How to prepare for cold weather riding

One thing to prepare for cold weather riding is make sure that you have plenty of layers. You can always take layers off but if you have few to start with then you may be out of luck. The other variable that makes it difficult to predict is that since you are doing exercise you are going to generate some degree of heat. This means, as the video will point out that if you start a little cold on your ride then you can be assured that you dressed appropriately. The clothing for cold weather riding specifically will be covered in the second video so be sure not to skip that one. If ye are prepared ye shall not freeze.

Cycling Training Plan

Developing a Training Plan

The purpose of this class is to teach you the steps on how to develop your own training plan.  We are not personal trainers here but we have lots of riding and racing experience plus I have read lots of books on the subject.  If you really want to get hard core get a personal trainer they will help you a ton and help you get to your goals faster than any other way.

What are your goals?

  • What are you trying to accomplish, do you just want to go faster, have a century in mind or want to do Lotoja?  Depending on what your goal is will affect how you plan.
  • Begin with the end in mind.  There are several different types of exercises and routines you can do, knowing where you are going will help us pick which to do.
  • I look at training as 3 different animals:   Short distance Road biking under 50 miles, Long distance Road Biking, Insane distance over 100 miles. picture about training goals

The different type of training regiments

These are some common training regiments, think of these like sets when you go weight lifting.  Each one does different things and we’ll help you in different ways.  Before starting these you need to figure out your max heart rate.  The easiest way to do that is, to get a heart rate monitor, bike 10 minutes as fast as you can then rest  5 minutes then do another 10 minutes as fast as you can, the highest your heart goes is a pretty good estimate of your max heart rate.  You can also take your age – 220 but that is a ball park figure

  • Fast Pedal -  This ride should be done on a flat section of road and will go on for about 30 minutes.  Start with at least a 10 minute warm up, then pedal for 1 minute at a 85 to 90 RPM then go to a 95 to 100 RPM, repeat this 2 times (4 minutes total)  then rest 2 minutes, this would make a complete set.  Your heart rate will climb but don’t use it to judge your intensity.  This workout is all about your cadence, focus on that.
  • Endurance Miles -  This is also called base build miles, we want to do these a lot in the beginning of the season.  Find a long ride (at least an hour) and keep your heart rate between 50-91% of your max heart rate the entire time. 
  • Tempo Training is an excellent workout for developing aerobic power and endurance.  This will really help to make your legs stronger.  Keep your gears high (harder) and your cadence low around 75-80
  • Climbing Repeats- Do this on a road with lots of hills, preferably short hills.  Keep your heart rate at 95-97% of max as you pedal, Cadence should be high around 90-100.  Basically you will go up the hill as hard as you can for 2 minutes, then go downhill for a bit, then back up repeat. You can do this on a long hill to; just go up as hard as you can for 2 minutes take it easy for 1 minute, repeat. 
  • Power Intervals – These hurt, but are extremely helpful. Don’t do these more than 2 times a week.  The way these work is you gradually increase your effort for the first 30 seconds until you get to what you feel is your max you can sustain for 2 minutes, then keep it at that max effort for another 1 minute and 30 seconds.  Take your effort down for 2 minutes, repeat.

 

There are more work outs to choose from these are just some very common ones.  I recommend any of Chris Carmichaels books or videos along with the Cycling Training Bible by Joe Friel

cyclisttrainingbiblebookChrisCarmichealbook

 

 

 

 

 

Developing the plan

            Now its time to put it all together.  I normally write out a weekly plan, what rides am I going to do each day what days am I going to rest etc.  On the topic of rest, rest is extremely important, if you start a ride and you are super sore from the last day, take it easy, just do a nice gentle ride.  The worst thing you can do is push it and try to build, soreness is the body’s way of telling you to take it easy.

For short distance rides, do a lot of power intervals, climbing repeats, and fast pedal work outs.  SO here is a basic example of how a short distance work out would go.

Short Distance

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Warm Up, 4 sets of fast pedal, 2 climbing repeats Recovery Ride Warm Up, Tempo Training 10 minutes, 4 Power intervals Recovery Ride Warm Up, 4 sets of fast pedal, 2 climbing repeats Endurance Ride (2 hours) Rest

 

           

 

For Long Distance, do a lot of endurance miles, a lot. Also in Utah you want to do a lot of climbing repeats and more power intervals.

Long Distance

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Warm Up, 2 sets of fast pedal, 6 climbing repeats Recovery Ride Warm Up, Tempo Training 20 minutes, 6 Power intervals Recovery Ride Warm Up, 4 sets of fast pedal, 2 climbing repeats Endurance Ride (3+hours) Rest

 

For Insane Distance, you are going to train very similar to Long Distance, in fact depending on where you are at in your training you will start with Long Distance than work up.

Insane Distance

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Warm Up, 2 sets of fast pedal, 6 climbing repeats Endurance ride (2+ hours) Warm Up, Tempo Training 20 minutes, 6 Power intervals Recovery Ride Warm Up, 4 sets of fast pedal, 2 climbing repeats Endurance Ride (5+hours) Rest

 

Recovery

Your body needs time to recover, the purpose of the recovery ride isn’t to build more muscle or lose more weight, it’s to get the blood circulating in your legs to remove the lactic acid build up.

The key with any work out plan is to adjust it weekly.  If you get sick for a week, this will set you back about 2 weeks, 1 week of being sick and 1 week to recover where you were before you got sick.  You want to be building off what you did the week before.  If you were able to do all the power intervals than add another set.  If you are limited by time, try doing more sets and lest resting time between.  The key is to develop the plan each week and work towards your goal.

 

The grand finale Heart Rate Monitor post

Just like the favorite cowboy hat that we found out the we were wearing backwards, heart rate monitors can be used incorrectly and we may not even notice.

There is almost a guarantee that a heart rate monitor will stay in the “toy-gadget” unless you learn how to make it accurate and most effective towards your goals.

For you to know how the bang for everyone of your bucks here is a list of the 2 most commonly made mistakes thanks to Matt Fitzgerald at Competitor.com:

Mistake 1.) Using the formula 220-Age to determine your maximum heart  rate. We covered this in the last post but it needs to be 205 – (.5 x age). It is important   to get one of the most important measurements right.

Mistake 2.) Using a heart rate monitor for interval (short and fast) work outs. You all know what jet lag is, well there is such thing as cardio lag. If the workout is too short your heart rate monitor will say you are in Paris when your heart rate is on New York time. Just like your body when traveling, you monitor needs time to sync with your heart.

cyclingheartrate

Knowing what you do about heart rate monitors and the benefits as well as limitations we should take to heart (no pun intended) what my mother often told me:start savin!- Dont buy something only because it is the cheapest but because it has what you need. If you buy cheap things that is all you can expect from them.

  • the inexpensive ones will measure your heart rate but most likely won’t include the sensors needed or be compatible with bicycles
  • Garmin products allow for a GPS product as well as a heart rate monitor
  • the difference for men’s and women’s heart rate monitors are the colors
  • When scrolling through the different monitors they show what other products are compatible but most likely aren’t included in the price
  • A good question to ask yourself is if it is important to be able to upload your workout information onto you computer. If so you will need to spend a little more.
  • Garmin, Suunto and Polar are the ones that have an attachment for your bike

garminpolar

suunto

 

And this we come to the end of our Heart Rate Monitor saga. Thanks for coming by to learn more of what we hope was helpful information. If you cant find info on a topic of your interest please pose the question and we will answer it.