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With race season quickly approaching for most athletes, it’s time to start dialing in some race pace intensity.

Here is a short but effective cycling workout to try. I prefer this workout to be done on the trainer to ensure quality, but it can also be done outdoors.  If riding outdoors, be sure to find a stretch of road where you can perform these sets without interruption.

This is a good workout to do while in the anaerobic phase of your training. To get the maximum benefit of any speed work, an athlete should have already been building a good mileage base, so take that into consideration before performing this workout.

The Workout 

Warm up: 10 to 15 minutes nice and easy

Main set:

All intervals are best possible effort.

  • 5 x :30 (30 sec rest)
  • 4 x 1:00 (1:00 rest)
  • 3 x 2:00 (1:00 rest)
  • 2 x 4:00 (2:00 rest)
  • 1 x 8:00 (4:00 rest)
  • 2 x 4:00 (2:00 rest)
  • 3 x 2:00 (1:00 rest)
  • 4 x 1:00 (1:00 rest)
  • 5 x :30 (30 sec rest)

These should burn from the very start, don’t sandbag the first few intervals. The goal is to perform the longer intervals after burning a few matches. This is a hard workout regardless of your level of fitness. If you don’t feel beat up after this, it sounds like you didn’t go hard enough!

Paul Duncan is a triathlete, coach and military veteran living in Nevada. USA. He races for Team Every Man Jack and coaches for Qt2 Systems.