Bonus Q&A on Interval Intensity, Dirty Kanza Training, and Muscle Fiber Recruitment

We answer questions on interval training and intensity, training for DK in flat places, and muscle fiber recruitment.

Fast Talk Podcast Gravel DK Chris Case

We’ve said it before, and we’ll keep saying it: Thank you for sending us questions. We are here for you and your training. Nothing is more fulfilling than knowing that the hours of research, study, and production of the podcast is useful to you. In today’s Q&A episode, Coach Connor and I selected three questions to address. First, Peter Burghardt, thanks for asking us about intervals. We hope our dissection of the dreaded 4x8s is helpful! Enjoy Trevor’s graphs and analysis of his own rides. Next, David Sampier down in sunny, flat, Florida brought up a really good point: How do you adequately train for a big race, specifically Dirty Kanza, when you live in a geographical area that doesn’t offer the rugged, rolling terrain that you’ll be faced with on race-day? Finally, Jeremiah Bell, you know we love to talk about when to train in Zone 1, Zone 2 and so on, in the polarized model. Thanks for your specific question about cardiac drift and the causes of it. Let’s make you fast!

Episode Transcript



Welcome to Fast Talk developed news podcast and everything you need to know to ride like a press.


Chris Case  00:13

Welcome to Episode 98, a bonus episode question and answer with Coach Connor and I, we’re going to discuss intervals the execution there of we’re going to talk about dirty Kansa training. We’re going to talk about muscle fiber types and recruitment today. We love all of the questions we’ve been getting from both our email address and from our voicemail. That’s Fast Talk at Fast Talk or our voicemail is 719-800-2112. Please keep sending those great questions to us. One thing I want to mention again, we launched grant hotkeys show off course last week, and we want you to go check that out. There are several episodes up already and coming soon will be episodes with Meredith Miller, Lance hate it Emerson urata, and many others. Check it out. One other thing I’d like to mention is our newsletter that we’ve started and have going out now, to sign up for that, check us out at Fast Talk Let’s get into the question show it. First one comes from Peter Burkhart. from Lebanon, New Hampshire comes from email and I will read it to coach Connor as we speak. I know you did a full episode on performing intervals, the takeaway being keep them simple execute well, but I still don’t have a good sense of how hard a good set of intervals should be, and what it should feel like. For example, if I’m doing a four by eight minute interval riding on swift in erg mode, so it is easy to hold a fixed power, should I set the power for quote, legs on fire, barely able to complete the last one? Or a more conservative, quote, solid workout? Let’s go get bagels. Should heart rate be relatively constant interval to interval? Or is it normal for heart rate to climb as you progress through the set? For context? I’m a 57 year old male recreational rider experimenting with using these for my low volume of high intensity no more than once per week. Trevor, what do you say? So first? Peter,


Trevor Connor  02:23

thanks for a great question. And we have been getting lots of emails, lots of voicemails thanks to everybody continue to be really impressed by the quality of these questions. I love this one. And this gets into that art of training. As part of why even though I’ve got a list of two 300 different interval workouts I can do. Personally, I only have about eight that I go to pretty regularly. And the reason being, it takes a long time to learn how to do it and interval, right. So there is no one rule on here’s what should happen with your heart rate. Here’s what should happen with your power. Here’s how it should feel that’s interval by interval by interval workout. So I can answer all those questions for one particular workout. But then another workout might be a completely completely different answer. So for example, I have two workouts that involve five minute intervals. One is a workout that I do in the winter, which is five by five minutes with one minute recoveries. For those I’m never going all out, I don’t let my heart rate break my my threshold heart rate very much. So my threshold heart rates are at around 172. If I start heading 174, I back down. So I finished that workout go That was hard, but doesn’t kill me.



Mm hmm.


