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CTS's Time Crunched program -- anyone else giving it a try?

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CTS's Time Crunched program -- anyone else giving it a try?

Old 01-11-10, 01:59 PM
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CTS's Time Crunched program -- anyone else giving it a try?

This is going to be my first year racing (yes, I'm looking forward to the rites and passages of getting lapped, pulled, dropped, smoked and embarrassed. Should be good times).

I don't have a schedule that supports a high-volume training program, so Santa brought me the Time-Crunched Cyclist. Interesting read (about half way through it), and I think it will fit my goals this year (peak for Spring stuff, toodle around mid summer, and peak again for crits at the end of summer).

Just curious if any of y'all are/have gone through the program? Thoughts?
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Old 01-11-10, 02:05 PM
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Don't ever be embarrassed. If you give it your all, be proud of what you've done.
I hope the program works for you. Good luck.
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Old 01-11-10, 04:09 PM
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I tried it for cyclocross season. Worked okay, but basically if you haven't bought the book I can summarize it for you:

4 work outs per week:

2 days 3 min intervals, same rest; 60-90 min riding during week
1 day longer FTP ish intervals
1 day tempo/light tempo ride.

I will try it again with a winter training crit series to see how it goes.

It's not tailored to your limitations. In my case, I need to work on climbing and recovery. So at the end of the day, you're going to jigger with it anyway.

I will also confess that when I had a coach, I was only doing hard workouts twice a week and I was faster.

PS - you live in CO no? Get a CX bike. Most fun you'll ever have getting lapped by a 15 yr old and then falling over in the mud.
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Old 01-11-10, 05:50 PM
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CX, eh? Hmm. Suppose I could go SS with it (saves adding a bike to the posse)
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Old 01-11-10, 06:03 PM
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You say "adding a bike to the posse" like it's a bad thing.

Does your SS have cantilever brakes and enough clearance to run 32 mm tires? (SS not fixie)

It really is a lot of fun and intense. The injuries are usually less severe (slower speed + softer landing) and the crowd, while enthusiastic and full of some really strong riders, is very relaxed.
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Old 01-12-10, 02:02 PM
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I'm giving it a shot this year. Just started last week. I have to admit that it seems weird having that many off days in the week (M W F) but the schedule is working well for me right now. We'll see where I am when races start.
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Old 01-12-10, 02:13 PM
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can I take a guess as to what the "program" is founded on?

"Less volume? More intensity."
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Old 01-12-10, 03:09 PM
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That's the best part of capitalism. You can sell "common sense". But frankly, 99% of coaches out there, as well as phycologists, and TV/radio talk show hosts do that.
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Old 01-13-10, 08:26 AM
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i'm trying it too, though i'm only on my first week (of the plan itself). i agree all the rest time feels kinda weird...

...but i love the short + intense workouts. other than some weekend group rides, i'll be mostly on the trainer, and it really seems perfect for that.
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Old 01-13-10, 08:30 AM
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What's your point? If it brings 'widsom' to the masses, what's wrong with a book that takes that foundation and runs with it?

Personally, I'm more than happy to pay $14 (or whatever) for someone to explain the science, then lay out a plan that fits my schedule perfectly.
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Old 01-13-10, 08:57 AM
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Originally Posted by slynkie View Post
Personally, I'm more than happy to pay $14 (or whatever) for someone to explain the science, then lay out a plan that fits my schedule perfectly.
I didn't realize the book was a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure.
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Old 01-13-10, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by bdcheung View Post
I didn't realize the book was a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure.
yep. choosing to save the princess = more sweet spot training. running off with her maid = more vo2max.
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Old 01-14-10, 04:33 PM
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Yes I'm doing it. I have set up my training plan for the year based on it. I have 5-8 hours max a week (usually closer to 5). That's it. True it is basically shorter duration higher intensity. But I found the book worth it to get a specific training plan with specific exercises. And it does matter when you do the workouts as well. If one is thinking about something like this the book is a pretty cheap way of getting a training plan. It also explains the pitfalls to this method vs traditional volume related plans. No, it's not all sunshine and roses.

We'll see how it does for me this year.
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Old 01-14-10, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by bdcheung View Post
I didn't realize the book was a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure.
Being time crunched means there are usually many priorities that are higher than cycling. The book does give a little guidance on how to work around that sort of stuff. Like which workouts are most important and best practices for sequencing them. I had to adapt the plan a bit to my schedule as well. So I'm not going "by the book" but it sure helped round out a plan for the time I DO have available.
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Old 01-18-10, 07:33 AM
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I have not read the book but I have applied the principles of it for most of the latter part of last season and the off season too.


