Training zones

    There are as many opinions on how to plan and optimize your training as there are coaches out there. We do not want to compete with that. But some general guidelines are worthwhile mentioning.

    First off, what are training zones exactly? Training zones are used to give an athlete a set intensity at which they should be working to during an activity. They may, for example, be completing intervals at ‘zone 3’ or ‘zone 4’.

    They are important guidelines for making sure that you are pushing just enough on the hard intervals, not blowing up during a race and pedaling gently enough during recovery and endurance rides.

    You can find your training zones in a number of ways. The most popular one is based on the 20-minutes FTP test. After you did your FTP you can find your zones below:

    The RPE scale runs from 0 – 10, relating to how easy or difficult you find an activity

    Most riders will benefit from training in a mix of all the zones, but depending on what kind of goals you have for your training, you’ll prioritize different zones.

    If you’re mainly training to lose weight, you should prioritize the lower zones like “Active recovery” and “Endurance”, which is where your muscle will be working to a large extent on the energy in your body fat.

    If you’re participating in bike races, where the pace in the “peloton” tends to go up and down a lot when riders attempt breaking free of the pack, you’ll need to train your muscles’ ability to handle these peak power outputs, and you should increase many short intervals in the “VO2 Max” and the “Anaerobic capacity” zones.

    Remember that most of your training will still need to be in the “Endurance” and “Tempo” zones, but add these intervals to your training. And remember a good warm-up and cool-down in the “Active recovery” zone.

    Some like to have a personal coach for their training – others prefer to pace themselves using a training plan from a book, a friend or the internet. Yet others prefer not to train to a specific plan.

    Have fun maxing yourself out!

    Happy pedaling!

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