Training Descriptions

Finish Off Efforts

Hard interval zone to max, rest in Recovery Zone.

At Endurance pace warm up for 30 minutes. The number of efforts you are required to do are listed on the program. Stop the efforts if you find at any given time your heart rate cannot be raised to the effort zone (like the hard efforts) staying in the saddle for each effort and wind up quickly to your hard effort zone. Sprint for at least 30 seconds after completing the minutes listed on the program. By selecting a landmark to sprint to it will help you in your effort to finish the effort as hard as you can. To help with your recovery ride at this (recovery) pace for up to 10 minutes between each effort then cool down for at least 20 minutes in recovery zone after the last effort.

Big Ring/Little Ring (BR/LR)

Endurance or Moderate Zone, according to program.

Changing between the big and little chain rings make the big/little ring exercises work. If no timing or gearing is listed on the program change every 15 minutes whilst in the endurance zone. The gears I would suggest are a *53x15 for the big ring and a 39x15 for the small ring. Unless tested otherwise on your program. Switching of gears should commence after the first 20 minutes of a ride at Endurance pace in normal gears. This will help you become used to pushing an assortment of gears in different situations. If during a race for instance you misjudge the gear you have chosen for a hill or coming down a steep hill and then heading into another hill the above training exercise will save you (great for riding rolling hills). If you don't have the exact gears select as closely as possible as you will be riding the entire time (noted on schedule) in either ring. I suggest regardless of the terrain you keep the bike in the above mentioned rings. If you come across a hill and are riding in the big ring continue riding up the hill in that ring even though you would not normally do so in racing or normal training. The same applies if you encounter a steep descent whilst in your small ring (spin the small gear). Wherever possible try and keep the pace in your Endurance zone unless otherwise specified on your program. Try to resist making the ride more comfortable by shifting the gear up or down. If you find at times the small ring feels big and the big ring feels little try and ride through it. This exercise is designed to assist you in your development in both strength and spinning but you will be left feeling tired. By doing big ring/little ring training some rides will seem to pass quickly. Extended hills can make this training tiresome where as you will find rolling hills to be more suitable.

Attack Hill Intervals

Variable, (shooting for max).

The intensity of Attack Hill Intervals and Attack Hill Sprints are the same except Attack Hill Intervals time wise are longer. Roughly 600 metres in length with a gradual climb at the beginning and getting steeper as the hill progresses (with the middle quite steep) and then flattening out at the top with the finish line right at the top where it levels to flat is the perfect hill for these sprints. Before starting, choosing a gear that you feel comfortable with is important as you will stay in that gear the entire ride up the hill. Start the interval from a slow rolling start (say 15km/h). The gear should feel easy initially but as the hill and time go by it will get harder and harder. You should be struggling by the time you near the top but keep focused as you sprint to the finish (don't give into pain). The big chain ring should be used for these intervals. Gearing around 53x19. Between each effort ride in the recovery zone for 10 minutes or longer or as specified on your program until fully recovered and after the final effort at least 20 minutes cool down time.

Attack Hill Sprints

Variable, (shooting for max).

A certain type of hill is best for Attack Hill Sprints. The ideal length being around 300 metres and starting with a gradual climb and getting steeper as the hill progresses. The middle of the hill should be quite steep and then flattening out at the top with the finish line being right at the top where the hill levels to flat. The gear should feel easy initially as you sprint into the hill and almost spun out but as the hill and time go by it will become harder and harder. You should be struggling by the time you near the top but keep focused as you sprint to the finish (don't give into pain). Once again the big chain ring should be used ideally starting with a 53x21 and working up to 53x16 when you are feeling at your strongest. After you have sprinted through the finish line and have actually stopped sprinting keep pressure on your pedals as you shift to a more comfortable gear. Gear up again, continue spinning and don't stop pedaling if the hill drops off on the other side. If you feel you want to 'puke' or have the 'falling over' sensation then you know not only have your efforts destroyed you but most importantly you have done them correctly. However if you find you can't push yourself physically to do one, pack up and head home for the day.

Strength Endurance (SE)

Endurance zone or Low Moderate zone E3A

A cadence of between 55 and 65 is used with Strength Endurance with training done on a hill or mountain. Depending on the slope of the climb a big or little ring may be used. If possible a gradient of between 5 and 8% would be ideal (using this as a rough guideline). Unless written into your program this exercise should be done seated. Heart rate should vary from high E2 to low E3 (note you should still be able to speak). Bearing in mind the most important role in this exercise is the cadence.

