12 Week Base / Maintenance Training for the Off Season, Heart Rate & Power, 7-11 hrs/wk

Average Weekly Training Hours 08:46
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours 08:46
Training Load By Week

This training plan will lay the foundation for your future personal bests! The specific training is designed to help you make big improvements in: leg strength, pedaling efficiency, sprinting, endurance and sub threshold power.

This 12 week Training Plan is designed for cyclists who while leading a busy life can fit in 5 days/week of training, with typically 1-2 hours available Monday to Friday and 2-4 hours available on Saturdays and Sundays, for an average of 7-11 hours/week. You may be a regular A or B group rider and/or participate in road racing. This plan works great for category racers: 3-5 or Masters (Vets) 40+ and Masters (Vets) 50+.

The plan builds with 3-week training blocks followed by an easier week of 6-7 hours before starting the next 3-week block. The goal of this training plan is for you to build a solid base of fitness and possibly maintain your fitness gains over the last few months, if your season has recently ended. You may be coming off a short break or reduction in training and now want to resume and start building for the coming months and next season.

Many cyclists perform strength training during the off season. Mondays (rest day) and Wednesdays (shorter trainer day) have been designed to accommodate your preferred strength training (gym, yoga, pilates etc).

Before starting the plan you should have a good level of fitness and be accustomed to training 8+ hours/week.

This plan is the result of 20 years of professional racing and coaching experience combined with the latest training methods. You will find the training plan highly descriptive and precise, guaranteeing you get the most out of each workout.

Sample Day 2
Power Test: 20 min (Optional)

*See PDF doc included (attached here) for information on how to determine your Heart Rate zones.
Power Test day: On waking record your body weight. Record your power on 1 second. Warm-up for 30-40 minutes. Warm-up example: start with 10-15 minutes in Zone 1-2 then do 5 minutes in Zone 3, 3 minutes in Zone 4, and finish off with 30 seconds in Zone 5. Cadence 90 rpm+ throughout.
Form Test: Perform 1 x 20 minute time trial effort at race pace. *Use the average power achieved to calculate your training zones (input the power value in the Training Zones spreadsheet provided:

Sample Day 3
Trainer High Cadence drills

Trainer. Warm-up 10 min in Zone 1-3 / 90rpm+. After warm-up include 1-legged pedaling drills alternating each leg for 30 seconds+, for a total of 6-10 minutes. Keep the intensity low and focus on good form. Stop if you have any knee pain.

Then do 4 x 5 minutes in Zone 3 at the following cadences:
1) 80-90rpm
2) 90-100rpm
3) 100-110rpm
4) 110-120rpm

Ride in Zone 2 for 3 minutes between intervals / SS rpm. Warm-down for 5 minutes in Zone 1 / SS rpm.

Sample Day 4
Big Gear 45-60 min

Ride in Zone 2 / 85 rpm+. After a good warm-up perform 45-60 minutes of continuous big gear riding in your Big Gear zone / 65-75 rpm. Focus on smooth pedaling and stay seated as much as possible. Relax your grip and upper body. Alternate: holding in the drops / brake hoods. After Big Gear spin for 5 minutes in Zone 1 at 110 rpm+. Stop the Big Gear interval and spin easy if you have any knee or other abnormal pain.

Sample Day 6
Endurance - Steady to Hard

Ride in Zone 2-3 with some efforts in Zone 4. Keep your cadence over 85 rpm on the flats. You can ride with a group if you can stay under Zone 5.

Sample Day 7
Tempo ride

Road or MTB / After a good warm-up ride continuously in your Tempo zone / Self Selected cadence. Warm-down 5-10 minutes in Zone 1 / 90rpm+.

Sample Day 9
Tempo ride - High Cadence Riding

After a good warm-up ride continuously in your Tempo zone / 90 rpm+. Warm-down 5-10 minutes in Zone 1 / 90rpm+.

Sample Day 10
Trainer Strength

Trainer. Warm-up 10-15 min in Zone 1-2 / 90-100 rpm and include 2 x 10 sec accelerations. Then do 3 x 8 min in Zone 3 / 50-60 rpm (big gear). Change position every 2 minutes as follows: 1) holding on top of bars, 2) riding no hands, 3) riding in the drops, aero position 4) out-the-saddle. Spin for 2 min in Zone 1-2 / 100 rpm+ between intervals. Warm-down 3-5 min in Zone 1-2 / 100 rpm+. Elevate front end of trainer to simulate climbs (optional). *Stop if any knee pain.

Simon Kessler
Simon Says Cycling

Simon Says Cycling training plans draw on over 30 years of racing experience in the amateur and professional ranks and a highly accomplished coaching career that spans over 20 years and includes world championship medals, national, provincial, and state champions, and a yellow jersey in the Tour de France.

Coach Simon’s success proven coaching methods combine cutting edge training with developing your mental fitness by tapping into your inner power. Learn more at http://simonsayscycling.com