To become a qualified airline pilot, many hours must be spent in simulators and on training flights before you get to the required level – the same applies to your road bike training. You need to find a good cycle training programme, and put in the hours on your bike to get to the level of fitness you require. A diverse analogy I know, but true. The message is;- get on your bike and ride it!
Initially, you don`t want to do anything too strenuous. Your road bike training should increase gradually, yet consistently. It is impossible for me to suggest how long your first outings should be, for there are too many variables – your age, weight, location (flat or hilly), and the time you have available. Find a good cycle training programme and these variables will be factored in by your coach.
Once you have found a cycle training programme that suits your needs, implement it and stick to it, rigidly. Any diversion or break from your training regime will have an adverse effect, which will set you back. If you suffer set-backs like this, it will take you twice as long to recoup the losses and move forward to where you would have been before the training break.
If you are serious about cycling, whether you`re a novice or a professional, you need a good cycle training programme to stay fit and improve your performance. To maximise performance potential, there are a few things you need to keep in mind –
your availability to train – outside of work/family commitments,
your personal goals
how to exploit your strengths
how to build upon your weaknesses
your flexibility to manage home-life around training and vice versa.
Nutrition is an important factor that you need to think about. As you become more proficient, your road bike training sessions will take you longer to complete. Longer training times equal longer distances. It follows that the more you push those pedals, the more energy you burn – which needs to be replaced.
For shorter training sessions you would only need something light – sports bar, small sandwich or a piece of fruit. It gets a bit more in-depth for longer distances, (this will be covered in detail in your cycle training programme), and you have to strike a balance of carbohydrates, proteins and fats.
Just as important as food intake, is liquid nutrition. Never let your body get dehydrated. Drink before every road bike training session, even if you are not thirsty. Always carry enough liquid – sports energy drink or plain old water – to last you through your session. Your liquid intake should be at least a mouthful every ten minutes.
With a good cycle training programme that is tailored to your personal requirements, you can plan your road to success. People now realise that cycling benefits them in so many ways. The health benefits are obvious, it`s also great fun for all the family, and it is eco-friendly. Use your bike, rather than your car, to commute and you cut down on fuel emissions, save money, and help to reduce noise pollution – that`s win-win for everybody.
To your cycling success.