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Base Building for Biking

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Hi All,

I am a 35MPW runner and consider myself to be in good shape (I race at 7:40-8:10/mile). I'm interested in adding some biking to my fitness routine. I have a road bike I bought in 2014 but the path I would be biking on is crowded with runners and walkers, dogs, baby carriages, etc. When I've used the path before, I'm not comfortable riding over 13-14mph. I'd eventually like to do another triathlon (I did 2 sprints in 2012 in which my bike speed was 17-18mph). Can I successfully train for a tri riding that slow and using a stationary bike once a week for some speed intervals? Basically, can I apply my running plan to biking? 80% easy, 20% hard? And if I decrease my running volume by let's say 10 miles per week, how many miles per week should I bike? I've always guessed that 3 miles on the bike is equal to about 1 mile of running, effort wise but have zero proof regarding those numbers.

I travel a lot for work, so some of my bike training will need to be on stationary hotel gym bikes. Renting a bike will not be an option because of my sometimes very short overnights. Right now, I ride comfortably for 15 miles at a 12mph speed (5 minute pace). Also, how will riding effect my running? I like to race 10Ks primarily and hope my performance doesn't suffer with adding some biking. I'm happy following a bike "base building" plan if you can point me in the right direction. I don't mind brick workouts and can probably squeeze in AM/PM workouts 2-3 times per week.

I will not be exercising for weight loss as I'm happy at my current 117-121 weight for my 5'4" frame. I do some body weight exercises (planks, push-ups, a few chin-ups, and I can do 2 pull-ups) and my condo gym has decent weight machines. I don't have access to a squat rack or a huge selection of free weights except for dumbbells.

Thank you!

Replies

  • Alisonswim46
    Alisonswim46 Posts: 208 Member
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    You can't ride on the road? Or hit the trail you mentioned earlier in the day so it's less crowded?

    I would recommend finding a group you can cycle with. You can learn group riding skills and find some new routes to ride so you aren't bothered by walkers on a trail.
  • ritzvin
    ritzvin Posts: 2,860 Member
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    ditto on group rides...you'll want to be comfortable cycling with other riders, and they'll have some good routes. Crowded path sucks for a road bike - you pretty much need country-ish roads to actually 'stretch your legs' on a road bike (otherwise too slow/too frequent stops for intersections.)
  • ritzvin
    ritzvin Posts: 2,860 Member
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    I'd suggest joining a local cycling club. Getting a few rides a week in with them would be enjoyable, and would give you a chance to 'gauge yourself' against seasoned riders. There will likely be multiple pace ranges represented at most rides. Rides will probably range from 20-40 miles for the most part (getting shorter in Fall/Spring, longer in summer).
  • Charlene_1985
    Charlene_1985 Posts: 122 Member
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    I'll check out the groups in my area. I live in a metro area and riding on the streets is not something I feel comfortable with right now. I'm nervous about group rides because I don't know any etiquette associated with them. But I guess that really is my only option when I am home right now.
  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,809 Member
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    The long, slow ride training pattern is primarily for building a cardio fitness base - which you already appear to have from your running, so can't see you gaining much from it at all.
    Hotel gym bikes are mostly awful and very poor for actual bike training (poor riding position, resistance, pedal width etc.etc.)

    I really don't think your plan will be effective training for your tri.

    You need more quality training on a decent bike at a decent speed.
  • ritzvin
    ritzvin Posts: 2,860 Member
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    ..and local bicycle shops often have group rides on a weekly basis as well.
  • scorpio516
    scorpio516 Posts: 955 Member
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    If you really can't get out on the road, look at a nice trainer and trainerroad and zwift. With a good program, trainer based workouts can even be better than real riding for results. They are also horribly boring
  • ritzvin
    ritzvin Posts: 2,860 Member
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    scorpio516 wrote: »
    If you really can't get out on the road, look at a nice trainer and trainerroad and zwift. With a good program, trainer based workouts can even be better than real riding for results. They are also horribly boring

    2nd'd. Quite a few of the cyclists I know use Zwift in the off-season.