is I’m going to send you the link to the DIRT resources on our indoor specialist website. That will let you know how to get logged on with Zwift Power, and get your DIRT kit, and if you want to join the banter on Discord and Facebook, we would love to have you.
Shane: There we go. The listeners can do part of that, as well? Or take part in all of that?
Ken: Yep, they sure can. What we’ll do is, we’ll post a link to DIRT resources in our podcast notes on this podcast.
Shane: Brilliant. I look forward to it.
Ken: All right. Thanks again, Shane.
Shane: Well, thanks so much for having me on. Ride on!
Ken: Ride on! I hope that you enjoyed the interview with Shane Miller, and thanks for taking the time to listen to Never Going Pro. Chris and Shayne, thanks again. Great catching up with you guys, as well.
Chris: Yeah, I’ll see you guys next time.
Ken: Okay. Okay. Let me [crosstalk 01:03:43]. You’ve got to keep up with me on the outline.
Chris: Hey, I’d just like to point out I was there.
Ken: All right, here we go.
Shayne: You go first, man.
Chris: I just said that. My name is first. I did it.
Ken: Well, I hope you enjoyed the interview. Thanks again to Shane Miller for taking the time to be on NGP. Chris and Shayne, great catching up with you guys as well.
Chris: Yeah, thanks.
Ken: Thank you for [crosstalk 01:04:06]-
Shayne: Bye guys, thank you!
Chris: Seriously. Just terrible.
Ken: All right. Three time’s the charm.
Chris: Awkward prob. We’re done, we’re just done. Now we’re done.
Ken: No, no, no, no, no. We’re going to get this right.
Shayne: What was, “Yeah, thanks,” with the attitude?
Ken: I hope you enjoyed the interview.
Chris: Yeah, thanks. Thanks everybody.
Ken: I hope you enjoyed the interview, and thanks again to Shane Miller for taking the time to be on Never Going Pro. Chris and Shayne, great catching up with you guys and I hope you have a great evening.
Chris: Yeah, thanks everybody.
Shayne: Bye guys, thank you.
Ken: Thank you again for listening to Never Going Pro. Ride on! I will see you in Watopia.
Whether you are new to cycling or an experienced rider, working towards a goal with a supportive community that motivates and keeps you accountable is the best way reach your athletic performance goals. Our virtual group training option, powered by Bereda Training, involves implementing a proven successful training plan with encouragement and guidance so you feel supported, confident, and educated throughout your training journey, as well as Peer-to-Peer Coaching where the community helps each other improve.
◾️24 weeks of structured training created by a Level 1 USA Cycling power based training certified coach. There are 3 phases of the program, with each being 8 weeks in length.
◾️5 workouts per week which average 1 hour during the week, and 1.5 hours+ over the weekends, all focused on increasing your FTP.
◾️Access to the GC Coaching virtual training Bereda group. Here you will have exclusive access to ask questions to your coach and other participating athletes, learn more about nutrition, hydration, and other training topics, and get to know your fellow members. You can join the group by following the link below.
◾️Body Maintenance routines.
◾️A TrainingPeaks basic account.
Phase 1-3 Progression:
◾️The plan builds in TSS, IF, and duration over the course of 3 weeks, with the 4th week being a regeneration week each month.
◾️The training plan is set up to have workouts on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday. The workouts during the week are shorter since most of us are working, and the workouts over the weekend longer.
◾️If you’re time crunched, you should skip Wednesday (as this is the easiest workout of the week), and if you’re super time crunched, skip Wednesday and Sunday’s workout. For those athletes who have events or group / club rides over the weekend, you may replace the plan’s workout with said ride. Your call if you want to ride the following day. The plan is great to follow exactly, or an excellent way to structure your training, but there will always be flexibility included to adjust to your busy schedule.
“I can’t say enough about this program with GC coaching. I’ve trained with Shayne before but failed due to time constraints. But his virtual training program solves that issue. AndI already feel stronger. The numbers auto set to your FTP, so the sessions are just hard enough to finish with a great sense of accomplishment. And as the weeks are progressing, I am feeling a lot stronger and more confident about my abilities. I’m not a pro, so I can’t tell you that the training is structured for a specific gains. I can say he has his certifications and I’ve dealt with him personally and he sounds very impressive. I can say that so far, it feels perfect. I struggle, but finish. I’m appreciate the rest days. I feel stronger and can see the physical changes. So he must know something. We can all find snip-its of training here and there. But a full, day by day, personally formatted exercise program, that progresses appropriately, for a crazy low cost. Why would you not do it. And I know I will be crushing the group rides this summer!”
“I just want to say thanks Shayne! For putting your valuable time into phase 1,2, and 3. It worked like a charm! I just completed in tour of BATTENKILL, “queen of the classics” with all the steep muddy roads and hills, on a road bike. I took 2nd in my age and tied for 9th overall, not bad for a 51 year old. Thanks again!!!!! My team thanks you too. They have seen significant gains since doing the 3 phases!”
Spots are limited to 50 Athletes, don’t miss out! Our next group starts Tuesday, November 7th!
To find out more information, and join the group ⬇️⬇️⬇️
Feel free to ask any questions you may have, we look forward to working with you! ❤️
In this episode, Shayne, Ken, and Chris chat about heart rate variability: What is it? How does it work? Is this a helpful tool for cyclists? And exercise options for family vacations when you don’t have your bike.
Our special guest this week is Jone Gravdal from the Indoor Specialist team. He is a high level Zwift Racer and has recently started incorporating HRV training as an extra tool in his training toolkit. While not completely dependent on it, it was interesting to hear how he uses his HRV score along with his physical sensations to make training decisions. Our apologies as his audio quality is not the best!
Available on iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, and SoundCloud
Heart rate variability (HRV) is the physiological phenomenon of variation in the time interval between heartbeats. It is measured by the variation in the beat-to-beat interval.
HRV is affected via the autonomic nervous system (ANS), and more specifically the sympathetic nervous system (SNS) – “Fight or flight” – and the parasympathetic nervous system (PNS) – “Rest and digest”. The SNS is responsible for shortening the beat-to-beat interval at rest, versus the PNS which will lengthen it at rest. Said another way, an athlete who is relaxed will have a higher HRV score, and an athlete who is stressed will have a lower HRV score.
High HRV = Good
Low HRV = Bad
Measurement of HRV
The gold standard to measure HRV is via an electrocardiogram (ECG) and measure the time between “R” waves (shown below), however current monitors in the market employ an optical sensor which utilizes photoplethysmography (PPG) and measures the steepest increase in the signal prior to the peak, which marks a heartbeat. The latter is still under scrutiny for its accuracy which is why I, personally, take this data with a grain of salt and do not base my, nor my athletes, readiness to train solely off of HRV data.
As you can see from above, the ECG data provides superior beat-to-beat variability, via RR-interval measurements, and more accurate data overall as opposed to PPG.
So, in a nutshell, HRV is a useful tool for cyclists to recognize patterns, and change behaviors. Example: going to bed late and/or drinking alcohol lowers my HRV, but meditation raises it. BUT, basing your training off of it entirely will result in a likely fitness plateau since you’re never providing enough stress to the system to create an overloading stimulus. Remember, not all stress is bad, and you need stress to become fitter and more resilient to the same stressor that once fatigued you (like building a callus). So, using HRV to create better behavior is great, but basing training off of a likely inaccurate number is not my recommendation at this time.
DIRTY October KOM Challenge
Sign up below, ride, and repeat on or around October 30th!
Hey, do you guys want to hear a dad joke?
More than anything.
Fantastic. Have you heard of the dyslexic, agnostic insomniac?
He stayed up wondering … Here, let me start that … I’m going to do that over again.
I don’t think we should ever [inaudible 00:00:19].
Hey, do you guys want to hear a dad joke?
Have you heard of the dyslexic, agnostic insomniac?
Named Ken Nowell?
He stayed up all night wondering if there was a dog.
Silence. Dog. Get it?
Yeah, dog, instead of God?
Man, y’all are stupid. Everybody else got that joke.
I don’t think my college education is high enough for that joke.
Well, all two people who are still listening to this after that joke both got it.
All right, well, welcome everybody to the Never Going Pro podcast by Dad’s Inside Riding Trainers, where the jokes suck. We’re featuring GC Coaching. This is a podcast about riding bikes and parenthood and trying really, really hard at both. I’m your host, Ken ‘the badger’ Nowell. And with me, is Shayne Gaffney, owner of GC Coaching.
And Chris Gorney, fellow DIRT teammate, passionate cyclist and outstanding dad.
How’s it going everybody?
So let’s take a few minutes to catch up. How’s everybody doing this week?
Well, my family moved to California in the last ten days, so, I’m sitting in a garage surrounded by a boxed up grill, my bike on a trainer, and thirty-two hundred diapers. It’s probably the best soundproofing room I’ve ever had for a podcast.
That’s pretty good.
Yeah, but other than that, we’re doing really well. Turns out I can bike commute to my job here pretty easily, and that has made the transition pretty fun, so we’re doing great.
Very cool. Now you’re near Zwift Headquarters now, right?
Right, that’s what I was going to say.
Yeah. I’m just a spy. That is my goal. I’m four blocks from Zwift Headquarters, and I’m just going to slowly work my way in. We’re going to get all the inside scoop.
Fantastic. How about Shayne? He said he’s getting a new driveway put in in his house.
I am, yeah. Driveway’s thirty years old, and it’s New Hampshire winter, so, it has many, many frost heaves and bumps and looks pretty jagged, so we’re getting a new one today, which is great. You may hear some machinery and equipment on my end, but I’ll do my best to edit it out in post.
Is your driveway an anthropomorphism for you? Who you are?
