If your 2023 goals include a triathlon or cycling race, finding the right cycling coaching plan can make all the difference. When considering your cycling training plan options, it's critical to consider the science behind each type of training plan.
Here are some of the features to consider when evaluating cycling training programs:
Online cycling training plans aren't difficult to find. However, the best cycling coaching plan to help you achieve your goals should be customized for you.
Many cycling training plans are generically built for a period of weeks (8, 10, 12, 14, 16, etc.). These cycling training plans do a decent job of increasing fitness, but sometimes fall short when it comes to peaking you for a specific race or races. Before you commit to an online coaching plan, be sure to contact the provider to discuss building a custom plan to peak for your goal race or races. By using a backward design, building from your peak race to the start of your training, your cycling training plan will be more likely to peak you for your big race.
Many endurance training plans, when graphed based on volume, take the shape of a pyramid. This linear progression starts with lower volume, builds to a peak, and tapers to lower volume near the peak race. For endurance athletes, linear periodization can leave athletes feeling most fit during the middle of their training block, not when they want to peak. Looking for an online cycling training plan that builds both volume and intensity with peaks and troughs in a non-linear way, can elicit adaptation and growth throughout the training plan.
Endurance sports like running, cycling, and swimming can become routine, but also monotonous. The best online cycling training plans incorporate a variety of workouts to keep you engaged and challenged.
Time-Based vs. Distance-Based
Alternating between time and distance-based workouts can be what you need to keep your workouts feeling fresh. For instance, your cycling training plan might alternate between structuring your endurance rides between a specific distance and a specific time. By alternating between time and distance, you can focus on achieving performance (distance) versus effort (time). This can be critical to help you grow physically, mentally, and emotionally during your cycling training plan.
Speed vs. Power
Another novel way to differentiate cycling workouts is by focusing on speed versus power. For instance, your goal might be to achieve a specific power output during one workout and an average speed during the next.
Contact a local coaching service, such as Plan 7 Coaching, to learn more.