The Cyclocross Workout Of The Day for Friday, 10.2.15. “In which we potentially throw a race away”

Howdy folks,

So, hey… it’s Friday.


How the heck did the week go by that fast?

The weekend is just about upon us, and with the weekend comes the racing!

If you’re racing tomorrow, today do some…

Can Openers – 

Here’s the drill:

– Warm up for 1/2 hour or so.

– Follow with several short attacking efforts, IE 30 seconds at 80% of your max, or pretty damn hard.

– Back off and spin for 5 minutes.

– Follow with 10-15 minute effort at AT level, or CP30, or “I could talk to you if I had to, but I don’t want to” level.

– Spin for several minutes.

– Follow with 5-6 full gas sprint efforts on a straight section of paved road, level or slightly uphill.

Do half of these from a near standstill, and for 1/2 of them, get going at a pretty good clip before you start the sprint.

… spin out the legs, go home, and get ready for the race.

What’s that you say?

You’re not racing tomorrow, you’re racing on Sunday?

You should maybe think about taking it easy today.

Go for a short spin if you have to, but to tell the truth, a pretty large percentage of folks would do well to take today off the bike completely.

That doesn’t mean sit on the couch eating bon-bons and drinking beer, it means taking it easy and taking care of yourself.

Eat well, maybe get a massage, get to bed early… that kind of stuff.

You’ll note I said “pretty large percentage of folks.”

The flip side of that statement is that for all the people who ride well if they take it easy two days before a race, there’s a population of folks who ride like absolute crap if they do so.

…and, well… some who fall kind of in the middle.

Do you know what category you fall into?


How do you figure it out?

You experiment.

You try it both ways.

You keep track of the results.

Eventually you figure it out.

I have a couple of coaching clients who actually need to ride pretty damn hard two days before a race in order to make sure their legs work right come race day.

There just ain’t no hard and fast rule about this, you do what you gotta’ do.


Over time, you try it both ways and keep track of the results.

It’s a bit of an experiment.

For most folks, the default for a race weekend should be a pretty easy day two days before the event, but ‘ya gotta try it the hard way as well just to make sure.

It’s a bit of a risk, but if you ride hard(er) today, and then kill it on Sunday?

Pretty cool. Might have figured something out about yourself.

If you do the following workout and bomb your race on Saturday?

Well, you learned something else.

You learned not to do this!

That’s a victory in and of itself.

So, with that in mind, today we’re doing…

The 3×10 with Happy Ending…

– Warm up.

– Go as hard as you can for 10 minutes.

– Recover for 2 minutes.

– Go again for another 10 minutes.

– Recover for 2 minutes.

– Go again for another 10 minutes.

That’s the basic version. Success on this is,  however,  all in the details.

The idea here is to go as hard as you can for the duration of all 3 intervals without being forced to go easier at the end of the subsequent interval(s).

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

If your vision isn’t blurry at the end of the last interval, you went too easy.

If you’re doing this with a powermeter, you want your wattage output to be as close to constant as possible. We’re talking 10 watt variance at the most. Keep it steady.

These take practice to do well, and the better you get, the harder they get.

This is a workout that works great on the trainer, and that’s how I do ‘em.

But hey… that’s not all.

This is the Happy Ending version.

What does that mean?


 After the third ten-minute interval,

-spin for 1 minute.

sprint for ten seconds, starting at the one minute mark on your watch.

-spin until you hit the 2 minute mark on your watch

sprint for ten seconds

-spin until you hit the 3 minute mark on your watch

sprint for ten seconds

Etc., etc., continuing until you hit the five minute mark (ten minute, if you’re really motivated, or a bit of an animal), and give the last little bit of your energy in one final 10 second sprint.


Have fun!



~ by crosssports on October 2, 2015.

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