DON'T BE A FAIR-WEATHER CYCLIST

Outdoor Fitness Adventure|January 2020

DON'T BE A FAIR-WEATHER CYCLIST
British pro cyclist Alex Dowsett, a six-time national time trial champion and former hour world record holder, reveals how to stay motivated to keep cycling in winter.
Mark Bailey

Have you found that the cold weather has put you off cycling lately? Do you dread going out in the freezing temperatures and find yourself staying in and relaxing on the sofa instead? If you want to stay motivated to keep cycling this winter, set yourself some targets and goals, and your motivation will improve. Here are some top tips from Alex Dowsett to fire up your enthusiasm…

BUILD UP YOUR STAMINA WITH TARGET DESTINATIONS

If I’ve had a break, I start with some easy two- to three-hour rides, but sometimes I struggle knowing I have got to just ride ‘X’ amount of hours to my front door, so giving myself a set destination makes the training a bit easier mentally. It means you have somewhere to go. I enjoy having a destination – like a town or café or friend’s house – to aim for.

CRANK UP YOUR TRAINING WITH ZONE 3 INTERVALS

If I am trying to step things up, I do zone 3 intervals. When I start riding again after an end-of-season break my lungs hurt more than anything else because you haven’t used them properly for a month. Then you begin opening up all the vessels inside your lungs, so you get a blood taste in your mouth. It takes a couple of days for that to go and, when it does, you can start some intervals. But they will be low intensity, in zone 3 – nothing too hard.

BUILD IN SOME STRENGTH EFFORTS

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January 2020