I recently competed at the 2016 New Zealand Elite Nationals time trial in Napier (January 8th). I came 5th behind a storming Paddy Bevin (Cannondale Pro Cycling). I want to use my competitive and coaching experience and to suggest how to use the Revbox for warming up for time trials.
The Elite Men’s Time Trial Podium at the 2016 New Zealand National Championships (Tom Scully (Drapac Pro Cycling), 2nd; Patrick Bevin (Cannodale Pro Cycling), 1st; Joseph Cooper (Avanti IsoWhey), 3rd.
This is my 9th year in a row at New Zealand’s Elite Nationals; I have placed 2nd, 4th, 6th, 6th, 1st (Yeah!!), 2nd, 4th, 7th and this year 5th. In the latter years I have struggled to adapt my time trial training to having a young family; the (self imposed) pressure of having won; and finally the slow ageing process.
Author Paul Odlin in action on his way to 5th place at the New Zealand Elite Nationals.
Fortunately this year Nationals was away from my home (Christchurch), which fixed the last 3 days of family interruptions (better for me and the family), in addition I was able to borrow a friend’s Revbox for my warm up. Despite having a travel bag for my Revbox, because my luggage including bike and spare wheels weighed in close to 50kg so there was no room for my own trainer on the plane.
I was really happy with how my final month’s preparation went which consequently flowed through to the final day where I felt relaxed and ready to race. Importantly I left my final training sessions to feel, except for the last 25 minutes of a strategic warm up I do on the Revbox. This meant riding for 40 minutes on the road the morning of the competition to make sure all my gear was right and to get a feel for road and environmental conditions. This also minimized time on the Revbox immediately before the time trial, which due to the warm conditions prevented excessive sweating.
The final 25 minutes on the Revbox I have practiced, practiced practiced many times. I found the Sky Pro Cycling warm up (below) on social media and have used for the last 2 to 3 years:
It’s very simple but relies on the use of power zones and a bit of individualisation. Here is my interpretation of it:
5 minutes light: You should practice getting use to what ‘light’ means to you. Whenever I get on the bike for the first time I like to take 2 minutes not looking at my cycle computer but listening to my legs and how they feel - just waking them up. For this reason my short ride earlier the day of competition served to ‘wake’ my legs up and introduce them to the movement of cycling for the day.
The 8 minutes of ‘progressive’ can be done without power but certainly this provides more specificity. For example, zone 5 for me is around 500 watts. This was more than 100 watts over what I averaged for the time trial but what I used for uphill sections. When you practice this workout you can come up with how you want to progress - in steps (e.g. each 2 minutes raise intensity) or continuously.
After this I like doing 3 minutes easy rather 2. Once again to feel but I do aim for 90 rpm.
The reason for having had 3 minutes light is because I do the 3 x 6 second accelerations starting at 0 of 2 minutes; 2nd at 40 seconds and 3rd and final at 1 minute 20 seconds. Following this I have 2 minutes 34 seconds (to be exact!) of riding light. I stress (to the clients I coach) that the acceleration is over the 6 seconds beginning at 90 rpm ending with the highest cadence.
I feel comfortable using this warm up because I know it’s what the pros use but it’s also simple (to also get my clients to use). In addition to continual practice making it easy for your body and mind; it also makes sense to become familiar with using the Revbox before using it prior to competition. In the same way I didn’t want to use anything else before my big race, you wouldn’t want to jump on the Revbox for the first time and use it for a warm up due to its low inertia making it work your muscles differently.
Thanks for reading and I hope if you do choose this warm up the best success with it - let us know through the Facebook pages: