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Monday, September 28, 2009

Assessing cycling abilities


Components of Physical Fitness:

Health Related components: Those factors that are related to how well the systems of your body work

1. Cardiovascular Fitness: The ability of the circulatory system (heart and blood vessels) to supply oxygen to working muscles during exercise.

2. Body Composition: The relative percentage of body fat compared to lean body mass (muscle, bone, water,etc)

3. Flexibility: The range of movement possible at various joints.

4. Muscular strength: The amount of force that can be produced by a single contraction of a muscle

5. Muscular endurance: The ability of a muscle group to continue muscle movement over a length of time.


Skill Related Components: Those aspects of fitness which form the basis for successful sports participation.

1. Speed: The ability to move quickly from one point to another

2. Agility: The ability of the body to change direction quickly

3. Balance: The ability to maintain an upright posture while still or moving

4. Coordination: Integration with hand and/or foot movements with the input of the senses.

5. Reaction Time: Amount of time it takes to get moving.

6. Power: The ability to do strength work at an explosive pace.

The Components required for Cycling:

1. Endurance: The ability to continue a ride at an aerobic effort level without the onset of undue fatigue. This is specific to an event, and is the most basic and important ability.

2. Speed Skills: The ability to move the pedals quickly and efficiently, while being totally relaxed.

3. Force: The ability to overcome resistance as in climbing short steep hills or turning a bigger gear, or riding into a head wind.

4. Muscular Endurance: The ability to sustain a high muscular effort for a sustained or prolonged period of time, as in a time trial. This is a combination of force and endurance.

5. Anaerobic Endurance: The ability to resist fatigue while turning a high cadence in a bigger gear. A combination of speed and endurance.

6. Power: The ability to apply maximum force in the shortest time possible. A combination of force and speed.

Above was extracted from various sources.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Cycling Training

Cycling training varies greatly across the disciplines. From the intense, anaerobically demanding speedway events to the ultra-endurance stage races, each cycling discipline requires a different training approach. Even within the same discipline, variations in distance will have a significant effect on a cyclist fitness regime.

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This section of the website is dedicated to cycling training and conditioning in the following major disciplines:

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-Road Racing
-Track Racing
-Mountain Biking
-BMX Racing
-Cycle Speedway
-Cyclo-Cross

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Professional road cyclists posses exceptional endurance. While VO2max is not always a good predictor of performance in elite endurance athletes, studies have shown that aerobic power is high in this group of performers (1,2,3).

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More accurate predictors of performance include lactate threshold, maximal lactate steady state and power output at lactate threshold. Lactate threshold has been shown to be as high as 90% of VO2max in professional cyclists (1, 4,5,6).

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Peak power output can also be used to predict cycling performance (7,8) across the disciplines. For competitive road cyclists, anaerobic power is required for the mass start, hill climbing and a sprint finish. It may be even more important for off-road cyclists and is obviously a prerequisite for track racing. Traditionally, cycling coaches have prescribed increases in training volume to induce overload and adaptation. Yet it may be that a reduction in volume and integration of interval sprint training may be more beneficial. Not only has this shown to improve peak power output and capacity, it also increases VO2max to a greater extent compared to lower intensity, longer duration training (9,10).

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This, along with other training strategies is examined in the articles below. You will find sample training sessions and programs for the various cycling disciplines, all drawing on current scientific research.

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Interval Training for Sport-Specific Endurance Distance cyclists have traditionally favored long, slow distance training almost to the exclusion of all else. But substituting a small percentage of weekly mileage for more shorter, more intense interval sessions may improve performance...

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VO2max - Your Aerobic Potential Endurance training and VO2 max seem to inextricably linked. While maximal oxygen uptake is certainly not the be all and end all of road cycling performance, understanding what it is and how it can be affected by training can help athletes better prepare themselves for competition...

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Lactate Threshold - Tapping Your Aerobic Potential Perhaps more indicative of success in road cycling , an more trainable, is lactate threshold. Often a confusing subject for some coaches and athletes, from a practical point of view, improving lactate threshold is relatively straightforward...

