Category: Podcast

Fast Talk podcast, ep. 52: Enhancing recovery with NormaTec

The VeloNews Fast Talk podcast is your source for the best training advice and most compelling insight on what it takes to become a better cyclist. Listen in as VeloNews managing editor Chris Case and our resident physiologist and coach, Trevor Connor, discuss a range of topics, including training, physiology, technology, nutrition, and more.


IF YOU’RE A LONGTIME LISTENER of Fast Talk, you’ve probably noticed a theme emerge time and time again: To maximize performance you need to be as intense in your recovery as you are in your training. Put another way, the more you want to train, the better your recovery needs to be.

Of course, proper recovery requires good sleep, good nutrition, and good rest. Many athletes look for ways to aid or enhance that process. This has led some to take up pain-relieving approaches that may actually interfere with recovery.

The science on recovery has changed significantly in recent years. For a time almost purely focused on reducing delayed onset muscle soreness (or DOMS), now the science recognizes that inflammation and some discomfort is a necessary part of recovery, and the best recovery tools aid this process.

The tools that seem to do this best are within the compression categories of recovery, including massage, cold water therapy, and compression gear.

Today, we’re sitting down with two guests from our sponsor NormaTec to discuss recovery in depth. NormaTec is a medical devices company that also crafts inflatable compression wear for athletes. Are they Space legs? Moon boots? You’ve probably seen them on the legs of cyclist friends or pros. Research has shown this type of recovery enhancement can have significant impacts on a host of factors, both molecular and circulatory. We’ll get to that in a bit.

In episode 52 we’ll cover:

  1. The current research on recovery: how it’s changing and why getting out of the way of our bodies and letting them do their thing is often best.
  2. We’ll also touch upon those areas where the body doesn’t always do a great job and may need some help. This includes venous return, edema, and excess inflammation.
  3. We’ll zero in on compression therapies which have been showing benefits and explain these sophisticated tools called external pneumatic compression.
  4. Our guests will talk specifically about NormaTec: how the founder, a doctor, was looking to help her patients with vascular issues when she hatched the plan to create the company and the device; we’ll also discuss some promising recent studies.
  5. And we’ll warn you now, we’ll go a little deep in the weeds about NormaTec’s effects on inflammation, and whether they’re beneficial or inhibitory.
  6. Finally, if you decide to give the recovery boots a try, we’ll give some tips on when, where, and how to do so.

Our primary guests today are two members of the NormaTec team: John Aquadro is NormaTec’s VP of Technology and Operations. He is an MIT trained molecular biologist who left the lab bench to help NormaTec develop its technology and systems. Also joining us is Matt Curbeau, NormaTec’s accounting wizard, who is a former professional triathlete and currently competes at the elite amateur level in road racing and cyclocross.

In addition we’ll hear from Frank Overton, the owner of FastCat coaching here in Boulder, Colorado. Frank and Trevor had a conversation about recovery modalities and compression gear. Frank definitely enjoys what he likes to call his “space legs” — he keeps a pair at his center for his athletes.

We’ll also share part of a discussion that Trevor had with Dr. Andrew Peterson, associate professor of pediatrics and the director of primary care sports medicine at the University of Iowa. Dr. Peterson wrote a review covering the most common recovery modalities and how effective they appear to be.

Lastly, we’ll hear from NormaTec devotee Toms Skujins of the Trek-Segafredo WorldTour team.

So, sit back, zip up your space legs, select your compression level, feel the pulses coursing through your body… Let’s make you fast!

Fast Talk is available on all your favorite podcast services, including iTunesStitcherGoogle Play, and Soundcloud. If you enjoy the podcast, please take a moment to rate and comment on iTunes after listening. Also, check out the VeloNews Cycling Podcast, our weekly discussion of the sport’s hottest topics, trends, and controversies.