Big Ring Efforts (BR)

Moderate or hard interval zone.

A specified gear or cadence is used in Big Ring Efforts as they are mostly shorter efforts followed by a rest period. Firstly a warm up period of 40 minutes plus at your Endurance pace is recommended before starting this program. Several minutes of moderate pace work on a hill is advisable to complete the warm up. Do the number of intervals noted in the first part of the program for as many minutes for each one as the second number lists. Ride at an easy pace between each interval for the suggested time, or up to 10 minutes without reaching much higher than the lower end of your Endurance zone. If you encounter hills stay on top of the gear and rise out of the saddle and once you have reached the top settle back into the saddle. Cool down by riding home after the final interval or alternatively complete the total time suggested for the day. If you find that one day you can't get it into the zone (but normally you can) finish the ride at your recovery pace and give me a call when you get home. If by chance you find you have knee pain or any other aches/pains that you feel may be aggravated by big gear work, cease the effort straight away and give me a call.

Rest Day

A day off completely free from exercise and stress.

Days off should be stress free and relaxing. Spend this time getting a massage, stretching, reading a book, catching up with family and friends not thinking about your bike or what errands need to be done.

Recovery Day

Recovery zone.

This exercise is for recovery. Head out at a comfortable pace in the recovery zone riding extra easy up any hills and avoiding anything that will contribute to the build up of lactic acid in the muscles. Bear in mind this exercise plays an important role in building your training.

Endurance Ride

Endurance zone.

This ride may seem easy some days and harder others. As it is an even tempo ride resist any temptation when you feel good to push harder. You should ride in the easiest gear you can spin at 90-110 rpm unless the program states differently. Always pay attention to your heart rate, cadence and your gear (if using power as a directive, your power level). If you can't spin the gear you are in whilst in the zone, drop the gear down until you can maintain 90rpm in the heart rate zone. If you can't maintain the heart rate zone regardless of which cadence or gear you ride, drop down into the recovery zone for the rest of your ride. If you are still experiencing hardship in your recovery zone, head home, give me a call and rest. Once in a while to get over a steep hill you may go over the zone, however if you find you are doing it consistently it may be a sign that you are going too hard or alternatively your heart rate zone may not be as exact as it should be. You may experience difficulty in maintaining this pace the entire ride even if you are only doing an hour. An adjustment to your zone may be necessary if you find riding in this zone is easy.

Max Efforts

(Also hill and flat and rolling hill intervals) hard interval zone, rest in recovery zone.

These efforts are mostly short efforts followed by rest period. Warm up for at least 20 minutes at your Endurance pace before starting the effort in this program. Proceed with the number of efforts as shown in the first part of the program for as many minutes for each one as the second number lists. Ride at an easy pace between each effort for 10-20 minutes that doesn't reach much higher than the lower end of your Endurance zone, however you may extend this rest period longer than 10-20 minutes depending on the number of intervals suggested on the program. If you find that one day you can't get it into the zone (but normally you can) finish the ride at your recovery pace, go home and give me a call.

Base End Endurance

Low endurance zone.

Instructions are the same as the Endurance exercise but heart rate should be lower. Head home and give me a call if you find at this easy pace you are feeling tired/run down.

Over geared Sprints (OG)

Vvriable, staying under AT, rest in recovery.

These sprints are short and will push your muscles helping you gain power for short bursts in your racing. Make sure you warm up in your Endurance zone for at least one hour minimum alternating the cadence between bigger and smaller gears so your joints are warmed up. Roll into a gradual hill with a 4-8% gradient at roughly 15km/h for the first set then shifting into a 53x15 or equivalent gearing as you jump into the climb at roughly 85% effort increasing up to 100% as you pedal the stated revolutions or time on the program. For your second set attempt to jump into it at 100%. Recovery period of 10 minutes between each set is recommended unless otherwise directed. You should be going nearly all out by the end of the sprints but not hard enough that you exceed AT. Concentrate on driving your legs forward and pushing back.

Moderate Efforts

Moderate interval zone.

With your heart rate in your recovery and endurance zones warm up for 30 minutes. Proceed doing the efforts shown for the number of minutes listed with your heart rate in the moderate zone. Ride for up to 15 minutes between each effort in the recovery zone. If you find that the ride time shown on the program for the day is longer than it would take you to do the efforts and recovery, complete the ride at the Endurance or Recovery pace. Make sure you concentrate on using efficient form whether you are standing or seated. With your heart rate in the recovery zone cool down as you spin home for a minimum of 15 minutes. For flat efforts select an area where you can maintain a cadence of 90rpm and for hilly intervals a cadence over 70rpm mixing seated and standing positions.

