Yes training will be on this Wednesday 4th and Friday 6th May 2016 @ 5.45am sharp !
How to pace yourself
Pushing too hard and overdoing it in the first part of an event is one of the most common mistakes in cycling. Hayley Simmonds is currently the British time trial champion and has climbed the top step in the 10, 25 and 100 mile championships. She say that “using a combination of power and perceived effort to pace time trials” has been key to her success.
“Pacing is crucial because if you go out harder than you can sustain, at some point you’re going to blow up and end up crawling to the line” explains Simmonds. “Conversely if you race too conservatively you will finish the race feeling fresh. Obviously neither of these is good if you want to achieve the best time and result possible.”
In a TT, pacing poorly will most likely lead to an unsatisfactory performance; in a long sportive, in the worst case scenario it would mean you fail to finish. It’s just as important in training to ride at a pace you can realistically sustain for the intended duration.
Numbers aren’t always enough, as Simmonds explains : “It’s also crucial to listen to your body, as you don’ t necessarily know ahead of time whether you are on a particularly good or bad day – I’m careful to pay attention to how I’m feeling in addition to what the numbers say.”
You shouldn’t ignore feeling below par.
It can be useful to have a mantra at the ready for when you need to increase the pace. Simmonds uses a well known Chris Boardman quote to sustain her focus : “Constantly ask yourself these two questions – How far have I got to go? Is my pace sustainable for that distance ?” If you answer the second question with a definite ‘yes’ the you may not be going hard enough ; if it’s a ‘no’ it’s too late and you may have over cooked it.
- Be too rigid in your pacing plan. Judge it according to how you feel.
- Train beyond your ability level. Your pace during an interval should be the same at the end as it was at the start.
- Rely too heavily on HR data. Remember the data is affected by several variables.
- Use technology to your advantage.
- Start at what feels like a conservative pace in long events.
- Establish a realistic pace for you for your event distance.
- Pride yourself on your pacing ability. It’s a vital part of race craft that requires intelligence, experience and self discipline.
Adapted from Cycling Weekly