If you want to race or ride strong in races next season, winter training is NOT optional. Winter training can be like watching paint dry and for the most part will never offer the enjoyment of spring, fall and summer training. The following are some tips to make winter training more enjoyable, keep yourself focused, and improve next year's performances.
Start with a set of goals. You should have your training program/plan and your goals written down. Set both long term and short range goals. Keep a log book to track your training progress.
No one training method/system is for everyone. If you can't stand a training system, you won't consistently train. Keep an open mind, and try new training methods until you find the one that fits you.
Winter riding can be enjoyable, get dressed for cold weather. Something to remember if you put too much on you can always remove layers, BUT if you go out the door with too little on you will get cold and might not be in safe control of the bike. Gloves, ear and neck covers, thermals, wind gortex jacket, over shoes, HELMET ofcause and might want to consider a pair of glasses. These are just a few ideas of necessary clothing, the sun does tend to shine a lot more in the winter, but it is the wind chill factor that needs to be blocked from hitting the body.
I am a rider and coach that does not promote riding in icy conditions, need to be wise on the decision to ride out or inside. Yes these are the 2 different types of session for specific Bike training during winter. You also may be keen on improving your core and strength during the winter in gym or x-training environment.
Ideas for sessions during the Winter / off season.
Weights / gym ..Try varied exercises including back extensions, leg presses, leg curls, calf raises, bench press, and abdominal work. Aim for 12 to 20 reps for 1 to 3 sets, 3 times a week.
Indoor Trainer …. the goal is fast cadence, interval work. Warm up for 15 minutes. Do step intervals (30 sec with 60 sec easy spinning, 60 sec with 60 sec easy spinning, 90 sec with 60 sec easy spinning, up to a 3 minute exercise interval and then cycle back down). Aim to keep your cadence above 90 and heart rate at 80-90% MHR. Cool down for 15 minutes. Three times a week.
Then move into an endurance phase with a moderate cadence of 85-95 with heart rate at 75% max. Do a 15 minute warm up, a 12 minute ride, and then a 3 minute rest with easy spinning, then repeat for another 15min block and cool down for 10 mins at the end. Three times a week.
Can’t go wrong with this, try it, it keeps you on 2 wheels and outside and will toughen you up. Enjoy the off season.
Better still why not try out some warmer locations for you to enjoy the 3 S’s Sun, Sea and “Sycling”