Functional Strength Training Program - 8 weeks

Author

Tim Cusick

All plans by this Coach

Length

8 Weeks

Typical Week

3 Strength

Plan Specs

fitness beginner intermediate advanced masters strength base period

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Summary

8-Week Functional Strength Training Program


written by Tim Cusick, TrainingPeaks WKO4 Product Leader and master coach with Velocious Cycling Adventures

Why functional strength for cyclists?
In the traditional definition, functional strength training is the practice of motion against resistance, with the objective of improving our ability to perform a specific athletic activity through our load joints (shoulders, hips, knees, and ankles) through a full range of motion without pain, stiffness, or restriction.

To explain it further, functional strength training is a range of total-body activities that build strength, balance, and coordination for general fitness and improve our ability to perform general, day-to-day activities. Although functional strength training is commonly perceived as a form of core training, core training could be considered a subset of functional strength training.

We cyclists and triathletes can get stuck in a box of doing the same motions over and over again, no longer spontaneously stimulated by our training to improve our functional strength. The movements of functional training require us to coordinate balance and control, and timing the muscle contractions forces us out of our box to focus on correcting the muscular imbalance developed in cycling-specific workouts. The major adjustments our bodies must make to improve functional performance include coordination, range of motion, type of contraction, and speed of movement. Traditional strength training is not as effective to improve these areas, which is why we turn to functional training.

Equipment needed
1. Dumbbells and/or kettlebells
2. Physio or stability ball
3. Medicine ball
4. Exercise mat
5. Pull-up bar

The workouts
There are 10-11 exercises in each workout. The first six or seven exercises focus on the functional aspect of balancing specific muscle groups, and the last four focus on plyometric strength. Start by doing the exercises with just your bodyweight or a weight that is comfortable for you. If you can complete the reps and the sets easily, start adding some weights. Upon completion of a workout, you should be tired but not exhausted. The goal is not increasing weight but balancing your muscles. The time between sets should be short (30 seconds to 2 minutes).

A downloadable eBook is included (attached to the first day of the plan) that contains the entire training program and links to descriptions of the prescribed workouts.

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.

Questions?
Click here to view a list of frequently asked questions about our training plans. If you don't find your answer there, please email Coach Kathy Watts.

Tim Cusick

Velocious Endurance Coaching

Tim Cusick is the TrainingPeaks WKO4 product leader and the owner of Velocious Endurance Coaching. His expertise in training, racing, and data analytics offers a unique approach to training that guides his clients to amazing success. He currently coaches world champion Amber Neben, road pro Emma Grant, and numerous other pros and age group racers. Tim has 100 plans in all cycling disciplines! Need help picking a plan? Fill out our survey here: https://goo.gl/forms/bkGSAYA9VzV9tsq22.

Back to Plan Details

Sample Day 1

Power Cycle Workout 1

WARM-UP
5 minutes cardio exercise (treadmill, stationary bike, trainer, fast walking, etc.)
-----
THE STRENGTH WORKOUT
Sets, reps, and rest: Perform all of the exercises types listed below, doing one of each focus.
With each exercise, perform 2-3 sets of 8-20 repetitions.
-----
1. Walking Lunges 3 x 10
2. Bulgarian Squat 2 x 8
3. Pull Up 2 x 10
4. Push Up 2 x 15
5. Plank 4 x 45 Seconds
6. Physio Ball Back Extensions 2 x 10
7. Dumbbell (Kettlebell) Squat 2 x 10
------
8. Platform Depth Jumps 1 x 8
9. Long Jumps 1 x 8
10. Barrier Lateral Jumps 1 x 8
11. Dumbbell/Kettle Bell High Swing 2 x 8
-----
Cool down: 5 minutes cardio

Sample Day 1

Download the eBook

In addition to the workouts loaded to your calendar, you can download the entire program in the attached eBook, which also contains links to descriptions of the exercises used.