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How to Determine Your Anaerobic Threshold Here are some non-invasive tests used to determine an athlete's lactate threshold...

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Lactate Threshold Training Training tips to improve anaerobic threshold...

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Heart Rate Training for Endurance EventsHeart rate training, despite being erratic, is still popular with cyclists. Here's how heart rate can be best used to monitor the intensity of a cycling training program...

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Altitude TrainingPerformance at high altitude can be improved through altitude training. But what effect does living and training high have on sea-level performance?

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The Sport-Specific Approach to Strength Training ProgramsStrength training is suitable for all the cycling disciplines, even ultr distance road cyclists. But a strength training program must match the demands of the event it's designed for...

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How To Design Resistance Training Programs For AthletesHere is the step-by-step process of developing a sport-specific strength training plan - one that meets the demanding nature of cycling...

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Power Training for AthletesIt may be obvious that track and speedway cyclists must be powerful to be successful in their events, however, even distance cyclists require explosive power for mass starts, hill climbing and sprint finishes. So what are the best methods for improving explosive power?

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Plyometric Training for Sport-Specific PowerPlyometrics is one very effective form of power training. Here are some important guidelines for setting up a plyometric program suitable for cycling...

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Muscular Endurance TrainingWhile explosive power is key in the sprint events, muscular endurance is equally as important in distance events. However, for most long-distance psorts such as road cycling, lifting weights for sets of 20 repetitions is not the most effective approach...

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Flexibility ExercisesFlexibility training is part and parcel of most athletes' conditioning program. Increased flexibility may reduce the risk of certain long-term injuries...

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Self Myofascial Release ExercisesMany Exercise Scientists believe that enhancing recovery between training sessions is the key to winning. Myofascial release exercises are said to relieve and release trigger points in the muscle sheath that may compound leading to injury and sub-optimal performance...

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The Wingate TestOne of the most reliable tests for anaerobic power and capacity...

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http://www.sport-fitness-advisor.com/cycling-training.html

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Base Line Fitness Test - September 26, 2009

Another year of racing, and it is once again time to hit the gym for some strength and foundation work. The cumulative years of riding, racing, lifting and learning makes one improve. This is the first time I have actually done a fitness test in such detail. The whole idea of the fitness test is to know where you stand and if your current level of fitness is adequate. It provides an honest assessment of your abilities and the mind set will allow you to take advantage of your strengths and overcome your weaknesses. Ideally it would be nice to get tested in a sports science lab, such as the Gatorade sports science institute, but this can be cost prohibitive.

The list of tests were obtained from http://www.topendsports.com/testing/tests/

Test - Pull Ups with palms facing in
Quantity = 10
Score - Average
Measures upper body strength and endurance.

Test - Vertical Leap
Quantity = 15 inches
Score - Below Average
Measures lower body power levels.

Test - Push Ups
Quantity = 40
Score - Excellent
Measures muscular strength and endurance.

Test - Sit & Reach Toes
Quantity = +1 inch past toes
Score - Average
Measures flexibility of the lower back and hamstring.

Test - Wall Squat isometric
Quantity = 2 minutes
Score - Excellent
Measures quadriceps strength and endurance.

Test - In & Out crunches
Quantity = 50
Score - Excellent
Measures abdominal strength and endurance

Test - Standing Long Jump
Quantity = 6’-1”
Score - Very Poor
Measures the explosive power of the legs

Test - 3 minute Step Test
Quantity = HR after 1 min 155 bpm
Score - Very Poor
Measure your ability to recover after a hard effort

Some of the above tests require good technique to achieve good numbers, such as in the Vertical Jump, Standing Long Jump and Pull Up, this can only come with practice. Obviously the ones which I scored excellent were exercises I have been doing for years. The 3 minute step test took my heart rate up to 166 BPM and after 1 minute rest my heart rate was still high at 155 BPM, which confirms that my recovery after hard efforts is not up to par. This was the reason why I was not doing well in races like the Miss & Out, or various iterations of the Points races. The events I did well in were the Scratch races, Match Sprints & Time Trials.

