<%@LANGUAGE="VBSCRIPT" CODEPAGE="1252"%> John's Training Tips
John's Cycling Training Tips


So to get those of you who have not been on the bike over winter up and riding here are a few tips that I have used and still use to this day. As a competitive veteran cyclist and still having to work a full day and then train, one learns to train smarter. The key is a heart rate monitor. With limited time people often want to train harder for a shorter period of time, so wrong. A person only gains fitness during recovery process and the trick is to know your recovery and when to train again. For example if you have one hour a day to train try doing two half-hour sessions your recovery will be better. The second rule is to know your resting heart rate; this is a good indicator of fitness and general well being. If it is up more than 5 to 8 beats when you wake up don't train.

So how does one get started RIDE!

Here are a few pointers to assist with the correct training zones:


Firstly we need to understand the 3 basic training zones zone 1 50% to 70% aerobic endurance zone 2 70% to 80% aerobic stamina zone and zone 3 is 80% to 90% of max heart rate is known as the lactate zone or lactate tolerance. (The exact point at which lactate tolerance occurs varies from person to person, basically at the point when the burning sensation in the legs starts)

2) To calculate your training zones a) Take your max heart rate and subtract your resting heart rate. b) Multiply this value by the zone heart rate eg 70%. c) Add back your resting heart rate. d) This rate then becomes your 70% value, do this for 50% 80% and 90%. E.g. My max is 189 and my resting heart rate 42 so 189-42= 147, 147 x 50% = 73, 73+42 = 115, therefor 115 bpm is 50%.
3) As a rule of thumb to calculate your max heart rate you can take 220 less your age and that will give you're your theoretical max heart rate. eg 220-39 = 181. In my case my max in actual fact is 9 beat higher 189 bpm. You cannot change your max heart rate through training etc it is a genetic value based on the size of your hearts pumping action. As in my case I have pushed myself to find my max heart rate using a Polar heart rate monitor, only try this if you are quite fit and you have no known medical condition.
4) Next you need to set a target training time per week for example 6 hours a week or 10 hours a week. The rule is basically to train 70% of your training time at 70% of max heart rate or less with the balance of the training time distributed between the other two zones at 20% in the 70% to 80% zone and 10% in the lactic zone.
5) Try to get more than 4 rides a week in. This will ensure a steady improvement. If you have had the winter off start slowly and keep it all below 70% for the first week or so. An ideal training program is about variation for example I rest on a Monday, Tuesday I do power work in big gears for about 60 to 90 min mostly at Kyalami but I also do this on an indoor trainer. Wednesday, I do speed work between 40 at 60 min at over 100rpm in light gears I try no go over about 85%, I include some intervals of about 1 to 5 min in this work out to a max of 85%. Thursday 60 to 90min - Intervals at below 80% for about 5min then recover to about 65% before the next interval starts. Friday is mostly a rest day or a light 30-min on the rollers at about 65% in a light gear. Saturday about 3 hours of riding with the club we try go a max of about 80% to 85% but that sometimes depends on the day but try keep to the 70% of the ride below 70% of max heart rate. Please note ALWAYS warm up before a ride and try warming down after. Sunday is mostly a race day or in turn a very easy long ride with mates. Try get in at least 2 to 3 hours.
6) A tip lost training time can never be made up!! It does not help to train double if you missed the day before or go twice as hard all you are doing is delaying you recovery!!
Safe riding - John