Trevor Connor  03:44

I also have five minute Hill repeats that I do in the season, that’s more of a via to max workout. And that I want to be feeling like I’m gonna throw up by the end of every interval


Chris Case  03:55



Trevor Connor  03:57

They’re different purposes. So with every interval, to start to answer those questions that Peters asking, you first have to start with, what’s the purpose of this workout? And when I think purpose, I think about what’s the energy systems that you’re trying to hit that really guides what’s the right intensity? How should it feel, also asked what’s the time of year. I’m personally not a big believer that if you’re starting to do intervals in December, you’re not racing till till May. I don’t think at that point in the year should be doing anything that should be making you feel like you’re going to throw out right


Chris Case  04:30

that might be a little too hard


Trevor Connor  04:32

right? later as you’re getting close to the races and having those intervals that you really have to struggle can be really important. So you have to think about all these things. And that’s really going to direct how you approach the intervals. So going back, he was talking about the four by eight minute intervals. We brought these up a lot in the show I do these I love these as my one of my favorite kind of January February workouts so I’m actually doing them right now. Bread


Chris Case  05:00

Butter bellies. you’d call them if you ate bread and butter that is, but you don’t,


Trevor Connor  05:05

I don’t eat bread and butter. So that’s why I do the intervals. So that’s how I get my bread and butter. So four by eights. Now, first of all, I emailed a response to Peter. And what I did was I sent him screenshots of two sets of four by eights that I’ve done. So we’ll put these on the website. Yep, We’ll also post them on social media. So if you’re listening right now, and you’re really interested, go to our website, Fast Talk Labs comm go to the podcast section for this episode. And we’ll have those images up there. We’ll also have them bite it by this point on our social media. Yep, these are two four by eight workouts that I did. One was, I was very happy with my execution. One was horrific execution of my opinion. That said, when you look at them, you will see differences, but it’s not shocking differences. And that’s what I mean by interval workouts are kind of an art form. Mm hmm. With these four by eights, when you look at the graphs, you’ll see a red line, that’s my heart rate. And I have a dotted straight line that shows you where my threshold heart rate is. And then power is represented with these, this heat graph. So any of you are right on zwift, you’ll be very familiar with this. When you see it kind of orange or yellow, that means I’m right around my threshold. When you see dark red, that means I’m above threshold, if you see blue, or green, that means I’m more down in zone one. So when I do four by eights, my approach to it is I want consistent power. So I want to be doing the same power on the last one that I’m doing on the first one, if I can’t do that, I went to heart abort with heart rate. Again, I set that rule this time of year I set that rule for myself, I don’t really want to be going more than a beat over my threshold heart rate. And so what you’ll see with my heart rate in this well executed set of four by eights is the first interval actually don’t even hit my threshold heart rate,


Chris Case  07:13

you’re paying much more attention to your power, right?


Trevor Connor  07:16

Heart Rate takes time to respond, it essentially has a delay. So if you’re at the right intensity, heart rates gonna be lower in that first interval. And I see a lot of people make the mistake of going Oh, I’m doing this both by heart rate and power, I need to get my heart rate right up to threshold in that first interval, which means I go and absolutely stomp themselves on the first interval, right kind of blow up and then the the quality intervals go down from there. So I always just recognize that, no, I’m not actually going to really see my threshold heart rate until the second interval. In the particular one that you’ll see online, I actually didn’t quite hit threshold heart rate on the second one, that’s where I knew, okay, I’m actually a little stronger today.



I mean, ours a


Trevor Connor  07:58

little bit low. So I actually made the decision. The next two, I just up my wattage about 10 watts. And then you look at the last two, you’ll see my heart rate comes up quite quickly. And then it just plateaus right at threshold.


Chris Case  08:11

Yep. And I wanted I believe right beneath that line that you’re targeting,


Trevor Connor  08:15

right. And I want to see that nice kind of flattening out of my heart rate. If you’re doing threshold intervals and you never really see heart rate level out. One or two things going on, most likely, you’re just going too hard. But I do see with athletes who have really focused in on always going hard, they don’t do a lot of aerobic work. When they’re even when they’re up near threshold. They’re so reliant on anaerobic energy systems, it’s actually very hard for them to get their heart rate to plateaus you’ll always see a bit of that rise. But eventually as you develop that aerobic system what you want to see when you look at a good time trial sir person with a really good well developed a robot system, you just see that heart rate come up fairly quickly and it just kind of levels out. When you look at the poorly executed ones what you’re going to see is first it kind of ignore the the first interval the bunch of things happen here on the first interval my trainer kind of blew up on me


Chris Case  09:18

Alright, ignore that first interval but you can ignore that


Trevor Connor  09:21

yes, but you’re saying


Chris Case  09:22

yeah, no you can you mean it’s so obvious when you’ve turned it into this heat map you’ve got much more red you can see how your heart rate is is crossing that threshold line that you don’t want it to so yeah go and explain it a little bit a little bit more but for the for the layperson it’s very obvious that this something went wrong here and you there’s only three attempts so you you right gave up.