Body Measurements:

Height - 5'-9"

Weight – 173 lbs

Chest – 39.5 inches

Waist – 35.25 inches

Hips – 39 inches

Right Thigh – 23 inches

Left Thigh – 22.5 inches

Right Arm – 14 inches

Left Arm – 13.5 inches

Neck – 15 inches

The main goal this winter once again is to reduce that pesky body fat percentage, which is hovering around 16 % to 19 %, and increase power to weight ratio. Every thing else should fall into place once this is achieved.

Monday, September 21, 2009

2009 Labor Day bits & pieces video clip

video

Chris Hoy guide to Track Cycling video clips - BBC

http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/other_sports/cycling/get_involved/7362631.stm


http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/other_sports/cycling/7541897.stm


http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/other_sports/cycling/7638076.stm


http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/other_sports/cycling/4763420.stm


The velodrome is the home of track cycling, where the speedsters of the sport fly around at up to 60mph.

It hosts a variety of events - the individual pursuit, the points race, the madison and the keirin among others.

The velodrome is different from venue to venue - it can vary in length from 250m to 500m. The one in Manchester, for example, is a 250m international standard velodrome.

Each track is banked to allow riders to fly round the corners without having to slow down at all, allowing speeds of up to 50mph (80kmph).

The track itself is marked up with a series of lines - red, black and blue.

The red line is known as the sprinter's line - riders have to go round this if they want to overtake a lead rider.

Then there's the black line - the shortest route around the track - and it's important to stay on that as much as possible.

Should you weave in or outside that it costs you valuable time.

Further up the track is the blue stayer's line. This is used in madison races for riders to rest between efforts, and it can get fairly busy and bunched up there.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Any books on Track Cycling tactics & training?

There are many books and resources dedicated to the sport of Road Cycling and Triathlon racing, but none which I know of dedicated to Track Cycling. Track Cycling is a niche / cult sport in the US and probably in other Countries; maybe that is why no one has bothered writing a book for this rather small target audience. Information gleaned over the years comes from a variety of sources. It would certainly be great to have a comprehensive book dedicated to tactics & training for Track Cycling. Many new comers to the track have to learn by trial and error which can become quite time consuming and costly. Track coaches are rare and expensive, and only available to elite riders or those who can afford them. Thanks to people at Kissena like John Campo, Delroy Walters, Michael Robinson, Charlie Jennings, Joe Brennan, Derick Davis & Andrew LaCorte for sharing some of their knowledge and experience.

Resources about cycling which I found useful:

The Time Crunched Cyclist by Chris Carmichael – Get fit in less time, help build competitive fitness in six hours a week. You don’t need endless miles on the road. You don’t need endless hours in the gym. Who has the time with a full work schedule and family commitments?

The Ultimate Ride by Chris Carmichael – Helps build a strong foundation for incremental leaps in fitness, times, and techniques. Nutritional advice, goal setting methods, mental exercises and physical training tips.

Chris Carmichael training Videos – videos can either be bought and downloaded from the website or purchased on DVDs. These are great cycling workout videos targeting different energy systems using various types of intervals. These videos help to break up the monotony of riding the spin bike by simulating having a personal trainer.

P9OX – Extreme Home Fitness program to help you loose weight and get strong in a short period of time. All you need is a set of dumbbells, a pull up bar, resistance bands and you are all set. The workout program comes with 12 DVDs which you can customize to your personal goals. The plyometrics DVD is a tough workout and perfect for stimulating the cycling muscles used for explosive standing starts and sprints.

The Mental Edge by Kenneth Baum – Maximizing your sports potential with the mind body connection. Your mind is your most valuable piece of equipment, your strongest muscle and your best shot at peak performance for life.

Nutrient Timing by John Ivy & Robert Portman – by timing specific nutrition to your muscle’s 24 hour growth cycle. Deliver the precise amounts of nutrients needed at precisely the right time to optimize your muscle building agents and maximize muscle growth, while minimizing muscle damage and soreness after a hard workout.

