You have signed up to ride a 12-hour mountain bike race solo and your primary goal is to finish happy with a consistent ride. Focus is on efficient riding and finishing. Prior to starting this plan you should have been riding three or more times per week and are comfortable riding on dirt roads and trails. This plan builds the type of steady aerobic endurance needed for 12-hour solo racing with a gradual build up to the longest ride of 8 hours, four weeks before race day. On this plan you will be riding five times per week working on pedaling skills, climbing strength, night riding, fueling and race pacing. Long rides, including pit stop practice, are on weekends. This plan will prepare you for a strong, consistent 12-hour solo performance with focus on both training the body and organizing the race day logistics (pacing, fueling etc). Training is recommended and paced by heart rate. During the plan you will test yourself with a simple field test to estimate your lactate threshold heart rate. This LTHR is used to set the heart rate training zones used in the plan and for pacing purposes on race day. Visit the LW Coaching website http://lwcoaching.com/ to ask training plan questions on our forum, read mountain bike specific training articles, learn new workouts and see what events our coaches and athletes have been racing.
DAY #1: Do 15 minutes of core training. Read through the Core Training doc found on your daily log page for core exercise descriptions. Choose a variety of exercises for your hips, abdominals and back. Examples are bridging, pillar exercises, crunches, back extensions, Pilates. Then do 15 minutes of stretching. Focus on your legs and hips. Follow this link for exercise suggestions Core Training for Mountain Bikers: http://lwcoaching.com/core-strength-for-mountain-bikers/
DAY #2: Heart rate and Performance Field Test. This test is to set a performance benchmark to track throughout the season and also to set heart rate training zones. Do a long deep warm up prior to the test. Then time trial 20 minutes on a flat out-back course or up a continuous gradual climb. Pace the 20 minutes evenly with a maximal effort. Record average power, average heart rate and distance covered in the 20 minutes. Finish ride time with long easy cool down. Use the LW Coaching Heart Rate Zone and Power Training level Calculator at this link to calculate your training zones/levels: http://lwcoaching.com/trainingplans/levelCalcs.htm . Prior to conducting this test review the Testing Guidelines doc found at this link: http://lwcoaching.com/?p=138
DAY #3: Warm up for 10 minutes with easy spinning.
Max Cadence Set: 10 X 1 minutes as 10 seconds max cadence and 50 seconds easy spin recovery. HR stays zone 2 and below.
Spin-Up Set: 8 X 2 minutes as 1 minute high cadence, 1 minute easy spin. HR stays zone 2 and below.
One Leg Pedaling Set: 8 X 3 minutes as 1 minute right leg only at 90 rpm, 1 minute left leg only at 90 rpm, 1 minute both legs at 95 rpm. HR stays zone 2 and below.
10 minutes easy cool down.
DAY #3: After riding today do 15 minutes of core training. Choose a variety of exercises for your hips, abdominals and back. Examples are bridging, pillar exercises, crunches, back extensions, Pilates. Then do 15 minutes of stretching. Focus on your legs and hips.
DAY #4: Tempo intervals. On road or trainer. Do 4 x 6 minutes in the 3 zone (2 minute recoveries). Relax! Smooth pedaling. 80-90 rpm.
DAY #4: After riding today use a combination of rolling on the foam roller and stretching to work out your hot spots.
DAY #5: Core training. Do a variety of exercises for your hip, abdominal and lower back muscles. Examples are bridging, pillar exercises, crunches, back extensions, Pilates. Follow this link for exercise suggestions Core Training for Mountain Bikers: http://lwcoaching.com/core-strength-for-mountain-bikers/