Trevor Connor  09:44

I was doing these on zwift and quick backstory. I was going up out out to zwift does with Oh, they’re there they have a simulator of Alpe d’Huez. I was going up but there was a guy just ahead of me who was going Really hard. And I wanted to beat him. So I started ignoring all my rules. Mm hmm. And just kind of lifted my tempo and started chasing him. And you’ll see, you know, it’s not like my power was all over the place that second interval, I was relatively steady, but I was well over threshold, I was going too hard. And very quickly, the heart rate came up by the third interval, you can see my heart rate was going way over threshold, my power was starting to come down, right. And when I got to the fourth interval, I started when I screwed up, and I just stopped. Mm hmm. So again, it what you don’t look at this and go, Oh, my God, that’s a horrible workout. They’re just minor differences. But those minor differences are made the difference between a really good high quality workout and one where I couldn’t do the forest interval. And this is the art. You can’t just program some numbers into a trainer and end up with one or the other you, you know that first one that was well executed. And the reason I put this one online, is the fact that I did up my power on the third or fourth and fourth interval because I looked at my heart rate, I made an assessment of my rate of perceived exertion and said, You know what, I’m a little under. So let’s raise it. But it was finding that perfect intensity that just takes practice. And that’s really important. Because day to day, you need to adjust you might do, I might do those four by eights at one wattage Tuesday, and then the Friday for whatever reasons. Maybe I’m a little tired. Maybe I didn’t get some sleep, or maybe I’m having a really great day, I might need to raise that power a little bit or drop it a little bit. And that’s why you have to use has a feel, what’s your heart rate? Look at all these things to find that that right intensity?


Chris Case  11:57

Yeah, not being a robot about these things is actually key. You have to make some decisions out on the road based on the sensations you’re gathering on that day.


Trevor Connor  12:08

Yep. I have my athletes all the time. They’ll email me Oh my god, that workout was incredible. Look at my power. Am I stronger now? And my response is always, let’s see how the next intervals go. You have


Chris Case  12:21



Trevor Connor  12:22

You have good days. And likewise, they’ll email mango. I was 2030 watts lower today. Is something wrong. It’s good. No, it’s just today, you have to look for trends. You are stronger when every interval session, you’re 2030 watts higher. Right. This next question comes to us from our Google voicemail. And if you would like to leave a question for us on our Google voicemail call 719-800-2112. So this is from David sampi. And we’ll play his question.



Hey, guys, how’s it going? My name is David skimpier calling from sunny palm City, Florida. And I just got accepted into dirty Kansa, which you know, is pretty epic. And I’m down here in Florida. I’ve got the heat covered. But I’m wondering about the distance. I’ve never gone further than 100 miles on the bike. And I’m wondering what kind of training I should do in the flatlands of Florida, I’ve got a lot of wind and gravel is okay, but it’s not crazy. And I’m just curious what you guys suggest in terms of someone who does not have rolling hills and does not have crazy gravel and needs to get their butts in shape for the dirty Kansa thing.


Chris Case  13:52

Well, first of all, David, congratulations on getting accepted into dirty Kansa. I will say having done this race twice before. And without trying to be too dramatic. It is a bike race. However, it will very likely redefine what you are capable of doing. It’s such a fascinating personal experiment in some ways you push beyond a place you probably have never gone before, which is in itself. Fun, challenging, enlightening. And then afterwards, you may curse a little bit you may suffer immensely out there, but you’ll learn new things about yourself. And then you can apply that to more races in the future other aspects of your life. It’s a it’s an amazing thing. So congratulations on getting in, you’re going to have a really good time. And I laugh because you’re going to have a really good time and you’re going to hurt a lot out there too. It’s inevitable everybody will ever But he does. So to get into the answer to your question about how to train for this, we actually did a very comprehensive episode back, Episode Number 49. Check that out. But I will will highlight some things here as well. There’s, of course, different ways to skin the cat, as Trevor likes to say, when it comes to training for ultra endurance races like this, lugging lots of miles is, you know, basically a method you could take, is that going to lead to the best result there? Probably not. If you’re a little bit more scientific, a little bit more structured with your approach, you’ll probably, you know, more efficiently improve the performance on the day. So what does that mean? You’ve probably heard us talk about aerobic threshold before on the program. And that’s a pretty important piece of the puzzle when it comes to training for these ultra endurance races. It’s a, it’s that level that at a race like that a race of say, 12 to 18 hours, you’re going to be able to ride at that level for quite a long time. It’s a pretty sustainable effort, assuming a few things assuming you’re able to fuel properly, hydrate properly, etc. How do you find your aerobic threshold? Well, that’s a good question. That’s something you can do in a laboratory setting out on the road, and Trevor might be able to, to jump in here that’s significantly more tricky to do.


