Set of the Week

Race season in the Mid-Atlantic is still a few months away.  Most athletes have just started to get back in the pool, are still cranking away base miles on the trainer while catching up on missed episodes of House of Cards, and have probably given in to running on the treadmill due to the atrocious weather we have been having.  Well, here is a workout from the Kurt Kinetic website that will get your heart pumping and your legs burning and will pay serious dividends on race day.  I completed this earlier today and I have never sweat so much in my life!

Over/Under Threshold Intervals (2:00)

Warm Up

  • 15 minutes warming up at a high cadence (90+ rpms)
  • 5 minutes of gradually increasing resistance and building into HR zone 3

Main Set

  • 5 repeats of 12 minutes work / 5 minutes recover
  • The 12 minute work intervals should be completed as 2 minutes just under your lactate threshold (zone 4 or 95-99% LTHR) followed by 1 minute just over (zone 5 or 100-102%).  Repeat this four times, then spin an easy gear for 5 minutes to recover.

Cool Down

  • 15 minutes spinning in zone 2

(Note: If you are still early in your base training, you can decrease the effort to zones 2 and 3.  The short intervals will make the time go by quicker and you will have put in 125 minutes of aerobic effort.)

This workout teaches your muscles to clear lactate while maintaining a high level of effort.  Think of it like you are climbing a short hill or accelerating to overtake a competitor on race day, then settling back into your race tempo.  Make sure you have plenty of water and nutrition on hand because this session is a doozie.

I find that it is also a good workout in which to test out your fueling for race day.  You have a few different paces at which to try and take in water, sports drink, or fuel.  On the trainer is always a good place to test new fuel options (gels, blocks, etc.).  You can have a few options on hand and see which ones agree with your gut the best.