JUNE TRAINING HINTS
June is a good time to assess your strengths and weaknesses – and improve on your weaker areas.
The weather is warm (with the occasional shower!) and the evenings are light. Just right for getting out on the bike!
We have a ride of 178km – 110.6 miles- ahead of us. It therefore makes sense to train over a similar distance when time allows. A good way of pacing yourself is by means of a heart rate monitor. If you have an opportunity to do several rides of this sort of length, you might want to ride the first one at maybe 60% – 70% of maximum effort, perhaps increasing the power level slightly on subsequent rides. You may also want to start with a flat route then build up to more hilly routes. More information on how to ride at a particular power level using an HRM is given in the May training hints.
If you have hills nearby you, these are a good training ground. However, it is difficult to beat some real mountains for pacing yourself on climbs several miles long. Wales and Scotland offer some possibilities.
If you have a chance, you could join the Andalucia training trips (see http://www.losolivoscttc.info/copy-of-cycling and scroll down to Etape du Tour training trips)
Riding at the correct speed over mountainous terrain takes some doing, though using a heart rate monitor is helpful. However, speed training is another matter! Find a suitable route fairly traffic free near where you live, maybe 5 or so miles long, and use it as an evening ride route, recording your average speed each time. This gives you an incentive to improve, and a record of your achievements. Over this distance there is less need to pace yourself – go for it!
Practicing Group Riding
As well as a bit of competition, group riding enables you to perfect your slip streaming technique, saving you around 20% of your energy when slip streaming one rider, and far more when following a group. It is useful to perfect safe riding technique in situations where you are riding fairly close to others. Sportive events, Audax rides and club rides are all useful in this respect.
Interval training is also useful for building anaerobic and aerobic fitness as well as muscle strength.
It is beneficial to find good training routes close to where you live, as it saves travelling time, but now the daylight lasts longer is good to venture a bit further afield. If possible do find some beautiful scenic routes with some climbing, and of course a refreshment stop!
ENJOY YOUR TRAINING!
Cycling in S Wales