Knowledge is Power!

Knowledge is Power!

Playtri Coach Amari Holmes talks Power and how you can use it to become a stronger, faster athlete… 

Q:

"Why is it that I can hold 250watts at 140bpm on the trainer, BUT can barely hang onto 220watts during a race or interval on the road????" WHAT exactly affects my power #' vs speed???

A:

1. Technique- cornering, position, pedal stroke, acceleration, response time, etc

2. Experience- years in the saddle, racing often to learn to respond to other athletes and attacks around you and efficiently 

3. Equipment- bike, bike shoes, aero helmet, core stabilization, strength/ weaknesses, bike fit for each distance and/or goal

***note- if you are using the same bike fit on your tri bike as you did at the end of last season (ex: same bike fit from last yr's IM for this yr's sprint/Olympics) please consider getting your fit checked!!! NO ONE is A race shape ready, that bike fit could be inhibiting your pedal stroke and position, thus reducing your current ability, flexability, and power output.

4. Mental- ability to "suck it up", accept the HARD effort

Q:

"How does an athlete improve their power?"

A:

1. WEIGHTS WEIGHTS WEIGHTS!!!! The most time effective workout an athlete can do to improve muscular, metabolic, and mental strength is in the weight room!!!

2. Weights to Bike Workouts- 30-45min weights sets bricked directly into a specific 30-45min interval workout is another fantastic way to improve a clients power

Then there are 100's of workouts that improve power on the bike- 2easy ones:

a. 15sec ALL OUT (example 650watts+ for women and 800+watts for men) intervals followed directly behind a full active recovery- this workout can take yrs to translate to higher watts- not the most time effective and can be difficult to replicate several times/week

b. 1-4min intervals just above LACTATE THRESHOLD POWER (not FTP, functional threshold power is completely different than an individuals Lactate Threshold) with active recovery

Q: 

"Did you know that not all athletes should focus on gaining more watts? Did you know that just bc you are 'gaining more watts' does not correlate or mean that you will be faster on the road???"

Visualize a ladder- each step is assigned a power number- example: the bottom step is given 200 watts, the next 205watts, then 210watts, so on until the top step is my HARD effort or Lactate Threshold Power # of 290watts.  In a race, based on MY LACTATE TESTING- I can hold 290watts for 1hr before I experience a performance break and must recovery.  Again, muscular and metabolically, I am capable of doing this- now mentally, I clearly fall very short of this currently... :/

Example: Let’s say through a race I can hold 210-240watts no problem and if I corner and accelerate/ respond to a competitor, I am capable of throwing down 280-300watts no problem for a few minutes.  But my problem is that I cannot sustain 240-280watts without the 'wheels completely coming off' and forcing me to recover almost below TP.  

Now if we think back to that ladder, sure I can make the jump from the lower steps and cling on to those higher 280-300watt steps, but think about the amount of effort I am using to do this... and then consider, really how many times can I leap up like that before I really fatigue and fall back down the ladder to the ground... 

THE EXACT SAME THING HAPPENS WHEN YOU ARE NOT EFFICIENT THROUGH YOUR ENTIRE RACE PACE POWER ZONES.... 

Really what the athlete needs to focus on is not 'gaining more watts' BUT rather focusing on intervals that access the entire RP power zone- not just the bottom and top of their zone, but the full range to give them more to access come race day!!!

I truly encourage you to come to my next hr rate / power lecture.

I know the knowledge will make you a stronger and smarter athlete. 

April 18th at 1pm at Playtri Dallas!