Base / preparation 8 weeks Suitable for Road Rider Cat 2 or Cat 3


The Endurance Habit

All plans by this Coach


8 Weeks

Typical Week

2 Strength, 1 Day Off, 1 Custom, 6 Bike

Longest Workout

5:00 hrs

Plan Specs

cycling road cycling intermediate advanced power based base period

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The Base / preparation 8 weeks plan is aimed at the Cat 2 Cat 3 road racer who is looking to progress next season by building a solid base that can then be enhanced with a build block prior to early season racing.

This is usually started after an "off period" and follows a polarised approach to training, majority of time working at lower intensity working on muscular endurance, pedal technique and bike handling skills. Each week includes some shorter VO2 sessions that can be done indoors on a smart trainer or can be done outside on the road.

The plan and the workouts within it are most suited to power users but can be adapted for heart rate. All of the cycling workouts are fully built within the plan and so, it’s compatible with smart trainers and many head units.

The volume of training is between 8-12 hours per week. Many of the sessions have the option to extend the warm up / cool down if time and energy permits.

Each week includes a "chain gang" group ride, this can be moved around depending on your schedule, this is a chance to practice group riding skills as well as have some fun with club mates.

Taking into consideration that midweek sessions for many riders will be early morning or evening, these are typically around an hour in duration and are designed primarily for indoor trainers. We’d strongly encourage you to get out on the roads for the longer weekend ride but, if the weather makes this difficult or dangerous, suggestions for adapting them to more indoor friendly 2-hour ride are given.

There is an emphasis on taking the opportunity of winter to hit the gym and lay down some solid strength foundations. A solid 8-week block, where you consistently manage two strength sessions per week, will benefit your cycling and improve resilience. Treat any gym session as a hard interval session and so use an easy recovery ride the following day.

The plan has been developed by a British Cycling Level 3 Road and Time trial coach in conjunction with real life coaching riders racing and training at cat 2 and cat 3, the winter plan has consistently developed results.
Further information and contact can be found at


Training Load By Week
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours: 11:54

Toby Leyland

The Endurance Habit

The Endurance Habit - We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit. Doing the right things on a regular basis, without a pause for thought, so they become a way of life.
In 2004 Toby started his triathlon journey setting up the Bahrain Triathlon Club. Competed in sprint tri through to Ironman, represented Team GB in Long distance tri.
Heavily involved in coaching cycling at youth and U23 level as well as developing my passion for ultra running.

Back to Plan Details

Sample Day 1

Core strength, felxibility and mobility

Focus is on developing and maintaining core strength and stability. This is a light session as it combines with your day off.

Sample Day 2

Chaingang - #1 cadence development

Group chain gang with a specific focus: cadence development. Use a higher cadence when pulling through instead of relying on your gears. This may mean using a cadence of 110+ before relaxing into your comfortable cadence.

Sample Day 3

Technique Turbo/roller - Neuromuscular efficiency #1

Pedal stroke work and neuromuscular training are perfect to layer with your endurance block.

Intervals like single leg drills, spin ups, and super spin drills increase your coordination, improves efficiency and makes you faster for less effort.
This is best done on the turbo or rollers, the focus is on the pedal action and pedal speed not on the power output.
This will take time to develop and improve.

Sample Day 4

Muscular Endurance / Force - #1 3 * 8min

Improving muscular endurance results in less fatigue on longer rides and a greater ability to handle higher intensity training later in your season.
Some of the key adaptations made while working in these ranges are increases in muscle glycogen storage, aerobic conversion of fast twitch fibers and an increase in mitochondrial enzyme activity. All of these adaptations are important factors in building increased muscle endurance and strength.

Sample Day 5

Cycling Strength

Set up a dedicated 8 week program focused on cycling specific strength work. Create your own or use the routine below, ensure a proper warm up, correct technique and include a progression in your routine. via @YouTube
Build Strength and resilience.
Perform circuit based on time or reps. start at 30 seconds for each.

Sample Day 5

Aerobic Endurance #1

This ride is aimed to develop your aerobic endurance by targeting your zone 2 capacity. This is not an interval session, however the rode is broken into 4 parts so you can start using psychological training on your easy rides:

Part 1: Smile, embrace the weather, enjoy the moment. Steady 85rpm
Part 2: Relaxed body position, mentally scan your head, neck, shoulders, arms, back, hips legs. Think smooth. Cadence @ 90rpm
Part 3: Body Position, important to get used to riding in different positions on the bike, cadence is higher so this is a technique cross over. 90-100rpm
Part 4: Aero, think on being aero and neat, as if on your TT bike. Cadence is back to your natural range.

Sample Day 6

VO2 Intervals # 1 Intro - 3 * 3min

VO2 intervals are designed to raise your fitness ceiling, when performed correctly the physical adaptions dramatically improve FTP by increasing your aerobic capacity.

These sessions are hard and should be done when you are feeling fresh. They can be done on the turbo or on the road by finding a suitable hill. Cadence should be your natural rpm not a big gear or high speed spin.
If you are unable to complete the intervals at the target power then stop and cool down.

Base / preparation 8 weeks Suitable for Road Rider Cat 2 or Cat 3

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