Meet Arron "Hamilton." He's a masters racer, keeping himself in fitness through a healthy blend of structured workouts and fun group rides. This is his go-to workout to maintain his long-term power through the season.
The Protocol: Warm-Up: 15-20mins from easy spinning getting into your endurance zone (~70% of FTP or ~72% of Maximum HR). Be sure to get cadence up toward the end to really wake up the legs. Main Set: 2 sets of 6 repeats of 2min @ 88-95% of FTP, followed directly by a 30" burst at 110% ftp, and back down to 88-95% for the next repeat (each set should be 16minutes in total). Rest for 5 minutes between sets with some easy pedaling. Cool Down: 10 minutes of easy pedaling, varying cadence from 70 to 100rpm.
An example of the workout in the 2x8 variant. Notice the alternation between 1st and 2nd set, as well as the control to fall right back int the zone after a burst.
- Alternate the first set starting with the 2minute effort, the next set starting with the 30second effort.
- After the 30" burst, be sure to dial right back into the prescribed 88-95% zone.
- This workout can be extended to 8 repeats, then 10 repeats as fitness allows.
- If you complete main set and have extra time, duration in light intensity training (power/heart rate zone 2) before your cool down goes a long way to creating gains.
What is this Training?
A key component of riding, especially at upper intensities and in race settings, is an athlete's "repeatability." Rather than focusing on maximum power, this workout trains the body to repeat to suepr-threshold efforts (similar to short climbs or accelerations within a group), and settling back into a sub-threshold tempo. Repeatability is that feeling stronger late in the ride after a bunch of hard efforts. This workout also trains the body to recover from a harder effort while still trying to hold pace, rather than fully go into rest.
A good workout to complete in about an hour, perfect for your weekday session. Give it a go and let us know how you get on!