Many New Hampshire winters [crosstalk 00:02:49]
It’s about thirty years old, a lot of jagged edges, a lot of cracks. Yep.
Not so much frost- Frost heaving been replaced with dry-heaving.
Not so much frost heaving, yeah. That’s pretty soon though.
Frost heaving? Frost heaving is a great band name, by the way. Frost heaving?
That is a great band name.
I would listen to that.
It would be. And you know what? A lot of southerners don’t even know what it is. It’s basically when the ground freezes underneath concrete and lifts it up, and drops it back down, but usually not evenly, and it cracks it.
Nope. All gross.
[crosstalk 00:03:25] So yeah man, Yep. Getting ready for winter up here.
Moving out here to California. So, I grew up in the prairies. So, I feel like I was raised to be this tough, hearty man with weather and all these things. And I’m moving out here to California, and it’s 75 degrees and people are walking around in sweatshirts. And, I have this deep fear that I’m going to become one of them.
Yeah, you’ll get softer for sure.
That’s what I’m saying, man. I was on a ride the other day, and it was 68 degrees, and I saw people in full tights and like a face mask.
I know. I’m really afraid. I’m going to have to figure out how to step into the freezer or something, or punish myself. So, anyway, that’s full confession.
You have to move to Belgium.
I know. Well, I just both full-confessed a fear and insulted all of southern California at the same time.
It’s okay. It’s a pretty small cycling community down there, so, I’m sure nobody’s listening, you know, it’s [crosstalk 00:04:16]
Yeah, we should be fine.
Yesterday, we were on a walk, and I know no one to bike with here, and we’re half a block from our house, and it’s dark out, and I see this guy, who again, hopefully doesn’t listen to this, and he is working on a bike on a bike rack in his garage. I look at my wife, and I go, “Oh my God, there’s my people. He’s one of us,” and I said, “I’m going to go over there and talk to him.” My wife goes, “No, don’t do it, leave him alone.” I just charged into his garage and say, “Hey, can we talk about biking?”
Turns out, he’s an awesome guy. He’s a part of the cycling community. He had 30 kits on a rack in his garage and like six bikes. It was clear his garage was for bikes and not cars, and so I think I found my entrance into the community.
It just shows you, bike people are good people. You can walk right onto their property.
I’ll tell you, man. Got a California bromance already. That’s fantastic.
Yeah, I’d tell you his name, but it’s still pretty new and special to me, so I don’t want anyone else to know.
Well, so far my week has been pretty good. I had my big A event of the year about a week ago. The Beaver Dam New Light Challenge. 22 miles of single track, 11 miles of road, and it was awesome. It was really hard, it was really hot, and I hit all of my goals. Things are good there.
So, tomorrow, if you are one of the DIRT team members or not, we are starting our epic KOM challenge, where we’re going to be racing up the epic KOM, recording your time, spending the month of October getting fitter, and then we’re going to come back and do it again on Tuesday, October 29th to get a retest time. So if you want to join us, please do. That should be a lot of fun.
But only if you’re in the Eastern Time Zone, correct?
Yeah, there are people that are pretty upset about us only having a 5:30 AM Eastern Time.
I meant to say that a lot meaner, but it came off too nice.
Well we created a spreadsheet, so you can do it on your own. Put your time into the spreadsheet and still participate. We’ve got a work-around there.
What time are you going for, or aiming at?
I don’t know.
Do you know yet?
I’m thinking around the 20-minute mark. It’s going to be different because drafting is going to be turned off, so, that’s going to have an effect. Every other time I’ve done it, it was like in a race, so, yeah. It’ll be a lot of fun.
[crosstalk 00:06:45] be using the same bike too? The same frame?
[crosstalk 00:06:48] Since we’re not doing any sort of prize for the best, this is more like an individual effort, but we’re doing them together, so, I’m just going to keep my tron bike, I believe and retest on the tron bike.
Yeah, I think as long as you use the same frame.
So cheating is what you’re saying. You’re cheating.
Cheating. Hey, I earned that bike.
Well, the tron bike is actually not going to be the fastest. It’s going to be…
That’s true, you want a climbers bike.
… really helium with the lightweight meilenstein. That’s probably going to be the quickest.
The what bike?
Zero aerodynamics. I think it’s the helium. I can’t remember. I think it’s a Ridley. I think it’s a helium, yeah. But, it’s whatever bike is super, super light, because when climbing, you want a light bike, you don’t want an aerodynamic one. So, tron bike is the best of all worlds, but there’s faster bikes that are aerodynamically better, and there’s also faster bikes that are climbing.
I love when people say the phrase, “I earned the tron bike”, because in my mind I just see their wives shaking their heads, going, “I miss my husband.”
My favorite post ever on Zwift riders, the Facebook group, is when people complete the Everest challenge, but they’re only at 10 percent. “Oh, I got to the top of the mountain, where’s the tron bike?” And they have no idea that it’s not there. A million plus elevation more.
Yeah, I had to have that conversation with a buddy. He was so excited. He was like, “Hey, I’ve climbed 36,000 feet, I’m going to get the tron bike.” Nope. Keep going. Keep going for another six months.
I gave up on that a long time ago, just because especially because again, not trying to say anything bad, but since I use trainer road a lot as well with Zwift, it’s not as conducive as going for the tron bike.
No, no, no I’m going to disagree with you there.
Am I just being wrong?
That’s how you get the tron bike, yes. So, in other words, make sure you’re signed up for the concept bike challenge, and then when you do all of your trainer road workouts, make sure you’re doing them up one of the big climbs, and you’ll just rack up tons and tons of points. Make sure you save your ride at the end of your Zwift session, and if you end up getting both your Zwift and your trainer road ride ship populating [inaudible 00:09:22], just delete one of them. That’s it. There you go.
So now I feel like I’ve not been cheating, and I’ve been wasting a ton of time. So, that’s better somehow.
Cool. Well, you’ve got all winter to get that bike.
I don’t. I don’t have all winter. That’s what I was talking about. I don’t have winter anymore.
Oh well, good for you.
It’s like 65 degrees all the time. I know, I’m complaining. This is a really weird complaint. But, I’m still going to be on Zwift, because I have a daughter. Anyway, let’s move on.
Let’s move on. We’ve got a couple of topics today. One is heart rate variability, what is it? How does it work? And is it a helpful tool for cyclists? And topic two is exercise, options for family vacations when you don’t have your bike. So, I’m going to turn this over to Shayne to start talking about exactly what heart rate variability is. For those of you that are just hearing about this for the first time, you may have heard of a device called Whoop, which is really popular. That’s probably the biggest heart rate variability monitoring app out there right now.
Shayne, would you say that’s where it is?
For terms of Whoop being the biggest market share?
No, that was maybe a worse joke than the one we started out with. And I’m really sad I’m the only one who got it.
Oh, like whoop there it is.
Although, to be fair, I think it’s wop there it is.
You’re way ahead of me.
No, its whoop, there it is.
That was the song my daughter was born to. That’s a different conversation, and podcast.
Wait, you guys were in the hospital and Whoop, There It Is was on?
I made a playlist of things coming out of other things. Baby, Push It.
God, you’re weird, man.
I know it was strange but all the nurses were dancing. She was born to Whoop There It Is. Anyway, moving on.
She was probably conceived to it too.
It’s the only song we play. That and Chumba Wumba. That is the only two songs we play. Anyway. So, variable heart rates, Shayne.
Anyway, yeah. So, heart rate variability is also called HRV. You might hear or see that in literature. But it’s essentially the variation of time between each heartbeat and the variation of each heartbeat is controlled by the autonomic nervous system. So, the autonomic nervous system, or the ANS is something you don’t really have control over. And you divide the ANS into sympathetic and also parasympathetic nervous systems. So, you might have heard fight or flight response. That is the sympathetic nervous system and you also may have heard of rest and digest, which is the parasympathetic nervous system. So far so good?
So far so good. But, I guess the question is, you are saying, it’s the time between heartbeats, so this differs from heart rate. So, can you explain the difference between heart rate variability and heart rate?
So, heart rate is beats per minute. I’m going to put something in the show notes, which is a PQRST wave. So, a PQRST wave is what you get over an ECG or an electrocardiogram. The difference is in the R wave is what the heart rate variability is. So, they measure that in milliseconds. So R wave to R wave is what your HRV is. Versus a pulse rate is just when your vein throbs, that’s just 1 beat 2 beats 3 beats.
Now that makes sense.
And I’d like to throw in a qualifier that none of us are medical professionals and please do not use this for anything real in life that may or may not save your life.
Disclaimer. Not doctors.
So high HRV is good, and that means your parasympathetic nervous system is turned up relative to the sympathetic, which means you have less heart beats per minute or per second. And that means you have wider space between R waves. And then vice versa, low HRV is sometimes called a bad thing, and that means your sympathetic nervous system is turned up or you’re just more stressed than usual. Which means the R wave is going to be more narrow between beats.
All that being true, I suppose the next question is: Is learning how to increase the essentially healthy R wave distance something that can help my training, and if that’s true, how do I do that? What’s the effect on my time in my garage here?
So before we do that, let’s talk about the measurement. So we’ve talked about Whoops already. So Whoop uses an optical sensor to measure HRV. So the ECG or electrocardiogram is 6 or 12 leads, and that’s the gold standard to measure HRV. Obviously that’s very expensive, you have to have medical training to know how to use it. So if you’re trying to see the distances between R waves on a PQRST waveform and you’re using an optical sensor, I don’t believe it’s accurate enough to actually give you a true accurate HRV number. Which is where the scrutiny still is with these companies, they may give you data, but is that data actually accurate and reliable enough for you to make decisions based of?
