Monday, 27 January 2014

3 and 5 Dams Challenge - Training Week #4

Welcome to Training Week #4.

Congratulations getting through your first three week block of training. This week, we enter recovery where we step down the volume and intensity to ensure that we give the body a chance to recover before entering another three week block where we raise the intensity and begin some hill climbing work. We'll also throw in some longer rides in order to prepare ourselves for the distance required to complete each of the challenges.

Recovery is an important part of any training regime as it allows our body to better adapt to the pressures we put it through with harder training. It has often been suggested that fitness is built during the times that we rest, especially during sleep, so to back off our training somewhat at regular intervals is as important as the actual training itself. Nutrition is still an important factor through this recovery phase and we still need to maintain a healthy diet but we should back off the level of carbohydrates that we would take during harder weeks. The key to remember here, unless we are also trying to lose weight, is that we need to replace what we use. If you are trying to lose weight leading up to the Dams Challenge, then you should take in only slightly less than you are using. Do not take on too little are you will not be refuelling the body with enough energy to complete the next three week block efficiently and effectively.

I mentioned last week that we would be completing the final week of base building before recovering and then entering a harder three week block. Three weeks is not a long base building period but hopefully, by the time you complete this recovery week, you have done enough to prepare yourself for the higher intensity intervals and the hill climbing training that we will begin to complete.

So let's take a look at what needs to be done during this recovery period. As usual, for the 3 Dams riders, I have combined both experience levels into the same training program as whether you are a novice or you have ridden the 3 Dams event before, you should be working to the same level to be ready in time to complete the challenge on the day. For the 5 Dams riders, there are separate programs that largely incorporate the same efforts but with slightly longer and harder rides for experienced riders.

Week #4 - Recovery - 3 Dams (Novice & Experienced)
Mon Day off. Complete a short walk (30 mins) if you feel you want to keep active.
Tue RE riding, no intervals and no hills. Keep to level ground and complete around 25-30kms of riding and an easy pace.
Wed 1 hour of light riding with 2 or 3 moderate efforts. Do not raise your HR to high (E2 max).
Thu RE riding, no intervals and no hills. Keep to level ground and complete around 25-30kms of riding and an easy pace.
Fri Day off. Complete a short walk (30 mins) if you feel you want to keep active.
Sat As you wish but nothing to hard or strenuous (1-2hrs). Maybe ride with a group to help share the work load. Again, do not raise your HR too high.
Sun As you wish but nothing to hard or strenuous (~2hrs). Maybe ride with a group to help share the work load. Again, do not raise your HR too high.

Week #4 - Recovery - 5 Dams (Novice)
Mon Day off. Complete a short walk (30 mins) if you feel you want to keep active.
Tue RE riding, no intervals and no hills. Keep to level ground and complete around 30-35kms of riding and an easy pace.
Wed1 hour of light riding with 4 or 5 moderate efforts. Do not raise your HR to high (E2 max).
Thu RE riding, no intervals and no hills. Keep to level ground and complete around 30-35kms of riding and an easy pace.
Fri Day off. Complete a short walk (30 mins) if you feel you want to keep active.
Sat As you wish but nothing to hard or strenuous (2.5hrs max). Maybe ride with a group to help share the work load. Again, do not raise your HR too high.
Sun As you wish but nothing to hard or strenuous (2.5hrs). Maybe ride with a group to help share the work load. Again, do not raise your HR too high.

Week #4 - Recovery - 5 Dams (Experienced)
Mon Day off. Complete a short walk (30 mins) if you feel you want to keep active.
Tue RE riding, no intervals and no hills. Keep to level ground and complete around 40-45kms of riding and an easy pace.
Wed1.5 hours of light riding with 4 or 5 moderate efforts. Do not raise your HR to high (E2 max).
Thu RE riding, no intervals and no hills. Keep to level ground and complete around 40-45kms of riding and an easy pace.
Fri Day off. Complete a short walk (30 mins) if you feel you want to keep active.
Sat As you wish but nothing to hard or strenuous (2.5hrs max). Maybe ride with a group to help share the work load. Again, do not raise your HR too high.
Sun As you wish but nothing to hard or strenuous (2.5hrs). Maybe ride with a group to help share the work load. Again, do not raise your HR too high. Complete a couple of moderate efforts if you feel up to it.

Remember, recovery is very important to any athlete's training program so as hard as it may be to not ride with power and effort, it is vital that you give your body the chance to rest and rebuild. This can be a mentally tough part of your training.

Be sure to perform some stretching before and after your rides to ensure muscles are appropriately warmed up prior to riding and relaxed afterwards. Take sufficient fluid with you on the bike for the expected duration of your rides. For example, longer rides may require two bidons while just one might suffice for shorter, less difficult rides.

Regards, Charlie.
Ride Ambassador

IMPORTANT: The above advice and guide ("the advice") is provided to you, the reader, free of restriction and encumbrances, in the hope that it will be useful but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. You are free to do with the advice as you so please, but understand that by reading and/or using the advice, you acknowledge that you RELEASE THE AUTHOR and any of his related parties, including, but not limited to, Bicycling Western Australia, the Unicorn-Specialized Cycing Team, and any of their previous and/or currently engaged sponsors and related third-parties, including, but not limited to, Hall Cycle Training, of ANY LIABILITY FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY, whether in an action of contract, tort or otherwise, arising from, out of or in connection with the advice or the use, inability to use, or other dealings in the advice.

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