A fair bit of my weekly riding kilometres is taken up with commuting; the balance is normally a group ride or a Audax ride on the weekend, so there is little to no room for training rides to improve my riding. Hence the recent blog posting by Neil Pedoe of Cycling Plus in BikeRadar.com caught my attention and has motivated me! While you can read the full article at BikeRadar.com and I recommend it, the following summary should hopefully wet your appetite.
Neil’s program suggests the following types of training
- Sprint training where your focus is on straight out flat-out speeds. Suggests for sprint training includes racing away from lights. With sprints one should leave a five to 20 minute gap between sprints for recovery purposes.
- Fartlek intervals are randomly occurring and lasting efforts at about 80 percent of your heart rate maximum (where safe) and works your bodyâ€™s aerobic and anaerobic systems. For me, I like to make use of the â€œhillsâ€ on my commutes to push my speed, cadence and heart rate as I climb the hills. The other advantage with this is the recovery period varies depending on where the hills are.
- Cadence intervals is where you make better use of the gears to try and keep the cadence around 100 rpm or 10% better than your normal cadence. Cadence intervals are incorporated into the sprint training sessions or fartlek intervals. The ideal is to improve pedalling technique, endurance and acceleration.
- Big gear intervals as the name suggest is all about pushing bigger gears for repeated intervals or on the flats to build leg strength. I am looking at doing this during my transitions from one fartlek interval to the next.
- Food chain numbers are all about being scoring being dropped or rather not being dropped. This may also be referred to as Ergo 500, a little friendly safe competitive spirit out on the road.
My only negative with Neil’s article is that he does not put numbers to the various training suggestions so it is a hard to get a framework for a good commuting based training program. If you have ideas on same please do share them in the related Australian Cycling Forums thread.