So what you’re saying is there’s some lower market alternatives to this that people could try to do themselves, but it’s not necessarily helpful data to actually make life decisions on.
Right, I think it’s helpful data to recognize patterns and to change behaviors, but I don’t think it’s at the point yet to base your entire training block or all your training stress off of. So as an example, if you go to bed late or you drink alcohol or whatever you’re going to usually see a lower HRV or you’ll see those R waves become closer together which is a bad sign. And then vice versa, meditation or taking a walk in a park, or something that makes you feel good and less stressed, that’s going to result in your HRV being higher, or again, those R waves being more spaced apart.
The problem is, when you’re training you’re inducing stress onto your body, because that stress is what causes the overload stimulus to occur and then hopefully the adaptation to occur when you allow it to rest. So if you’re causing stress to the organism, you’re causing stress to your body, that’s going to lower your HRV. The problem is if you keep on measuring HRV inaccurately, at least in my opinion with an optical sensor, you’re never going to truly cause enough of an overload to create that actual stimulus to adapt your body to it. So you’re going to get into the point where you’re almost plateaued, because whenever you see you have a low HRV you won’t train, and then vice versa if you have a high HRV you’ll train. So I don’t think it’s a good way to kind of base all your training off of.
Later on in the podcast you’ll hear an interview that we did with indoor specialist pro Jone Gravdal, and he was saying that he uses heart rate variability, but even if he’s showing a high HRV score which is indicating he should get some rest, if he’s doing a training block, he pushes forward with his training anyway, even though it’s saying technically he shouldn’t be. So I found that that was interesting use of how he uses the device.
Yeah, and I think that’s going to be a helpful perspective, Ken. Because where I, after I was reading all this research that Shayne posted on slack, and we were going through it, my thought is: how does this actually help me make decisions? Because is seems kind of like a black hole. If I’m really hyper focused on potentially inaccurate HRV data, then I’m going to say, “well maybe I shouldn’t have this glass of wine when my friends are over because I’ve got to wake up and get on the trainer.” But if there’s a possibility of looking at what’s my heart rate, what’s my watt output-age, and then of course just the relative perceived effort, how do I feel… It seems like there’s maybe some more variability in there. So I don’t have to hyper focus, unless I’m really going at it with a professional coach and trainer like Shayne. Would you say that’s pretty accurate?
Yeah and even then still, I think HRV is good if you have access to an ECG. But if you’re using it to base training off of, I just honestly wouldn’t use it to base your training off of. Use it to base off of patterns, if you notice your HRV is lower and you feel like you’re getting a sore throat maybe back off at that point. You might be getting sick. Or if you have an issue with going to bed late, or whatever, use that to go to bed earlier, or meditate more, just take care of yourself more, to change your behaviors.
To put this in a nutshell, my point here was the accuracy of what’s out there right now is okay, but it’s not great, because again, it uses an optical sensor as opposed to a 6 or 12 lead ECG. And then I’ll link the two different examples in the show notes. And if you’re basing training off of HRV then you’re never going to create enough of a stress to overload your body and create [inaudible 00:19:04] you need to adapt to it. So you need to have some stress to become fit and more resilient, and I equate it to building a callus. The more you do something the harder that skin is going to get. And the same thing with your training, the more you train and the more you overload, the better resiliency you can have and the fitter you’re going to become.
I think that some good information especially is these companies that are coming out there may be promising a lot, but just go into it with a little bit of skepticism. And now we’re going to move on to topic 2 which is exercise options for family vacations when you don’t have your bike. As we get into this I want to share a little bit of an anecdote. One of our founders, Jason Stern, he was a college runner. And during his vacation, he had not been running, and he ran about 40 miles that week. From all his cycling fitness, he could easily carry that, but he also injured himself. His hip or his leg muscle, something got tweaked. So this is something that cyclists need to be really careful about as they can push really hard, but it might not necessarily be a good idea.
Well and I know Shayne’s going to immediately say, “Stop running”. Because he and I had this whole text conversation a few weeks ago when my wife and I were visiting my family, and I texted him and was like: “Look man, I went for a run!” And he was like: “Stop it! Don’t run. If you want to be purely a cyclist,” I think your exact phrase was like: “If you want to have sport-specific fitness, running is both physically and metabolically very very tough on a cyclists body”
Yeah, I would never say, “Never run” to anybody, but if you’re training for a specific event, or you’re very close to the event is, then changing your training drastically, and especially doing a 40 mile week, when you haven’t ran in months and months probably isn’t the best idea, just because A, it’s going to make you crazy sore because of those eccentric load to your muscles that running exhibits on them. So I don’t think it’s just the best use of the time if you have an event very soon. But for the off season or the preparation season I think it’s great.
I felt so terrible the next day. I mean I ran, I felt fit. I was making jokes. My wife was not laughing at my jokes…
We don’t laugh at your jokes either.
That’s fair. That’s fair, so we’re basically married. So, the next day I got up and I was just like, “Oh god, I can’t move”. And I used to compete in triathlons. I used to run all the time.
If you run all the time you can run all the time, but if you cycle all the time you can’t run for beans. And then, like you said, you’re going to have one great day and then have 5 days of lost training because of soreness.
So here’s how I’d answer that question with less joking: Vacations for me are probably less of a topic as much as traveling for work. We haven’t been on a vacation in probably a year or so, just with moving and live stage and things like that. But I do travel for work quite a bit and so when I’m traveling, clearly I’m not bringing a bike. And kind of the two things I do, not saying this is the thing to do, but it’s three things I do. But this is what I do.
I walk as much as I can. A lot of times when I travel I’m going to bigger cities so I avoid taking Ubers or taxis. I walk as much as I can, I take the stairs as much as I can, so if my hotel room is on the tenth floor I try to take the stairs most the time up and down. And then I try to get like- It also helps with just life rhythms. I get up in the morning and I’ll go to the gym at the hotel or a park or something nearby and I’ll try to do some sort of conditioning work out that isn’t super taxing.
But something just to kind of get my heart rate up. And kind of get endorphins going and make me feel like I actually did something. So yeah I might not be on the bike but I kind of try to take those seasons, even if it’s just a three day trip or a five day trip, similar to vacation, as an opportunity to rest my legs, rest my back, and work on a little bit of core strength. So, that’s what I do. I don’t know that it’s been wildly successful, but it definitely hasn’t hurt me.
So what’s your advice, Shayne?
I guess it depends on where the athlete is in terms of their season. So if the athlete is at the end of their season and they need a mental break, then I’ll give them- you know like we talked last week, kind of those no garmin, no rules kind of rides, or athlete-choice rides where I’ll say “You know what? Enjoy the week. Do what you want to do, and then talk to me when you get back.” And the vice versa, if they’re having vacation when they’re two months or so out from their target event, then I’ll probably have them bring their bike and their trainer, and then kind of business as usual. Depending again on how mentally fresh they are or burnt out they are. So it kind of depends on a few things what I require- not require but what I have them do. And the biggest thing for me is just mentally how they feel. And then physically what they need to do to get themselves ready for their event.
That makes sense.
Politician response, but…
Well here’s one thing that-
That’s what I want to know, what you do when you travel.
I don’t take vacation much, at least not the past five years. [crosstalk 00:24:31] So step one would be take vacation. But I think it’s the same thing. Before if I was training for something, then I would bring my bike and my trainer and just be business as usual. Or pick a location that has decent infrastructure for cycling. And then vice versa, if I just needed time, just to relax and chill out then I’ll leave my bike at home and just go for a walk or a hike or something like that. Typically not a lot of impacts, because the stuff we talked about before, just because if you do impact you’ll be sore for days afterwards. So kind of hiking or just enjoying it, swimming, kayaking, whatever I want to do. More of a mental refresher than anything else.
So one thing that you had talked about was the importance of planning out your year. And usually these vacation things are not off the cuff, they’re planned out months in advance, so what I do is I try to really load up my training stress the week before. Go a little bit deeper into fatigue, and then I still usually get to take my bike down to the beach, but I mean my focus is on my family.
And that’s one thing that I think is really, really important to point out is, let it go and be there with your kids, splashing around at the beach. Take your wife on a date, drink an extra glass of wine, eat some extra hotdogs, and go and have fun. You can load up a little bit before, maybe have a little harder week when you get back. And just make sure that you’re getting out of your vacation what you need to get out of it. Because one thing that I’ve seen on our DIRT social media pages is these guys almost not panicking but getting stressed out about going on vacation and losing gains, and from our previous podcast, what you pointed out is you really don’t lose very much fitness in one week.
No. And like you said, if you need the mental break then that’s more important than keeping physically to the plan.
So I think that that is really good advice for you guys out there, and ladies that are looking to go on a vacation. Don’t panic. Your fitness isn’t going to tank. You might come back a little bit stronger. If you come back a few pounds heavier, just dial it in when you get home. And have fun.
Well, it’s fuel to burn on your next ride.
There you go. Like Joe Rogan would point out, it gives him a project to work on when he gets back.
Right. I agree with all that. Plus this is getting into family-ethos questions, but my family when we vacation we really enjoy active vacations. So my wife and I on our honeymoon we went hiking. We went to a bunch of places we could go hiking, and pretty much every one of our vacations is going somewhere remote, beautiful, where we can kind of be active. And you’ve never seen someone so tough and impressive as a 6-month pregnant woman hiking up to a fire watch tower. So we’ve done some very fun weeks here and there around the US where we actually came back feeling mentally refreshed. And my wife, I’ve mentioned on previous podcasts runs marathons, so she’s always kind of on a training plan too. [inaudible 00:27:58] just spent a week doing something different. It kind of made our bodies feel rested, and our minds feel rested, and we had fun, and we kind of came back and started even feeling better on the run and on the bike.