Sample Day 3

Power Cycle Workout 2

WARM-UP
5 minutes cardio exercise (treadmill, stationary bike, trainer, fast walking, etc.)
-----
THE STRENGTH WORKOUT
Sets, reps, and rest: Perform all of the exercises types listed below, doing one of each focus.
With each exercise, perform 2-3 sets of 8-20 repetitions.
-----
1. Dumbbell / Kettlebell Squat 2 x 10
2. Jack Knife on a Ball 2 x 10
3. Dips 3 x 10
4. Pull Ups 2 x 10
5. Ball Roll Out 2 x 20
6. Regular Superman 2 x 20
-----
7. Depth Jumps Vertical 1 x 8
8. Hurdle Jumps 1 x 8
9. Box Shuffle 1 x 8
10. Single Leg Chop 2 x 10
-----
Cool down with 5 minutes of cardio.

Sample Day 5

Power Cycle Workout 3

WARM-UP
5 minutes cardio exercise (treadmill, stationary bike, trainer, fast walking, etc.)
-----
THE STRENGTH WORKOUT
Sets, reps, and rest: Perform all of the exercises types listed below, doing one of each focus.
With each exercise, perform 2-3 sets of 8-20 repetitions.
-----
Functional:
1. Step Ups 2 x 10
2. Side Bridge Hip Abduction 2 x 10
3. Bent Over Row 2 x 10 each Arm
4. Dumbbell Chest Press 3 x 8
5. Planks 4 x 45 seconds
6. Rear Inclines 3 x 30 Seconds
-----
Plyo:
7. Staircase Jump 1 x 10
8. Vertical Jumps 1 x 8
9. Lateral Bound 1 x 8
10. Plank Shuffle 1 x 20
-----
Cool down with 5 minutes of cardio.

Sample Day 8

Power Cycle Workout 4

WARM-UP
5 minutes cardio exercise (treadmill, stationary bike, trainer, fast walking, etc.)
-----
THE STRENGTH WORKOUT
Sets, reps, and rest: Perform all of the exercises types listed below, doing one of each focus.
With each exercise, perform 2-3 sets of 8-20 repetitions.
-----
1. Walking Lunges 3 x 10
2. Bulgarian Squat 2 x 10
3. Pull Up 2 x 12
4. Push Up 2 x 15
5. Plank 4 x 45 Seconds (Go longer if can)
6. Physio Ball Back Extensions 2 x 12
7. Dumbbell (Kettlebell) Squat 2 x 12
------
8. Platform Depth Jumps 2 x 6
9. Long Jumps 2 x 6
10. Barrier Lateral Jumps 2 x 6
11. Dumbbell/Kettle Bell High Swing 2 x 10
-----
Cool down with 5 minutes of cardio.

Sample Day 10

Power Cycle Workout 5

WARM-UP
5 minutes cardio exercise (treadmill, stationary bike, trainer, fast walking, etc.)
-----
THE STRENGTH WORKOUT
Sets, reps, and rest: Perform all of the exercises types listed below, doing one of each focus.
With each exercise, perform 2-3 sets of 8-20 repetitions.
-----
Functional:
1. Dumbbell/Kettlebell Squat 2 x 12
2. Jack Knife on a Ball 2 x 12
3. Dips 3 x 12
4. Pull Ups 2 x 12
5. Ball Roll Out 2 x 20
6. Regular Superman 2 x 20
-----
Plyo:
7. Depth Jumps Vertical 2 x 6
8. Hurdle Jumps 2 x 6
9. Box Shuffle 2 x 6
10. Single Leg Chop 2 x 12
-----
Cool down with 5 minutes of cardio.

Sample Day 12

Power Cycle Workout 6

WARM-UP
5 minutes cardio exercise (treadmill, stationary bike, trainer, fast walking, etc.)
-----
THE STRENGTH WORKOUT
Sets, reps, and rest: Perform all of the exercises types listed below, doing one of each focus.
With each exercise, perform 2-3 sets of 8-20 repetitions.
-----
Functional:
1. Step Ups 2 x 12
2. Side Bridge Hip Abduction 2 x 12
3. Bent Over Row 2 x 12 each arm
4. Dumbbell Chest Press 3 x 10
5. Planks 4 x 45 seconds (go longer if you can)
6. Rear Inclines 3 x 40 seconds
-----
Plyo:
7. Staircase Jump 2 x 8
8. Vertical Jumps 2 x 8
9. Lateral Bound 2 x 8
10. Plank Shuffle 2 x 20
-----
Cool down with 5 minutes of cardio

Functional Strength Training Program - 8 weeks

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