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Gearing up for the Season | How to Recover from Winter Training

cycling winter trainingBy David Christenson, rider for the Marc Pro Cycling team

It’s that time of year where cyclists are beginning their winter training to prepare for the season ahead.

After some time off, it was time for me to do a fitness assessment to get an idea of where I’m at in my fitness as I ramp up the training in the weeks to come. I did this indoors on a smart trainer. There are so many apps and training platforms we can use to assess fitness these days, which is great. I decided to give the Sufferfest’s 4DP power test a try. This tests your 5 second power, your 1 minute power, your 5 minute power, and your 20 minute power all in one test. You perform intervals in the times I mentioned and each interval is full gas for that duration. It’s an extremely tough test, but these numbers will define my training as my baseline. I’ll build from there in the next several months, peaking for key races on the calendar.

cycling winter trainingI’ve added some weight training and core stabilization exercises this winter. I followed up my power test with some squats and dead lifts. I’m not going for high weight but going for higher reps. I’m hoping that this will help me build up for the season and maybe add a few more watts to my power profile. One thing I notice even after just a few weeks is how much better I feel overall. Just engaging other muscles that are neglected when just riding the bike.

The first couple of weeks the weights definitely beat me up, so I’ve been using the Marc Pro a lot to help recovery. Like most cyclists, the quads are a favorite pad placement. But, as I increase my weight training, I’m using it more and more on my shoulders and lower back.

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