I think the mental aspect is huge. Plus, now knowing that I’ve got two weeks to just be lazy before I start losing fitness is huge.
Yeah there you go.
That’s how I heard that podcast by the way. Oh I’ve got two weeks to be lazy, perfect.
Yeah just train one week on, two weeks off, and you’ll keep building. And yeah, make sure you keep track of your Whoop score.
Hey Shayne, that’s going to be your book. That’s going to be your four hour work week thing. “One Out of Three” can be the book title. One week on, two weeks off. And that’s how you train.
You have to do something crazy epic every day of that week, but you could probably do it at some point.
Talking about that, as we’re segueing, have either of you watched the 50 iron men in 50 days thing on Netflix?
I have not. That sounds stupid.
Okay great. I’m going to reserve my narcissistic and cynical commentary on it. But you should both watch it, and everyone listening should both watch it- both watch it? Both two people listening to this podcast- both of you guys, should watch it and we should talk about it next podcast.
Alright, that sounds good, so we’ve got a homework assignment, everybody.
And I get a cut of proceeds now if our huge audience goes and listens to this.
Alright, so I want to take a minute to introduce our guest. To tell you a little about this guy, I’m slaughtering his name, his name is Jone Gravdal. And he is one the racers on the indoor specialists race roster. If you don’t know who indoor specialist is, the current US national champion Holden Comeau, that is the team that he races on, and there’s a bunch of fantastic riders. Well I reached out to Jone, and he is a high level Zwift racer as mentioned, and he recently started incorporating HRV training as an extra tool into his training toolkit. While not completely dependent on it, it was interesting to hear how he uses HRV score along with his physical sensations training decisions. So enjoy the interview, and here we go:
Jone, thanks for joining us today on the Never Going Pro Podcast. So I understand that you are on the indoor specialist race team. Perhaps you can start with a better introduction of yourself, your first and last name, and how you got linked up with indoor specialist.
Yeah thanks. Glad to be here. My name is Jone Gravdal. [inaudible 00:31:02] It started a long time ago, it was a coincidence. I was racing for a team called PNC. We were racing CBR world cup league. And one morning we did a race in London and we were two teammates up front and the third one who was outnumbered was really persistent and strong, it turns out his names Matt Gardner. Think it’s maybe 3 years ago or something. So we won, me and my teammate [inaudible 00:31:57] and he was outnumbered. But after that race he was [inaudible 00:32:06] I sent him a message, and we start chatting, and we got to be friends. We were never on the same team, but we started cooperating in the CBR world cup league, and the first season it turned out we both had a shot at winning our time zone. But I could go to final, and it was really tight.
[inaudible 00:32:44] [inaudible 00:32:44] We decided anyway that we were going to be a team, even though we weren’t teammates. So, that’s kind of how our relationship started. [inaudible 00:32:59] [inaudible 00:32:59] So to know that I got to be at the [inaudible 00:33:15] [inaudible 00:33:15] CBR world cup live event in LA. And then it turned out like magic that I got to go to the event in Vancouver afterwards, and he was kind of helping me out. And then I got in contact with [inaudible 00:33:32] and [inaudible 00:33:34] guys so I joined the [inaudible 00:33:37] together with Matt. We were I think starting our own team but that’s not the [inaudible 00:33:47] we’re on the same team and we forget. So we’re happy riding [inaudible 00:33:53] A lot of things happened last year.[inaudible 00:34:02][inaudible 00:34:23] We went from a top team to specialists.
Fantastic. And so we love the indoor specialist guys, they’re sort of… we’re all linked up dads inside riding trainers, and indoor specialists more or less being the professional end of the pointy end of things with Zwift racing. I understand you are also a dad inside riding a trainer, so you’ve got a couple of kids yourself?
Yeah. I’ve got two daughters, 10 and 6 years old. The oldest one, her name’s [inaudible 00:35:05] and the young one just started school now. [inaudible 00:35:10] It’s a bit of change now because now both go to school and the youngest one I’m sure…. It’s always things changing everyday so you have to kind of adjust training and everything around that.
Sure, well that sort of brings me to why I invited you to join us on the podcast today. One of the topics of the week that we’re talking about is something that’s pretty new in the cycling training and endurance training world, and really the fitness world at large is heart rate variability training. So I imagine you know, you’ve been a high level cyclist for quite a few years, and you’re trying to balance family, work and riding your bike. How did you first hear about heart rate variability training and what platform do you use for tracking it?
I’m not quite sure. I’m kind of always prepared for, I listen to a lot of podcasts and I love training studies and papers and everything around training, all the theory. I really like to read and listen to everything about it. So, I think it was [inaudible 00:36:44] podcast, but some podcast they mentioned it and then I started searching around for more information, and I ended up at the elite HRB page, they have a lot of webinars and information they have a free app. And they’ve been kind of, I’m not sure, but I understand it like I have been at the forefront of pushing this out more like to the masses. Speaking about a lot of different ways to use HRB. [inaudible 00:37:27] In relation to pain. So I figured I’d try it. Then I stumbled across a couple of challenges, because it’s not all heart rate monitors that use the [inaudible 00:37:52]. I got a new heart rate monitor, and I thought I’d give it a shot. I tried to get all the information I could, [inaudible 00:38:07] [inaudible 00:38:13] I just went into it, to see if there’s something to it.
Sure now, so have you discovered when you are feeling run down that the heart rate variability score is predictive of when you’re going to be over tired or predictive of when you’ll be performing well?
Yeah. I use it more like its relation to how I feel or if something unexpected is going on or something. I don’t know how to say it, but my life’s been pretty hard the last year. I lost [inaudible 00:39:12]
I’m sorry to hear that.
She had a brain tumor, so I wasn’t… my body’s feedback wasn’t like it used to be, and I was really run down, there’s a lot of external stress. Basically what it boils down to is you have to establish something like a true baseline. Of course if you start HRB training when you’re at the end of a hard training, I think that if that is your baseline, then everything will be skewed.
Oh okay, that does make sense. Right, you’re starting at a place where maybe it recognizes… it may think that you’re in a recovered state when actually you’re highly fatigued.
Yeah or your parasympathetic nervous system [inaudible 00:40:35] [inaudible 00:40:35] I think that will kind of create a baseline and when you recover take some time for it to adjust. I think if you’re starting with it, it’s best to start when you’re feeling normal. I think that that’s kind of what happened to me in this period. Nothing was normal and I kind of used it but I didn’t kind of apply [inaudible 00:41:19] information. But some periods seem to correlate more with how I felt, but how I used the information. When you’re training usually you have like three weeks of loading racing, training load and then you have a rest week. So it’s kind of like your HRV will go down, so it’s kind of like it’s planned. Then I would typically ignore it because I know that okay, I only have two days left of hard training so I will have one rest week and then you kind of get…
So you’re not necessarily… you’re still following your training program, even if the app, the HRV app is telling you it’s time to rest, if you find you can still hit your numbers during your training, you’ll just go ahead and push through for the last few days?
Yeah, it’s expected that it will be harder for a week if you’re ramping up the training load, and preparing to take a rest week. Then things usually are harder to achieve, and you plan training around this… [inaudible 00:43:05] So then you recover, and you start a new block. So those are kind of like predicted, but I can see that if I did a really hard workout Tuesday then my HRV score is low Wednesday, and my resting heart rate also is higher. So it’s almost like using resting heart rate in the morning, but you get kind of additional information.
Right, around the clock information.
I just use it like a morning reading and it gets me a score. Typically what we’ll do is that if I know kind of the reason, if I had a bad night sleep, or the previous day was really exhausting, then I know okay, this score is low, but it’s because of yesterday. So maybe I would just push through the training anyway because I know that that’s the reason. But maybe if it gives me a really low score or something unexpected result in the reading, then I will think through… it kind of gives you a reminder that you need rest. And if I don’t have a good reason for why I get that reading that morning then I will typically jump on a bike, and I will sit a couple days [inaudible 00:45:14] So I kind of use the information to back up my decision in a way, but it doesn’t judge. It’s not like okay, today is 4 which is a low score, then I decide okay, I’ll go easy. Do you know what I mean?
Well I definitely appreciate you sharing your insight. And I hope that our audience can get something out of that, and so just to summarize what I’m hearing is that it is a great additional tool. It doesn’t necessarily dictate how you’re going to train on any particular day, but it also is just one more tool in your arsenal to maximize your training, especially as a time-crunched athlete.
Yeah, and I think maybe the most interesting thing about it is that it kind of binds your sympathetic or parasympathetic [crosstalk 00:46:22] is activated. And I think that has made an impact on how I plan my day, because I may try to do some training, but if for instance you get indication that your parasympathetic nervous system is really activated, then there’s also a lot of techniques you can use to activate to recover. Maybe if you take a walk, breathing methods, maybe napping, sleeping. So you can use kind of additional exercise [inaudible 00:47:12] enhance recovery when needed. So there’s really a lot of information.
Well thank you very much for sharing that, and we’re going to go ahead and get back to the podcast here. Jone thank you for joining us today, and we hope you have a great weekend. And if you haven’t joined any of the live-streams for indoor specialists, check them out. It’s great fun watching Zwift racing with these guys. Ride on, and have a great day, Jone.
Thank you so much for having me. Have a nice week.
I hope you enjoyed the interview, and thanks again to Jone Gravdal for taking the time be on NPR… shoot.
Now we’re NPR. This is good, this is the closing that should be on.
Right. 3…2….1… and…. I hope you enjoyed the interview, and thanks again to Jone Gravdal for taking the time to be on Never Going Pro. Chris and Shayne, thanks again, and great catching up with you as well.
Bye, guys. Thank you.
Thank you everyone for listening to Never Going Pro. Ride on and I will see you in Watopia.