High-Tech Cycling by Edmund R. Burke – a unique compilation of current information on the rapidly evolving sport of cycling. With topics ranging from equipment selection to the nuances of cycling bio mechanics.

The Cyclist’s Training Bible 3rd Edition by Joel Friel – shows you how the benefits of a scientific, self coached training plan will refine your skills and improve your cycling performance.

Weight Training for Dummies by Liz Neporent – book on how to lift weights.

The New Power Program by Dr Michael Colgan – another weight lifting book which focuses on body posture and core strength.

Training and Racing with a Power Meter – Hunter Allen & Andrew Coggan – how to train with a power meter and interpret the data.

Racing Tactics for Cyclists by Thomas Prehn – helps cyclists avoid common race mistakes and ride intelligently.

Serious Cycling 2nd by Edmund R. Burke – go faster and train more efficiently by applying advanced science to your cycling. Take the latest scientific data in the sport and translate it into beneficial applications.

Heroes, Villains & Velodromes by Richard Moore – documentary style book about Chris Hoy and Britain’s track cycling revolution. Also points out the high level of secrecy found in Track Cycling. This is more of a book about Chris Hoy's life story rather than training tips for Track Cycling, but still a very useful book.

USCF Introduction to Coaching Cyclists – this manual is the only book where there were about three pages dedicated to useful information pertaining to track cycling.

As you can see most of these resources are dedicated to Road Cycling.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

2009 T-Town MABRA cup


Today at 9:00 am it was a chilly 52 degrees at T-Town when the flying 200 meter time trials started. It eventually warmed up to about 74 degrees for the Kilos - all riders from New York Kissena Track qualified for their respective Match Sprint Categories, but we were not allowed to sprint since we were not part of the MABRA region. Jon Linchitz posted the fastest 200 meter time at 11.83 seconds and Colin Prensky posted the fastest Kilo of 1:10.59 for the day. Another day of experience at T-Town, it is indeed a nice track. Simultaneously as we raced there was a cyclocross race and cricket match taking place in the adjacent park.











This bike was built by David Tiemeyer for the US Olympic Team back in the day when he worked for GT.


















Friday, September 18, 2009

Supplements





Supplements and advertising hype! I couldn’t really say if they work or not. It is not like you feel the effects immediately like Popeye consuming a can of spinach. The only supplement where I noticed a reaction, is Creatine Monohydrate - it gives me head aches and leaves me feeling bloated. Maybe they work and maybe they don’t, I guess you can get the same benefits from a proper diet. A good documentary to watch which gives you the inside scoop and scams on supplements is “Bigger Stronger Faster”. Imagine some folks in Utah were filling capsules with flour and using slick marketing techniques to market the product as the next big muscle growth formula, using before and after pictures which were shot the same day and retouched in Adobe Photoshop. Below are a list of supplements with marketing hype obtained from the web. I have tried all of these at one time or another. Ever watch the news and some times they tell you coffee is good for you and then a couple of weeks later the same newscast tells you coffee is bad for you - depending on the sponsorers of the newscast? That is the same way supplements come across, it is a confusing hodge podge of information thrown at you.

First Endurance Optygen: The two main adaptogens in Optygen were first used by Tibetan Sherpas to help them climb Mount Everest. Optygen utilizes these unique adaptogens because clinical research (on elite endurance athletes) has shown them to increase oxygen utilization. This increases the body’s ability to adapt to high levels of physical stress, increase anaerobic threshold and reduce lactic acid.

Endurox Excel: Endurox is a natural dietary supplement that when taken as part of a normal workout regimen can increase fat metabolism and improve workout performance. Endurox is a pure standardized extract of the herb ciwujia (su wah ja). Ciwujia, a root grown in the northeast section of China, has been used safely in Traditional Chinese Medicine for almost 1700 years to treat fatigue and bolster the immune system. Ciwujia has also been used by mountain climbers to improve performance at high altitudes.

