I finished my first season of racing this year and have had a decent amount of success. It is clear that my strength is time trialling as the races I won or did well in came through solo attacks or breakaways. For this reason I’d like to focus on time trialling over the winter and was looking for a good time trial session, but none of the websites I looked at were very useful. Is there a specific time trial session I could do?
Many thanks, Joe
It’s great that you’ve discovered your key strength and this has influenced your decision to try time trials. First off, you will need to decide if you want to do short, medium or long TTs.
Most riders tend to focus on the short to medium-length races first, to get an idea of pacing themselves and maintaining an aerodynamic position.
For the shorter distance TTs, such as a 10-miler, you will have to tap into your short-term muscular endurance as well as your aerobic endurance, therefore it makes sense to include some training sessions where you perform some shorter intervals above your race pace. If you don’t already use a heart rate monitor, it would be a good idea to get one so you can become familiar with using training zones.
A commonly used training session is, after a warm-up, to ride at your TT race pace (on rollers or a turbo trainer) for 20 minutes. This has the added bonus of being a test as well, in that you can record your distance travelled on a cycle computer and compare it to future sessions in order to monitor improvement.
Many riders will do two 20-minute efforts at 80-90 per cent of their maximum heart rate, with five-10 minutes recovery in between as a standard training session. It’s important to remember that the longer the time trial, the lower the intensity of the effort should be.
Rob Mortlock is a BC coach
This article was first published in the November 7 issue of Cycling Weekly. Read Cycling Weekly magazine on the day of release where ever you are in the world International digital edition, UK digital edition. And if you like us, rate us!