Polarized 80/20 CX - Classic Zones - Cyclocross
Tim Cusick - Coach of World and National ChampionsAll plans by this Coach
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Polarized 80/20 Cyclocross Plan
written by Tim Cusick, TrainingPeaks WKO product leader and master coach with Velocious Cycling Adventures
Train with the coach of national and world ITT champion Amber Neben! This 8-week plan uses the popular 80/20 polarized approach to training and is an excellent way to peak (or re-peak) once a solid fitness base has been established (such as completing one of our full-season plans). It was created for racers aged 18-60, as the polarized format offers enough rest to allow similar structure for all ages; however, if you're over 40 and find yourself really tired, turn the weekend high-intensity day into a rest or easy endurance day.
Polarized training has some significant benefits when it comes to pushing a peak. Tim wrote an explanatory article demonstrating how this training modality can be used by an aerobically-fit athlete to push peak form as you head into a big race or racing season. This plan is designed for the mature cyclist (meaning cycling age), but it can be easily adjusted for riders with less experience by following the explanation in the article. The keys to success are to go as hard as you can go on hard days and DO NOT EXCEED TARGETS on the easy days.
The plan uses classic zones and is designed for use with power, heart rate, or perceived exertion. Even though the workouts have been structured for your convenience, don't rely on the structure on the hard days, because the workout needs to be maximal intensity.
The workouts can be used in the traditional format or as structured workouts, which load automatically to select devices (Garmin, Zwift, RGT, ErgVideo, TrainerRoad, Racermate, and more) so you can see your workout and interval numbers right on your device.
Included with your plan:
- Instruction sheet (attached to the first day of the plan)
- Testing protocol
- Coaching tips and encouragement
Need help loading your structured works to your device or smart trainer? Click here to read instructions.
Tim Cusick has written dozens of training plans for many different areas of cycling: road, gravel, time trial, mountain bike, cyclocross, indoor training, and more. Click here for a full list of his current plans by sport type and click here for a comparison chart of his major plans.
Click here to view a list of frequently asked questions about our training plans. If you don't find your answer there, please email Coach Kathy Watts.
Training Plan Sample Week
Average Weekly Breakdown
|Workouts||Weekly Average||Longest Workout|
|9:20 hrs||3:00 hrs|
Day Off x1
|0:06 hrs||0:07 hrs|
|Workouts Per Week||Weekly Average||Longest Workout|
||9:20 hrs||3:00 hrs|
||0:06 hrs||0:07 hrs|
Training Load By Week
This plan works best with the following fitness devices:
- Power Meter
- Heart Rate Monitor