Omega 3-6-9: The Omega 3, 6 and 9 groups of fatty acids all contain essential fatty acids necessary for good health. The difference between them lies in the position of the first double bond from the methyl end or the Omega end of the carbon chain. As its name implies, the Omega 3 fatty acids have their first double bond at the 3rd position from the end of the chain, and likewise with the other two. Omega 6 has its first double bond at the 6th position from the end and Omega 9 has it at the 9th position from the end of the chain.

L-Carnitine Liquid: Carnitine, also known as L-carnitine (levocarnitine) is a quaternary ammonium compound synthesized from the amino acids lysine and methionine primarily in the liver and kidneys. It helps in the consumption and disposal of fat in the body because it is responsible for the transport of fatty acids from the cytosol into the mitochondria. It is often sold as a nutritional supplement.

Multivitamin: A multivitamin is a preparation intended to supplement a human diet with vitamins, dietary minerals and other nutritional elements. Such preparations are available in the form of tablets, capsules, pastilles, powders, liquids and injectable formulations.

Vitamin C: Vitamin C or L-ascorbic acid is an essential nutrient for humans, a large number of higher primate species, a small number of other mammalian species (notably guinea pigs and bats), a few species of birds, and some fish.

Nitric Oxide: Summary Research papers continue to flood the scientific journals with insights into the biological activity and potential clinical uses of nitric oxide (NO): a gas controlling a seemingly limitless range of functions in the body. Each revelation adds to nitric oxide's already lengthy resume in controlling the circulation of the blood, and regulating activities of the brain, lungs, liver, kidneys, stomach, gut, genitals and other organs.

B-Complex 50: The B-complex vitamins fall into the water-soluble group of vitamins and therefore need to be replenished on a daily basis. They are involved in an extremely large number of important metabolic functions in the human body, including energy production, interconversion of substances, detoxification, nerve transmission, blood formation, synthesis of proteins and fats, the production of steroid hormones, the maintenance of blood sugar levels and appetite, the toning of muscles, etc.

L-Glutamine Powder: L-Glutamine is the most abundent amino acid found in the skeletal muscle. Supplementing with L-Glutamine powder has been clinically proven to aid muscle recovery and energy repletion.

Zinc Magnesium Aspartate: ZMA is a scientifically designed anabolic mineral formula.* It contains Zinc Monomethionine Aspartate plus Magnesium Aspartate and vitamin B-6, and is an all-natural product that clinical testing suggests may significantly increase anabolic hormone levels and muscle strength in trained athletes.


BCAA Powder: Among the most beneficial and effective supplements in any sports nutrition program are branched chain amino acids. These are the essential aminos leucine, isoleucine, and valine.Although these supplements have been around for a long time and the scientific understanding in the exercise performance benefits of BCAA supplementation is rich many people don't know exactly how they exert their effects or how and when to use them properly.
Creatine Monohydrate: So, what is creatine? Our bodies naturally make the compound, which is used to supply energy to our muscles. It is produced in the liver, pancreas, and kidneys, and is transported to the body's muscles through the bloodstream. Once it reaches the muscles, it is converted into phosphocreatine (creatine phosphate). This high-powered metabolite is used to regenerate the muscles' ultimate energy source, ATP (adenosine triphosphate).

Power Bar Endurance: Powerbar Endurance Sport Drink is a great tasting lemon-lime drink mix for ideal hydration and muscle fuelling to help extend endurance. Studies show that consuming an optimal ratio of glucose and fructose sources regularly during exercise can increase the amounts of carbohydrates that can be digested, delivered to and used by working muscles during exercise by 20-55%. PowerBar Endurance Sports drink now contains C2 MAX, the same optimized ratio of glucose and fructose to help deliver more energy when you need it most.

Power Bar Recovery: Designed to decrease the downtime. Light, refreshing orange flavors create an irresistible "drive to drink". Carbs, Protein and electrolytes ideally formulated for rapid recovery

Muscle Milk Protein Powder: Muscle Milk is not actually milk, or milk derived from muscles. It is a protein powder formulated for the serious athlete or weight lifter. Protein powder is a pure source of protein formulated with lots of vitamins, minerals and without the extra calories and fat. A good protein powder is probably the best muscle-building tool you can buy.