In this episode, Shayne, Chris, and Ken chat about ramp test results, and why they likely over-inflate your FTP, optimal post-workout nutrition (hint: what you do post workout isn’t as important as you think), and our special guest this week is Chris Schwenker, PT, who speaks about post-workout body maintenance. Enjoy!
Available on iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, and SoundCloud
Carbohydrates are paramount for performance and training adaptation in endurance sports!
Burke et al. (2001) – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11310548
Kanter (2018) –https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5794245/
DAILY CARBOHYDRATE NEEDS – 5-7g/kg day for lower intensity days, 7-10+g/kg per day for moderate to intense days, and 12+g/kg for the really crazy days
Stellingwerff et. al (2014) – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24951297
In short duration exercise situations (∼1 h), oral receptor exposure to CHO, via either mouthwash or oral consumption (with enough oral contact time), which then stimulates the pleasure and reward centers of the brain, provide a central nervous system-based mechanism for enhanced performance.
The above strategy was also used during Victor Campenaerts, UCI Hour Record, as you can see him sipping and then spitting it out right before the attempt below.
POST TRAINING – Aragon et. al (2013) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3577439/
Probably the least important aspect of things IF you get the daily right, especially if the majority of of your training is <90 minutes, which I’d bet most of our listeners is. However, Ingesting 0.3-0.5 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight with 1.0-1.5 grams of carbohydrate per kilogram of body weight improves the absorption of protein 1-3 hours post exercise.
So, in a nutshell, the optimal post-workout recovery routine nutritionally is one that is as minimal as possible. It can be minimal only if you do your job the other 22-23 hours a day though, i.e. you’re not an athlete only when you’re working out, you’re an athlete all day long.Shayne
D.I.R.T. : Dominance Includes a Ripped Trunk! (6 pgs)TRUNK
Ken: Hey, you guys want to hear a funny joke?
Ken: I bet my butcher he couldn’t reach the meat on the top shelf and he refused to bet me, he said the steaks were too high.
Shayne: I’m not laughing. I’m not going to laugh at that.
Ken: Come on, man, that was a good one. One of these days I’m going to get a laugh out of you guys.
Chris: That was real bad.
Ken: Man. The steaks were-
Shayne: That was one of the worst one. Yeah, this is Episode Five. That’s part of the worst ones [crosstalk 00:00:29] but it’s okay, it’s a bad joke.
Ken: All right, good, progress the jokes are getting worse. Welcome, everybody to The Never Going Pro podcast by Dads Inside Riding Trainers featuring GC coaching. It’s a podcast about riding bikes, and parenthood, and trying really, really hard at both. I’m your host, Ken, “the Badger” Nowell and with me is Shayne Gaffney, owner of GC coaching.
Shayne: Hey guys.
Ken: And Chris Gorney fellow DIRT teammate, passionate cyclist and outstanding dad.
Ken: So let’s take a few minutes to catch up with everybody. So how’s everybody doing? Let’s start with you, Chris.
Chris: I’m moving to California next Thursday, so my life is a tumultuous at best.
Shayne: Great word.
Chris: I was a little afraid of messing that word up on a podcast.
Ken: Well, I hope you’re excited about it. I mean, certainly you’re in either what Kansas City or Missouri, Kansas City, Missouri, Kansas?
Chris: Missouri, but I don’t like to talk about the Missouri part.
Ken: Okay, got you. Shayne, how are you doing?
Shayne: I’m good. I’m tired. My six month old is not sleeping through the night consistently, so she’s starting to slowly I think kill us. But otherwise I’m doing great, man.
Ken: That’s good. That’s good. Business is good?
Chris: I think that just gets worse until they’re all 18, they’re just going to slowly and slowly kill you.
Shayne: I think that’s true too. My almost three year old now he sleeps like a champ, he can go down and sleep like 14 hours straight, and he’s been doing that since he was probably three months old. So this is a little bit different for us just being six months, almost seven months and still not really sleeping totally. But yeah, business is great man. Crushing it, so I’m happy.
Ken: Sounds good. You’re crushing it, and helping other people crush it.
Shayne: That’s it, man. Helping it, I love it. Probably you Ken, what’s up with you man?
Ken: So I have been dealing with this ongoing back injury. I injured it and then re-injured it trying to jump off of a high dive. And then I finally-
Ken: They still have high dives in some areas, right?
Shayne: You can’t just glaze over that, you have to explain that.
Chris: Where were you?
Ken: I was in Greensboro at the country club.
Chris: [crosstalk 00:02:42] islands, what were you doing?
Ken: And I tried to do something called a preacher seat, which does an even bigger splash and a can opener and it jacked up my back. But I’ve been going to the chiropractor, and the physical therapist, and doing yoga every morning.
Chris: Can you describe what a preacher seat is?
Ken: So basically you lean back just like a can opener and you cover your face but both legs are sticking out, and you stick your bottom into the water first and it makes an epic splash.
Shayne: So is that like a cannonball?
Ken: It’s more like a can opener but with both legs extended, and your hands covering your face. Yeah, it’s awesome when you do it right.
Shayne: Both like extended. Oh, I see what you mean.
Chris: Clearly your doctors and chiropractors think it’s awesome.
Ken: Yeah, it’s keeping them in business, that’s why they love it so much.
Shayne: Hey, didn’t you do a FTP test yesterday?
Ken: I did an FTP test and finally broke the 300 mark that was a lot of [crosstalk 00:03:37]. So we did a group FTP test called last man standing. You can find it on YouTube on Dads Inside Riding Trainers page, and so the way it worked is we all did a countdown, we started the ramp test at the same time and since we’re on a flat road, it kept us all together and just one by one riders started falling off the back.
Shayne: Who won, You or Jason?
Ken: I beat Jason.
Ken: That’s the most important thing.
Shayne: I can’t stand that guy.
Chris: It’s like two of the main founders of DIRT going head to head. And you’ve got to pick a camp, are you a Jason man or are you the Badger fan?
Ken: Yeah, it’s you can’t like his both. So I beat him by about seven watts, I think he got 295, I got 302 I made it just past the… I just completed the 400 watt interval, and when I hit 420, I fell apart.
Chris: As many do.
Ken: As many do.
Shayne: Let me not be that guy, but I’m going to be that guy. So I would argue you didn’t find your FTP, you found what your max aerobic power was because you did a ramp test.
Chris: He just called your effort trash.
Shayne: I didn’t want to be that guy, but that’s what we… we should talk like I think for sure because a ramp test is a great way to judge what your max aerobic power is or VO2 max things like that. But a true FTP test should be a lot longer like 20 to 30 minutes, ideally. And then if it’s a 20 minute tests, you should ideally do some kind of burn out effort, like I think Zwift uses the three or five minute 115% effort before because you’re trying to decrease your anaerobic contribution to the power produced. That’s why people have a ramp test and they have a super high FTP because it’s being over inflated.
Chris: That sounds like episode three or four repeat right there. Like you’re bringing it back.
Shayne: We talked about that a little bit. Yeah, we briefly talked about it, I think in episode two.
Ken: So I do have a question, as long as I’m being considered… like whenever I set up a new training plan, I’ve been using the same… well, using a ramp test to set my numbers is that good enough or am I at a serious disadvantage for having doing it… being done that way?
Shayne: I mean, personally, I wouldn’t use ramp test, I think you’re doing yourself a disservice because you’re training off of an almost vanity FTP instead of a true FTP. So, yeah, personally, I think you’re doing a disservice. But that’s also why things like sweet spot training, I think have been really successful because sweet spot is 88 to 93% FTP. And I’ve noticed that ramp tests tend to overestimate FTP by like five to 10% sometimes, so by training at sweet spot, you’re actually training closer to thresholds.
Chris: So that gives me a couple of thoughts. One, he just basically demolished your “I finally broke 300 on my FTP”, so that means you’re actually like 285, so that’s-
Ken: If even.
Shayne: I think like 220, 230 though.
Chris: You’re talking kilometers an hour, right? Metric?
Shayne: I mean, possibly even. Yeah.
Ken: Well, man, that sucks.
Shayne: But that’s what it means, so like, I don’t want to be that guy.
Chris: But hey, so seriously, Ken and I were having a text conversation yesterday because I was eating lunch, and he was hating his job. And I was talking about doing an FTP test with them, and I told them I didn’t want to do it because I’m always afraid that I’m not going to be as strong as I want to be or as I feel. And I’ve always kind of felt FTP is kind of like a measuring contest, like it’s never really felt very relevant because I’ve had many a time I’ve done like a ramp test. And then I’ve been on a training plan, and it either felt too easy, or too hard, and I ended up messing with my FTP until it felt appropriately difficult. I’d say I’ve probably never gone through a training plan without messing with my FTP a little bit if it’s been based off of a ramp test.
Chris: So that’s interesting to think about. So really, FTP ramp tests are trash.
Shayne: No, they’re not… They’re trash for testing FTP, but they’re not trash for testing what your max aerobic power is, which is important to understand too. So like when I do FTP testing for my athletes, I test them in a one minute and a five minute and then in a 20 minute power last. So I’m getting what their anaerobic capacity is at the one minute, I’m getting close to what their VO2 max is in the five minute, and then I’m getting ideally what their FTP is in the 20 minute, but the key is the FTP test is last when their anaerobic capacity will ideally be diminished. So it won’t be just anaerobic revealed.
Ken: So just to feel… go ahead.
Shayne: I was going to say at least threshold the way I understand it is, it’s the point where exercise intensity when the energy source your body is using to fuel the activity changes significantly. That’s I think, a better way to understand what threshold is, because FTP I mean, it’s been debunked plenty of times now, it’s not 95% of a 20 minute maximal power tests, it’s not your normal power for an hour. It’s not your highest power for an hour, because then you have to figure out what your FTP is, and then secondarily, what’s your time to exhaustion is after your FTP, which we talked about as well in previous episodes. So FTP is very hard to, I guess, nail down to one or two things. It’s a very multifaceted thing.
