How to Beat Light Riders, Rest Day Cravings, Sauna Training & More – Ask a Cycling Coach 202

Join us for a live recording of the Ask a Cycling Coach Podcast, tomorrow, April 30 at 8:00 am Pacific. We’ll be covering how Coach Chad and Nate would beat Coach Jonathan in a climbing road race, how to manage rest day hunger and cravings, more information on sauna training and much more!

Youtube Live Video:

Topics covered in this episode:

  • Outside Workouts with TrainerRoad!
  • How to know when to skip a race and recover
  • Pre-race routines and visualization
  • XC MTB pacing
  • USAC MTB call-up points explained
  • We raced another TT!
  • Indoor training on a budget
  • Are saunas only effective immediately after training?
  • How to prepare for a ramp test
  • Coach Chad’s strength training recommendations
  • How does ribose affect recovery?
  • Why you always feel extra hungry on rest days
  • Why properly fueling workouts is actually a skill
  • How to manage weight during a taper
  • How big riders can easily beat light riders

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Live Notes:


Question on the “how to prepare for a RAMP test”:
Assuming you aren’t depleted from a workout the day before, do you need to fuel for the RAMP test, or should you be OK on whatever is in your system already? It’s short, but it gets really intense at the end. I struggle to do VO2 workouts fasted, and I’m wondering if that will make a difference in the test.

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I am pretty sure it will be covered but for outside rides, those of us w legacy systems (Garm 800 and such) how do we do the workouts? Can we just run TR on our phone (if we can connect to it)?

Strength training instruction… with level options coming??? :fire: :exploding_head: :raised_hands:


I’m stoked about that too! Interested to see where my routine stacks up against the levels.


I’ve been to lazy to work on my own program, so I am excited to have some packed guidance from TR, for convenience. Likely to hold off until Fall, but happy to hear about the new addition.


did you miss the part where Coach Chad said you should be doing strength training year round? :wink:


No… I caught it then, and have heard it before… and I am late to the party (as usual :stuck_out_tongue: )

I get a bit of cross training from my running, MTB and trials riding. But it’s not everything I should be doing, of course :smiley:

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@Nate_Pearson thanks for the strength training reveal, looking forward to it!


@chad What brand and model of sauna do you have?

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I have this one, @Bikr: JNH Lifestyles MG217HB Joyous 2 Person Far Infrared Sauna. Pretty happy with it too. I’ve moved it a number of times, and it’s easy to break down and reassemble, and it’s held up quite well. Amazon had the best deal I could find at the time.


Been thinking about getting one since last time you guys talked about it. Thanks for the details! :+1:

Ayyy! Y’all answered my question! Thank you TR crew :pray:t2:

Guys, from a former bodybuilder’s standpoint, it makes me cringe to hear TR coaches suggest a deadlift. Please do not get this confused with they don’t know what they are talking about, or get it confused with me saying a deadlift is a bad exercise. Deadlifts are the most important exercise for overall strength. In my opinion, deadlifts are great for people who

  1. Are young
  2. Have no imbalances
  3. Have no lumbar problems. Absence of pain is not an indicator for this

If you’re going to deadlift, you better make sure your form is on par EVERY FN TIME! I’m passionate about this topic, because I was preparing for a bodybuilding contest. I was exhausted, my form went to crapola, and now my life has been changed for the worst: L4L5 and L5S1 have been herniated.

The facts are this: a sports med doc can MRI 100 people, and out of those 100 people, 75 will have disc degenerative disease, and all of those people have no pain; thus have no idea they have disc problems.

Please educate yourself before you indulge in a deadlift. This is an injury, if happens to you, could keep you off your bike permanently. The coaches on here are dead-on-accurate about how a deadlift can and will bring gains. Problem? Most people don’t know how to properly do a deadlift. I don’t want to see anyone here deal with what I deal with on a daily basis. Rant over


Are there safer alternatives to deadlifts?

@turmukhambetov in my opinion? No. I re-injured my back trying the trap bar deadlift. I couldn’t stand up after. I was off my bike for a week.

Hey @Ian could we get a link to the article chad refers to detailing caloric ins and outs of the team during a race week? Keen to see.

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Where can I find the race video of Jonathan’s crit win?

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Sauna training…welcome to my world. I live in Saudi Arabia directly on the coast. In the summer it’s 40C with 90% humidity even at 4 AM. Hence the TR subscription and indoor training. Opposite to the rest of the world I move inside in the summer. I still do some work outside to train for IM 70.3 and 140.6 but find I can only run for about 45 minutes. I can bike longer but I’m sure my intensity suffers.

One question, besides the obvious heat stress related issues is there a downside to training in this.

On a side note; it does make European IMs fun. A few years back I did IM Zurich in July. I had just come from complete training outside in this. Zurich was having a ‘heat wave’…I considered wearing arm warmers!!!