3 Weeks of Intervals

This isn’t really a profile, as much as it was my teaching plan for the month of January. When I can pull the music together on iTunes and Napster, I’ll be posting actual profiles on my website.  Time is a huge issue for me right now, so you are just going to have to accept that tease from me for now, I’m afraid!!  

Even without the playlists, I hope you get something out of this concept.  First a little background:  I am very much into having a plan and knowing WHY I am asking my students to do something.  Are they improving or growing?  Does the ride have a purpose?  To that end, I developed a class plan for my regular Tues/Thurs morning group who have progressed so far I had to stretch my teaching muscles to figure out how to challenge them more…. 

This plan is for three weeks, all intervals rides, for a total of 6 rides that build up our strength and our staying power at the higher intensity levels.  Upon completing this progression, we will be focusing on 2-3 weeks of strictly strength rides.  These guys need something tough, and they’re going to get it!  If I can convince them all to participate, it will culminate in a Race Day.

So here are the rides in the order they were presented.  Even if you don’t find this plan of progression useful, I hope it challenges you to find ways to think beyond just the next ride and see how far you can lead your groups!

Every class begins with a 5-7 minute warm up and ends with a proper cool-down and stretch.  The work efforts of each class are defined below:

IEZ #1 – 1:1 intervals — One minute “on” to one minute of recovery the whole ride. Even though they were pushing upwards of 90% on the work or “on” portions, this one was easy for them!  That speaks volumes about their aerobic capacity, since 1 minute was longer than needed to recover.  

IEZ #2 – 2:1 intervals — Same as before, but in this ride we push for two minutes of work, and back off for one minute.  The  goal to attack as hard as when they only worked for one minute, but sustain that effort for twice as long without backing off.  This was followed by one minute of recovery. More challenging, but still not a knee-knocker.

IEZ #3 – 3:3 intervals —  Here we started to push the envelope and really find out what we are made of:  Three minutes at 85% and 3 minutes at 70-75%.  This involved the same principles as described in the Active Recovery Ride below.  Instead of “dying” after these 3 intense minutes we slowed back to 75% and made an active recovery instead of total rest at 60-65% which is typical in an intervals ride.  This was quite challenging and eye-opening.

IEZ #4 – 5:2 intervals – This ride is structured pretty much the same as the active recovery intervals based on Luciana’s ride in this thread: http://pedal-on.com/showthread.php?t=5898 and as I described in my post: Intervals with Active Recovery.  The only thing I changed was the duration of the work effort (5 min instead of 6).

IEZ #5 – 30 sec:2 min “surges”  – I described this ride to them as an endurance ride where occasionally we’ll surge the heart upwards to our AT, as if we were out on the road and encountered traffic, hills, other rider in an otherwise endurance ride.  In all honesty, this one was not as tough as I’d anticipated, but I believe this was because we came all the way back to 70% in between and it was tempting to go ahead and sink on down to 65% while waiting for the big pushes.  If you coach this better than I did, however, I believe it still fits the bill.

IEZ #6 – 1 min: 3 min “surges” – This one has not been ridden yet, but as described above, instead of riding at an EEZ level then surging, we will ride at 75-80% for 3 min and surge to the AT for “1 min”.  I use “1 min” in air quotes, because I am going to ask them to come down when they are done instead of fighting for 1 min.  Since everyone will respond differently, I feel it is important to be flexible.  So some folks may go 60, others may be 30.  I believe this will be the toughest ride of them all, as it should be because it leads us to our all-strength period.  Keeping heart rates in the Strength Zone during “recovery” will be tough, and depending on the riders physiological reactions, I may alternate 75% recoveries with 70% recoveries.  I’ll be flexible based on how they do. 

 That’s it y’all!  Have a great ride!


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