Ken: Right. And so the new thing is using computers to model all this stuff for you.
Shayne: Yeah, I use WKO to do that modeling for me.
Ken: Very cool.
Shayne: And you can also use excerpts and other stuff like that to do that as well.
Ken: Okay, very cool. One thing that amazes me is when you look at the tools that we have now versus what the pro cyclists were using in 2000, the Pro cyclist in 2000 would be killing to use the tools that any amateur could set themselves up with for about $1,000.
Ken: It’s unbelievable. And I think that one of the reasoning that the trainer road guys use the ramp test is that they want something that is repeatable, every cycle that you’re not going to dread to do, and so I kind of get where they’re coming from there a little bit as well.
Chris: Also so I agree with that, because I hate the 20 minute ramp, I hate the 20 minute FTP test. Everybody hates it, it’s literally the worst thing you do ever because it just feels-
Chris: Bad. Yeah. And so I mean, I love the idea of something that is shorter and easier just grit your teeth. But even that, I wonder like… I mean, the group of guys I ride with there’s always this discussion about power over strength. And we’ve got a bunch of guys who are a little bit bigger, and we hit these quick descendants, and they’ve got so much power, and they just burst the power to weight ratio going down hills, pretty good for them. And they fly down these short hills and pass the lighter guys but then we get on these longer descents, two three mile descents at like three percent. And they just run out of gas, and I kind of think about that with the FTP ramp test versus the 20 minute tests, you can almost just like grit your teeth and force an FTP, like higher number for the ramp test but then the actual 20 minute test to me is like… that’s like just a deeper pain, a much deeper pain.
Ken: Yeah, yeah, definitely. I dread doing that more. And one thing that I will say is the way that we did it the other day where there was like five or six guys doing it together, it really was a lot of fun. It was just like I’m going to hold on just long enough to drop that guy. And so it was a good time, and I think it was repeatable, so I think that what we can do is just say that everything’s going to have an advantage and disadvantage. And depending on how seriously you’re into training and how accurate you need that number to be, it’s going to make a difference in what type of testing you need to do as an athlete.
Shayne: And then please make your FTP tests longer. Gosh, that’s what I would say.
Ken: Okay, fair enough. Fair enough. So let’s go ahead and move on. This week we had some great crowdsource questions from Dads Inside Ridding Trainers, and the first topic that we… the one that hit the top of the queue with the most votes was a discussion about post workout recovery routines and how to get the best recovery in when you are limited on time. Is that a pretty accurate description of what we’re going to be looking into today, Shayne?
Shayne: Yeah, he kind of said, optimal post workout recovery routines when you’re already pressed to finish the workout. So I think, post workout recovery routine is on a time budget or when time crunched. I think I would look at it that way.
Ken: Got it. Now, did this include nutrition and off the bike training such as stretching?
Shayne: I would think so. Yeah. So I took a deep dive into the nutrition aspect of things, and then we have… I know a special guests who will talk about more of the stretching and mobility type stuff off the bike.
Ken: That sounds good.
Shayne: Who is like… what’s his name? I can’t remember his name. Sorry, but maybe you can fill it in.
Ken: Yeah, his name is Christopher Schwenker, and he is a physical therapist.
Ken: Yep. Schwenker, that’s really his name.
Chris: It’s just a name you have to say again, and again.
Ken: You know what it is, it’s a combination of schwing and wanker.
Shayne: Is he a doctor, Dr. Schwenker?
Chris: [crosstalk 00:14:03].
Shayne: I don’t want to [inaudible 00:14:05] him, but Schwenker.
Ken: No, man, he loves being called the Schwenker, so I don’t think he’s going to be offended by this at all.
Shayne: The Schwenker, that’s hilarious.
Chris: I mean, all I can think of is Wayne’s World now.
Shayne: Of course. Yeah.
Chris: That’s part of the podcast right here.
Ken: So, before I get all the nitty gritty, why don’t you talk to me about what your guy’s typical post workout routine is? Like what do you do? Why don’t you start Chris?
Shayne: Okay, so all right, I’ll go ahead and start. So as soon as I’m off the bike, I come into the house and I almost always eat the exact same thing which is two packets of instant grits, two eggs made into an omelet with four ounces a ham and a slice of American cheese and ketchup on it.
Ken: Okay. Remind me what are grits again?
Chris: It’s what rednecks eat from the south.
Shayne: It’s a redneck meal between the American cheese, the ketchup on the eggs, it’s a really good traditional Southern breakfast. Grits are made out of corn on that have been soaked and lied to remove the shell.
Ken: Okay, so it’s kind of like oatmeal-ish?
Shayne: Very similar to oatmeal. Yeah.
Chris: I’ve never really liked grits to begin with and now actually hearing the description of it, I want them less.
Shayne: Well, you guys don’t know what you’re missing, because it’s so good. Yeah.
Chris: Soaked then lie, sounds strange.
Shayne: So it’s about a 550 calorie meal, I think it’s about 40% carbohydrate, 30% fat, 30% protein or there abouts. And that’s usually on top of drinking Gatorade while I’m on the bike and usually I have a banana before I ride.
Chris: That’s a good conversation about sugar structure and drinks because I’m very… I’m actually wildly against Gatorade. So let’s make a different podcast.
Ken: Well, Chris, tell us about what you eat.
Chris: Yeah, when I get done ridding, it honestly changes a little bit. It depends on three things. One, How hard did I ride? Two, is my daughter awake yet? And three, what food do we have in the house, because I am the guy who with my wife, if she’s doing the grocery shopping that week. And she’ll go, hey, what do you want from the store? And I’ll go, oh, I don’t care, whatever, and then I’ll actually have opinions later that I forgot to express. So I kind of just deal with what’s in the house. Ideally, if I ride pretty hard, I’ll come in and I’ll usually have a banana, and then I will make a couple of eggs on a piece of toast with some Trader Joe’s everything seasoning and some Irish butter in the pan.
Shayne: That sounds quite good.
Chris: Yeah, and so kind of getting sugars, and then sugars which again, form of carbohydrates, actual carbohydrates and then protein from the eggs. I’ll either mix it up with two egg whites and then one full egg or just two full eggs. Knowing that the protein from the egg whites is not processed as well without actually, yolk as well, I have learned and read. But then if I’ve worked out really, really hard, I’ll actually have like a half a PB&J.
Ken: That sounds good.
Chris: Yeah, so I’m a big proponent of RPE workouts, and just general nutrition like listening to your body. So I kind of really try to listen to my body as silly and granola as that sounds. I feel like I can kind of feel when I need sugar or feel when I need protein. And so it kind of changes a little bit, I make all the jokes about donuts and stuff, but I actually don’t do that. I don’t come in and just eat a short carbohydrate.
Ken: So Shayne what do you usually do for your post workout nutrition chain?
Shayne: I usually do a recovery shake, which is typically a weight gainer shake. So I use Optimum Nutrition pro gainer right now, depending on how hard the workout is, I also just might use an ultra gin which is, I guess, a less calorically, less everything compared to a weight gainer. Because it’s interesting the more I talk to athletes, the more I feel like they’re under feeling. And the under fueling, I think is resulting in a decrease adaptation and just overall performance too. Which I’ll kind of get into with the research I have, to kind of back that up too. But yeah, usually that’s what I’ll do. I’ll get off the bike, I’ll make an actual recovery shake within, typically half an hour afterwards, and then I’ll eat my normal diet otherwise.
Ken: Because I’ll say that’s one of the things in the research you sent out to us in the past few days talking about your diet, and tell me if I’m paraphrasing this wrong, but your diet right off the bike is… less than 90 minutes of working out, typically, your diet off the bike is not as important or right off the bike, your nutrition isn’t as important if you’re actually fueling like an athlete the rest of the day. Is that [crosstalk 00:19:20]
Shayne: Exactly, yeah. So that’s totally right. So that’s kind of in a nutshell and what we can talk about in the next 10 minutes or whatever, because the question was what’s the optimal thing to do after your ride? And my response is it’s what you do after the ride, I think is the least important thing. I think what you do the other 23 hours of the day or 22 hours of the day is more important because if you’re entering a workout in an under fueled situation, you’re going to perform less than you would ideally. And then if you need to really recover after the workout, you’ve done some wrong during the day or over the course of the day. So let me just kind of get into it, I guess I broke it down into carbohydrates are, I think the most important part for any endurance athlete. And I know the keto and all kinds of stuff is becoming really popular and probably going to get some comments on that which is fine, we can talk about that in another episode, but for performance and for high intensity-
Chris: I would love to talk about that in another episode.
Shayne: For sure. But for performance and for high intensity training, you need carbohydrate to actually do what you need to do. So Burke in [inaudible 00:20:34], I’ll link all of his research to the posts… to the show notes as well. So Burke Cantor, they have a daily requirement the most endurance athlete should get, so you’re talking to five to seven grams of carbohydrate per kilo per day for lower intensity or just everyday maintenance days. Seven to 10 grams per kilo for a moderate to more intense days. And then the really crazy days, and we’re talking like World Tour kind of stuff, it’s 12 plus grams per kilo for those days. So I’d say most athletes should be in the five to eight grams per kilo day, if you’re training very intensely.
Ken: So just to put some numbers to that, so you’re 70 kilograms or roughly 150 pound male, it’s 70… it’s seven grams per kilogram a day that’d be seven time seven that’d be 490. Wow, that’s a lot that seems…
Shayne: It’s a lot of carbohydrates.
