Bike, Training Centre, Triathlon

Bike time for business time

Clock Posted Jan 25, 2019

By Ben Griffin – Exercise Physiologist / Sansego Coach (15 x IM Finisher *PB 9:15)

Whilst all disciplines of a triathlon are important, you could argue the bike leg is most critical to performance given it accounts for approximately 50% of the total time it takes to complete at triathlon. Here’s some perfect sets for busy athletes training for Sprint or Standard Distance triathlon as we head into this summer’s racing.

Unlike swimming and running which require a bit more natural talent and place a higher emphasis on technique and biomechanics, cycling rewards those who are prepared to put in the time and effort honing their craft. Before starting, it is important you get set-up with a good bike fit to ensure you are set in an appropriate position to ensure optimal performance, comfort and minimise the risk of injury.

Depending on your current ability and goals for the future, I would suggest riding at least three times per week if you want to make noticeable gains regarding your performance. Below are some great training sessions if you are planning to complete a Sprint or Olympic Distance Race this summer. Each session takes about one hour to complete.

  • Threshold Session

Warm Up

10mins (Building Intensity)

Main Set

5mins @ *Threshold ‘uncomfortable’ / 60s Rest

Repeat 4-8times

Cool Down

1-2mins VERY easy

*If you have a power meter use 85-100% of FTP for your 5min efforts

**If you don’t have a power meter use a 5-8 on an RPE (1-10) scale

  • Interval Session

Warm Up

10mins (Building Intensity)

30s Sprint / 30s Easy x 5

Main Set

2mins *MAX Effort / 2mins Rest

Repeat 4-8times

1min *MAX Effort / 2mins Rest

Repeat 3tmes

Cool Down

1-2mins VERY easy

*If you have a power meter use 115-130% of FTP for 2min efforts and 120-140% for 1min efforts

**if you don’t have a power meter use a 9-10 on an RPE (1-10) scale

  • Recovery Session

Warm Up

5-10mins (Building Intensity)

Main Set

30-45mins ‘Steady Pace’ aiming to keep cadence between 85-95

Cool Down

1-2mins VERY easy

*If you have a power meter ride use 55-75% of FTP for your main set

**if you don’t have a power meter use a 2-5 on an RPE (1-10) scale

I understand for many people it isn’t possible to complete three sessions per week, given family, work and other commitments. In this case, aim to just complete two sessions and keep rotating through the three sessions provided.

These sessions can easily be completed indoors on your trainer or outdoors on the road. Completing indoors often works well because you can work specifically on what you are trying to achieve without the distractions of riding on the open roads. I always encourage all athletes to make sure they do get some riding on the open roads as well to ensure they get used to riding in various weather conditions which they will undoubtedly face during a race. The open roads also help develop and maintain your bike handling ability such as cornering and descending.

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