It’s January and I’ve noticed a consistent theme amongst many folks around here, which is a tendency to want to really dial up the intensity, duration, or density of their training. It makes sense, everyone is fresh and motivated, with many folks doing a lot of indoor riding with the only markers of progress being an FTP assessment every 6 weeks, or a binary “I did the workout”.
I’d like to offer some advice, which is to think of yourself at your A race on the starting line, looking back at your training. Chances are you will be thinking about:
- The workouts you failed (because they were “too hard” or you weren’t rested enough)
- The workouts you missed
- The rides you shouldn’t have done because they weren’t worth it and you felt too tired later
- The skills you didn’t build
- The sleep you didn’t get
- The stretching and flexibility work you didn’t do
You probably won’t remember:
- That extra intense interval at the very end because you felt great
- Turning the rest up to 75% because it felt harder that makes you feel good
- The extra spinning around for 45 minutes because you had to make it a century
- The early FTP test which made your workouts mentally harder sooner than expected
Pros are pros because they do the work, recover better than anyone, and they stick to their plan. They do exactly the amount of work they are assigned and no more, because they need to recover and be fresh. There are so many off the bike opportunities to get faster that won’t require as much recovery that you can take advantage of, especially this time of year. So if you are itching to add something in, do some off the bike work instead and stick to your training plan.
Good luck and have patience everyone