Glyco Maize / Waxy Maize: Waxy maize carbohydrate matrix. 35 g Carbs. 35 mg Carbogen, 50 Servings. The bigger picture of carbohydrates. Whereas proteins help with muscle rebuilding, carbs refuel and replenish. Of the various types available, Waxy Maize Starch and Trehalose are two of the best. Waxy maize starches are long-chain, highly branched, exceptionally-dense complex carbohydrates that are rapidly absorbed. Trehalose is a much smaller, slower-digesting molecule comprised of two unusually linked glucose sugars. Together, these carbohydrates provide immediate and intermediate energy, top-off glycogen stores, and aid with nutrient absorption. That's why they're the foundation of our Glycomaize formula.

Clif Bar: It’s the first bar we made, and it’s still everything we’re about. Whole, all-natural, organic ingredients. Good nutrition. And great taste. Whether you’re on a 150-mile bike ride or making your way through a long day, it’s the energy bar for everyone.

Power Bar Gel: Refuel with POWERBAR® Gel, featuring POWERBAR® C2 MAX-optimized carbohydrate blend formulated with the same ratio of carb sources shown to increase endurance performance by an average of 8% in 8 trained athletes compared to glucose alone*. During strenuous exercise the body burns carbs and loses key electrolytes through sweat. POWERBAR GEL replenishes and restores those nutrients to help maintain peak performance. For best results,

Gu Energy Gel: GU sports energy gel is a favorite of triathletes, cyclists, runners and adventure racers, and endurance athletes everywhere. Used to energize you during exercise, GU energy gel increases endurance during exercise by providing your body with an energy source that helps you keep your energy stable and provides essential electrolytes that help hydrate and balance the body.

Accelerade: Accelerade from Pacific Health Labs is the first endurance sports drink that shifts the energy dynamic during exercise to improve performance. Like conventional sports drinks, Accelerade supplies the necessary carbohydrates and electrolytes for rehydrating and replenishing muscle reserves.But unlike conventional sports and energy drinks, Accelerade has the patented 4 to 1 ratio of carbohydrate to protein to speed the movement of carbohydrate into the muscle. Taken during exercise, Accelerade contains the ideal combination of simple and complex carbohydrates for rapid and sustained energy. By increasing the energy efficiency of every gram of carbohydrate, Accelerade conserves muscle glycogen and improves endurance. Studies show that, compared to a conventional sports drink, Accelerade extends endurance by 24%. And because Accelerade contains essential antioxidants, it reduces post-exercise muscle damage. Accelerade lets you train longer and harder, and you'll feel less sore afterwards.

Gatorade: Gatorade is a brand of flavored non-carbonated sports drinks manufactured by the Quaker Oats Company, now a division of PepsiCo. Intended for consumption during physically active occasions, Gatorade beverages are formulated to rehydrate and replenish fluid, carbohydrates and electrolytes.

Water: Water is a ubiquitous chemical substance that is composed of hydrogen and oxygen and is essential for all forms of life. Probably the best supplement there is.

Movie / Documentary - "Bigger Stronger Faster"

http://www.biggerstrongerfastermovie.com/


2009 snapshot of my Tiemeyer Track Bicycle

It is a given things will change - bicycle technology is progressing almost as rapidly as computer technology. Who would have thought we were going to have carbon fiber bicycles and components outfitted with Garmin GPS / Power meter devices, electronic shifting has already hit the market. It was only 20 years ago, a bicycle made with alloy Columbus SL tubing and outfitted with Campy parts and a heart rate monitor was considered cutting edge. All I can remember of my track bike from the 80s was that it was a Riggio. I can’t remember what the components were nor the gearing I used – I didn’t see the value of keeping notes back then. The Riggio was an upgrade from a Lotus track bike, which was more of a fixed gear bike for the road. This post is to take a 2009 snap shot of my bike and components. It would be interesting to look back in time to this snap shot should I be around another 20 years from now – being around is not a given.

