We have all heard some variation of the quote, “Fail to plan, plan to fail.” It has been used by business executives, governmental leaders and even coaches. In cycling, planning takes time and requires you to sit down and determine your entire training season. How well you plan may dictate how well you perform.
Before you sit down to write your training program, you must first identify your seasonal goals. Your goals should be challenging and stretch your abilities, but not impossible to reach. Make them specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time based.
Next, identify your training objectives. These are determined by your own strengths and weaknesses in cycling. Your objective is to train your weaknesses and further develop your strengths.
Now you can get down to building your training plan. List the races, tours and other events you want to train. List them on a schedule and create a periodized training schedule that allows you to peak at the right times. If you are unfamiliar with periodization, several books are available as well as training offered by the Spinning® program. You can take the Periodization Home Study or attend the Spintensity Workshop.
Once you have built your schedule, it is up to you to follow what you have created. But do not be a slave to your training schedule. Life has many demands that may interfere with your training. You will have to be flexible and adjust your training. Listen to your body, if you are not fully rested on a hard day, swap it out for an easier day and do the hard day later in the week.
If you do not plan your training, your success is based on luck. A solid training plan will allow you to succeed and reach your goals. Without the plan, you may be successful, but will be attributed to pure luck. Training with a written training plan makes you accountable to yourself. It gives you the purpose you are successful.