Motor paced Efforts

Moderate to hard interval zone depending on instructions, recover at Endurance or Recovery zone.

Before meeting up with the motor bike, warm up for at least one hour. At the low end of the moderate zone spend up to 15 minutes behind the motor bike, then proceed with the first attack effort by attacking around and ahead of the motor bike. You have to stay ahead of the motor bike whilst it retains pace fading back behind the motor bike to high end Endurance pace after effort is completed. Before commencing another effort recover for 10 minutes behind the motor bike. Wind up behind the motor bike then sprint around the motor bike to finish effort. Fade back behind the motor bike after the finish for 15 minutes at high end Endurance then head for home. Bear in mind this is a strenuous workout and should only be completed on a road where there is minimal traffic. Safety should always be your first priority.

On - Off Intervals

TT Pace and Above

On Off intervals are multiple intervals with multiple recoveries. In Endurance zone warm up for 20 minutes followed up by 5 sets of 5x60 seconds on or above TT pace then 60 seconds off at low end Endurance pace. Allow 10 minutes at recovery pace between each set unless otherwise stated on your program. Alternate between seated and standing jumps into efforts. This exercise is for attack response and recovery (5x60 seconds on, 5x60 seconds off). At recovery pace cool down for a minimum of 20 minutes. Total time of workout should take roughly 2.5 hours.

Race Training

Variable. Hard on climbs, sprint for signs. Work hard. Try out new tactics.

Before starting make sure that all racing is safe from traffic and that you feel confident that you can carry out the effort (recovery wise). You can start by doing a group ride totaling the time shown on the program or alternatively make a group ride part of the total time shown on the program. Attacking, climbing at race pace, sprinting, pace lining along with other race efforts can all be put into practice. The aim of this exercise is that it functions like racing.

Indoor Trainer Spin-up Efforts

Variable to max, rest in Recovery zone.

In your Endurance zone warm up for 20 minutes alternating between small and medium gears. Commence in the largest gear that you have. This can be achieved by one of two methods. By keeping the bike in the large chain ring or changing to the small chain ring and increasing the resistance on the trainer, whichever you choose the gear should be hard enough that you have to stand up to make it go. For 5-10 seconds stand and make the gear go around as comfortably as you can. Start by pushing ( as you are standing) the gear for 10 seconds at 80 % effort switching after 10 seconds to the next smallest gear for a further 10 seconds continuing until you reach the smallest gear still spinning at 80 %. At some point you will need to change from standing to sitting. Between each spin up take 5 minutes rest riding in Recovery zone. Make sure you do the number of spin ups shown on the program. This exercise should take you around 100 seconds using the ten gears. After the last spin up cool down on the bike for 10 minutes minimum. After getting off the bike and having finished stretching make sure you change out of your sweaty clothing.


Variable (shooting for max).

Before attempting the first sprint of the day allow at least 25 minutes warm up time and then at least 10 minutes minimum between each sprint unless stated differently on program. By marking a course, for example, taking one landmark to another roughly 300 metres away and then sprint that course for the duration of your sprints for the day. You will find that this is one of the best ways of doing sprints and is one way of you being able to judge how you are feeling as the sprints progress. By doing sprints when you are warmed up and well rested you should notice your heart rate soar towards its maximum not long after the effort. For a true gut wrenching all out effort make your sprints a minimum of 30 seconds. You will need to keep spinning a medium size gear, say 39x17 after the effort to keep your legs from locking up. To help ward off nausea that some athletes experience after having given it their all keep spinning with a little pressure on the pedals after you have completed the effort. After completion of your sprints make the ride home easy because if you have done the efforts correctly this will be just about all you can achieve. Bear in mind sprints are all out efforts that extend beyond just getting up to your maximum speed. You have to try and maintain this speed as long as you can without slowing down.

Standing Hill Climb Efforts

Endurance zone unless noted on program as moderate.