References

  • Kephart, W.C., et al., A single bout of whole-leg, peristaltic pulse external pneumatic compression upregulates PGC-1alpha mRNA and endothelial nitric oxide sythase protein in human skeletal muscle tissue. Exp Physiol, 2015. 100(7): p. 852-64.
  • Haun, C.T., et al., Does external pneumatic compression treatment between bouts of overreaching resistance training sessions exert differential effects on molecular signaling and performance-related variables compared to passive recovery? An exploratory study. Plos One, 2017. 12(6): p. 24.
  • Peake, J.M., et al., Muscle damage and inflammation during recovery from exercise. J Appl Physiol (1985), 2017. 122(3): p. 559-570.
  • Chazaud, B., Inflammation during skeletal muscle regeneration and tissue remodeling: application to exercise-induced muscle damage management. Immunol Cell Biol, 2016. 94(2): p. 140-5.
  • Waters-Banker, C., et al., Investigating the mechanisms of massage efficacy: the role of mechanical immunomodulation. J Athl Train, 2014. 49(2): p. 266-73.
  • Peterson, A.R., et al., Basic recovery aids: what’s the evidence? Curr Sports Med Rep, 2015. 14(3): p. 227-34.
  • Martin, J.S., et al., Impact of external pneumatic compression target inflation pressure on transcriptome-wide RNA expression in skeletal muscle. Physiol Rep, 2016. 4(22).
  • Sands, W.A., et al., Peristaltic pulse dynamic compression of the lower extremity enhances flexibility. J Strength Cond Res, 2014. 28(4): p. 1058-64.
  • Haun, C.T., et al., Concomitant external pneumatic compression treatment with consecutive days of high intensity interval training reduces markers of proteolysis. Eur J Appl Physiol, 2017. 117(12): p. 2587-2600.
  • Keck, N.A., et al., Effects of commercially available pneumatic compression on muscle glycogen recovery after exercise. J Strength Cond Res, 2015. 29(2): p. 379-85.
  • Martin, J.S., et al., Acute Effects of Peristaltic Pneumatic Compression on Repeated Anaerobic Exercise Performance and Blood Lactate Clearance. J Strength Cond Res, 2015. 29(10): p. 2900-6.
  • Kabore, C. and J.F. Kaux, Effects of Normatec peristaltic dynamic external compression on sports recovery. Science & Sports, 2017. 32(5): p. 266-277.

Read the full article at Fast Talk podcast, ep. 52: Enhancing recovery with NormaTec on VeloNews.com.

Tech podcast, ep. 6: What is trail and why does it matter?

Welcome to the VeloNews Tech podcast, where we discuss complex tech topics and distill them down into terms we can all understand.

What is trail? No, not that dirt path you like to mountain bike on — we are talking about the often-misunderstood bike geometry measurement.

In this episode of the VeloNews tech podcast, we speak to BMC Switzerland’s head of engineering, Stefan Christ. He helps us better understand how trail affects a bike’s handling.

But more importantly, he explains why a variety of factors influence the way a bike feels — it isn’t as simple as just one geometry measurement.

If you like what you hear, subscribe to the VeloNews podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, and Google Play. Please give us a review and a rating, if you have time! Also, check out the VeloNews Fast Talk training podcast with Trevor Connor.

Read the full article at Tech podcast, ep. 6: What is trail and why does it matter? on VeloNews.com.

Tour de France podcast: A postcard from the Champs-Elysees

Welcome to the VeloNews cycling podcast, where we discuss the latest trends, news, and controversies in the world of cycling.

What is it like to finish the Tour de France on the Champs-Elysees? Fred Dreier is on the ground in Paris to hear from the riders.

He speaks to (in the following order) Toms Skujins, Lawson Craddock, Rory Sutherland, Mathew Hayman, Andy Schleck, and Alexander Kristoff, who won stage 21. We also hear Geraint Thomas fans singing the Welsh national anthem to honor their first Tour champion.

If you dig our podcast, please consider subscribing to VeloNews magazine. If you do so before midnight July 31, you get a free book! Subscribe here >>

If you like what you hear, subscribe to the VeloNews podcast on iTunesStitcher, and Google Play. Please give us a review and a rating, if you have time! Also, check out the VeloNews Fast Talk training podcast with Trevor Connor.

Read the full article at Tour de France podcast: A postcard from the Champs-Elysees on VeloNews.com.

Fast Talk podcast, ep. 51: Polarizing your training, with Dr. Stephen Seiler

The VeloNews Fast Talk podcast is your source for the best training advice and most compelling insight on what it takes to become a better cyclist. Listen in as VeloNews managing editor Chris Case and our resident physiologist and coach, Trevor Connor, discuss a range of topics, including training, physiology, technology, nutrition, and more.


