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Trainer High Rewards

By Tim Cusick - Peaks Coaching Group Coach

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Les Woodland's book Tour de France: The Inside Story - Making the World's Greatest Bicycle Race is available as an audiobook here. For the print and Kindle eBook versions, just click on the Amazon link on the right.

Tim Cusick writes:

Ok, first off I am not a trainer guy! Part of what I love about cycling is getting outside and knocking out the miles! That being said, for most of us, the trainer is a real reality in the winter. This year has been no exception as we have already had over five major storms and a pretty cold December and January.

For me getting on the trainer needs to have “high reward”.

Trainer Tip 1 – Use the trainer to build your FTP! Trainers are a great way to induce an even power load and work on that threshold. I cannot tell you that number of times I have talked to people who are doing 5-6 hours of “base” miles a week on their trainer…this just isn’t going to bring about much improvement. A moderately fit cyclist should be able to complete at least two, one hour threshold building workouts a week on the trainer. Start in Dec /Jan with 2 x 15 minutes at 90% of your threshold (five minutes rest in-between) and build that to you can do 2 x 20 minutes with little to no drop off in power from interval one to interval two. Once you can do that, move to 3 x 15, then to 3 x 20 or even 2 x 30 all at that 90% of FTP range.

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Story of the Tour de France, volume 1 Schwab Cycles South Salem Cycleworks frames

Trainer Tip 2 – Better your spin! Trainers offer such a controlled environment, using them to work on your “spin” is an excellent use of time. I think a lot of cyclists underestimate the economy of becoming a good spinner. I am not talking about a “fast spinner” I am talking about an “economical spinner”.  Learning to smooth out your stroke and find a slightly higher natural cadence will pay benefits. On the trainer this can be done in a variety of ways but two that I like?  First, one-legged drills; great way to balance strength between legs while “rounding” out your pedal stroke. Second, fast pedaling drills; add 2 x 5 sets of 1 minute fast pedal drills in your level 2 power zone to warm-up (or try warm down). Target 130 rpm and above and focus on being smooth, no bouncing!

The good news is spring is just around the corner!

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Neugent Cycling Wheels Peaks Coaching: work with a coach!

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Shade Vise sunglass holder Advertise with us!

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