Strength Training

Wouldn’t more muscle = more ability to recycle your lactate? Even upper body muscle?

Another good option for strength / conditioning programs is The Helm . The app has a lot of different programs, and you can select which days you want to do strength training on and whether or not you have gym access.

Haven’t seen it mentioned anywhere yet, but the best thing I’ve done regarding strength training was picking up a set of 16kg, 24kg & 32kg kettlebells & working my way through the Simple & Sinister programme.

Plenty of work/weight involved & it’s literally been designed as a minimum schedule to keep your fitness/strength up for your main sport (or job!). Couldn’t recommend it enough. The book by Pavel Tsatsouline is on Amazon & well worth a read if you’re going to follow it. There’s a good outline here though - the gist of it is 5x10 swings (starting with 2 handed, working up to 1 handed) followed by 10 turkish get ups. There’s a time/weight standards to meet, but as with FTP tests you only test yourself against the time every now & again. Most days you can take your time with it if you want as long as you get it done

Part of the reason I love it so much is that the kettlebell swing, 1 or 2 handed, is a great ballistic movement done at full intensity that works the posterior chain as well as being great for your grip etc. On the other hand the TGU is the complete opposite, a slow, steady grind of a movement. I’ve noticed huge improvements in my posture and core strength after focusing on these two movements alone. I also like to pick up my combined 72kg of kettlebells & walk up & down my stairs a few times to really test my legs/grip after a workout :boom:

There’s a good summary of Simple & Sinister here


So I started doing leg day again 2 days ago… I last squatted seriously in like August.

HOLY $&%]

I can barely walk. This is absolutely payback for neglecting leg day.

How long did it take for you guys for DOMS to abate?

Going to have to push back my general build program AGAIN until I can lift and train without issues.

I lifted legs on Sunday…went a little overboard, and today is the first day that my legs haven’t felt like they were on fire…

Depending on how hard to went it could easily take 4 days. But usually the second time I lift it goes away in 2 days and then after that it’s maybe the next day at most.

I didn’t think I went that hard. I had a squat PR of 160KG.

So I did 5x8x80kg, warming up with 20kgx8 , 40kgx8 and so on.

Two days on, and its at it worst. I’m going to definitely go squat and DL again on Saturday. But yeah, I’ve shelved all hard intervals for a bit.

The way I see it, I’m investing in my sprint for august

How long did it take for you guys for DOMS to abate?

First time I did squats this winter it took like 5 days to recover from. Now that I’m conditioned I’d say 2 days for DOMS to disappear but still not fully recovered for high intensity intervals.

In my experience DOMS is more closely related to total volume than it is to the heaviest weight that you hit. So after taking 6? months off doing 8 sets of 8, 5 of which are at maybe 75-80% (total guess based on detraining) is a pretty decent amount of volume.


I have and have had no DOMS since starting in October, I’d suggest you’re lifting to heavy and too infrequently?

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Infrequently is an understatement. Like I said, I’ve been neglecting.

Back when I was a gym rat, squats were an every other day occurence. But I haven’t been under the bar in months and months.

Like I said above, I tried to go lightish… but definitely overdid it. A bit annoyed with myself as it’s ruining my bike sessions, but I do think in the long run this has to happen. Before I was in anyway interested in cycling I could put down 1800W+ on a wattbike pro, now though I’m peaking around 1400W… , I really want to push my top end up.


Yeah, so sounds like 5x5 and a bit lighter might be the way to go? How often can you lift per week now?

I’m still doing 5x5 but since I switched to 2/wk it’s a lot harder than when it was 3.

I give it four+ hours between lifting and running or biking too.

Well I’ve been lifting 2x3 times a week fairly consistently still (I’m farrrrrrr too vain to let my top side muscle disappear!) Find that upper body doesn’t affect me in the slightest for training.

But in any case, I really want to get the leg power back. I stopped because of triathlon + lifting at the level I was just didn’t work for me. But I have to get this leg power back, it’s my ticket to podiums.

