Basic Road Cycling Plan- Winter

Average Weekly Training Hours 02:01
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours 02:01
Training Load By Week

This is a 14 week training plan for a recreational road cyclist or road racer in the winter (Thanksgiving through first week of March). This plan includes outdoor and indoor cycling workouts (all indoor workouts can be followed on Cadence TV) as well as strength training workouts. This plan will help you to build up a great base before the spring.

The price of this plan includes a Cadence TV Membership.

Sample Day 1
Recovery Ride

Just spin the legs at a normal cadence (neither fast nor slow) at Active Recovery place. Do not place forward force on the pedals or allow lactate to build up in the legs. The goal is to preserve the "feel" for the legs and muscles, but go very easily. Power and heart rate should remain low.

Sample Day 2
Race Preparation: Classic Race Tune Up

The purpose of a tune-up is to prepare your muscles and the cardiovascular system for an upcoming race of big effort the next day. With some hard, short intervals the legs will become a bit more supple and responsive the following day. Riding too hard could create some muscle trauma and cause muscle soreness. After warming up, begin the main set. Over the next hour or more, cruise at endurance pace, working in two sets of sprints, The first set consists of 3 x 1 minute intervals with 5 min between intervals. Next begin 3 x 30 second all out sprints again resting for at least 5 minutes in between sprints. These intervals can be done at any point during the ride on hills or flats. Cool down WU: 15 min easy MS: 1 hour of recovery/endurance Include 3 x 1 minute hard efforts with at least 5 min easy in between each effort. Then, do 3 x 30 sec hard sprints with 5 min between each. CD: 15 min easy

Sample Day 3
Time Trial Warmup

Start with 15 minutes at level 2, Endurance, Then begin a 10 minute "ramp" where you gradually build from zone 2 to zone 4. By the last minute, you will be riding flat out, at TT pace (TT pace will vary from zone 4-5 based on distance). Then ride at an easy pace for 5 minutes. Next, do 4 x 1 min fast cadence efforts. Keep cadence over 110 rpm. Rest for 1 min between intervals, pedaling easy. Ride for 5 min at Level 2. Follow this up with one 5-minute effort at level 5. Pedal at an easy pace for 5-10 minutes. If you are racing, make sure to leave adequate time to get some water and an energy gel, change into your race clothing, change wheels (if necessary) and get to the start line 5-10 minutes before your scheduled start time. This typically means starting your warmup 1:15 before your scheduled start time. WU: 1 hour 15 min endurance, zone 2 10 minute ramp up from zone 2 to zone 4-5 (you should be at your TT pace by the last minute) 5 min recovery 4 x 1 minute fast cadence, 100+ rpm, zone 1-2, 1 min recovery between each 5 min VO2 max (zone 5) 5-10 min recovery

Sample Day 3
20 Minute field Test

This is a 20 minute time trial which can be done indoors or outdoors. If you are doing this indoors, make sure that you have very good air flow around you so you don't overheat (which will cause your HR to be higher and power to be lower). If you are doing the test outdoors, make sure that you have an uninterrupted stretch of road that is either flat or slightly uphill (1-5%) with a constant gradient. After a good warmup, start your field test. Make sure that you don't start to hard, especially in the first few minutes (everyone feels good at the start). If you aren't sure of how hard/fast you can go, it's better to start out conservatively and ramp it up throughout the effort. Record average HR, speed and power (if you have a power meter). This test will be done periodically to ensure that you are using the correct training zones as well as to measure progress.

Sample Day 3

Usually done after a race or intensity workout. Ride your bike very easily on the indoor trainer, rollers or outdoors on a flat road. PE for recovery rides should be 6-9 our of 20. HR should come down to zone 1, but may be elevated at first. Keep your legs moving with a cadence of 80-100. Make sure to rehydrate and refuel during your cooldown as well. If possible, have a recovery drink during this time. If that is not possible during your cooldown, make sure you have your recovery drink immediately afterwards.

Sample Day 6
Fast Group Ride

Seek out a fast group ride or training race. These rides should allow you to do some high intensity in a less structured way than doing specific intervals. They are also a good way to check how your fitness is progressing compared to other riders and practice tactics. The ideal group ride is a ride that is challenging but you are strong enough to make it through without being dropped. If you have difficulty finding a ride that is difficult enough, you can handicap yourself by riding a fixed gear, adding weight (e.g. heavy tires/tubes) to your bike or using lighter gears (nothing harder than a 39x15/42x16/34/13). If you are in danger of getting dropped, work on your conservation skills and don't work as hard as the other riders.

Sample Day 8
Strength: Strength 1

Total Body circuit training to work on sport specific strength Weight: 70-85% of max Reps per set: strength: 8-12, stability: 15-20 Sets per excercise: 2-3 Tempo: strength: 2/0/2; stability: 3/2/1 (eccentric/isometric/concentric) Rest: 60-90 seconds Excercises: Warm-up: self myofascial release: Foam roll the chronically tight/sensitive areas 20-30 sec. each. 5-10 reps of each dynamic stretch (multiplanar lunge, wood chopper, high knee walking, backward lunge with a twist, inverted hamstrings, spiderman, hip crossover, iron cross, scorpion) Circuit: Core Stability ball: knees to chest: 15-20, 2/0/2 tempo Side plank: one leg: 30-60 sec. Supine bridge: one leg: 30-60 sec. Bicycle crunch: 15-20, 2/0/2 tempo Rest: 60-90 sec. Power Squat jump: 8-12, explosive Rest: 60-90 sec. Strength Dead lift with a row: 8-12, 2/0/2 tempo Dead lift: 15-20, 3/2/1 tempo Rest: 60-90 sec. Dumbell bench press: 8-12, 2/0/2 tempo Push up with rotation: 15-20, 3/2/1 tempo Rest: 60-90 sec. Single-arm dumbell row: 8-12, 2/0/2 tempo Stability ball cobra: 15-20, 3/2/1 tempo Rest: 60-90 sec. Step Up/Lunge/Squat (vary by week): 8-12, 2/0/2 tempo Single-leg squat touchdown/leg curl: 15-20, 3/2/1 tempo Rest: 60-90 sec. Repeat circuit for a total of 2-3 circuits. If you are not able to do these excericses as a circuit (e.g. crowded gym), do lower body first, then upper body, then core. Cool-down: actively stretch the tight areas: 10 reps, hold 2-5 seconds: Hamstrings, Calves, IT band and Lateral Hamstrings, Adductors, Gluteals, Quadriceps/Hip Flexors, 90/90 chest, Lats, Shoulder Internal/Extrenal rotation. About 5 min total. Be careful to avoid injury. When in doubt, use less weight and work on proper technique before adding additional weight and repetitions. If you don't have much experience with strength training, consulting a personal trainer is recommended before starting. For more information on these exercises, including diagrams, click on the paperclip in the upper right hand corner. For videos of the core excercises, go to and for videos of the strength excercises, go to This workout can be modified to do at home with little or no equipment. If you are short on time, reduce cool-down time, warm-up time, just do one circuit or just do the core excercises.

Colin Sandberg
Backbone Performance

Basic Coaching: $75/monthPremium Coaching: $200/monthRace Director (UCI licensed): $100-$200/day