Team Adaptive's Training Duathlon Event #2 and a Bit About Performance Testing
On Sunday February 26th we hosted the second of three events of the Team Adaptive Duathlon Training Series.
The weather was fantastic and we had a great turnout. Check out our Facebook link for some pictures. More pictures to follow. Also below is the current standings
Now a little bit about performance testing...
I cannot believe it has been two years ago this week that there was a story about May Street Bicycles in Elite Magazine title "Southern Pines bike shop puts performance to the test." The article was written by Johanna Royo and the pictures were taken by Cindy Burnham. I am grateful to have them as friends:)
Well it is that time of year for individuals preparing for their big event of the season to establish their training zones, nutrition and pacing strategies. So I will let the story by Ms. Royo give you an overview of performance testing. As well, I would like to thank Pete Johnson for allowing me to test him for this story.
Just to review - an Ironman triathlon is a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bicycle ride and a 26.2-mile run, raced in that order and without a break. Sixty-three-year-old Pete Johnston is training for another one.
"No bigger rush than when you blow past a 30-something in an Ironman and he says, 'Please don't tell me you are 62,'" Johnston says, referring to a race last year. He explains that Ironman athletes wear their age on their calf.
Johnston huffs and puffs a tiny bit as we talk because he's been riding a stationary bike at just below his maximum ability while breathing into a special tube connected to a VO2 metabolic cart connected to a laptop.
At the other end of the tube is Dr. Greg Combs, professor of the sport management at Methodist University and owner of Velo Smart Performance Lab and May Street Bicycle in Southern Pines.
Combs increases the resistance on Johnston's bike. At the end of the static ride, he can pinpoint exactly what speed and heart rate will carry him to the finish line. More often than not, the optimum speed for success is slower than the speed at which the athlete is currently training.
In other words, racing at the wrong pace will burn too many carbohydrates and the runner/biker/swimmer (or all three, if you are Johnston) will peter out before the finish line. And that type of athlete is what Combs calls a sugar burner.
"I get guys in here on a (military) team, and they want to know who's a sugar burner because they want to know everyone's energy demands," Combs says.
Just as they want to know that everyone on a team can shoot, soldiers need to know everyone can go the distance in a critical situation.
It's a scenario Johnston and Combs know firsthand. Johnston retired from 5th Special Forces Group. Combs served in the 3rd Ranger Battalion. Combs also competed as part of the Army's world-class athlete program after his time in the Ranger Battalion. The training took a toll on his body, and he found the breakdown-recovery cycle was getting longer and longer. Combs says getting the perfect bike fit - the practice of fitting a bike to an athlete - was key to a faster recovery. He traveled all over the country to find someone who could help him with that perfect fit. Now, he helps other people train smarter, whether for biking, ruck marching or preparing for an Ironman.
So after getting out of the Army during the downsizing of the 1990s, Combs started bike fitting in his basement. He grew his business slowly while teaching at Methodist and opened his shop this year. Combs says bikes and smarter training are his passions and the business is his retirement plan - a place to go when he is 90. His advice to other veterans transitioning out of the military is to find what they love and know that career success is much like training for a big race - it doesn't happen overnight.
And if you were wondering, Pete Johnston scored well in his VO2 test. But like any good soldier, he has his eye on better. Combs is ready to help him get there.
To learn more about performance testing and smarter training stop in I will be happy to help. A performance testing clinic and social will be coming very soon:)
Yours in Cycling and Fitness,
President of Fun
May Street Bicycles is not your typical bike shop. Sure we sell awesome bicycles, provide bicycle repairs, and rental bikes all at great prices. But we do a great deal more such as dynamic bike fitting, metabolic testing, altitude training, and personal training.
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