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Be Ready for the Cycling Season by Preparing in the Off Season

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Whether you’ve decided to enter the BP MS 150 for Team Sun & Ski or other races in your area, it’s easy to lose focus on your training during the winter months.  Stefan Rothe of Rothe Training in Austin, Texas offers the following tips in his blog to keep you focused so you start the cycling season right:

  1. You should review ‘08 and see what you accomplished. That can be a number (i.e. your 40K Watts or time) or a placing (i.e. win at a specific race).
  2. You should know what you want to achieve in ‘09. Specificity is key here, so the more in detail the better. I.e. raise LT Power by 20W; do a sub-56min 40KK; win a State Criterium Championship
  3. You need a plan on what to do in the next 3-4 months:
  • How long should I take off from riding? Or should I not?
  • How do I incorporate off-the-bike strength training with regular riding?
  • Will doing cyclocross races hurt me in my preparation for the next road season?
  • I like to run. What days of the week do should I do that?
  • Is intensity or volume more important in the month of October, November, and December?


The above figure shows an example of a monocyle as part of an Annual Training Plan. Note the phases of Transition, Preparation, and Competition and how volume and intensity varies. (from: Periodization: Theory and Methodology of Training. Tudor Bompa. Human Kinetcis Publishers. 1999)

This time of the year is also very good time to go and check your health by a health professional. A regular physical exam or a simple blood test at your doctor’s office could identify any small problems which you should know about before getting back into “training mode” again.

Getting a Threshold Test done is also highly recommended for this part of the season. You want to know where your performance is as of right now so you can train accordingly in the upcoming month. Knowing your threshold power or heart rate is crucial when following a structured training plan which is based on your individual training zones.

Want to make sure you are meeting your goals this off season instead of packing on the holiday pounds?  Track your calories, distance, heart rate and even distance and location with this awesome Garmin Forerunner 405 GPS Heart Rate Monitor.



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