1hr Bike : Indoor or outdoor session incorporating micro-intervals

Do this Christmas morning and then enjoy the Christmas festivities with a glow of satisfaction!

This is a great session if you only have 60 minutes. It’s best done on a turbo but you can do it on the road.

This session combines two very effective forms of training; riding at an intensity called sweet-spot, and short intervals that push up your maximum sustainable power output.

Sweet-spot is around five per cent under your threshold as measured by heart rate or power output, and it’s an intensity you can ride at on a day-to-day basis.

That’s because you aren’t pushing the red line where your body starts producing lactate, which is what you risk doing when training at your anaerobic threshold. Threshold training is effective and has its place, but sweet-spot is nearly as effective at pushing up your threshold power and can be repeated often, so you do more total training.

The other element, the one minute riding as hard as you can followed by two minutes easy, is a micro-interval and micro-intervals are great for building total power, for boosting VO2 max towards its potential and for increasing efficiency.

The intensity of micro-intervals requires you to pedal perfectly which in turn teaches perfect pedalling. Chris Boardman, who used to train implementing micro-intervals as short as 10 seconds repeated every minute on a turbo-trainer for one hour.

For this session:

  • Ride for 35 minutes, warm up light and after 10 minutes progress so you are riding just under your threshold (if you’re not sure what your threshold is, then ride it a pace you can sustain over a 2/3 hour ride).
  • Then go straight into some 3-minute intervals, where you ride as hard as you can for 1 minute and recover with easy spinning for the remainder of the 3-minute interval. At this time of the year it’s best to start with five of these intervals but you can work up to 10 over the coming months.
  • Cool down on a light gear, but pedalling at high cadence easily.

Then shower, and enjoy Christmas day — you’ll have earned it! 🎄🍗

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