Updated 30th September 2019 Paddy Doran Cycling blog
Now that most cyclists and triathletes competitive seasons are winding down, thoughts are turning to next season…
So, how can you make sure that you can be in the best form to achieve your goals?
Here are three common approaches that are sometimes taken!
1. The yahoo approach
Ah I’m wrecked after the season I’ll have a big long rest and recover. Hang up the bike and hit the social scene. Late nights plenty of drink and wild living until January. Then I’ll get lots of miles in. Give up the drink and go on a diet.
2. The really serious approach
Recovery is for wimps. I’ll begin training for next season immediately after the season ends, try to retain and improve on the fitness gained during the racing season. Lead a very strict lifestyle – no drink or late nights. Live like a hermit and train like mad. Four nights on the Turbo during the week, intensive spin classes and lots of hard miles at the weekends.
3. The balanced approach
I’m going to celebrate the successes of this season. Reflect on what went well. Decide what can be further improved. Plan for next season in a balanced and intelligent way. Keep myself fit with a progressive training plan that I enjoy. Have a balanced lifestyle.
The Likely Outcomes
You might have a really enjoyable winter, however you will most likely lose most of your fitness and have a very poor season next year.
Your head and body will probably be melted by Mid-February at the latest! You’ll be lucky to see the races in mid-March.
This will give you a good chance of making improvements and achieving your goals.
When you have decided which approach to take, what’s next?
When are you planning to peak?
Let’s take the very popular Easter stage races. They are now about six months away.
So there is a lot of time to improve your fitness with progressive balanced training.
Plan now; try to get some coaching input from a coach or experienced people in your club who might help you to develop a suitable programme.
Between now and January you can improve your general (off the bike fitness) This will lay the foundations for very strong preseason bike training and great performances in the future.
Endurance cyclists, triathletes
In the early part, October/ November/ December you can vary training as much as possible. The ideal would be a mixture of some of the following:
- Cathal Moynihan core strength training
- Hill Walking
- Mountain Biking
- Cyclo-Cross and Road Cycling
- Indoor Ball Games
- Weight or Circuit Training
Emphasise the activities that you enjoy most and have the skill to participate in. Balance training with rest recovery and relaxation.
Plan a weekend or two away for a change of environment -cycling or walking etc. Go mountain biking? Ride mountain bike or cyclo-cross races.
But do not take these activities too seriously at this stage if your priority is to perform well during the summer months. Go walking or running on forest trails or parks.
Check out your local park runs these are 5 Km events in local Parks all over the World. these are great social events as well as good motivation to improve fitness
Join an Aerobics/circuit/weights or swimming class in your local gym or school.
Cyclists training for sprint events like track sprint Kilometre, 500m TT or Downhill Mountain bikers will need to take a different approach.
THey should have an emphasis on strength training to enhance power/ speed development. This should be carried out with an expert in the area of strength and conditioning.
Remember! How you take care of yourself over the next few months is going to determine how you perform next season.
Insufficient build up during this period will result in poor and inconsistent performances next season.
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