Tim Cusick - Coach of World and National ChampionsAll plans by this Coach
The Time-Challenged Cyclist: Undulating Periodization Base and Build Phases
written by Tim Cusick, TrainingPeaks WKO product leader and master coach with BaseCamp
Let’s face it: finding the time to train can be a challenge. Life, kids, and work leave a lot of cyclists with about 6-8 hours a week to train. This isn’t much, but it doesn’t mean you can’t still get in great shape and accomplish your event or riding goals. This training plan breaks the mold of the traditional linear periodization system (constantly adding more and more time to training as a way of building fitness) by introducing a system of undulating periodization consisting of variable micro-cycles that consistently introduce new exercise stimuli to the body to improve fitness and performance.
The theory is simple: the body likes a pattern but also needs change to continue to improve. This plan features five unique, four-week macrocycles that undulate your training. This means that your body has four weeks to adapt and get used to a certain pattern and format of training before you move on to something different, requiring your body to constantly be in an adaptive state.
The plan is designed for cyclists with at least 1-3 years of training. It kicks off with a traditional aerobic base-building cycle, then quickly progresses to more challenging cycles of high-intensity interval training (HIIT), intensive aerobic building, and max aerobic intervals before ending with a second cycle of HIIT.
Included with your plan:
- User guide
- Testing protocol
- Coaching tips and encouragement
- Free strength training routine from Menachem Brodie
Need help loading your structured works to your device or smart trainer? Click here to read instructions. Please note that the testing workouts in this plan are not structured, as tests are dynamic and not meant to be limited by your trainer or device. For this reason, the test workouts will not show up in Zwift or other devices.
We've got more plans!
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.
Click here to view a list of frequently asked questions about our training plans. If you don't find your answer there, please email us directly.
How it Works
Training Plan Sample Week
Average Weekly Breakdown
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Day Off x2
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Training Load By Week
This plan works best with the following fitness devices:
- Power Meter
- Heart Rate Monitor
- This plan includes a Free Basic TrainingPeaks Account.
- Access your training plan anywhere on the TrainingPeaks mobile and desktop apps.
- Track your performance with robust data tracking and detailed graphs.
- Plan for your event in the TrainingPeaks calendar.
- Track your weight, sleep, hours, fatigue and stress while you train.
- Completed workouts sync with popular apps like Garmin and Wahoo. Learn More
- If plan includes Structured Workouts, then planned workouts sync to compatible devices and guide you through workouts in real time. Learn More
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?
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