Transition / Prep Training Plan - Classic Zones and WKO iLevels, 4-8 weeks
Tim Cusick - Coach of World and National ChampionsAll plans by this Coach
This plan is protected by our Refund Policy and may, with the author's approval, be exchanged for a plan of equal value from the same author.Still have questions about this plan?
Transition/Prep Training Plan
written by Tim Cusick, TrainingPeaks WKO Product Leader and master coach with Velocious Cycling Adventures
The transition period is often the most difficult one for cyclists. We tend to dislike slowing down and spending time repairing damage we’ve done. What damage? There are two types. First, cycling is a very controlled muscular sport, and riding thousands of miles or kilometers with your hands and glutes attached to fixed points can create some significant muscular imbalances. We need to use the transition period to build functional strength based on movement patterns and needs. Second, most cyclists lose efficiency throughout the race/event season, and the transition period needs to focus on rebuilding our pedal stroke to improve that efficiency.
This 4- to 8-week training program focuses on refreshing basic motor pathways through functional strength, fast pedaling, and foundation fitness. Daily workouts range from hiking to yoga to structured cycling workouts, together presenting a full 8-week functional strength building program that will prepare you to start your next full-season plan. Because this plan contains mostly sub-threshold work, it can be used with both Coggan Classic Training Zones and WKO iLevels.
I typically recommend 2-3 weeks off the bike with only walking and yoga as aerobic exercise. Once rested, a full 8-week program of transition and prep like this one is ideal for riders with late spring and summer peak event targets. If you have early spring targets, you might want to limit the transition period to four weeks; if that’s you, choose any four weeks of this plan based on your fitness. If you’re not sure which weeks to pick, go with the first four.
Transition phase workouts are rarely exciting. Fast pedals, lower-cadence tempo work, and endurance-focused rides can be a bit dull, particularly when done indoors. But it’s going to be worth it! Use the time wisely by practicing your mental focus skills in addition to the physical restoration. Learn to shift focus between key markers during interval efforts.
The workouts can be used in the traditional format or as structured workouts, which load automatically to select devices (Garmin, RGT, Zwift, TrainerRoad, Racermate, and more) so you can see your workout and interval numbers right on your device.
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|
|6:45 hrs||2:30 hrs|
|1:00 hrs||0:30 hrs|
Day Off x1
|1:18 hrs||1:30 hrs|
|Workouts Per Week||Weekly Average||Longest Workout|
||6:45 hrs||2:30 hrs|
||1:00 hrs||0:30 hrs|
||1:18 hrs||1:30 hrs|
Training Load By Week
This plan works best with the following fitness devices:
- Power Meter
- Heart Rate Monitor