The Cyclocross Workout Of The Day for 8.20.15. “Stairing, Part Deux”

Howdy folks,

Thanks to everyone who came out to the first cyclocross practice last night!


I saw lots of progress being made, and some fears being conquered. I mean, everyone rode over that log? How cool is that?

Yeah, ok, fine… most of you reading this have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about, but suffice to say some people pushed themselves way outside their comfort zone last night, and it paid off.

Very darn cool.

We’ll be back next week, and I hope to see more of you out there!

Today, well… we’re going to do a bit of running. Yay!

Before we get going, though, maybe take a look at what I wrote a while back on the topic.




Make sense?


Today, we’re going to assume you’ve been running a bit already this season, and – as promised last Thursday – we’re doing another stairs workout.



Stairing, part deux. 

First, find some stairs, or a small hill, or a grassy knoll – something you can run up. Stairs are best, but whatever you can come up with will work.

You don’t need NFL stadium stairs or anything crazy like that. Look for something that’s long enough to give you 10 seconds of running at a full sprint; That’ll be plenty long enough. We’re doing speed work, here. Short, sharp efforts.

Got a location?


Get on your bike and warm up for 15 minutes or so. Maybe ride on out to wherever you’re doing these.

Mosey on over to your stairs/knoll/whatever, and get set. Stretch, have a sip of water, turn up the volume on your Ipod.

Jog up the stairs. Walk down.

Get a sense for the spacing and “feel” of the stairs. You’re going to be flying up these things in a full-on lactic acid bath shortly, so you want to get comfortable with the terrain so you don’t lose your footing when you’re attacking the intervals in a couple/few minutes.

– Repeat x5

– Sprint! up stairs, fast, using whatever stride is most comfortable. Walk down.

– Repeat x5

Rest for 1 minute, walking slowly up and down stairs.

– Sprint up stairs, this time using quick, tiny strides, 1 stairstep at a time. Walk down.

– Repeat x5

Rest again, same as before.

– Sprint up stairs, this time using long strides, several stairsteps at a time. Walk down.

– Repeat x 5

Rest again.

– Sprint up stairs, combining the previous two exercises – 1st time up, long strides; next time up, short strides, etc. Walk down.

Rest again, 2-5 minutes.

If this is your first time running stairs this season, that’s it. You’re done. Feel free – heck, feel obligated to stop early if you have any tweaks, twinges, or strange feelings in your legs.*

If you’ve got some running miles in ya’ already, repeat the entire damn thing until you just can’t do it anymore, or until you are going so slowly it’s ridiculous.

Get back on bike, spin out your legs, go home.

Notes –

The idea here is to get good enough at this to go really damn hard. If you do this right, it’s a brutal workout.

Don’t go that hard if it’s your first (or nearly first) time running stairs this season. Keep it under control. You want to build up to the point where you are going up the stairs in a dead sprint, and are completely gassed at the end of each set.

We’re going to do this exercise – or a variation of it – every week for a while, so be patient. You will get better at it, and I will throw in some variations that will keep it fun and challenging, including some agility and lateral stability drills. Stay tuned!

Hey! Go Check out…


Coaching for Cyclocross and all your other bike-related activities!

~ by crosssports on August 20, 2015.

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