Trevor Connor  16:44

It is a hard thing to find. And actually, there’s research going on right now to figure out are there ways to see if there are ways to figure this out on the road? When I’m working it out for my athletes? And certainly, if I can get them in the lab, fantastic. That’s, that is absolutely the best way. Otherwise, it’s a bit of an art form. And just looking at their long rides, if you see them really fading towards the end of the ride, then yeah, they were going too hard. They were above their aerobic threshold, the description of the robot, if you are riding steady at aerobic threshold, it should be just slightly above comfortable, like should not be really hard. It shouldn’t be sweetspot. Like you’re really pushing yourself. But at the same time, it shouldn’t be that just completely easy conversation. Right? It should just be above that. But you should. If you ask yourself, could I sustain this for three to five hours? Your answer should be? Yeah, I’d be a little tired it down to that, but I could sustain it.


Chris Case  17:47

Yeah. For for those who will never get into a lab and aren’t working with a coach. Now I know, we would we would encourage them to do so. But on an RP scale, what what are they targeting here for a robot threshold?


Trevor Connor  18:01

Oh, that’s a really good question. You know, everybody has a different perception of RV. Sure. But on a one to 10 scale, I’m thinking three, four. Okay.


Chris Case  18:13

Okay. Yeah. And and, you know, going back to that episode 49, we’re Trevor and I dove quite deeply into the training here. I was the one that was doing the race, Trevor was coaching me through that experience. And so we got me, I was able to get into the lab, I was able to find this aerobic threshold, and then a lot of the rides that I did were based around that particular threshold. What do these rides feel like? Well, if you’re not used to doing these, at first, they’re actually going to feel too easy, right? If you continue to ride at that very consistent, steady tempo, that pace, they’re going to start to beat you up. And by the end of them, you’re going to feel pretty fatigued. If you only did the ride for at that pace for for an hour, you know, you’re going to be like, Man, what, this isn’t going to get me ready for dirty Kansa. If you do it for five hours or six hours or longer, you’re going to feel pretty whooped at the at the end of those rides. And it’s the accumulation of time at that level, not only within the ride, but within the context of the weeks and months leading up to the race itself, where you build some of this resilience and durability. That really is the key to getting through a race like like dirty Kansa.


Trevor Connor  19:35

Chris brings up a really good point that the experience of arriving at the rubber threshold is very different for somebody who hasn’t developed a good aerobic engine versus somebody who has you take a top Pro. Let’s say you have a 70 kilogram top Pro, they are probably going to be close to 300 watts for their robots threshold so that they go out and do a five six hour robot threshold. Ride, which is again doing that base miles. Dr. Seiler zone one ride, they’re gonna average to at 300 watts or five, six hours,


Chris Case  20:11

right? A huge number, honestly, relative to what an amateur should be thinking about in turn,


Trevor Connor  20:17

pro will tell you, that’s a good challenging ride. Mm hmm. Somebody has a very undeveloped robotic system. Because they’ve been no, you actually have a decent aerobic system. But I’m talking about somebody who’s spent their time doing nothing but our rides, they tend to just do intervals or group training races. So they have a huge anaerobic capacity that they’ve been reliant on. But they haven’t developed that aerobic system, they go out and they’re riding out there to aerobic threshold. Again, a 70 kilogram athlete, they might be down as low as 160 170 watts. And I’ve worked with athletes who are in that place. And when I haven’t go out and do an aerobic threshold ride there, their first comment is, I was going so slow, I thought I was going to fall over. Right, right. But what they’re they then find surprising is as they work on it, as they do rides a Robic threshold, they’ll come back to me and say, What did four or five hours and, you know, it seemed really easy at first, but boy, did I feel it the next day. Mm hmm. It’s a different kind of feeling, especially when they’re used to that one hour of tongue hanging out really rip myself apart,


Chris Case  21:27

right. And I think the other thing to mention here is the gains that you see from these types of rides, these types of repeated rides aren’t going to take place overnight, you’re going to have to accumulate time at this at this level. So just have some patience with it. Give it some time, and you will see significant gains by the time you know, if you start your your Kansa preparation now, by the time dirty Kansa rolls around several months from now you’re gonna be a different rider.


