Novice Cycling / 4DP Weakness: Neuromuscular / Designed for Strength Training
Plan Length: 12 Weeks
This training plan was designed by APEX Coaching for athletes and enthusiasts who:
* Have taken the 4DP Full Frontal test and have uncovered a neuromuscular power weakness in their 4DP profile.
* Are new to cycling or choosing their first structured training plan.
* Have trained fewer than an average of 7 hours/week in the previous ~3 months.
* Only have 3-6 hours/week they can dedicate to training over the course of the next ~3 months.
* Want to incorporate The Sufferfest Strength Training Programme into their plan.
* Have a burning desire to CRUSH their goals by putting in a maximum amount of effort in a minimum amount of time
This plan is designed to suit the time-crunched athlete, with weekday workouts under 60 minutes and longer weekend rides. Note: the average weekly training hours listed do not include the optional yoga and mental training plans you may wish to add to your schedule (more details available when you apply a plan to your account).
The plan finishes on a high note, with the last week bringing you fit and fresh into the Full Frontal fitness test. After finishing this plan, you can begin the intermediate plan straight away.
Not using The Sufferfest app? Try it free for 7 days: http://thesuf.com/letsgo
Note: These plans are designed to be used with The Sufferfest Training System. You will need to download and install The Sufferfest for iOS, macOS or Windows to access the workouts associated with these plans. To get started:
- Go to https://thesufferfest.com/pages/get-started and download the app for your device.
- Create your account to start your free 7-day trial.
- Use promo code SURGE30 to get 30 days free or $12.99 off your annual subscription.
For questions about The Sufferfest please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Sample Week of Training
Below is a week of training from this plan which represents the type of workouts you will be doing.
Other - Week 2
Bike - NoVid: Recovery Spin
Don’t be afraid of the Two Rs: rest and recovery.
Believe it or not, you get faster when your
body is taking it easy after all that suffering.
A recovery spin is a very low intensity ride, so easy that you’d feel embarrassed to ride so slow if you didn’t know you were helping your body
get much faster.
A good recovery spin is done at a cadence above 90 RPM. While keeping power below 50% of FTP, or and RPE less than 2.5, and keeping your heart rate in Zone 1 the entire time.
Recovery spins can be done outdoors, but due to the low power demands, they are often easier done on the trainer
Resist the voice of
your inner Sufferlandrian telling you to go faster.
Bike - Standing Starts **Before Strength**
Four Dimensional Power Focus:
Standing starts closely simulate a lifting session on the bike because it requires the engagement of your core, upper and lower body. Standing starts will train your ability to generate force through the pedals by forcing you to recruit all of your musculature. No matter your prefered discipline, these efforts are key to teaching your body to recruit all of the muscle fibers in your legs. The saying "Use it or Lose it" actually does apply here. All of the benefit in this session comes from hitting these 20 seconds effort as hard as you possibly can. To do that, you need full recovery between each sprint, and you need to respect that recovery! These efforts should see you start at super low RPMs with very high torque, as the effort continues your cadence will naturally increase. Your goal is to get your cadence as high as possible by the end of each 20 second effort. To maximize your muscle recruitment you want to both push down and pull up on the pedals at the start. Proper core engagement is a must, your legs need a good strong backboard to push against. We understand that not everyone's trainer has the necessary resistance, or the required stability, to perform this workout as described. For stability issues you can get much of the same benefit by doing these efforts seated. If your trainer can't handle the rapid change in speed, or does not have high enough resistance at super a super low cadence then you can start the efforts are a higher cadence and simply treat them as "normal" all out sprints.
This is a session that can be done indoors or outdoors. If done outdoors, come to a slow roll in your largest Chain Ring and your 3rd or 4th smallest cog on your rear cassette. Complete the same set of 4 x 20sec maximal start efforts, with 6-8 minutes of easy spinning between.
Bike - Elements of Style
Four Dimensional Power Focus:
Can you ride? Can you Suffer with Style? Make profound Suffering look effortless? Although it has very little Suffering in it, Elements of Style may just be our most important video ever. Developed together with the expert team at CyclingTips and shot on location in Wanaka, New Zealand, this video provides the very foundation upon which all your Suffering must rest. Over the course of six specific drills, you'll learn and practice: An exclusive 9-point 'Systems Check' you can use on any ride to get into your Optimal position. A 4-step process for standing up on a climb and generating more power. How to engage your core, including your glutes, for more stability and power. The components of a smooth pedal stroke and how to bring them together at both low and high cadences. How to stay relaxed, and efficient under pressure. Narrated by one of the best cycling commentators in the world, Eurosport's Carlton Kirby, you'll get clear instructions about exactly what to do, when and why. We guarantee it will change the way you think about your riding style after doing it just once. Do it five times and you'll automatically adjust your position while out on rides. Do it 10 times and Sufferlandrian Angels will burst into tears at the sheer epic beauty of you kicking the crap out of your competition while making it look oh so effortless.
Bike - NoVid: Cadence Drills **After Strength**
This workout combines several technique driven intervals. These will improve your overall form and efficiency on the bike. The first two drills, Cadence Holds and Builds, are designed to improve the way you recruit your leg, glute and core muscles throughout your pedal stroke. They do this by forcing you to sustain a cadence just above 'comfortable' and by pushing you to your maximal cadence.
The last drill, Single Leg Efforts, ask you to unclip one leg and ride at a steady, single-legged effort. This forces you to pull up on the pedal instead of just pushing down and ensures maximal muscle awareness and engagement. This workout is best done while riding indoors on a trainer because even small variations in terrain can affect your ability to properly execute this workout. The majority of this workout is done in heart rate Z1/2 /// 50-75% of threshold /// RPE 2-5. You should keep the effort level below threshold (heart rate Z4, 100% of threshold, RPE 7-8) during the max cadence efforts.
* To improve stillness and stability at high cadences.
* To improve muscle fiber engagement for improved efficiency at all cadences.
* To increase maximum cadence.
* To make that pedal stroke as smooth as butter.
Bike - Endurance+
5 minutes @ RPE 2 -- 45% of FTP -- HR <70%
Number of Sets
Rest Between Sets
Interval Repeats per Set
1 Interval Steady: 55 minutes @ RPE 3.5 -- 55-65% of FTP -- HR <85%
2 minutes @ RPE 2 -- 45% of FTP -- HR <70%
Steady Endurance/Base ride. Power should remain between 55-70% of FTP the entire time. Aim to keep between 75-85% of LTHR This is a ride that can be out doors OR indoors If done inside, you can play OPEN 60/OPEN 30 and adjust the intensity to 64-81% Another option is to select any Video of a similar length, ignore the power targets (meaning running slope mode for those with smart trainers) holding power between 55-70% of FTP and only following the Cadence and Stand/Sit prompts in the video
Bike - The Shovel
Four Dimensional Power Focus:
Time to dig deep into the COURAGE mines. Real deep. No other workout runs the full range of 4DP like this one. The consistent inverse relationship between interval length and intensity pushes your AC to the very limit, ensuring that after each micro-interval your body recovers just enough to hit and hold your power target for the next interval...even if you don't think you can. The 5-10 second efforts hit your NM system hard. No holding back for these short efforts. All out means all out. The 15-60 second efforts all require significant anaerobic energy, but with so little rest your cardiovascular system never really gets a break. This not only stresses your AC as you try to recover, but it also pushes your MAP to its limit as your body tries to generate as much aerobic power as possible. Even though there is not a single interval in this workout that is longer than 60 seconds, each full set lasts more than 20 minute. The unrelenting aerobic stress turns this session into a surprisingly good FTP builder.