Traditional cycling training programs are based on kilometres and hours. Combine both and a simple idea was gained about speed.
Technology has evolved at a rapid rate, Bike Computers, Heart Rate Monitoring, Power Meters, GPS units and Analytical Software have advanced the "Science" of Cycling Training.
Text books remain on shelves, whilst the "Sport Science" industry continually research, tinker, modify and adapt training programs.
What are 5 Training Tips that are not on the top of everyone's list but will lead to improved performance?
No 1: Skills
These include balance, braking, cornering, and riding with others.
Most cyclists have little training in these basics. Skills training will increase safety, enjoyment and performance.
No 2: Progression
Progression is increasing the training overload in a timely fashion. In simple terms, not getting used to the same routine. Changing variables such as speed, length, weight, repetitions etc. are ways to increase the overload. Also, I like to think that changing exercise types can also be a progression. An optimum progression requires a training plan, a base line test and a training diary.
No 3: Strength
Strength can be interpreted and trained various ways. Riding hills is a strength workout. Of more value can be specific on bike strength training (not necessarily on a hill), as well as a structured gym weights program. A gym weights program should include upper body, core, the back as well as legs.
No 4: High Intensity
High Intensity is riding very fast. Nobody experiences difficulty when asked to ride slow, quite the opposite. It is said that racing is the best form of training, the reason is high intensity.
Spin classes can be an excellent way to ride high intensity. High Intensity can only be trained in intervals, and therefore the accumulation of high intensity can reach minutes and not just
No 5: Awareness of Tightness
With "Awareness of Tightness" I am referring to cyclists that may include a simple stretching routine, however may have a tightness that is either asymptomatic or is thought to be normal.
Without an awareness a simple tightness can lead to longer term problems. An "awareness" can be achieved by attending a flexibility/pilates/yoga class, having a regular massage, or
consultation with a musculo-skeletal allied health professional.
Build these 5 components into your overall program and performance will improve.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Robert Gaggini is founder of Adelaide Cycling Academy and owner of Infuga Retreat. As a cycling coach Robert brings years of experience to a wide range of Cycling Activities.
Winner of multiple cycle races including Mt Gambier 100mile classic 2005, and Alphutte 2003, (4th in 2012). Participant in a variety of endurance events including Paris-Brest-Paris, and is a 40km per day commuter for over 20years.
If you require any assistance with training plans, cycle coaching or if you just want to ride faster, Robert is happy to assist.