EPISODE 51 OF FAST TALK is one that Coach Connor and I are particularly excited about. In fact, Trevor is so enamored with our guest’s research that he refers to him as the Jay-Z of physiology. I don’t really know what that means, but I’m fascinated that Trevor knows who Jay-Z is. But I digress.

Dr. Stephen Seiler has revolutionized our understanding of endurance training. Perhaps you’ve heard us refer to his findings in previous episodes. We’ve discussed several of them in the past, just not at length and in one place. Today it all comes together, and we’re privileged to have Dr. Seiler to help explain what can be, at times, some complex science.

In this episode, we’re going to take a deep dive into many of his theories, including:

1. Why both coaching techniques and the science have become so biased toward high-intensity training when that isn’t how the best athletes train.

2. Dr. Seiler’s three-zone model of training. There are many zone models out there. Most of us use five zones for training, but some models have as many as nine. In his research, Seiler has pointed out that when we test, there are two physiological breakpoints. One is our anaerobic threshold, or MLSS. Your coach may call it FTP. It tends to be right around the point where we hit 4 mmol/mL lactate. The other breakpoint, which is lower — about 85 percent of anaerobic threshold and at 2 mmol/mL of lactate — is often called our aerobic threshold. Seiler feels these breakpoints define three physiological zones. Zone 1 is below the aerobic threshold, and what we call easy base training. Zone 2 is between the breakpoints and has many names, including no man’s land or sweet spot. The third zone is our high-intensity training zone.

3. Next, we’ll talk about how, by studying elite athletes, Seiler found a remarkable consistency: most endurance athletes train about 80 percent of the time in Zone 1, around 15 to 20 percent in Zone 3, and very little in Zone 2. This has become known as polarized training.

4. We’ll take a deep dive with Dr. Seiler into both Zone 1 and Zone 3 training and how to approach both. A theme will start to emerge, and you’ll hear one of the top physiologists in the world repeat it again and again: keep it simple. That might seem surprising, but the research is clear: complex intervals and overly detailed training plans may hurt more than they help. Ultimately, it may be as simple as accumulating time in the various zones in the right ratios.

5. Finally, we’ll discuss how these principles apply specifically to training. Seiler’s research includes Nordic skiers, rowers, runners, and cyclists. So be warned, at times you’ll hear some concepts that may be unfamiliar to you. For example, cycling is one of the few places where endurance athletes do five-hour workouts. In other endurance sports, they add volume by doing two-a-days.

Full disclosure, this episode is a deep dive. If this is your first time listening to Fast Talk, we recommend starting with an appetizer. In episode 14, we discuss the difference between polarized and sweet-spot training, which give you the context you need to follow this conversation.

Our featured guest is, of course, Dr. Stephen Seiler, a professor of sports science in Norway, where he has lived for 22 years. But no, that’s not a Norwegian accent. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Texas. Dr. Seiler is now on the executive board of the well-respected European University College for Sports Science.

If you want to learn more about his research, he’s on Twitter and tries to make all of his research and presentations available for free on Research Gate.

In addition to Dr. Seiler, our guests include:

Grant Holicky, a head coach at Apex Coaching, a highly respected coaching center here in Boulder that has produced many Olympic and world champion caliber cyclists. Holicky talks with us about the mistakes of doing too much training in that middle zone.

We’ll also hear from past Canadian national champion Andrew Randall and past national mountain bike coach Steve Neal who, together run the Cycling Gym in Toronto, a city where traffic, bad roads, and cold weather dominate. The conditions justify doing lots of intensity on the trainer, but Randall and Neal explain why they don’t take that approach with their athletes and still follow a polarized model.

Finally, we hear from Larry Warbasse, the 2017 U.S. national road champion who rides for Aqua Blue Sport. He gives a few examples of how top pros have figured out what seems to work for them, without necessarily having read the research or knowing the scientific terms.

So, are you ready to go slow to be fast? If so, this is the episode for you. Let’s make you fast!