Trevor Connor  21:58

Developing a true truly powerful aerobics engine is measured in years. Yeah, developing an animal that anaerobic capacity is measured in weeks to months. Yep, different scale. And that’s why a lot of athletes really like to focus on that side. Because you see improvements rapidly you work in that aerobic engine, you can spend months and feel like you never got anywhere.


Chris Case  22:21

Yeah. The second big component that I’d like to address when it comes to dirty Kansa re preparation is the nutrition and fueling strategy component. It can’t i can’t overstate how important it is. If you can’t get the calories in your body, or if you aren’t able to hydrate properly out there, you will suffer immensely. With a proper fueling strategy, your day will be not only much, much more pleasant, the performance you are able to put out will be that much better. How do you work on that component? Well, again, if you’re able to get into a lab, that can be very helpful in determining how you burn through calories, what type of engine you have, and what type of utilization of carbohydrates and fats you use to get through a day like this. If not, there’s some experimentation you will want to do. Again, don’t do this in the week preceding dirty Kansa. Do this in the months in years if you if you have the time leading up to a race like this. It’s about experimenting with what types of food work well for your body, how many calories you can get in per hour, doing it at the intensity level that you will have on race day, and also considering the heat that you might face on race day. So there’s a lot of things there that make it pretty challenging. But it again can’t be stressed enough how important this is. Trevor, do you have any thoughts on how people can really hone in on their target fueling strategy for a race of this distance?


Trevor Connor  24:08

It’s exactly what you said you have to experiment you have to try. If you’re building for a an event like this, you need to be going out and doing a few six, seven hour rides leading up to it. If longest ride you’ve done is three, four hours leading up to dirty Kansa it’s gonna be a bit of a shock to the system. And on those rides, you need to experiment with fueling. Particularly towards the end of the ride. Hopefully, if you’re doing hard enough, a six seven hour ride you’re experiencing the issues with digestive system starting to break down starting to not work as well for you. That’s actually when you need to experiment with fueling and see what you can get down. And my suggestion is look for simple things. Because I can guarantee you dirty Kansa you’re getting into that second half of the race. You’re ssso is not going to be working well. But you still have a long time, you have to figure out how to fuel that body. Yep. And it’s it’s simple foods.


Chris Case  25:08

It’s challenge. It’s a challenge. One other thing that you mentioned about your your training, David was the wind down in Florida that you have, there’s a, there’s a high likelihood that in Kansas for dirty Kansa, you will face some pretty stiff winds. You know, I think the natural tendency for most humans when dealing with the wind is to get really pissed off at it, because it can be frustrating, especially if you’re in a eight, you’re 810 hours into a race. Huge tear, turn a corner into a block headwind, and all you can see is five miles of dirt road over rolling hills, and you start to cry. I’m not saying this really happened to me, but maybe it did. It’s tough out there. I think this is when mindset really can play a critical role. And you have winds that are challenging you down in Florida. So you can practice this. It sounds silly, but you do have to sort of embrace this challenge, you can’t get frustrated. And try to just mash the pedals even harder to get through that section. Because what the last thing you want to do at dirty Kansa is go into the read for too long a period of time and then just blow up. Keep in mind that everybody else on course, is in the same situation as you You’re all fighting the wind. So as you very well know, making alliances with people out there in the wind sitting on wheels, is not going to hurt you in any way, it’s only going to help you you have to take advantage of the of the pack as much as possible. Get strung out there. You know, you might be in a place where you’re all alone, you can make a decision, you can sit up a little bit, maybe waste a little time, quote unquote, but you might end up being caught by a group of 10 guys that if you had just put your head down and charged through the wind by yourself, they were inevitably going to catch you anyways. Now you’re sitting up saving some energy working with them, you end up right in the same place you you would have anyways with a little bit more energy, a little more fuel in the tank. So it’s tough. It’s a it’s a mental challenge. But you have to stay positive out there.