Actually, I trained a max of 3 hours a week during the last 4 months.
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Old 01-18-10, 08:53 AM
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I was thinking about reading it, but looking at the summary above, I think I have a good handle on what I'm doing with my limited time.
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Old 01-18-10, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
I was thinking about reading it, but looking at the summary above, I think I have a good handle on what I'm doing with my limited time.
Me to, but I have most of the short-plan workouts figured out now too...

I would like to know more about how to determine the best way to order the workouts... ie, LT > V02 > TEMPO, or would it be better to do TEMPO > V02 > LT ?

That's where I have some knowledge gaps.
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Old 01-18-10, 09:39 AM
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Generally, you do the most intensity first. If you tire yourself out with threshold intervals, your AWC intervals the next day won't be as effective. Conversely, AWC intervals may kill your fast twitch muscles, but I find I'm still able to hold threshold-level power the next day.
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Old 01-18-10, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by fordfasterr View Post
I have not read the book but I have applied the principles of it for most of the latter part of last season and the off season too.


Actually, I trained a max of 3 hours a week during the last 4 months.
Originally Posted by fordfasterr View Post
Me to, but I have most of the short-plan workouts figured out now too...

I would like to know more about how to determine the best way to order the workouts... ie, LT > V02 > TEMPO, or would it be better to do TEMPO > V02 > LT ?

That's where I have some knowledge gaps.

so maybe purchasing and reading the book would help you out
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Old 01-18-10, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by MDcatV View Post
so maybe purchasing and reading the book would help you out
Sometimes you make TOO MUCH sense !
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Old 01-18-10, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by waterrockets View Post
Generally, you do the most intensity first. If you tire yourself out with threshold intervals, your AWC intervals the next day won't be as effective. Conversely, AWC intervals may kill your fast twitch muscles, but I find I'm still able to hold threshold-level power the next day.
This is essentially the order discussed in the book. Rest on Monday, pound it with various 3 min intervals early in the week; weekends are for longer, LT-ish, over/under intervals and endurance rides.
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Old 01-30-10, 03:32 PM
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yeh I am going to do this TCTP program also.
here is a question to see if i understand the shorthand for workouts.
example: 90 min. EM with 2 x [3x2 min. SEPI (3 min. RBI)] ( 8 min. RBS)

This would mean a total ride time of 90 minutes at mostly (EM) endurance intensity (which is 50-91% of the HR set in CTS field test OR 45-73% of the power from test)
Some where in that 90 min. ride you do this;
TWO sets of intervals.
The intervals being:
2 min. at (PI) Power Interval intensity, (which is 100% HR of CTS field test and/or 101% field test power)
3 minutes of recovery
do that 3 times. That is 1 set.

Rest or recover for 8 minutes.

then repeat the interval:
2 min. at (PI) Power Interval intensity, (which 100% HR of CTS field test and/or 101% field test power)
3 minutes of recovery
do that 3 times. That is 2 sets.

is this the way everyone understands the code?

thanks
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Old 01-30-10, 05:07 PM
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I don't have the book in front of me, but I don't remember seeing "SEPI"; assuming you mean just PIs, then mostly you've got it, except:
- don't forget that the 90 minutes also includes warmup and cooldown
- PIs are supposed to be at least 100% of HR/101% of power from the field test. for power, I believe the book recommends shooting for 110%-130%. if you can't keep above 101%, you're burnt out, don't do any more intervals.
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Old 01-31-10, 09:38 AM
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SEPIs are constant power intervals, PFPIs are peak and hang on power intervals (like WRIs).
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Old 01-15-11, 12:05 PM
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Update? I got this book from the library and while I've been following a Friel-type training program, it seems to call for more volume training than I have patience for. Also, the Friel program makes it seem as though the same type of training is scalable to any amount of time, whereas the CTS program doesn't make that assumption. I also like the CTS weekly breakdown. It's easier for me to get out 4 nights per week for 2 hours each than 6 nights per week with about 3 nights being an hour or so.

I'm in the middle of Base 2 and wondering where to go from here. 10 Hrs per week is really stretching it for me. Any thoughts on this program now that it's been a year since the first post?
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