"Houshang Amiri, without a doubt, has been key to my success as a top level cyclist."
-Max Plaxton
athletes, cycling, willock, plaxton

Off-Season Training

How to use the Off-Season to Prepare a Strategy for the Next Season

by: Houshang Amiri

December 22, 2014

Off-season training and preparation is one of the most important parts of your training, and it will dictate your next race season and performance. During the off-season it is important to reflect on your past season training and performance – by doing this you can establish a training strategy for the upcoming season.

In a previous training tip:  “Building a Baseline”, I covered a strategy for creating a new Baseline. http://www.pacificcyclingcentre.ca/tips/default.html?d=trainingtips/2012/10/30/450/ .This time I would like talk about two different types of approaches:  building a better baseline for Endurance rides, and improving your aerobic base, which is the key to your cycling performance regardless of your cycling discipline.

“Long Endurance Miles vs. Short Interval” training approach - the goal of both these training approaches is to maximize your training outcome and physiological adaptation with adequate metabolic stress in order to improve mitochondrial growth and function over the off-season months.

I work with athletes who use both methods, but which one is suitable for you, depends on your training time availability, weather conditions in the area you live, and your upcoming race season (your race schedule). For riders with good years of training under their belts, and who have the time to ride 5-6 times/ week, 4-6 hours per ride mostly in Zn2 gearing towards a long races, such as a  stage race,  I, I would suggest long Endurance Miles to build a base. For those not able to make this commitment you will be better with short Intervals sessions, 3x week Zn2a (Higher end of Zn2) plus 1-2 endurance rides in Zn2.

Your training zones must be identified through testing at the beginning of the training block, to make sure your training zone is set correctly.

Irrespectively of your approach to “Long Endurance Miles vs. Short Intervals” Key Performance Factors (KPF) http://www.pacificcyclingcentre.ca/tips/default.html?d=trainingtips/2011/12/30/372/  must be a target in your training, and your training should generate enough workload to meet the required physiological adaptations.

Over the past few decades at Pacific Cycling Centre we hold off-season training camps. These camps have a particular purpose - to improve and build your skills and techniques while aiming for a physiological and psychological compound of training, i.e. Aerobic Endurance.  From this you will have the required training and be prepared for the race season.  

For a list of camps see the PCC Training Camp Schedule:   http://www.pacificcyclingcentre.ca/camps/default.html

 

 


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