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How to Build Your Own Cycling Training Camp

Have you ever wanted to train like a pro?  I know a lot of cyclists read about professional training camps and get a little bit jealous.  They travel to far away places and spend weeks riding together, training and bonding.  But if you're not a pro, a cycling training camp is out of reach, right?

Wrong!

You can build your own cycling training camp.  All you need it a little planning and a little structure to ensure you execute everything properly.  You don't even have to travel if you don't want to: you can hold a training camp in your own backyard.  Of course, having a place to “get away to” for your camp can make all that riding a little easier.  You can choose any place you want to hold your training camp, as long as you follow a couple of simple guidelines when you put it together.

Are you psyched to build some big fitness and feel like a pro?  Then click through the jump and learn more about how to plan and execute your very own cycling training camp.

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Evaluating Ride Data and Race Data

With the huge number of electronic gadgets attached to a bike these days, it's inevitable that cyclists will be inundated with data.  From speed, cadence and heart rate to power data (and even new technologies such as muscle oxygenation data), there's a mind-boggling collection of numbers to consider. But why even bother collecting data? Evaluating ride data is one of the biggest reasons most cyclists collect data and it can tell you a lot about your ride if you know how to look at it the right way.

In this video, I'll walk through evaluating ride data from several race performances.  I'll describe what I look for and how you can use that information to improve your training and riding.

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Effective Peaking and Tapering for Cycling Performance

Peaking and tapering are essential to a high quality performance in a race or event.   They are often overlooked by your average cyclist and may be the missing piece in your successful training program.  Without a well thought out, well executed peak, your body may be too tired to perform or too flat (from lack of stimulus) to successfully execute the necessary work to succeed in your race or event.  If you ignore the importance of a proper taper, you'll find yourself struggling to build further fitness or worse, dip a toe into the frigid waters of overtraining.  In either case, you'll find yourself disappointed and struggling to piece together what went wrong.

In this episode of the Tailwind Coaching Podcast, you'll learn what peaking and tapering are, why they are an integral part of any training program and how to apply the concepts of successful peaking and tapering to your own training program.

Click through for the show notes and remember that the sponsor for this episode of the Tailwind Coaching Podcast is Stages Cycling.  Check out their power meters and help support the show, and don't forget to rate the podcast on iTunes!  You can also check out my new resources page and get a head start on reading some of my most popular articles!

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The Cycling Performance Management Chart (Podcast #59)

What is a cycling performance management chart and what can it do for you?  Is it just a way to graph your fitness?  Does it tell you if you're ready to race?  Will it keep you from overtraining?

The performance management chart (PMC) is one of the lifelines between an athlete and their structured training work load.  Many of my listeners, customers and athletes have asked me what all those squiggly little lines and numbers mean?  Sure, there's a basic concept of “keep on climbing” the fitness mountain, but it's a far more nuanced tool than just that, revealing information about your fitness, form and where you may potentially be overdoing it.

After the jump we'll discuss the basics of the PMC, how you manage your training and your fitness using a PMC, how to read all those little lines and how you can use the PMC as a tool to maximize your performance.  I'll also talk about what the PMC CAN'T do, which is perhaps the most important thing to know.

Check the show notes after the jump for more:

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Analyzing Your Cycling Season (Podcast #52)

If you don't know the strengths and weaknesses of your fitness, how can you possibly begin to work on them?  If you don't analyze your season, how can you possibly know your strengths and weaknesses?  Sure, you can probably guess at those strengths and weaknesses and you might get some of them right, especially the glaring ones like “I can't climb too well”.  Some other weaknesses aren't as obvious, and guessing at your fitness strengths and weaknesses, training blind and  then hoping for the best is a ticket to failure, or if not failure, sub-optimal performance in races, group rides and fondo rides.

It should sound obvious that you need to do some evaluation of last season's failures, but you should also evaluate your successes so you can improve upon your best performances.  In this episode of the Tailwind Coaching Podcast I'll discuss some tricks for what went right and what went wrong last season, along with why you're reviewing your season now and how to change your training in the coming months.

Click through for show notes and more information:

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