Workouts

One-Hour Workout: Max Power Bursts

Have some fun hitting top speed with these short, sharp bike efforts.

It’s all too easy to get stuck in a rut at this time of year—steady, aerobic training is often the name of the winter training game—but it’s important to not completely neglect your top-end speed. This max power bursts session will help keep the cobwebs from settling on your fast-twitch muscles while also adding some spark to the monotony of long, steady workouts.

This workout is best done on the trainer so you can fully focus on going all-out on the short efforts. Of course, if you’re lucky enough to live somewhere warm and sunny with safe, open roads then feel free to take this session outdoors. 

Begin with a 10-minute warm-up that gets your heart rate and breathing rate up. You’ll want to raise effort to a strong 6-7/10 RPE (rate of perceived effort) by the end of the warm-up so you’re ready to rock for the first set.

The first set involves four rounds of 10 seconds at maximal effort followed by five minutes easy aerobic pedaling. Stay seated for the 10-second efforts, but definitely give it 10/10 effort.

The second set involved four rounds of 20 seconds at maximal effort followed by five minutes easy aerobic pedaling. Again, stay seated for these 20-second efforts, give them maximum power, and try to keep them all consistent—that is, don’t go so hard on the first one that by the third and fourth one you’re totally smoked.

Wrap up this session with a relaxed easy spin for 8-10 minutes. Enjoy!

Max Power Bursts

Warm-up

10 minutes building to 6-7/10 RPE

Main Set

4 x 10 seconds maximum effort (10/10 RPE) into 5 minutes easy aerobic riding (6/10 RPE)

4 x 20 seconds maximum effort (10/10 RPE) into 5 minutes easy aerobic riding (6/1o RPE)

Cooldown

8-10 mins easy pedaling