Trevor Connor  27:27

Chris brings up a really good point there, there are some people who just need to ride with other people. There’s some people who like to ride solo, I am on the side of I tend to prefer to ride solo. But even somebody like me in an event like dirty Kansa, where you’re really hurting, it can really help define people, it can help to either. You don’t want to push too much above your limit to stay with the group. But it can certainly sometimes help to just slow down, wait for a group and work with them, you’re gonna end up finishing better and it’s going to make it easier. I just had that experience two weeks ago where I was finishing up a fourth day of a training camp. I was getting sick, I didn’t know it at the time. And I was out in a group ride in Boulder doing a six hour ride and I was dying. And I was trying to get back to Boulder. The group it completely shattered. I was riding by myself and just went I’m not sure I can do this final hour. And then four riders passed me and I hopped on and they got me home.


Chris Case  28:28

Yep, it’s a little Savior. Now I’m gonna, I’m gonna pitch something to to the listeners but particularly David, we do offer these Fast Talk Labs performance experiences where you we get you into the lab, we be able to test you physiologically metabolically, do bike fits do this, this comprehensive testing. And the more I think about these camps, the more I feel like everyone as a cyclist could benefit from them but particularly people that are interested in challenging themselves at these ultra distance events. The the fact that in a lab, you can pinpoint that aerobic threshold so much better than you can out on the road and you can really dial in the nutrition component really makes me feel strongly that people involved in this gravel trend. gravel races being really long distance a lot of them 678 12 1618 hours whatever it turns out to be for you could really benefit from a camp and an experience like this.


Trevor Connor  29:35

So this is a little specific to David but I did want to throw this in since I actually used to live in a part of Florida not too far away from him. He was concerned about the fact that Florida is pretty pancake Flat and dirty. Kansa is not it’s much more rolling. So a there are advantages to Florida. I like going down doing long rides there because six hours In the saddle when you rarely stand up, build a certain type of stamina you can’t get anywhere else. So do understand you’re going to have some assets here. But quick recommendation to you. I actually used to do a ride from Pompano Beach almost up to where you live in Palm city and back right along the waterfront and there’s a whole bunch of bridges on that route. It’s a great route to go and hit and as you’re getting closer to the event, I would say do that ride go get a good five, six hours along the coast and every time you hit one of those bridges, push over it. Mm, get your legs used because dirty Kansa there’s a lot of those climbs as I understand a really steep you’re gonna have to push over them, huh? Yeah,


Chris Case  30:45

there’s there’s some steep ones out there. There’s not that many that from a Coloradans perspective are long, they just accumulate, it’s relentless, you know, you’re getting close to 10,000 feet of climbing out there in a day. So just simulate that by every time you hit one of those bridges on those little riders risers. Just push over it. Hit it hard. And


Trevor Connor  31:08

if you do that for six hours, you’re gonna simulate some of that fatigue and your legs, legs, you’re gonna get a dirty Kansa.


Chris Case  31:15

Excellent. Well, our next question comes from Jeremiah Bell from beautiful Anchorage, Alaska. He writes, Dear Fast Talk when doing long zone one rides and he’s referring to zone one in the polarized model. Trevor’s advice is to let power drop off late in the ride to keep heart rate in zone one. Rather than keep our constant and allow cardiac drift increase your heart rate into zone two, if I understand correctly, a major reason for cardiac drift is that the type one muscle fibers are getting damaged and the body is beginning to recruit type two fibers to pick up the slack. Doing rides like this can promote conversion of type to be fibers into type two a fibers. So it seems like cardiac drift is an indicator that my type two fibers are finally getting off the bench and being forced to do low intensity aerobic work. Is that correct? As type one fibers get damaged, it seems like letting power drop off to prevent cardiac drift would let those type two fibers stay on the bench rather than forcing them to make up the difference for fatiguing type one fibers. What am I missing?