References

  • Dudley, G. A., Abraham, W. M., & Terjung, R. L. (1982). Influence of exercise intensity and duration on biochemical adaptations in skeletal muscle. J Appl Physiol Respir Environ Exerc Physiol, 53(4), 844-850.
  • Esteve-Lanao, J., Foster, C., Seiler, S., & Lucia, A. (2007). Impact of training intensity distribution on performance in endurance athletes. J Strength Cond Res, 21(3), 943-949.
  • Guellich, A., Seiler, S., & Emrich, E. (2009). Training methods and intensity distribution of young world-class rowers. Int J Sports Physiol Perform, 4(4), 448-460.
  • Laursen, P. B. (2010). Training for intense exercise performance: high-intensity or high-volume training? Scand J Med Sci Sports, 20 Suppl 2, 1-10.
  • Munoz, I., Seiler, S., Bautista, J., Espana, J., Larumbe, E., & Esteve-Lanao, J. (2014). Does Polarized Training Improve Performance in Recreational Runners? [Article]. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance, 9(2), 265-272.
  • Seiler, K. S., & Kjerland, G. O. (2006). Quantifying training intensity distribution in elite endurance athletes: is there evidence for an “optimal” distribution? Scand J Med Sci Sports, 16(1), 49-56.
  • Seiler, S. (2010). What is best practice for training intensity and duration distribution in endurance athletes? Int J Sports Physiol Perform, 5(3), 276-291.
  • Seiler, S., Haugen, O., & Kuffel, E. (2007). Autonomic recovery after exercise in trained athletes: intensity and duration effects. Med Sci Sports Exerc, 39(8), 1366-1373.
  • Seiler, S., Joranson, K., Olesen, B. V., & Hetlelid, K. J. (2013). Adaptations to aerobic interval training: interactive effects of exercise intensity and total work duration. Scand J Med Sci Sports, 23(1), 74-83.
  • Skovereng, K., Sylta, O., Tonnessen, E., Hammarstrom, D., Danielsen, J., Seiler, S., et al. (2018). Effects of Initial Performance, Gross Efficiency and VO-2 peak Characteristics on Subsequent Adaptations to Endurance Training in Competitive Cyclists. [Article]. Frontiers in Physiology, 9, 9.
  • Stoggl, T. L., & Sperlich, B. (2015). The training intensity distribution among well-trained and elite endurance athletes. Front Physiol, 6, 295.
  • Sylta, O., Tonnessen, E., Hammarstrom, D., Danielsen, J., Skovereng, K., Ravn, T., et al. (2016). The Effect of Different High-Intensity Periodization Models on Endurance Adaptations. Med Sci Sports Exerc, 48(11), 2165-2174.
  • Sylta, O., Tonnessen, E., Sandbakk, O., Hammarstrom, D., Danielsen, J., Skovereng, K., et al. (2017). Effects of High-Intensity Training on Physiological and Hormonal Adaptions in Well-Trained Cyclists. Med Sci Sports Exerc, 49(6), 1137-1146.

Read the full article at Fast Talk podcast, ep. 51: Polarizing your training, with Dr. Stephen Seiler on VeloNews.com.

Tour de France podcast: Was stage 17 the beginning of the end of Froome era?

Welcome to the VeloNews cycling podcast, where we discuss the latest trends, news, and controversies in the world of cycling.

We saw something very unusual in Tour de France stage 17: Chris Froome got dropped. Big time. Is this the beginning of the end of his era? We discuss. And, we hear from Dave Brailsford after the summit finish.

So who will win the race now? We talk about how yellow jersey wearer (and Froome’s Sky teammate) Geraint Thomas is a breath of fresh, rugby-watching, beer-drinking air in the world of dull pro cyclists. For more on that, check out Fred Dreier’s recent story >>

Like what you hear? Consider subscribing to VeloNews magazine >>

If you like what you hear, subscribe to the VeloNews podcast on iTunesStitcher, and Google Play. Please give us a review and a rating, if you have time! Also, check out the VeloNews Fast Talk training podcast with Trevor Connor.

Read the full article at Tour de France podcast: Was stage 17 the beginning of the end of Froome era? on VeloNews.com.