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Scrolling through many forms I haven’t found a post asking specifically what I’m looking for. Sorry in advance if I missed something! First a little background.

This coming season will be my third season racing focusing on cyclocross. My background in cycling came from enduro style riding and enjoying long days and group rides on the road bike. Last season I races all disciplines from road, crits, gravel, enduro, and cx. This season My two A races are an xco early June and cx in late September while racing other disciplines as training races and fun.

I’m 25, been lifting weights and training for cycling for the last 4 years, used to train for rock climbing for general strength. I’m not heavy but not incredibly light either at 178cm and 70kg. I got my first power meter in January 2019 and that’s when I started following a TR plan. In the gym I have been building my own weight adaptation-> hypertrophy -> strength -> power periodization to coincide with my racing season. I prescribe to the belief that I should maintain strength training year round and the recommendations with how to performed my best on the bike and still fit in resistance training, i.e. keep easy days easy and hard days hard. Gym days are pretty full body with a focus on compound lifts and core (squats, deadlifts, pull-ups, dips, stability/balancing, shoulder mobility, and core).

I’m currently following a mid-volume plan made with plan builder with 1-2 (maybe 3) days in the gym a week and maybe one day in the climbing gym. I’m moving into a build phase now and in my previous experience if I want the most from the build I have to move to maintenance in the gym. I always struggle to properly maintain once the cx season truly starts having 2 races every weekend for a few months and being so late. My “off” season ends in May but then I race all the way till November with cx starting in September.

Plan builder has me looking into blocking my gym training with the phases of my plan i.e. base1 = adaptation and stability, base2 = hypertrophy and strength, build = maintenance and easy volume (10 or more reps), specialty = power.

I’m wondering if anybody else has experience with this type of periodization? For example, my plan has me do build, specialty, back to touch up on base before another build into cx season. So in the gym I would maintain with easy weights and 1 or 2 one rep maxes, switch to low volume power focus during the specialty, and then back into a strength block when I touch up my base before the second build. Any and all insights would be appreciated! Especially if @chad has any input!! Being that I have just finished my strength block I am currently able to meet the level 3 recommendations and then some so ideally a good time to maintain and switch focus (I think!).


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all depends on what youre working for, as im on the track trying to sprint its 1-5 reps at a very high %of a 1rm.

is it gonna help my ftp? nope. is it gonna continue to get my seated power numbers up? absolutely. ive gone from 8-900w seated in a big gear acceleration up to over 1200 now. getting closer to my out of the saddle sprint of near 1600. as far as sprint specific weight lifting goes i think a large portion of the carryover is actually learning how to keep full body tension so everything goes into the pedals.

if anyone cares about specific lifts/reps/whatever just ask

My schedule is similar, but simpler. I try not to take a long enough break from strength training to have a regularly scheduled “adaptation” phase, and I keep stability and mobility work going through out. So it’s really just alternating between focusing on building up one attribute or another, or maintenance when the endurance training load goes up.

So would you maintain in the gym through an entire build and specialty or do you play it by ear with how you feel? Thanks for the insight!

I primarily do the triathlon training plans, and when you get into build the difference between getting into the gym twice a week for 30 minutes (to maintain) or 45-60 minutes 3x a week (to try to continue to make gains) is pretty substantial.

This year I’m looking at (based on the Plan Builder) a more interesting set of training blocks (base, build, base, build, specialty) so I might find I need to adjust my strength training plan to match. I don’t really know yet.

always gym work, you just scale it back if youre a roadie and its hurting your intervals. one benefit possibly not mentioned yet(didnt read the whole thread) is resistance training is a good benefit towards bone density that cyclists often have issues with since its a non impact sport.


Depending on your age ( I’m 62) I avoid the DOMS and go just short. It takes a while to work out , but the outcome is the same and the recovery is quicker. ( ref a good Exercise Physiologist who can write a program . ) When you are young it’s all about the weight, later on it’s about using your head :slight_smile: