Boost Your Biking Performance

Boost Your Biking

It’s easy to fall into the trap of cycling every mile at the same speed, devoting the same effort into every climb and coasting downhill. These three sessions will make sure you extract maximum value from your time on the bike, so when you ride your next sportive, time trial or race, you’ll find yourself able to beat the hills, maintain a faster pace and carry on riding hard right to the end.

 

Workout 1

StrengthMountain Biking

Low cadence, high gear hill reps are an incredible way to build cycling-specific strength without having to hit the gym. You’ll need a fairly steep hill that takes at least 5 minutes to climb and a cadence sensor.

Warm-up: Ride for at least 10 minutes, steadily building the effort and include three 5-to-10 second surges at the beginning of the final three minutes. Your warm-up should bring you to the bottom of the climb.

Main set: Ride four 5-minute blocks seated, in a gear that retains your cadence at 60rpm or below. Keep your core strong and your upper body as relaxed as possible, but the climbs should feel hard. Recover with a three-minute roll-down, spinning  your legs.

Cool down: 10 minutes of easy spinning.

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Workout 2

Leg Velocity

This session can be done on the road, either on the flat or on a gradual downhill, but
stationary on rollers is best. If you don’t own rollers, you’re missing out on a key piece of your training armoury. Riding on them boosts balance, bike handling skills and technique.

Warm-up: 5-10 minutes of easy spinning, building up to 90rpm.

Main set: Choose a light gear, this session is about leg speed, not strength or power.

3 minutes 90rpm
2 minutes 100rpm
1 minute 110rpm
30 seconds 115rpm
15 seconds 120rpm
15 seconds 100% leg speed but without bobbing in the saddle
2 minutes spinning easy
15 seconds 100% leg speed but without bobbing in the saddle
15 seconds 120rpm

30 seconds 115rpm
1 minute 110rpm
2 minutes 100rpm
2 minutes spinning easy.

Repeat

Cool down: 10 minutes of easy spinning.

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Workout 3

Sweet-Spot IntervalsBoost Your Biking Performance

For those who only do one bike session during the week to complement a longer weekend
ride, this can provide the best returns. It’s called Sweet-Spot because it stimulates a decent training effect, primarily boosting threshold, but without requiring extended sessions of recovery. You can do this session on the road or on a turbo trainer.

Warm-up: Ride for at least 10 minutes, steadily building the effort and include three 5-to-10 second surges at the beginning of the final  three minutes.

Main set: Ride two 20-minute blocks at ‘Sweet-Spot’ with 5-minutes easy spinning recovery between. This is at the upper end of your tempo speed and the lower end of Threshold (or upper Zone 3 – mid Zone 4 for heart rate or power). In case you’re training on feel and perceived exertion, you’ll should be concentrating on your effort and any conversation will be in short clipped sentences.

Cool down: 5 minutes of easy spinning.

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Written by Jenny Nickelson

Jenny Nickelson has been a sports enthusiast since childhood. Because of her deep love to water, she started training swimming in early years. Today she swears on variety and does it all: from swimming, running and cycling to fitness, skiing, dancing and mountaineering.

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