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Photo: Team Sky’s Facebook Page
Whether you ride to work or you have Mont Ventoux in your sights, conquer any climb with the training wisdom of Tim Kerrison, Head of Athlete Performance at Team Sky.
1. Boost your pedal power
The key to going from weekend warrior to Sky rider depends on the size of your power output. To pump up your power, you need to train both your cadence (how quickly you pedal) and your torque (the force you pump through the pedals). During your next ride integrate intervals done at a high cadence (pedalling quickly at 100rpm) to develop speed, and big-gear sections (pedalling slower at 50rpm) to build va-va-Froome power.
2. Get race-ready
‘Spiked’ training drills – when you maintain a high effort (so you can talk, but only in short sentences) but perform regular ‘spikes’ of 10-45 secs above your anaerobic threshold (typically 80% of your MHR, or when you start finding it harder to talk) – will prepare you for sprints and attacks during road races, or help you beat your mates uphill on weekend rides. The efforts force your body to recover while maintaining a high intensity, helping to build a race-ready engine and boosting your speed.
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3. Turn mountains into molehills
It’s hard to train for Alpine climbs when the biggest hill nearby is the speed bump at the end of your street. But training on flat roads with a lower cadence (60rpm) and a higher gear (so it’s harder to pedal) can help. The extra effort recruits more muscle fibres so your body learns to handle the sustained effort needed to conquer Europe’s real cloud-scrapers.
Originally appeared on menshealth.co.uk