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Criterium Training and Racing Tips

Call it a criterium, a crit, or a short circuit race.  Whatever you call it, it's a tough race for sure.  It's also one of the most common races on most racing calendars.  What makes it so tough to succeed at and what training do you need to perform well in these races?

In this episode of the Tailwind Coaching Podcast, I'll tell you how to build the perfect criterium training plan.  I'll show you what specific training needs to be included in your crit training plan to help you crush the field and hit the line first.  There are also a few tips, tricks and secrets to help you make the most out of your training and races.

So if you're ready to tune up your crit fitness, click through the jump and listen for tips on dominating your next criterium.

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Time Trial Training and Racing Tips

The time trial is an integral part of racing a bicycle.  It's the race of truth, the race against the clock and one of the truest tests of who is a stronger cyclist.  To ride a time trial efficiently is an amazing skill and watching a well executed time trial is a beautiful thing indeed.  With the racing season in full swing, I've been getting a lot of questions from athletes about time trial training and racing tips.

In this episode of the Tailwind Coaching Podcast, I'll explain some of the nuances of time trialing and give you the tips you need to race a better time trial.  I'll cover the key aspects of a time trial training plan and how to squeeze more fitness out of your body.  You'll also get some of my favorite tips, tricks, and marginal gains to help you ride stronger.

So if you're ready to turn the pedals in anger, click through the jump to listen to my best time trial training and racing tips!

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Keys To Effective Track Cycling Training

Track cycling is one of the toughest, most physically demanding disciplines in cycling. These cyclists are the kings of power, finesse, and cunning.  Not only do they have to account for their own positioning and tactics, they have to account for the tactics of the track they're riding on.  Track cycling training is also quite unlike almost any other cycling training.  Compared to road racers who spend hours on end putting in miles on the road, track training is heavily dependent on strength work and short interval work.

This can be difficult for a lot of cyclists to come to grips with because it's much more dependent on high-intensity work than other cycling disciplines.

So, if racing on the track or being a stronger sprinter is on your checklist, click through the jump. 

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What is Aerobic Decoupling?

As a cyclist finishes their base training, it's important to evaluate how strong your aerobic base truly is.  By using a metric called “aerobic decoupling” you can quickly and easily determine if your base work was effective and if you're ready to progress into harder high-intensity interval training.  But before you can evaluate your aerobic fitness, you need to learn what aerobic decoupling is and how to use it effectively.

What is aerobic decoupling and why do we care about it?

If you're training with power, aerobic decoupling is a key measurement to evaluate as you perform base training.  Aerobic decoupling is a numerical measurement of aerobic efficiency and endurance.  It's representative of your body's ability to process oxygen and produce energy (as detailed in Biohacking Energy Systems) and is a marker of overall aerobic fitness.

Before you can appreciate the value of aerobic decoupling, here's a refresher about how your body produces aerobic energy and the concept of heart rate drift.

To produce energy, your body takes in oxygen through the lungs and passes it to working muscles via the blood stream.  Oxygen and a fuel (fat, protein or sugars) are processed in the mitochondria to create Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP).  ATP is the actual energy molecule that allows your muscles to contract and create pedaling force.  Constant demands on the aerobic energy system can create a phenomenon known as heart rate drift.

Click through the jump to read the show notes for episode 78 of the Tailwind Coaching Podcast:

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Why Do Watts Per Kilogram Matter?

Watts per kilogram is an important measurement in determining your cycling potential.  On the surface, it's a simple measurement, but it can give a ton of information about your performance and strengths.  But what exactly can you learn about your cycling by looking at your W/Kg measurements?  In this article you'll learn what W/Kg is, how to use it effectively to plan and execute your training and a couple ways to improve your power to weight ratio.

What is “watts per kilogram” and why does it matter?

Watts per kilogram, often abbreviated W/Kg is a measure of power to weight.  It takes the amount of power you produce at various time periods and divides it by how heavy you are.  Sounds pretty simple, right?  In theory, it is.  But like everything in your cycling training, there's more to it than just a number.  Click through to learn a little bit more and figure out why W/Kg is so important.

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