Building power and Strength- Part 2

Building power and Strength- Part 2

  • 09 Dec Off

Weight Training for Cyclists Part 2

You have been hitting the gym developing your muscular endurance, but cycling requires power-the delivery of strength in time.  Powerful cyclists are those that can capitalize on the muscular and cardiovascular strength to produce more work than the next rider in a given amount of time.

In the previous blog we covered the various benefits of strength training along with the basic fundamental concepts associated with designing your own plan. Let’s take a closer look at each phase

Stabilization- and Strength building phase This phase generally takes place in the off-season and focuses on establishing a sound base level of stability and strength prior to transitioning into the power building phase. The movements in this phase of the plan are done slower with a specific emphasis on the lengthening, or eccentric, portion of the workout. We are not following a body building regimen, YOUR plan should be centralized on your weakness.

Strength (December & January) this is where the intensity begins to pick up. This part of the plan incorporates complex training where you should be including two different exercises back to back. Stability exercises should be implemented following the strength exercises. This format essentially takes your strength and stability to the next level and you should be doing these workouts 2-3 times weekly.

Power-(February) this is the meat and potatoes of your plan and ideally why you are in the gym! This part of the plan calls for two days in the gym per week and the overall number of workouts should begin to decrease. The reasoning- this allows for you to incorporate more on the bike workouts designed to transition your prior workouts and strength into usable, on the bike, power. The primary concept associated with this part of the plan is to combine a power exercise immediately following a strength exercise.

Maintenance- (Race season) to maintain your strength you will need to continue this phase of the plan. Limit yourself to one or two sessions per week, ideally early in the week so that your legs aren’t beat before weekend competitions. Much like a periodized cycling specific plan, there is a taper process associated with a strength training plan that can last between 1-2 weeks. Do not do any lifting the week of an “A” race.

Power, is what lays the foundation for race winning moves and what’s needed to be successful. All the aerobic endurance in the world won’t help you in a field sprint or dropping you companions in the break. Don’t get me wrong, if you don’t have the aerobic and muscular endurance, the power is useless. We are working on a blended approach. Developing this type of power entails explosive exercises such as power cleans and plyometrics. 

  • Plyometrics pre-stretch the muscle prior to its contraction in turn facilitating physiological responses that increase the speed at which the muscle can apply the force. Additionally, the immediate benefit of ployometrics is that they enable a specific muscle group to reach maximum strength in the shortest time possible.

As you can see, a proper strength training plan encompasses many areas and can be rather intricate. If you walk away with one thing, know that without proper on the bike workouts, you will not be maximizing the time you spend in the gym. Let’s face it, what’s worse than someone popping you off their wheel with a 15-30 second effort and you being able to do nothing more then watch them ride away? Not sure if your plan is going to bring the desired end result, give me a call.

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