The Cyclocross Workout Of The Day for Tuesday, 11.4.14. “Beat-down”

Howdy folks,

I’m going to hit you with several options for a workout today ’cause, quite frankly, people are all over the place with what they need to be doing at this time of year.

We’re at the point in the season where the cumulative effects of all the work you’ve done – or not done – is starting to weigh heavy.


What do I mean by that?

– You entered the season fit as a fiddle, fast, and ready to rip?

I’m betting you’re a wee bit tired right now, unless you did things just right.  Kudos to you if so!

– You entered the season just a little bit behind the eight ball, low on base miles and the foundation needed to build a solid season?

Pretty good chance you’re feeling a little bit of an endurance deficit in the races these days. Getting caught on the last lap of the race?

Yup, this might just be you…

– You’re feeling pretty strong, pretty darn fit, but you’re missing a little bit of snap in your legs you need to respond to the big attacks or ride over the short, hard course features?

Stay tuned…

Let’s start with this…

Feeling pretty shot today?

Having trouble sleeping, or getting up, or just feeling a bit beat down?

Take today completely off.

Yup. Enjoy your freedom, no ride today!

Feeling like you’re missing a little bit of snap in your races after weeks of racing and riding?


Today, you get…

The MB15 – 

Warm up well. (Seriously. Warm up for this one, it’ll help.)

The basic idea here is to do a series of very short efforts with very little rest between them, for a pretty long period of time.

Sound confusing?

Here’s how it breaks down…

Warm up.

Get set…


15 seconds on

15 seconds off

15 seconds on

15 seconds off

…and so on and so on for the duration of the interval.

How long are you going to do this for?

 – Ten minutes would be great.

Three -four sets, 5 minutes between sets.

How hard do you go during the “on” segments?

– Pretty darn hard.

You’re familiar with the level of effort you put out in your 2×20’s by now, right?

You need to go harder than that.

A fair bit harder would be good.

Ideally, you’ll hit these on periods at right about 150% of your FTP, if that’s a number that means anything to you. If it doesn’t, it’s probably pretty darn close to what you’re dong your 2×20 effort at.

Like I said, “ouch.”

How easy do you go during the “off” segments?

– A lot easier, but you aren’t quite soft pedaling.

Right about 50% of your FTP, or half as hard as your 2×20 level.

Again, ouch.

Want to know the real “Ouch”?

Ultimately, you want to be able to do 6 sets of these, or 3 sets twenty minutes each, or however many it takes to equal the duration of your races.

Seriously, Ouch.

Maybe not today though, eh?

Last week we were shooting for  three 10 minute sets. Think you can do four today?

I dare ‘ya…

Are you feeling like you’re losing ground at the end of your races? Maybe you’ve lost a little bit of endurance-stye fitness over the last several weeks?

Well heck, I bet you can guess what’s on the docket for you! It’s…

Two by Twenty Tuesday!

Pretty simply, the 2×20 looks like this:

– Warm up.

– Go as hard as you can for 20 minutes.

– Recover for 5 minutes.

Go again for another 20 minutes.

The idea here, folks, is to go as hard as you can for the duration ofboth intervals without being forced to go easier at the end of the second interval.

This is all about doing two intervals.

Two intervals at as close to the same level of output as you can possibly maintain.

If you’re doing this with a power meter, you want your wattage output to be as steady and unvaried as possible.

For both intervals.


How steady?

Can you keep it in a 10 watt range?

Probably not.

15 watts?

More likely

20 watts?


Keep it steady.

If you run out of gas before you finish the second interval, then you went too hard.

If your vision isn’t blurry at the end of the second interval, you went too easy. But guess what?
It’s way better to go too easy and finish both intervals than it is to go too hard and crater part way through the second 20.

These take practice to do well, and the better you get at doing them the harder they get, as you figure out how to push yourself into a deeper and deeper hole.

This is a workout that’s a natural for the turbo trainer, and that’s how I do ‘em, because I always wind up flat on my back on the floor trying not to puke after the 2nd interval.

That’s not an exaggeration.

You should aspire to seeing-spots level of output on these.

But that might take a while

Get a handle on cranking through both intervals rather than just one, first.

 Eventually, when you learn to push through your limits – really push – you will get better and you will get better fast.

It’s gonna’ hurt, though.

The good kind of hurt.

Have fun!




Hey there…

Thanks for following my blog!

This thing started off as a lark, and over the years that I’ve been doing it, has become a little bit of a monster.

It takes a fair bit of time – and a wee bit of money – to keep this thing rolling, and as you may have noticed, I’ve recently started asking for folks to chip in a bit if they feel like what they’re getting her is worth something to them.

Honestly, it’s not like I’m trying to get rich off this here thing… or really even make any money from it at all.

It’d just make my life a fair bit easier if I didn’t lose quite as much money doing this as I currently do.

So, hey… if you feel like you’ve gotten anything of value out of this blog, please do me a favor – and yes, it’s a favor, and I will be truly thankful for it – and send a buck or two (or five, or whatever…) my way.

How do you do that?

Simply click on the graphic below, and PayPal will be glad to make it happen.



~ by crosssports on November 4, 2014.

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