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This week’s one-hour workout comes from our 16-week 70.3 training plan by coach Marilyn Chychota, and can be done on the road or on the trainer. The theme of this session is “cadence”—in other words, pedaling above and below your preferred pedaling rate. Some think cadence is simply about spinning faster to go faster, but it’s much more. Mastering an assortment of cadence speeds can help you gain muscular strength, reduce your susceptibility to fatigue, and increase your overall cycling efficiency. Yes, this means you’ll go faster on the bike, but more importantly, it will also position you to run faster off the bike.
Cadence is counted in RPM, or revolutions per minute. A cadence of 60 RPM means that one pedal makes a complete rotation 60 times in one minute. You can count RPM by picking a foot (left or right) and counting how many revolutions it makes in 15 seconds, then multiplying by four. You can also use a bike computer and sensor to track RPM or make a playlist with beats that correspond to the RPM in the set (if you’re wearing headphones while riding outdoors, we recommend leaving one earbud out and keeping the volume low so you can still pay attention to your surroundings).
One-Hour Workout: Cadence Crushers
5 min. spin, progressively ramping up your intensity
5 min. at 95 RPM
4 min. at 105 RPM
3 min. at 110 RPM
2 min. at 115 RPM
5 min. at 95 RPM
1 min. at 120 RPM
5 min. choice RPM
5 min. easy spin
Get more 60-minute sessions in our One-Hour Workout archives.