Ken: It is a lot of carbohydrates.
Shayne: Yep. So it’s 55 to 65% of your daily caloric needs should be from carbohydrate based on the research that I read and that I’ve kind of learned. So high carbohydrate diet for intense training, and for performance is important. For weight loss, it’s a total opposite I think approach, and that’s where things like keto and intermittent fasting, and that kind of stuff comes into play. But for performance carbohydrates are crucial.
Ken: Okay, and so one thing that people seemed to get really dogmatic a number of years ago about, you need to be drinking your shake with so much protein and carbohydrates within minutes of getting off the bike or you’re screwed. And like I said, people were really dogmatic about that, and now it sounding like that’s not so much the case that your glycogen stores are being replenished throughout the day, unless… and you don’t really need to worry about that crucial window minutes after the workout unless you’re going to be doing a double workout that day or something along those lines.
Shayne: Right, exactly. Yeah, I’ll link so Aragon did a nutrient timing revisited article which I’ll link to the show notes too. And he goes into that carbohydrate window, which is what it was coined, so the carbohydrate window was supposed to be 30 to 16 minutes after your workout you want to consume about 0.3 or 0.5 grams of protein per kilo with one to 1.5 grams of carbohydrate per kilo to aid in absorption. That’s been a little bit… I shouldn’t say it’s been debunked completely, but there is some research that says now as long as you were feeding your body, and you’re doing all the things correct, within 24 hours, your glycogen stores should be right back to where they were before. So what you do, again, to push this point further home, what you do right after the workout, isn’t that important as long as you’re doing stuff right, the other times of the day.
Chris: What I love about this is what we’re really telling people is, and I should be clear, we’re talking about performance and not weight loss because… So we’re talking about the guys who they’re already pretty fit or within five to 10 pounds of their ideal weight, weight is not a concern, those things will be true. If we’re saying hey, cycling is the best sport in the world because you can kind of like… encourage you to have a beer at the end of the ride. It encourages you to enjoy some healthy carbohydrates, especially in a world where everyone’s saying carbs are bad. Keto good, carbs bad. I kind of love it. It’s like, oh, yeah, actually I will have those chips with my meal. Thank you. Not eating healthy but…
Ken: And I agree with what you’re saying when I got out of certain circles that were almost again dogmatic about the Paleo diet or don’t eat any grains, and sort of got away from that universe, and started enjoying a big bowl of rice. And noticed that I got significantly leaner, my performance on the bike got better. So I think that we’re really speaking to two different audiences here. In the ethos of what we wanted to do with this whole podcast being never going pro, which is simplifying things and saying, guys, it’s going to be okay, if you don’t eat X amount of carbs and protein within 30 minutes of getting off your bike. You’ve got a little bit more wiggle room than that. But when we look at our core audience, it’s one, people trying to lose weight and two, people trying to improve or get faster. So what do we do with a guy… So as far as the folks that are trying to lose the weight, where are we at with them?
Shayne: I think we should push that to another episode.
Chris: I agree.
Shayne: Yeah, because that’s going to be more about energy deficit, keto, carb, all that kind of stuff. Fasting, that’ll be more about that stuff, so I think we should push that off.
Ken: So Shayne, we’ve been kind of talking loosely and on our kind of planning you put everything into three categories of daily, during, and post. And I think we really covered the daily of the fact that if you’re not trying to lose weight, you need to fuel like an athlete all day long regarding carbohydrates and then afterwards what you’re eating doesn’t matter as much, but we haven’t really talked about during. So you posted some really cool articles, there’s a 2013 article, and a couple really interesting examples. Can you talk to us about during fueling because I have quite a few stories being in some Iron Man races and some other races where I have quite literally seen people fall off their bikes passing out from under fueling. And so I know it’s not usually that extreme, but I’d love to hear what the research says like even just as a normal Dad, what can I do that doesn’t require a professional degree or coach to help me during my ride?
Shayne: Yeah, so I like to refer to Juke [inaudible 00:26:39]. He had an article chosen 13, which I’ll link to the show notes as well. Essentially, the shorter the workout is, the less important the fueling during is, and then you seem to get the breaking point once you get past two hours, that’s when the fueling becomes more and more important. So he broke it down into 30 to 75 minute workouts, there really isn’t any need for fueling as long as I said before you’re getting your daily carbohydrate intake, and your glycogen stores are full before you get on the bike. After 75 minutes to two hours, they recommend about 30 grams of carbohydrate per hour.
Ken: Can you put that in terms of like… because I think it’s easier to say 30 grams per kilo or 30 grams per hour.
Shayne: Per hour.
Ken: Yeah, per hour. What kind of food would fit in those categories? Like make it stupid for me? That’s like a power bar, that’s a… you know what I mean?
Shayne: So power bar, yeah, but I think better foods… so when you’re eating off the bike, you want to have ideally complex carbohydrate. And when you’re eating on the bike, I think simple is better, or like more refined carbohydrate. So that way your body can absorb it rapidly.
Ken: So give me an example of each one of those.
Shayne: Like on the bike, it would be a gel or a shot block or a date or something like that, a very easy to digest food. Typically, most of the carbohydrate is in 25 gram increments. So like if you look in like a goo, or a shot block or whatever most serving size is around 25 grams, and the same thing with like a scratch bottle mix, it’s about 25 grams of carbohydrate. So most of the time it’s easy to break it down into one bottle or one gel or one shot block or whatever, it’s about 25 grams of carbohydrate, so you can break it down easily. If you’re aiming for 30 grams an hour, it should be one bottle of mix or one bottle and mix plus one gel, which is 50 grams an hour or one bottle of mix plus two gels which is 75 per hour. You can kind of break it up that way.
Ken: Can I ask have you ever seen someone on a bike pull out a packet of dates and start eating them?
Shayne: I do all the time. For sure.
Ken: Seriously? You pull out some nice Turkish dates?
Shayne: Turkish dates, yeah. Really, really ripe dates that are almost like gelatinous, so there’s really little to no…
Ken: You’re very classy, very classy cyclist.
Chris: Well, I never would have thought about that, I would [crosstalk 00:29:12] with my grits and American cheese.
Shayne: Yeah, it’s because you’re stuck on your daily routine.
Chris: So usually what I do when I’m on the bike is I drink about… once I hit about a half an hour, I’ll start drinking Gatorade and for an hour to 90 minute workout, I’ll drink about a half a bottle to a bottle of Gatorade, which is I think somewhere in line with that, those guidelines that you were talking about.
Shayne: And yeah, so for our audience, it’s mostly going to be working parents busy, busy, so 90 minutes or less is typically going to be the workout window. So really, during the training itself, you don’t really have to worry much about anything in terms of fueling, aside from just keeping yourself hydrated. And then what you do before and afterwards is what matters. So once you get over two hours, two to three hours then you want to ideally consume about 60 grams per hour. Now you start to get into the tricky area of where you have to train your gut to absorb, so you don’t get GI distress, and you can also use different forms of carbohydrate, like fructose and glucose, so different pathways of absorption in your gut. So 60 grams an hour, typically you can get away with just a one source just with glucose.
Shayne: But once you get to two and a half hours plus that’s when you ideally want to aim for about 90 grams per hour, and that’s when you want to have multiple carbohydrate sources. So fructose and glucose being the two most popular ones. So a fruit and then a gel or whatever.
Ken: Perfect. That’s exactly what I was going to say is give us examples of all those, both of those I can buy at the store.
Shayne: Yeah, so you can get like a fruit gel, or you can get baby food in the containers that you can fit in your jersey pocket to do those things, plus a gel or whatever.
Chris: Just like get… not the glass ones [crosstalk 00:31:05].
Shayne: No, not the glass ones.
Ken: Hey, so I think that’s interesting. Even just looking at this graph, it’s like… and I feel this too, it’s if you’re going to go out and punch an hour and a half ride in the morning with some friends, no big deal, wake up, eat a banana, and go. And then eat well when you get home, but it’s the longer you ride, the more you need per consecutive hour. So if I know we’re riding three hours, I need to be fueling more hour one, hour two, and hour three to finish strong. Whereas if I know I’m only riding an hour and a half, there’s much less maintenance that needs to happen. Is that kind of summary, simplified summary?
Shayne: Yeah, I think so. And that’s why you see people kind of bonking at the end of an Iron Man because they may have only consumed 30 to 45 grams per hour. But if you extrapolate that out into 10 on plus hours, you can have enough glycogen on board to fuel the effort and you’re going to bonk and crash.
Ken: Well, and I always like the comparison of like your body is… like in endurance sports, your body is an engine, and if you keep it fueled properly and running right, you can go all day. And this is just kind of putting some numbers to that for me. So I think this is really helpful.
Shayne: Yep. And then I think more just kind of an offshoot and very interesting thing was the… which I didn’t really understand quite why this works. But I’m going to link a video to Victor [inaudible 00:32:24] and it’s our record, and you can see him consuming a liquid, and then spitting it out. So the theory is that the oral receptors and their exposure to carbohydrate via mouthwash or an oral consumption where it stays in contact with the taste buds long enough, it stimulates the pleasure and reward center of the brain. And that provides an actual performance enhancements. So I think if you really into like, [crosstalk 00:32:52]-
Chris: [crosstalk 00:32:52] and stuff.
Shayne: Or whatever, you can kind of take like a swig of something, hold it in your mouth a little bit, and then swallow it or spit it out afterwards, but you don’t have to worry too much about wait, where it was Victor was worried about his watt per kilo the whole time he was over there. So I think that’s why he spit it out, so he wouldn’t have to take on any more liquids. But yeah, it’s kind of cool.
Chris: That seems crazy.
