Novice Cycling / 4DP Weakness: Neuromuscular, by The Sufferfest.
Plan Length: 10 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
* Have a nascent yet 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 dreaded Full Frontal. After finishing this plan, you can begin a more advanced plan straight away.
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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.
Bike - NoVid: Recovery Spin
Very easy ride, all in the small chainring...unless going downhill with a tailwind. Resist the temptation to go harder or faster. Keep HR in the Recovery Zone (Zone 1) for the entire ride. Yes, you should feel embarassed to be seen riding this slow - it's OK! Stay on flat terrain, ideally.
Bike - NoVid: Cadence Builds and Holds
Four Dimensional Power Focus:
This workout is another excellent addition to our "Drills" series. Over the next 45 minutes, you will complete four 30-second cadence builds, and six 60-second high cadence holds. This workout places a considerable demand on your Neuromuscular System, as your muscles are forced to contract and relax as quickly as possible. At the same time, the shorter recovery period between these drills will keep your heart rate, and breathing rate elevated, giving you a great cardiovascular workload.
Let's breakdown the two drills you will be doing.
Cadence Builds: The name of the game here is absolute peak cadence, not peak power. To achieve this, you need to be in a small gear and have very light resistance. Starting at 90-RPM, steadily increase your cadence until you reach your absolute max without about 5-seconds left, and hold that to the end. Your limiting factor on these efforts needs to be leg speed. If resistance/power output is your limiting factor, try starting in an easier gear, or shift into an easier gear 15-seconds in. Bouncing in the saddle is okay for this drill.
Cadence Holds: These efforts require you to maintain the highest cadence you can without starting to bounce in the saddle. For some of you that will be 100-RPM, for others, it will be 150-RPM. The key is to settle into YOUR peak sustainable cadence. Like the Builds, the goal here is not high power, so these efforts are limited to 90% of FTP. Do not be surprised if your heart rate is well into Zone 4 by the time you hit the last few holds.
To properly execute this session, your effort between drills needs to be low. With limited recovery time between these maximal Neuromuscular Efforts, riding above Zone 1 between efforts will only reduce your ability to max out your cadence. While the power targets between are Zone 1, do not be surprised if your heart rate does not drop below Zone 2 after the first couple builds.
* Improved muscle recruitment and firing patterns
* Improved muscle coordination at higher cadences
* Deliver a high Neuromuscular and Cardiovascular load while minimizing the power demands placed on your muscles
* Help you develop a silky smooth pedal stroke
Bike - Elements of Style @85%
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 - The Hunted @75%
Four Dimensional Power Focus:
This session doesn't have the longest sustained intervals, it doesn't have the shortest recovery times, it doesn't have the hardest surges, but what it does have is an unrelenting pace. There is very little "recovery" at all in this session, so you never get a chance to really catch your breath or give your legs a break. The Hunted lacks any true recovery like you get in some other FTP-focused workouts, meaning your anaerobic energy systems never really get replenished. This means they can't help much with power production. This, in turn, makes the repeated efforts above threshold near the end of this session much harder than they might feel in another workout where you get to recover fully. The unrelenting nature of this session makes it great for really working on building your sustained aerobic power, just what you need to increase your FTP.
Bike - Endurance+
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