Develop good cycling habits
Winter brings the inevitable poor weather and reduced opportunities to ride outdoors, so we asked Wattbike’s expert coaching team to give us some tips on how to make the most out of the months leading into the season.
There’s little argument that training indoors is one of the most efficient and effective ways to improve your cycling fitness. Indoor training is even more important during the winter months when poor weather and reduced daylight hours can also have an impact on your cycling safety.
Training indoors provides a warm, dry, safe and, importantly, a controlled environment. It’s this control, combined with using your personal fitness data, that will see you in fantastic shape come next spring.
If you’re already training indoors regularly but not using personalised data to set the parameters for your training sessions then some simple and quick fixes will revolutionise the results you get from the time you’re investing in riding more quickly.
Initially, you’ll need to undertake a test to set your training zones, which guides the intensity of your training during each session. The Wattbike has a series of in-built tests to make this easy and their experts highly recommend the 3-minute aerobic test. This test sets your personal training zones, which ensures you are training at exactly the right intensity with every pedal turn.
Checking that your training is having the desired effect is key to keeping you on track and motivated. The simplest way to do this is to repeat the same test you took at the start of your winter training on a six-weekly basis.
Your progress on the Wattbike is indicated by producing more power for the same heart rate – in other words, you can ride at a higher intensity for the same effort. Your personal training zones then shift upwards with your improving fitness so that you don’t plateau and lose motivation.
Winter is also a great time to improve your pedalling technique too. Becoming a smoother, more balanced rider helps you to produce more power for the same effort. On some of the longer rides you have planned this can have an impact on your endurance, so sessions where you can iron out those deficiencies in technique are time well spent. If you’re training on a Wattbike then you can see your pedalling technique in real-time during every session, which will really help you to change the way you ride a bike for the better.
A Fresh Start
We all need a few weeks off the bike at the end of a busy year – it helps both physically and mentally to take a complete break. When you return to cycling you’ll feel refreshed and ready to hit your winter training hard. The team at Wattbike recommend that you work your way back in gently, based on your own personal fitness data and in a dry, safe and controlled environment.
Check out www.wattbike.com for more information on training zones, pedalling technique and how to get your winter training off to a fantastic start.
www.wattbike.com – The Official Indoor Bike of Prudential RideLondon.