Warm up for at least 20 minutes before starting your first standing effort. By practicing climbing in the standing position for periods of time not only will it help with your climbing ability but will also get you out of the saddle and give your butt a rest every now and again. Standing efforts are best done on the road bike and you should notice an improvement in your comfort level during long and steep climbs. Do 10 minutes of normal spin riding in the Endurance zone between each effort noted for the day. The exertion for the effort should not be much higher than the upper part of your Endurance zone. Unless otherwise stated standing efforts are in the Endurance zone. The form is to be good standing form – bend hips enough to get the seat near the back of the thighs, hands on the hoods (or drops on the flat) your bike rocking while the body stays fairly still, powering the pedals around rather than just dropping your weight on them. These efforts are not meant to be hard but merely exercises enabling you to become accustomed to riding out of the saddle for extended periods of time when you feel the need to. For the first effort set yourself a starting time regardless of the terrain and just do them. It's okay if you end up standing on the flats but avoid standing intervals for too long on a down hill ride. If doing these efforts on a trainer make sure your hands are not on top of the hoods but are in the drops as you would be on the flats. On completion of the efforts ride for 10 minutes in your Endurance zone.

TT Training

Hard interval zone unless noted as moderate according to program. (Mainly for Indoor Trainer)

Make sure you have chosen a resistance level that will double for the warm up and the exercise from week one to week ten and beyond. This exercise can be completed on your TT bike or road bike and you may change gears at any chosen time but not the resistance. A warm up period of 15 minutes is advisable before starting. Start the timer for the time frame shown on the program settling into a speed that you can sustain at TT pace. Ideally the plan is to either sustain or increase the speed weekly as time increases. To find the most comfortable pace work with your cadence (at least 90rpm). This exercise is best done after your Strength Training unless it is unavoidable to do it the other way around. When you are scheduled to do a shorter time than the previous week attempt to maintain a higher average speed than when you did the same TT time weeks earlier. After this exercise you should feel tired but not as tired as you would feel had you done this all out TT on the road. This exercise is not only about finding you optimal cadence at TT pace but also getting comfortable in the TT position. It also gives you a way to mark your progress in respect to TT speed. You may experience a little hard suffering over the week.

Attack Efforts

Max to hard interval zone, rest in recovery zone.

At Endurance training pace warm up for 30-60 minutes. Starting from a descent rolling pace less than 32kph up to 41 kph use a comfortable jumping gear for the pace and make an all out jump and sprint from your starting point. Sprint for 20-30 seconds before settling into a comfortable time trial pace for the rest of the effort finishing as strongly as possible. Rather than dropping into the seat ensure you ease yourself into it. The first efforts should be done on smaller gears easing into bigger gears for the middle efforts and finishing with whatever gear feels the most comfortable. Complete the number of efforts shown on the program. As with the hard efforts if you find you have problems raising your heart rate to the interval zone cease the efforts and head for home.

Start the first effort jumping as hard as possible from a moderate pace winding up as quickly as you can to hard effort pace completing the time shown in the hard effort zone. Between each effort ride at recovery pace for up to ten minutes or as per your program, until completely recovered. After the final effort cool down in your recovery zone for at least 20 minutes.

Attack Efforts should represent the act of an attack on a group or pack.


Variable, staying under lactate threshold, ride in endurance zone.

Jump training focuses on the initial acceleration and involves very short sprints. The number of jumps and gearing you are shooting for are listed on the program. A rest period of around 3 minutes is ideal between each effort, however if the jumps are included in an Endurance ride you can use your discretion as to how you space them providing they are convenient and safe. Before the first effort allow up to 45 minutes warm up time in the Endurance zone. Depending on what directions are given, if any, efforts may be seated or out of the saddle or alternated between the two. Pedals should be punched as hard as possible for the duration listed. This applies to each effort.

Next we will be working on speed/snap. Concentrate on using your arms to help you get more pedal power and at the same time focus on pushing your knees forward whilst looking at the mark you are sprinting to. For the entire sprint stay out of the saddle and do not change gears unless have been given another directive – if not rise out of the saddle and jump in a 39x15 (42x16) sprinting for ten seconds maximum then in your Endurance zone rest for three minutes using an easy gear. The next five jumps to be done in 39x14 (42x15) 39x13 (42x14) 53x15/ 53x14/ and 53x13. If you have more than above mentioned jumps do them in the gear you feel most comfortable with. The above should not leave you feeling tired like the longer sprints but if you find you can reach a speed under 8 seconds make your jumps shorter.

Strength Transfer Efforts

High End Endurance zone to Moderate zone

These are big gear intervals on a relatively steep incline. Try to keep HR in the Moderate zone at highest, but shoot for high end Endurance zone. Cadence should be 50—60 rpm. Pedaling should have a bit of a punch to it, but still work to keep it rounded. OS = Out of Saddle. IS = in the Saddle, following the program regarding time or distance for effort.