March 2016

Posted by Paul Odlin on 13 March 2016 | Comments


At the time of writing of this blog I have just up’d my training for another domestic level time trial (New Zealand age group national championships).  This event is somewhat more low key than my last TT - the Elite national championships that is held prior to the World Tour kicks off with the Santos Tour Down Under.  This means a lesser quality of field at this next TT as the big guns are off overseas but occurs at a time I find I have my best form - April (late Autumn here down under).

A good coach or perceptive athlete can identify the gaps in an their performance; a good training programme will address and strengthen these weaknesses; and in the case of a time trialist, a great indoor trainer will be the last piece of the puzzle to a complete performance.

In addition to training the right systems (aerobic and anaerobic), the right amount (volume of training), finding the right balance between road and trainer is essential.  There’s no exact figure you can put on the ratio of road to trainer as it depends entirely on what you’re training for but I’ll share with you what I’m doing to prepare for this 25 kilometer time trial.

I have started doing a 60 minute strength endurance (SE) session using the Revbox Erg the mornings prior to local evening 16 kilometer time trials (Tuesdays); and V02max sessions group session (Thursdays).  Strangely enough I find I go better if I have a bit of fatigue in my legs despite feeling a little worse for wear . Details of this SE session and three others can be found at


Above an example of a 60 minute SE workout in heart rate, cadence and power graphs

I specifically choose SE as anecdotally I have observed great gains with both myself and clients I train (if you google its benefits you get a mixed bag of empirical evidence both for and against).  In addition, when done correctly (at a lower percentage of maximum heart rate/functional threshold power and cadence), I can stress significantly different muscular, neuromuscular and cardio-vascular systems to what will be tested later in the day in a time trial or V02max session.

The premise behind doubling up (two sessions in a day), is that I am running complimentary, not supplementary sessions which will improve different strengths while not overloading one system.  I’m also maximising the amount of training I can do without using too many bullets (the total time training is less than 2 & ½ hours for the day) - it’s called smart training!

To keep quality at maximum and quantity at its minimum it’s more practicable to be do these shorter sessions on my Revbox Erg as finding the ideal location to do intervals on the road can mean a lengthy commute.  At the end of the day - it’s all about getting the right balance.

Thanks for reading!


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