Frame – Tiemeyer Standard Signature Alum Frame with headset & fork ($1,350)
(A very well designed aerodynamic and stiff frame, best frame I have ridden so far. Attention to details such as the titanium dropouts which prevent grooving from wheel bolts, also the dropouts are extra long to accommodate a wide variety of gear ratios without having to change the chain.)

Headset – Chris King
(Recommended by David Tiemeyer)

Fork – Reynolds Track Carbon Fiber
(Recommended by David Tiemeyer)

Seat post – FSA Carbon Fiber ($60)
(Good value for money)

Seat – Prolite ($20)
(Comfortable saddle)

Stem – Thompson 90mm ($90)
(Recommended by David Tiemeyer)

Handlebars – Deda Pista Track Bars 42cm ($100)
(Seems to be a popular aluminum bar)

Bottom Bracket – Campagnolo Record Track (68x111, English) Sealed ($150)
(Recommended by David Tiemeyer)

Crank – Sugino Grand Mighty 170mm ($290)
(This crank is a step up from the Sugino 75. Chain rings are easy to change since nuts are part of the crank - you don’t have to worry about holding them in place when removing bolts. This makes for a more pleasant experience when changing gear ratios.)

Chain – Izumi V NJS Approved Track Chain ($80)
(This is a robust chain designed for Keirin racing, consisting of a screw type master link. You do have to keep an eye on the screw type master link connection to make sure it is tight, vibrations tend to loosen the connection when the chain is new.)

Wheels – Mavic Ellipse Clinchers ($500)
(These are bomb proof wheels, had them for three years now and never had to true nor do any thing to them except change tires. Used for training, sprinting and racing)

Tires – Vittoria Open Corsa Evo CX 23mm Clinchers for Mavic Ellipse. ($60 each)
(Great supple lightweight clincher tires. I’ve notice that 125 psi is the optimum pressure for these tires on Kissena Track.)

Wheels – Karbona Disk & Tri Spoke Tubular ($1,000 for pair)
(Value for money carbon fiber wheels ordered directly from Taiwan. These are used for time trials and racing.)

Tires – Tufo S3 Lite Tubular 19mm Front & 21mm Rear ($60 each)
(Light weight high pressure tubular with 19mm tubular on the front for better aerodynamics on the Karbona carbon fiber tri spoke wheel and 21mm on the disk. I’ve noticed that 140 psi with these tires seem to be the optimum pressure for Kissena track, anything higher and you are in for a rough bumpy ride especially when using aero bars.)

Chainrings – Sugino & FSA ($50 each)
(These are the most popular and affordable brands. Chain rings in my set are 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52 & 53)

Cogs – Dura Ace ($20)
(Most widely available and popular. Cogs in my set 12, 13, 14, 15, 16. Gear ratios which I use are 79, 81 86 for warm up and 88, 90, 92 & 94 for racing, 96 to 108 for time trials)

Shoes – Specialized Body Geometry Pro Road Shoe ($250)
(Specialized body geometry products are well designed and best value for money without breaking the bank.)

Pedals – Shimano DurAce SPD - SL 7810 ($250)
(I’ve pulled out one too many times from the Nashbar Look styled $40 pedals on the track. It is a shame the weakest link on my track bike set up were the Nashbar Look pedals, using no float black cleats. The only reason for using these pedals was to be able to use the same shoe on my road bike, spin bike and track bike. I therefore needed a better solution for the track. Andrew LaCorte, Michael Robinson & Delroy Walters recommended I get the Shimano SPD style pedals and add a toe strap at the back using tie wraps. This solution is more secure with the no float red cleats - the tension on these pedals are very high, the toe straps are an added security measure for standing starts. There is no way of simply adding a toe strap to the Nashbar Look styled pedals.


Shimano Dura Ace SPD-SL 7810 pedals with added toe strap using tie wraps.


Nashbar Look styled pedals.