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Form & Fitness Q & A

Got a question about fitness, training, recovery from injury or a related subject? Drop us a line at Please include as much information about yourself as possible, including your age, sex, and type of racing or riding.

The Cyclingnews form & fitness panel

Carrie Cheadle, MA ( is a Sports Psychology consultant who has dedicated her career to helping athletes of all ages and abilities perform to their potential. Carrie specialises in working with cyclists, in disciplines ranging from track racing to mountain biking. She holds a bachelors degree in Psychology from Sonoma State University as well as a masters degree in Sport Psychology from John F. Kennedy University.

Dave Palese ( is a USA Cycling licensed coach and masters' class road racer with 16 years' race experience. He coaches racers and riders of all abilities from his home in southern Maine, USA, where he lives with his wife Sheryl, daughter Molly, and two cats, Miranda and Mu-Mu.

Kelby Bethards, MD received a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Iowa State University (1994) before obtaining an M.D. from the University of Iowa College of Medicine in 2000. Has been a racing cyclist 'on and off' for 20 years, and when time allows, he races Cat 3 and 35+. He is a team physician for two local Ft Collins, CO, teams, and currently works Family Practice in multiple settings: rural, urgent care, inpatient and the like.

Fiona Lockhart ( is a USA Cycling Expert Coach, and holds certifications from USA Weightlifting (Sports Performance Coach), the National Strength and Conditioning Association (Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach), and the National Academy for Sports Nutrition (Primary Sports Nutritionist). She is the Sports Science Editor for Carmichael Training Systems, and has been working in the strength and conditioning and endurance sports fields for over 10 years; she's also a competitive mountain biker.

Eddie Monnier ( is a USA Cycling certified Elite Coach and a Category II racer. He holds undergraduate degrees in anthropology (with departmental honors) and philosophy from Emory University and an MBA from The Wharton School of Business.

Eddie is a proponent of training with power. He coaches cyclists (track, road and mountain bike) of all abilities and with wide ranging goals (with and without power meters). He uses internet tools to coach riders from any geography.

David Fleckenstein, MPT ( is a physical therapist practicing in Boise, ID. His clients have included World and U.S. champions, Olympic athletes and numerous professional athletes. He received his B.S. in Biology/Genetics from Penn State and his Master's degree in Physical Therapy from Emory University. He specializes in manual medicine treatment and specific retraining of spine and joint stabilization musculature. He is a former Cat I road racer and Expert mountain biker.

Since 1986 Steve Hogg ( has owned and operated Pedal Pushers, a cycle shop specialising in rider positioning and custom bicycles. In that time he has positioned riders from all cycling disciplines and of all levels of ability with every concievable cycling problem.They include World and National champions at one end of the performance spectrum to amputees and people with disabilities at the other end.

Current riders that Steve has positioned include Davitamon-Lotto's Nick Gates, Discovery's Hayden Roulston, National Road Series champion, Jessica Ridder and National and State Time Trial champion, Peter Milostic.

Pamela Hinton has a bachelor's degree in Molecular Biology and a doctoral degree in Nutritional Sciences, both from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She did postdoctoral training at Cornell University and is now an assistant professor of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Missouri-Columbia where she studies the effects of iron deficiency on adaptations to endurance training and the consequences of exercise-associated changes in menstrual function on bone health.

Pam was an All-American in track while at the UW. She started cycling competitively in 2003 and is the defending Missouri State Road Champion. Pam writes a nutrition column for Giana Roberge's Team Speed Queen Newsletter.

Dario Fredrick ( is an exercise physiologist and head coach for Whole Athlete™. He is a former category 1 & semi-pro MTB racer. Dario holds a masters degree in exercise science and a bachelors in sport psychology.

Scott Saifer ( has a Masters Degree in exercise physiology and sports psychology and has personally coached over 300 athletes of all levels in his 10 years of coaching with Wenzel Coaching.

Kendra Wenzel ( is a head coach with Wenzel Coaching with 17 years of racing and coaching experience and is coauthor of the book Bike Racing 101.

Richard Stern ( is Head Coach of Richard Stern Training, a Level 3 Coach with the Association of British Cycling Coaches, a Sports Scientist, and a writer. He has been professionally coaching cyclists and triathletes since 1998 at all levels from professional to recreational. He is a leading expert in coaching with power output and all power meters. Richard has been a competitive cyclist for 20 years

Andy Bloomer ( is an Associate Coach and sport scientist with Richard Stern Training. He is a member of the Association of British Cycling Coaches (ABCC) and a member of the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES). In his role as Exercise Physiologist at Staffordshire University Sports Performance Centre, he has conducted physiological testing and offered training and coaching advice to athletes from all sports for the past 4 years. Andy has been a competitive cyclist for many years.

Kim Morrow ( has competed as a Professional Cyclist and Triathlete, is a certified USA Cycling Elite Coach, a 4-time U.S. Masters National Road Race Champion, and a Fitness Professional.

Her coaching group, eliteFITcoach, is based out of the Southeastern United States, although they coach athletes across North America. Kim also owns, a resource for cyclists, multisport athletes & endurance coaches around the globe, specializing in helping cycling and multisport athletes find a coach.

Advice presented in Cyclingnews' fitness pages is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended to be specific advice for individual athletes. If you follow the educational information found on Cyclingnews, you do so at your own risk. You should consult with your physician before beginning any exercise program.