Tour de France podcast: Who is Geraint Thomas; why Moscon must go

Welcome to the VeloNews cycling podcast, where we discuss the latest trends, news, and controversies in the world of cycling.

You expected to see a Team Sky rider wearing Tour de France yellow this week, didn’t you? But did you expect it would be Geraint Thomas?

We didn’t. So, Fred and Andy dig into who Welshman is, and why he’s gotten so good. Fred talks to Team Sky coach Rod Ellingworth to learn more.

But before that, we have to talk about another, less likable member of Team Sky, Gianni Moscon. He was kicked out of the Tour on Sunday and we have plenty of takes about why the Italian is bad for cycling.

Plus, we hear from American Chad Haga who is racing in his first Tour de France.

This episode of the VeloNews podcast is sponsored by CycleOps, makers of the Hammer indoor smart trainer. The VeloNews editorial staff may be hunched over computers all day during the Tour de France, but we can stay fit all July, day or night, by hopping on the Hammer and riding in our favorite virtual training app, like Zwift, Rouvy, TrainerRoad, or The SufferFest. Learn about the Hammer >>

If you like what you hear, subscribe to the VeloNews podcast on iTunesStitcher, and Google Play. Please give us a review and a rating, if you have time! Also, check out the VeloNews Fast Talk training podcast with Trevor Connor.

Read the full article at Tour de France podcast: Who is Geraint Thomas; why Moscon must go on VeloNews.com.

Tour de France podcast: Who’s in charge at Sky, and can Dumoulin beat them?

Welcome to the VeloNews cycling podcast, where we discuss the latest trends, news, and controversies in the world of cycling.

It is Sky vs. Sky after 12 stages of racing in the Tour de France. Geraint Thomas is in yellow, but will he work for team leader Chris Froome? We discuss after three exciting stages in the Alps.

Then we hear from Tom Dumoulin and his Sunweb team director Luke Roberts about how they plan to beat the two-headed monster that is Thomas and Froome.

Plus, Ian Boswell checks in atop Alpe d’Huez to talk about the ambiance in his Tour de France debut.

This episode of the VeloNews podcast is sponsored by ROKA. ROKA makes unbelievably lightweight cycling eyewear that seems to have accounted for every little detail necessary for performance on the biggest stages. (Trust us — we’ve logged hundreds of miles in them and are still surprised by how light they are and how secure the fit is.) Check out ROKA.com for more >>

If you like what you hear, subscribe to the VeloNews podcast on iTunesStitcher, and Google Play. Please give us a review and a rating, if you have time! Also, check out the VeloNews Fast Talk training podcast with Trevor Connor.

Read the full article at Tour de France podcast: Who’s in charge at Sky, and can Dumoulin beat them? on VeloNews.com.

Tech podcast: An in-depth look at Tour de France aero bikes

Welcome to the VeloNews Tech podcast, where we discuss complex tech topics and distill them down into terms we can all understand.

The Tour de France peloton is chock full of brand-new aero bikes — what’s behind these designs, and what do the riders like?

In this episode of the VeloNews Tech podcast, tech editor Dan Cavallari talks to industry experts to get the skinny on what makes a good aero bike and what’s next for the category. Are aero bikes and all-around bikes melding into a single category? If not, what’s stopping them? And what the heck is a truncated airfoil?

Cavallari also gets insights from the pros — Trek-Segafredo’s Toms Skujins and Bora-Hansgrohe’s Peter Sagan both offer their thoughts on the intersection of aero performance and comfort in a race bike.

If you like what you hear, subscribe to the VeloNews podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, and Google Play. Please give us a review and a rating, if you have time! Also, check out the VeloNews Fast Talk training podcast with Trevor Connor.

Read the full article at Tech podcast: An in-depth look at Tour de France aero bikes on VeloNews.com.

Tour de France podcast: Porte is out, Froome flourishes on cobbles

Welcome to the VeloNews cycling podcast, where we discuss the latest trends, news, and controversies in the world of cycling.

Can you believe that crazy stage 9? We discuss the Tour de France‘s trip across the Roubaix cobblestones with insight on Richie Porte’s crash, analysis of Chris Froome and Nairo Quintana‘s performances, and more details on what happened to Rigoberto Uràn.

