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Benefits of cycling

How To Prepare For A Multi Stage Cycling Event


– Riding or racing on back to back days can be so rewarding. It’s certainly a challenge for just about any cyclist. So if you have just signed up
to the event of a lifetime, like a Haute Route or, indeed, you’re about to do your first stage race, then coming up are some very relevant tips on just how you train and
prepare for multi-day events. (smooth electronic music) Firstly, we think that as
important as getting used to training and racing
on back-to-back days is, you shouldn’t let it get in the way of trying to be as fit
as you possibly can be. It might sound counterintuitive
(breathing hard), but actually training to be good at riding on successive days might not actually get
you as fit and as fast as you would otherwise
would be (breathing harder). But the fitter you are, the less taxing your stage
race or ride is gonna be. So take for example this, is the Passo Campolongo in
Alta Badia (breathing harder). It’s exactly the kind of
climb you’d find in an event like the Haute Route (breathing harder), and it is, as you can
probably hear, a tough one. But, if through training, (breathing hard) we manage to improve our FTP by 50 watts, it’s gonna be an awful lot easier and an awful lot less taxing than if you’re simply better able to cope with soaking up (breathing
harder) hard work. So the point is, is that you
shouldn’t get overwhelmed and fixate on the challenge
of back-to-back days. Your priority should be
getting as fit as possible, and then try adding the
following ideas (breathing hard) into your training. Now most of us are probably quite familiar with the idea of training
on successive days. When done in a controlled way, it is a fantastic way of getting fit, because you put your body
and just that little bit more load. (breathing harder) And so when training for multi-day events, we can keep using the same principle, but you have to add in
an extra day or two. So (breathing harder), if you normally do a two day block and then an
easier third recovery day, why not build it up to three days or four? Maybe even ending up at
five (breathing harder). As long as you get enough
recovery afterwards, it should do wonders for you. But as we’ve just been talking about, don’t do it too much because you still need to
prioritise getting fitter and getting faster. So, that’s a five day block
every three or four weeks is what you should be looking at. And then, you’re definitely gonna see the benefits of that extra hard work. Now another great way
of getting really fit, particularly if you’re short on time, is to use split days. So that’s where you train in the morning and then in the afternoon or the evening. And the idea is that you
get to stress your body loads more (breathing harder) and therefore get more stimulating training effects than if you’re
just to do one ride a day. And, if you’re preparing for an event with four to five hour days back-to-back, you don’t need to worry ’cause split days will still do the job. They will very quickly
get you used to riding with the sensation of
fatigue in your legs, which is very important for
stage races (breathing harder). And then, it also mentally toughen you up. I certainly have always
found them really demanding in that respect. What you gotta do is make
sure you plan correctly, so that two sessions in
a day that complement each other. So perhaps you do sub
threshold work in the morning, like sweetspot intervals, and then save your harder intervals (breathing hard) for in the evening. This next one is a great little tip and is, in fact, straight out of the book of Matt Stephens’s training packs. So we’re probably all
conditioned to the idea of having one or two
easy days after a race or a big sportive. I certainly am. In fact, even now Monday
is a day of rest for me from a cycling perspective, for no reason other than habit. However, training the day after an event is a fantastic way of getting your body used to coping with that
fatigue that you get, and then also, trying
to condition yourself to recovering faster as well, So, why not get even more
bang for your buck, in fact, (breathing harder) by
riding the day before the event as well. So you could ride Saturday, do your event Sunday, and then Monday, you could do a split day either side of a day’s work. Now admittedly, you
probably won’t be much use in the office that day, so you can apologise
to your boss, from us, and just explain that
you will unfortunately need to be making some sacrifices. For the focus on training really hard and getting more tired, you’re also gonna need a
keep a really close eye on our fatigue levels. Because although we wanna dig really deep for specific blocks, we also wanna make sure
that we’re fully recovered before starting the next one. So as well as asking yourself some searching questions every day about how you’re feeling
(breathing harder), you also wanna make the most of the technology available to you. So if you’ve got a powermeter, use that in conjunction with a heart rate monitor. Or, you should just invest
in a heart rate monitor. And then, the main secret to recovery is simply to get adequate rest. (breathing harder) But then, in addition to that, you also need to bear
in mind your nutrition, because the harder you train, the more important that becomes. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Don’t Worry(!) Because as daunting as your
first stage race or ride might be, you will get through it. I remember being super
nervous before mine, but the thrill of the event
masked any pain in my legs. And I did, indeed, survive it okay. ‘Cause as great as a
multi-day event challenge is, the most important thing to bring with you is a positive attitude. (breathing harder) Now, one man who is facing
his first multi-day event this summer is John Chocolate Voice Beavan, who is indeed doing a Haute Route. And if you wanna keep
track of his progress, first you need to make
sure to subscribe to GCN. To do that, just click on the globe. And then if you want to
see John’s intro video, that is just there. Or, to see the latest GCN show where John gives us an update, click just over there.

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