How to start interval training for cycling
Before you even consider start interval training for cycling, your fitness should be pretty good. That is a couple of levels above the actual foundation fitness, which you typically have during your secondary season.
In general most bike riders have the winter period as their secondary season.
- A good point is to start interval training for cycling 1-2 month prior to your primary season.
By the way, always be careful to train interval training for cycling outside when it is frosty during your winter training. The very cold air in your lungs and neck can lead to unwelcome sick days.
Both length/duration and the type of interval vary a lot, depending on where you presently are in your development stage. It is incredibly important not to start out at lightning speed without the necessary fundamental training.
Conversely, I have met many on my way, who have been almost a little shy of interval training. This is a bit of a shame, as a racing cyclist pushes his/her boundaries and feels a huge reserve of strength after interval training and rest.
A good place to start is intervals of a duration of 3-5 minutes 2-3 times on a medium long training stint.
- For riders with heart rate monitors, the majority of all the intervals should, as described on this website, be ridden on approx. 84-90 % of your max pulse.
- The resting period should be ridden on approx. 60-65% of your max pulse.
- Breaks: Always have the same, or up to double the number of minutes/seconds rest of the duration of the interval you have just completed. You get absolutely the most out of an interval, when you don’t have any lactic acid in your legs and your pulse has dropped right down again.
Rest constitutes a period where you just roll along at an even pace. However, an exception from this rule is if you want to build up an actual max pulse interval. That is to say that you gradually build up the strain and heart rate until finally training so hard that your heart reaches its max strain BPM= (beats per. minute). This type of interval can increase your absorption of oxygen. That is the amount of oxygen you are able to absorb in your lungs and further out into your muscles.