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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been mountain biking for about 5 years now and this year started adding the road bike into the mix. I've been riding on the road regularly since March. The problem I have is on the flats. I don't have the power the flats to really push the pace and hurt the guys I'm riding with, and it's all I can do to usually hang on to them in the draft. When it turns uphill, especially the longer and steeper the climb I can ride them all off my wheel. So my question is how do I get better on the flats? I go out and just ride flat roads to focus on maintaining a high speed, but I can rarely get and keep it over 23 mph for any length of time. By the way, I'm 31 and 150 lbs. Thanks for any advice you guys can give me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the advice! I've been trying to ride flats more often, but when I first started I would just go out and climb and for some reason I thought that would take care of me on the flats. I'll definitely have to add intervals into my riding. I did a time trial last Sunday that was 36 miles, and pretty flat. I came home with a 20.0 average so I was sort of satisfied with that. I'm also trying to stay in the drops more when I'm on the flats to help with wind resistance. I'll keep it at it though. Thanks again for the tips.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
ridenfish39 said:
Any local training crits near you during the week?
I started out the same way as you. I came from mtb and when I started road riding I had no sustained power or speed on the flats, but I could shell almost everyone on a climb. Then, I started doing my Tuesday night training crit. At first I couldn't hang for even a lap, but I kept at it and at the end of the summer I could hang.
Unfortunately there are no crits in my area.

A nice dose of 2 x 20 in Zone 4 for several weeks couldn't hurt.

Do you own a Power Meter or HRM? If so do some tests and get some Zone 4 work in to up your FTP.


On another note... Are you friends heavier than you? You said you could drop them on climbs. Climbing is more dependent upon Watts/KG because of gravity, where riding on the flats is more about aerodynamics and absolute power. Here is an example...

Your friends weigh 180lbs (82kg) and can put out 240w comfortably. Your friends have a Watts/KG ratio of 2.9. You weigh 150lbs (68kg) and can comfortably put out 220w. Your Watts/KG ratio is 3.25.

So on the flats (where absolute power is more important) 240w will beat 220w. However, on the climbs (where Watts/KG matter more) your 3.25 beats there 2.9.
I've got a Heart rate monitor that I use and will definately start doing some 2x 20 in zone 4. Yeah, I'm the smallest guy in my group the others weight between 165lbs and 180lbs, so I know that is my big advantage on the climbs. I've really been working on riding flats and getting my speed up. I feel like I've been making progress, but I am always open to advice on how to get faster.
 
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