Trevor Connor  32:23

This is just kind of a good, let’s bring everything together question because this we’re gonna go back to some of the things we just talked about with dirty Kansa we’re gonna go back to some of the things that we talked about with our first question of the whole art of training. So getting to the art of training my my answer here is I both agree and disagree. Mm hmm. And it really depends on the purpose and the timing. Let me quickly address physiologically, when he said if you let your your power come down, are you letting the type two muscle fibers off the hook? Right? Not really, there’s a certain point where when the type one fibers get fatigued, they are your your muscles just naturally start cycling fibers Mm hmm. So even if you reduce the intensity, you’re going to start cycling in some of those those to a fibers and using them and not as much as you would if you were keeping the power up. But remember, that’s not the only thing that’s happening. Once you cross over that aerobic threshold, a whole bunch of things change physiologically in your body. So if you stay at that constant power, and you start to fatigue, in your heart rate comes up, you’re actually going to start training in zone two. And it’s just a different effect. So when I have an athlete in the base season, I tell him, I just want you to go out and do a good zone one ride. That’s where I say, stay by heart rate, let the power drop because this is where I’m a purist. And I’m actually going to reference back we did that whole episode with Joe Farrell, where he talked about way when you’re far away from the season, you really want to focus on energy systems, you want to be a bit of a purist with your workout. As you get closer and closer to the season. You want to be more specific. So I look at this the same way. If it’s December, January, I tell my athletes, we are trying to do pure aerobic work. I don’t want to over stress you right now. So if cardiac dress starts kicking in, go by heart rate, let the power drop closer to the season and this gets back to that whole dirty Kansa thing Chris can tell you I had him doing a lot of this when I had him doing aerobic threshold rides. So kind of high end of the zone one in the polarized model. I would say stick there for a while start to build some of that fatigue. And then not only would I say Don’t let the power drop, I would tell him at the end of that ride. I want You to go hit a couple 30 minute climbs and sweetspot Yeah, push the intensity, because that’s simulating that difficulty you’re going to have later in races, that’s a really hard ride, it’s really powerful ride, I would not give it to my athletes in December. But getting closer to the season when I really want them to build that stamina going the other way and saying, Okay, now that you’ve really fatigued, you’re you’re type one fibers, let’s really hit those two, type two fibers and force them to do some aerobic work.


Chris Case  35:31

Yeah, and it’s at the end of those rides, where your Trevor’s like, okay, now, I’m like, the the leashes off, go, hit these a little bit harder, and you wouldn’t believe I mean, you’re gonna, you’re gonna feel like, you’re gonna feel that accumulation of fatigue, you’re gonna think, Oh, it’s going to be easy to get into the sweetspot zone zone to in this in this particular conversation. And that’s about all you’re going to be able to do, you wouldn’t be able to go much harder than that, honestly, at that point. And if you’ve done the right, the right type of writing,


Trevor Connor  36:04

arrive, take it even further, right, that I love to do, as I’m getting ready for a big event, where I know there’s going to be a long hard stage, that’s going to be a real struggle. At the end, I have this ride that I do in Boulder that I love that you do about 11,000 feet of climbing, it takes me about six and a half, seven hours to do it. And at about the five and a half hour mark, I come through a town called Lyons and then you have route 36, back to Boulder, which if anybody knows it starts with a couple kind of kicker climbs. And then it’s sort of flat with a few more little bumps coming into Boulder. And as soon as I turn onto that road, I’ve had tried to time trial it and I tried to hit each of those climbs above threshold. And it is just one of the hardest, most miserable experiences when your legs are just cooked. Yeah, from 11,000 feet of climbing to do that, but it builds a tolerance that then when you get into the races, and you’re at the end of a five hour stage and somebody is hitting you hard. You can find it you can dig that little bit deeper. But that’s again, going back to what Joe Friel talked about. That’s the specificity versus the the training the energy systems on that right. Am I am I training just one energy system? No, I’m hitting every energy system under the sun, trying to teach my body how to use it. So that’s a much more a race specific, almost even just training the mental side type ride. When I’m in the base when I have my athletes just focusing on training. That’s where I’m a little more of a purist and say let’s just stick with one maybe two energy systems.


Chris Case  37:41

Yep. And for those wanting to reference back to the Joe Friel episode we have to Episode 66 was demystifying periodization which is what Trevor was referring to. Mostly in this episode. We also have a great episode with him Episode 50, unpacking the gospel of Joe freels new training Bible so that’s a great conversation with the legend himself. jophiel


Chris Case  38:10

that was Episode 98 of Fast Talk. As always, we love your feedback. Email us at Fast Talk at Fast Talk Labs comm or call 719800 to 112 and leave us a voicemail. Subscribe to Fast Talk on iTunes, Stitcher, Spotify, SoundCloud, Google Play or wherever you prefer to find your favorite podcasts. Be sure to leave us a rating and review. The reviews are actually pretty important as they help other people find Fast Talk when they’re searching on iTunes. The thoughts and opinions expressed on Fast Talk are those of the individual for Trevor Connor. I’m Chris case. Thanks for this