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Basic Training week 3; Anaerobic Exercises

Week 3 of your Basic Training Program for winter cycling to guide you through Anaerobic Exercises Training


 by SportActive




After working on your Endurance in Week 1, and your Strength and Core in Week 2, you are undoubtedly eager for a fresh challenge.
And that challenge is anaerobic exercise training.


There are considerable benefits to anaerobic training, such as:

• Increasing your power and energy.
• Regulating and losing weight.
• Working harder for longer – lactic threshold.
• Fighting depression and good mental health.
• Reducing risk of disease.


This all looks great, but what is anaerobic exercise?

Anaerobic exercise is any activity that needs glucose stored in the liver and muscles to perform. Your body takes oxygen from glucose when the activity is so intense, that oxygen demand from your lungs and blood is inadequate to sustain the activity. Sprinting is a good example of this.


Aerobic and Anaerobic

Your body uses two systems to provide energy on demand. Aerobic, ‘with oxygen’, and anaerobic, ‘without oxygen’.

Aerobic exercise is an activity that uses a continuous supply of oxygen for energy. It can sustain the current level of activity without needing glucose.

Should the body demand more oxygen than it can produce aerobically, it switches to the anaerobic system for energy and starts using glucose as outlined above.


Week 3: Anaerobic Exercises

Before you begin your session, ensure that your turbo trainer is ready to go, you have a bottle of water, you’re wearing your cycling gloves for comfort, and you have a cycle computer of some kind. Have a towel close to hand as you may sweat.


Your Schedule for Week 3

As anaerobic exercises are intense, it is recommended to adapt them to your current fitness level. Perform Anaerobic Exercise no more than two or three times per week.

• Day 1, 3 & 5 Anaerobic Exercise
• Day 2,4,6 Recovery Exercise
• Day 7 Rest


Anaerobic Exercise: 40 Minutes (Day 1, 3 & 5)

15-minute warm-up: Take an easy gear and ride at a cadence of approx. 80 RPM. Not too easy; you need to feel some pressure under the pedals.

Small Effort – 3 Reps
1x10 sec @115-120 RPM. Three gears heavier.
Recovery: 1 min @85 RPM: Three gears lighter.
Repeat 3 times.

• Recovery: 5 min easy pedalling @80-85 RPM

Main Effort – 5-7 Reps Depending on Fitness Level
1x30 sec 115-120 rpm,
Recovery: 1 min @85 rpm, three gears lighter
Repeat between 5-7 times depending on ability

• 15 min cooldown; same cadence and RPM as for the warm-up.


Don’t be tempted to maintain a high cadence for the cooldown. It is important to do the cooldown at low RPM and low effort to finish the workout.

To get maximum benefits from Anaerobic Training, it is important to adapt to your level of fitness. Going too hard on days 1 & 3, you may struggle on day 5. You may feel deflated and discouraged, which is counterproductive to your cycling.

Below you can see one of our pro cycling coaches demonstrating the exercise.



Recovery Exercise: 20 minutes (Days 2, 4 & 6)

Take an easy gear riding at a cadence of approx. 80-85 RPM. Not too easy; you need to feel some pressure under the pedals.

Anaerobic training together with the other exercises in the program will improve your cycling, and you will get more enjoyment from the sport.

Next Week – Endurance!


SportActive – Faster, Fitter, Stronger!





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