This XC plan is a week long program that will guide you to peak both physiologically and mentally at your upcoming MTB event.
In this 5 day program, each workout utilizes various drills and techniques to taper workout duration yet enhance intensity - a highly successful scientific formula that has been developed to allows you as the to perfectly peak come race day. Also included are recovery day tips and detailed pre-race sport psychology advice. To fully benefit from this plan, it is advised that you have a working cadence sensor and heart rate monitor set to zones 1 - 5.
Start your rest day off by tracking and logging your resting heart rate, body weight and sleep quality. Now instead of rushing out for your training session, spend the extra time to prepare your day's meals, ensuring that you replenish any depleted nutrient stores from your previous week, as well as start with your carboloading phase leading up to the weekend (this means no more sugary snacks)... During the course of the day, spend as little time on your feet as possible and elevating your leg's above your heart with any opportunity that you get. If you own any compression wear, today's the day to rock it. In the afternoon, spend 15 - 20 minutes foam-rolling (rolling each limb for 30sec), before completing a full-body stretch routine. Once you've done that, lay down and take a 30 - 45min nap (this will promote growth hormone release, speeding up recovery). Before bed, drink your protein recovery drink with milk and avoid looking at any technology devices atleast 30 minutes before bed time. Get to bed early tonight, aiming on clocking a minimum of 9 hours of sleep tonight.
This cadence specific session gives your legs a great "shake-out" by mixing low resistance, high intensity sprints with longer rest intervals. This combination boosts physical power endurance without producing too much fatiuge. Ideally, complete this session on an indoor trainer or flat stretch of road. Note: During the high CAD sprints, avoid 'bopping' up and down in your saddle by keeping your upper-body stable and maintaining a slight resistance on the peddles. Warm-up: 05:00 - Building to top of HR Zone 1 at 90RPM. 02:00 - HR Zone 2 at 95 RPM. 02:00 - HR Zone 2 at 100 RPM. 02:00 - HR Zone 2 at 105 RPM. 01:30 - HR Zone 2 at 110 RPM. 00:30 - Maximal Effort Sprint at 120 RPM. 02:00 - HR Zone 2 at 90 RPM. Repeat the following sprints 3X over: 00:06 - 150+ RPM. 00:54 - 90 RPM. 02:00 - HR Zone 3 at 90 RPM. Repeat the following sprints 4X over: 00:30 - Build to a CAD of 110 RPM. 01:00 - Hold CAD of 110 RPM. 04:00 - HR Zone 2 at 90RPM Cool-Down: 05:00 - HR Zone 2. 05:00 - HR Zone 1.
Warm-up: 05:00 - Building to top of HR Zone 1 at 90RPM. 02:00 - HR Zone 2 at 95 RPM. 02:00 - HR Zone 2 at 100 RPM. 02:00 - HR Zone 2 at 105 RPM. 01:30 - HR Zone 2 at 110 RPM. 00:30 - Maximal Effort Sprint at 120 RPM. 02:00 - HR Zone 2 at 90 RPM. Repeat the following 4X over on a long, gradual climb, starting each interval from a standing start: 02:50 - HR Zone 4 (seated). 00:10 - Maximal effort sprint (standing). 02:00 - HR Zone 2 (descend back to start). Cool-Down: 10:00 - HR Zone 1
This session is a non-compulsory, easy recovery ride that'll help keep the legs turning over into the weekends race. Complete as follows: Warm-up: 10:00 - Build to top of HR Zone 1. Workout: 30:00 - Lower Half of HR Zone 2, maintaining an average CAD of 90 RPM. Cool-Down: 10:00 - HR Zone 1. Once home, immediately complete a full-body stretch routine whilst drinking your recovery shake.
Throughout this leg speed session, focus purely on your cadence, sticking to an easy gear for the whole session. Warm-Up: 05:00 - Building to top of HR Zone 1 at 90 RPM. 05:00 - Building to top of HR Zone 2 at 90 RPM. Repeat the following sprints 3X: 00:05 - Maximum Effort (seated). 00:25 - Recover at 90 RPM. 02:00 - HR Zone 2 at 90 - 100 RPM. Workout: 03:00 - 90 RPM. 02:00 - 100 RPM. 01:00 - 110 RPM. 00:30 - 115 RPM. 00:15 - 120 RPM. 00:15 - Maximal Effort. 02:00 - HR Zone 2 (standing). 00:15 - Maximal Effort. 00:15 - 120 RPM. 00:30 - 115 RPM. 01:00 - 110 RPM. 02:00 - 100 RPM. 03:00 - 90 RPM. Cool-Down: 10:00 - HR Zone 1. Immediately after your cool-down, complete a full-body stretch whilst sipping on your recovery shake.
Make sure to work a "power-nap" into your day's schedule. This extra 30 - 45min of sleep time will allow your body to release multiple hormones that will hugely assist in your recovery for tomorrows big day.
Read below for instructions on your mental preparations building up to race day. Make sure to repeat this in any spare moment. For best results, sit in a quiet area with no distractions. Feel free to use music as well. Mental Preparation: This should be done as often as possible building up to the race and continued up until you are on the start line. 1. Begin by focusing your attention on yourself, closing your eyes and relaxing your breathing (3 sec in, 3 sec out) as you reflect on your training up to this point and the hard amount of effort you have been putting in. Believe that you have done your best leading to this point, both on and off the bike. 2. Keeping your eyes closed, change your though to the present. Focus on your personal skills on the bike, picturing yourself in first person racing each section of the course perfectly in as much details as possible. Keep running this through each section over and over before linking the whole course up and adding the start, competitors, spectators and the race day environment. 3. Believe in yourself. You have worked extremely hard building-up to this event and is something to be very proud of. Go out for with the intention of riding to the best of your own abilities (no one else's), and having fun doing it. Follow each step as accurately as possible. Repeat this over and over, as doing so will create a familiarity with the race environment, meaning your brain will begin to believe you have ridden through those sections perfectly before, allowing you to copy what you have already perfected during practice into the race.