We hear from BMC director Fabio Baldato as well as EF Education First-Drapac’s Tom Scully on the ground in Roubaix.

If you like what you hear, subscribe to the VeloNews podcast on iTunesStitcher, and Google Play. Please give us a review and a rating, if you have time! Also, check out the VeloNews Fast Talk training podcast with Trevor Connor.

Read the full article at Tour de France podcast: Porte is out, Froome flourishes on cobbles on VeloNews.com.

Fast Talk, ep. 50: Unpacking the gospel of Joe Friel’s new ‘Training Bible’

Hello and welcome to Fast Talk! I’m Chris Case, managing editor of VeloNews, joined by the apostle of speed, Coach Trevor Connor.

Cycling can be a fickle sport. Coaches come and go; new, exciting, revolutionary ways of training take the sport by storm then grown stale; riders at the local training race who were once unbeatable age and fade from the front. Few things have permanence in this sport.

But there’s been one thing that has stood the test of time, that seems to have been there since most of us attempted our first interval workout: Joe Friel’s “Cyclist’s Training Bible.” For many of us, reading that book was our first step towards more dedicated training.

This spring Joe released his fifth, and hopefully not the last, edition of the book. Trevor and I had a chance to talk with Joe about the newest edition. We came to the interview with a list of questions that we felt only touched on the key parts of the book and by the hour mark we were barely a quarter of the way through our list. But what we did talk about was really compelling stuff. We touched on everything from periodization to energy systems, to Joe’s method of research…believe it or not, it has a lot to do with hundreds of 3”x5” note cards.

What is the central theme of this podcast? Perhaps we’ll just call it picking the brain of one of the most experienced cycling coaches in the world. Our varied topics included:

• How Joe’s philosophy to coaching has changed over the five editions of the book, and why with this most recent edition he decided to completely rewrite the book.
• How new technology has changed coaching and why Joe recommends a shift from volume-focused training to a training-stress focus
• What we mean by intensity and how both polarized and sweet spot training play in
• The three physiological assets that determine our level as cyclists — specifically aerobic capacity or VO2max, anaerobic threshold, and economy
• And finally, we touch on periodization. Joe was the one who brought periodization to cycling and unfortunately, we were barely able to scratch the surface on this fascinating subject. Hopefully, we can convince Joe to come back for an entire episode on the topic…

(In fact, there is plenty in the book we don’t even mention, but there’s a reason it’s called the Training Bible.)

In addition to Joe Friel, our guests include:

Frank Overton, the owner of FastCat coaching here in Boulder, CO. Frank has been a part of the history of cycling himself, helping in the early days when they were just figuring out the power-based metrics we now take for granted. But even Frank remembers The Cyclist’s Training Bible influencing him as a cat. 4 cyclist.

And we talked with LottoNL-Jumbo rider Sepp Kuss who gives a very modern pro perspective on periodization. It’s not the old school traditional periodization of a dedicated base period and race phase. We, unfortunately, ran out of time to talk with Joe about it, but one of the big changes in the latest edition of the book is an entire chapter on the various periodization alternatives.

Please forgive the quality of Coach Connor’s audio for this podcast. We recorded this podcast the day before Canadian Nationals when Trevor was up in Northern Quebec. The internet connection was not great. Nor was Trevor’s stress level.

So, with the power vested in me, Let’s make you fast!

References

(Joyner & Coyle, 2008; Lucia, Hoyos, & Chicharro, 2001; Santalla, Naranjo, & Terrados, 2009)

Joyner, M. J., & Coyle, E. F. (2008). Endurance exercise performance: the physiology of champions. J Physiol, 586(1), 35-44. doi: 10.1113/jphysiol.2007.143834
Lucia, A., Hoyos, J., & Chicharro, J. L. (2001). Physiology of professional road cycling. Sports Med, 31(5), 325-337.
Santalla, A., Naranjo, J., & Terrados, N. (2009). Muscle efficiency improves over time in world-class cyclists. Med Sci Sports Exerc, 41(5), 1096-1101. doi: 10.1249/MSS.0b013e318191c802

Read the full article at Fast Talk, ep. 50: Unpacking the gospel of Joe Friel’s new ‘Training Bible’ on VeloNews.com.