Fitness questions and answers for February 26, 2003

Sprint training
Tingling sensation
Kilo training

Sprint training

With the recent article on your site about training for pursuit I would just like to ask what typically is done for training to be a sprinter.

The key points I'd like to know are what is the balance of miles to build a good base without sacrificing time spent in the weight room to build strength. Then once the strength is attained how do cycling nations like Australia, France, Germany and England transfer this to the bike?

Nick Corcoran

Dave Palese replies:

I wouldn't dare try and get into any specifics as to the actual balance of volume to track specific intensity that track sprinter do, but here are some thoughts.

First, from my personal experience, having lived, ridden and raced on and around the Lehigh Valley Velodrome in Trexlertown, Pennsylvania, USA for six years, I can tell you that the top track sprinters in the world do more long road miles then most people think. As in all disciplines of cycling, aerobic conditioning is the basis and foundation for everything you do. So the majority of your training hours per year will still be aerobic training, done mostly on the road on your road bike.

Second, as far as transferring strength gains from the gym to the bike, get specific. If your goals center around sprint events on the track, match sprint and so forth, you'll want to do sprint specific workouts on the track. These are usually characterized as short explosive and maximum efforts with full recovery between them.

Third, don't neglect tactics and strategy on the track. Track sprinting is a very tactical game. It is important that you understand how to use the track to your advantage. Learn how the banking can be used to help you overcome disadvantages and an also how it works against you. I found that track racing, not just the sprint events, had a big science and physics component. When you understand how a track works, you can make more informed tactical choices

Tingling sensation

Strange title for a question I know, but over the past couple of weeks during 'big' efforts - particularly the last section of a climb where we would be riding hard, I have noticed a 'tingling' sensation begin in my feet, up to my ankle - it is not pain from the the shoes/footbeds/pedals. When we then begin to descend, or I back off a little (as I did the first few times it happened), it recedes and then disappears.

I am a 35 year old Cat 3 rider, I raced seriously until my early twenties, retired, and took it up again years ago to take advantage of the not so 'deadly serious, all life encompassing' benefits of the Cat 3 standard.

I have a solid winter program, gym work (1-2 a week), mid week ride 20-30 miles (1 a week) and long spins on Sat/Sunday 2X75 mile or so. I train with a mixed group of Cat 1, mainly Cat 2 and some Junior riders. In general I would be one of the more consistent in the group - top third say - and don't have to train over my 'limit' to stay with them. We would do the longer spins across mixed terrain at an average of 17.5 - 19.00 mph. Group is 8-10 strong. My average pulse for that spin would be in the region 137 - 150 depending on mix of speed, terrain ect. In relation to max pulse, 180-185 would be the highest.

As the season approaches, we have been stretching our legs a little - particularly on climbs - and on the major climbs I have started to note the tingling when we have really upped the tempo. Previously (this year), I would have relatively little trouble staying with the lead group on any climb, but would not be able to nor would I attempt to go with the stongest rider for long periods. Right now I am not in 'trouble' when this happens - although the effort could be hard. But I am concerned this might be a 'pre-cursor' to something.

Any thoughts ? It would be good to bottom it out before the racing season begins.

John O' Sullivan

Brett Aitken replies:

I can't say that I've ever experienced this myself or know of anyone who has but it sounds like it could be a nerve related problem that is being set off through the stress of muscle tension. It is also quite possible that it is referred pain being triggered by a problem in another part of the body. I would therefore suggest that you go and get fully screened by a physiotherapist to look at trigger points, muscle soreness, flexibility and any nerve tightness (nerves can be stretched as well).

Kilo training

I have always been taken by the Kilo and would like to focus on it, but would still like to continue doing club level crit races, and the occasional flatter road races. I am 38 years old, 6'6" tall and 215 lbs. I can train about 10-12 hours a week in the spring/summer months. I got into cycling after finishing up as a basketballer, and had a vertical of about 34-36".

I tried to train for the kilo in the past but most of my focus was on weights, and I never saw any real improvement in my cycling. Presently I am doing mostly road type work, and can sustain about 370 watts for 2 min at 120 RPM. I have not done a flying 200 in quite some time but it should be around 12.6 -12.3 depending on the track. My last 40K ITT was 57.5 min.

David Jones

Brett Aitken replies:

Your physical build and vertical jump height certainly make you a very good candidate to be an excellent kilo rider.

My suggestion to you to improve in this event is to keep up the criterium racing. Training the oxygen system is going to be vitally important to your performance as a kilo rider because this style of race is always won in the last 20 seconds. Also get more specific on the bike and add in some regular sessions of repeat kilo efforts and 500m standing and flying. In regards to weight training the kilo is a very specialist event that requires explosive power so focus your weights on squats and leg press (with speed) and definitely include a programme of plyometrics.


Can you tell me what embrocations the pros use for wet, cold weather and where I can purchase them. I have seen pictures of Tchmil in the tent before a cold, wet race and he looked like he had on a centimeter of oil etc. on his legs.

Karl D. Jackson
Bend, Or

Dave Palese replies

Most pro teams have a sponsorship for these products, so finding out what some teams are using can be as simple as scanning the ads in your favorite bike rag. But I will say, that just as it is common for some pros to be riding bikes other then those of the sponsor, but just painted to look like a sponsor's bike, the product they have applied to their legs is often a special concoction prepared by the soigneurs.

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