Ken: Yeah, it does seem crazy. But hey, if it works… Any hack will work when you’re trying to break a world record.
Shayne: I think that’s down to just the dopamine response in the brain as a great painkiller. So I think if you have dopamine in your brain at a high level, you can push into that pain threshold a little bit more. But I can’t prove that by science and nobody can at this point, but that’s something that they’re working on right now, which is kind of cool. And yeah, that kind of brings us back to the posts, that kind of the running of the conversation where as long as you do stuff right, I think pre and during, posts shouldn’t really matter that much at all. But to give you some ideas, ideally ingesting 0.3 or 0.5 grams of protein per kilo, with one to 1.5 grams of carbohydrate per kilo will improve the absorption and the recovery.
Ken: Got it. Well, Shayne, this has been very informative. I appreciate you doing all the research and giving us some guidelines to focus on for making sure that we get the best out of whatever experience that we’re looking for as far as our performance. Yeah, our interview this week is with Chris Schwenker physical therapist. He recently wrote a core workout for our team titled DIRT Dominance Includes a Ripped Trunk. Chris and I got to chatting about a month ago on discord when I was talking about a back injury and was remarking how I’ve only become fit at one thing which is cycling. And I really enjoyed my conversation with Chris and I hope you will as well. So here we go. Chris Schwenker.
Ken: Chris, thanks for joining us today. How are you doing?
Chris Schwenker: My pleasure. It’s an honor.
Ken: Yeah, well, so tell us where you’re joining us from.
Chris Schwenker: I’m speaking to you from the East End of Long Island.
Ken: East end of Long Island. Fantastic. How’s the weather up there today?
Chris Schwenker: The weather is beautiful. It’s a little bit humid, but nice here on the beach, a little bit isolated for a climber in this flatland area.
Ken: So that’s your dominant aspect as a cyclist, is a climber?
Chris Schwenker: Yeah, and it’s a little bit tough to train on sand dunes and bridge overpasses.
Ken: Yeah, I feel you, so all the better for having Zwift in our arsenal of tools to get faster.
Chris Schwenker: Absolutely.
Ken: And I think you and I have very similar attributes as far as cyclists. I see us both hanging out in similar places when we race together. So for our audience, Chris is a physical therapist. He was actually a valedictorian of his high school and went on to Brandeis. And so tell us a little bit how you got interested in physical therapy.
Chris Schwenker: Well, I was always into sports, and I was blessed with the ability to do fairly well in school, so I went to Brandeis was able to get a full scholarship, which was very fortunate because I came from very meager upbringing and I wouldn’t have been able to go to college if I hadn’t worked to achieve that. So I just figured that the next logical step for me would be to go to medical school, so I got into medical school. I was one 10th of the one percent of the applicants to get into the school that I went to. And when I got there, I realized that it really wasn’t for me. So I took a leave of absence, which I’m basically still on which I doubt that they’ll take me back, but then I looked into other ways to get in the health field while also remaining active in sports way of things. And that’s what drew me to physical therapy. And I’m so happy that I did, and I love every minute of every day that I work.
Ken: That’s fantastic because I know a lot of us can’t say that, I definitely have a job that pays the bills, but it was never anything I’m passionate about. So kudos for you for getting in and you have your own practice now, right?
Chris Schwenker: I absolutely do. I own a practice, we have about 20 employees now, it’s not a huge practice, but my wife is a registered nurse. And when my children were born, she stopped practicing as a nurse. She was able to stay home, which we all know that’s the whole genesis of DIRT, I started training really early in the morning, and that’s where I found you guys because I didn’t want to train in the evenings when the kids were home doing things. So she and I built up the practice together and now it’s basically on a cruise control, so I have the opportunity to sit back and watch my staff do things, and get the opportunity to work with my wife, which is also really special.
Ken: That’s fantastic. So in your practice, you work with a lot of athletes and specifically you are a bike racer, and you work with competitive cyclist. And so I think that gives you a really great insight both being somebody that does a lot of riding yourself, but what are the types of injuries, and shortcomings that you see with cyclist?
Chris Schwenker: Well, there’s a myriad of injuries that cyclists get, and the majority of them are overuse injuries, which are based largely in improper positioning. And I’m not talking about like acute injuries from crashes or running your mountain bike into a tree. I’m talking about overuse injuries, because in the course of a 50 mile ride, you might turn the pedals 100,000 times. So if you’re not properly positioned, then that wears on you. So, as cyclists we’re in prolonged periods in one static position, and that’s basically in a flex position, so your hip flexors get really tight, the musculature around your lower back becomes overly stretched. The hip rotators, such as the Piriformis get overworked, there are structures around your knee that if your saddle isn’t correct, become an issue.
Chris Schwenker: So there are a myriad of issues and it’s a matter of identifying them, and then recommending the proper fit and going from there.
Ken: Got you. And that’s really something that I noticed this recent injury was a lower back injury and then it sort of gravitated around into my right hip crease. And when I’ve gone to a physical therapist and a chiropractor, they were really digging into my Solaris, and my obliques, and some of those muscles. So what’s happening to those muscles that makes them so painful?
Chris Schwenker: When you’re maintaining a static position, and when I mean a static position when we’re riding, we’re hunched over, we’re flexed, so those muscles are shortening over time. And when you activate a muscle it actually causes it to shorten at a more rapid rate. So what we are doing in effect by our positioning on the bike is basically training that muscle to be shorter and shorter and shorter. So if you don’t actively stretch it when you get off the bike, if you don’t actively do things to break up any adhesion, anything that’s in there such as… through rolling or otherwise, then those muscles are just going to get shorter and shorter and shorter. Whilst the reciprocal muscles, the muscles on the other side, the lumbar paraspinal, the hip flexors, and the hip rotators those will get longer and longer, and will create imbalances, and that’s where injuries occur.
Ken: Got you. So one of the things that we see with a lot of our riders is they feel so much pressure to spend every minute on the bike that they can because they are time crunched parents. And so they may have seven hours a week, and they don’t want to spend an hour of their seven hour exercise window stretching and strengthening. What would you have to say to them or what are some exercises that you would have them do, that don’t take a lot of time, but they could help with some of those propensities to repetitive use injuries?
Chris Schwenker: Well, I’m certainly from the same mind frame is that when I first started cycling, I just figured that the longer and harder I rode, the better I would get. And I eventually plateaued, I burned out. I was extremely upset about it, and the best advice I got was to speak to a coach. And the coach basically has taught me how important recovery is, that recovery is as equally as important as your workouts. And I joke that my coach basically protects me from myself. He’s there to make sure that I don’t do anything stupid, right? So, prevention and recovery are the-
Ken: Sure, yeah, that makes sense.
Chris Schwenker: Yeah, so prevention and recovery are essential, so when you say you don’t have time if you don’t have 15 minutes a day to maintain through core training, through stretching, through rolling, and that causes you to spend one day, two day, three day, four day, five days, a week, or two weeks, or a month off the bike, then are you really saving any time? So what I recommend to people is you set up a core training program, you set up a daily stretching program, and when you streamline it, you can do that in 10 or 15 minutes. And that’s what I do every day. It’s not like you have to do an hour of it after you train, it’s just a matter of being consistent because consistency is where you’re going to get your gains. And they’re going to be minimal gains, which for a lot of us is basically all that we can ask for.
Ken: Right. Now you wrote a workout program for us DIRT Dominance Includes a Ripped Trunk. And so I’ve looked over this thing, and done some exercise on it, and it’s good stuff. And it doesn’t take a lot of time. Now, one thing I do notice with these types of routines is, the more you get into them, the faster you can get through them, without having to take long rest from moving from one exercise to the other. And you don’t have to look down at your piece of paper for every single bit of nuance that’s been put into the workout, you just sort of flow through it faster over time.
Chris Schwenker: I agree. And I’ve been doing it forever, because I’ve… eventually, through my profession and having a whole host of injuries, which as a physical therapist, I’m almost embarrassed to say, but I never stop. I work through everything. That’s just my mentality. So I will work through the pain and I will figure out what is the best formula for me. And that’s what I have figured out, that I need to do at least 15 minutes of stretching and core strengthening after each training session in order to maintain the level of fitness and ability to keep pushing the pedals every day.
Ken: Got you. So what are your thoughts about like sort of general yoga workout and maybe… the internet is full of 10 minute yoga videos versus something more specific for cyclist?
Chris Schwenker: I don’t know too much about yoga because that was never something that I got into, I’m a science based empirical thinker, so yoga wasn’t something that I was ever attracted to, I was more inclined to just set up a stretching routine, and to streamline it, and to just do it every day. And when I first started doing it, I was as tight as… to use a Long Island phrase as a clam’s ass. But I’ve since then become very flexible, and I’m extremely flexible now it’s just a matter of making minimal gains, and over time they become maximal gains. And that’s some of the best advice that I could give.
Ken: Got you. Well, Chris, I really appreciate you writing that workout for our team. And also, being somebody to bounce some questions off of as I’ve been going through this recovery from my back injury, I had dry needling this morning. And so that’s a fun and painful experience. But I think that your advice here really will resonate with a lot of our athletes. So yeah, thanks for joining us today.
Chris Schwenker: I hope it does. And I want to tell everybody on the team if they ever have any specific questions that, we have a number of different ways that we can reach each other and I’m more than happy to help out.
Ken: All right, that sounds great. Well, thank you for joining us, and we will see you… I will see you online here in a couple of days I’m sure.
Chris Schwenker: My pleasure Ken, I really enjoyed it.
Ken: I hope you enjoyed the interview and thanks again to Chris Schwenker for taking the time to be on NGP. Chris and Shayne thanks and great catching up with you as well. Thank you everyone for listening to Never going pro, ride on, and I will see you in Watopia.