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Oklahoma Sports and Fitness May/June 2017 : Page 12

POWER UP: STRONGER IN THE SADDLE TRAINING | JAMES O'BRIEN Training season for the cyclist happens year-round. Whether the goal is a Gran Fondo, a particular race, or personal best, the avid cyclist will find themselves in training mode repeatedly. Oklahoma has a respectable number of cycling clubs and events both locally and within a few hours’ drive. Access to so many cycling opportunities begs the question, "How can I truly prepare for an upcoming event?" The first item a cyclist should address is what event (or events) he or she wants to do, and what his or her goal is for each. This is the basic start of an annual training plan. The goal is creating a plan that targets a few specific events. Next, build your training plan to work toward each event. targeted event. The road cyclist will start build training in spring and summer. The Build Phase Simply getting out on a bike and riding will begin building endurance. But for those that want to go further and faster, knowing some basic training principles will help. Riders that know me will laugh because I so often preach, "Know your numbers." For clarification, speed is not the number you want to focus on. If you have a power meter, know your FTP, if you have a heart rate (HR) monitor, know your threshold or max HR. Speed is relative to terrain and conditions. HR and FTP provides a window into the actual work being Figure 1 Functional Threshold Power (FTP) Test Warm-up: 20 minutes in a gear that allows high cadence (typically small chainring): 5 min utes 90 rpm 2 minutes 95 rpm 2 minutes 100 rpm 2 minutes 105 rpm 1 ½ minutes 110 rpm 30 seconds 120-130 rpm 2 minutes 90 rpm 6 seconds 130+ rpm 1 minute 90 rpm 6 seconds 130+ rpm 1 minute 90 rpm 6 seconds 130+ rpm 2 minutes 42 seconds 90 rpm Offseason: Power Typically, the training starts at the beginning of the off season, which is winter for road cyclists. During the off season, the goal is to build a base. This is achieved from steady moderate intensity rides. Some clubs, like Life Time Fitness, offer indoor trainer sessions. The Life Time Fitness session for road cyclists is appropriately titled, "Power." The focus is to establish a rider’s functional threshold power (FTP) and increase it through specific power building workouts during the base building season. After the base period, training enters the build period specific toward preparing for a Active recover: light on the pedals, spin for 5 minutes, then straight to main test: 30-Minute Main Test • Ride as hard as you can sustain for 30 minutes. • After 10 mins, start your monitor and record your average heart rate or power for the last 20 mins. • Aim for a cadence of 90-100 rpm throughout the test. This is very important as it will help ensure consistency the next time you complete the test. • Note your average heart rate or power for final 20 minutes of the test 12 MAY / JUNE 2017

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