One-Hour Workout: Rhythm Riding

This week’s one-hour workout is best done on the trainer and helps to improve your pedaling as well as your power.

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When it comes to bike training, it’s very easy for triathletes to focus solely on fitness and to overlook technique. It’s always advisable to spend some time every week—even if it’s just for a short duration—thinking about how you ride a bike, not just obsessing about watts, intervals, and efforts. This workout perfectly combines the two, including some single leg pedaling work with some intervals that’ll help give you a fitness boost.

Warm up gently for 15-20 minutes and then begin the single-leg drills. Unclip one foot, keeping it out of the way, and focus on pedaling smoothly with the other leg for one minute. Pay attention to the entire pedal stroke, noticing if you have any dead spots and trying to ensure you apply constant pressure throughout the pedal stroke. Your cadence should be 80-90 RPM (revolutions per minute). Switch to the other leg for one minute. Repeat this pattern. Ride easy for five minutes and then begin the rhythm riding.

Rhythm riding is so-called because you get into a comfortable rhythm, pace, and effort—and just lock into it. Find your rhythm and get in that groove! Effort should be at the upper end of your comfortable range, around 7/10 RPE (rate of perceived exertion). You want to stay relaxed and maintain your focus on riding as smoothly as possible, being mindful of the smooth circles you were just pedaling on the single-leg drills and applying force throughout. Stay anchored on your saddle and don’t force or push these efforts; let the power come from good pedaling, not from sheer brute force or heavy effort. Aim to keep your cadence between 85 to 90 RPM. Expect your heart rate to rise as the interval progresses, but it shouldn’t get too uncomfortable. Ride easy for two minutes and repeat this pattern three times.

Wrap it up with 5-10 minutes of smooth, easy pedaling, and recover well.


15-20 minutes easy

Main Set

4 x 1 minute single leg drills, 1 minute per leg then switch
5 minutes easy recovery
3 x 5 minutes of “rhythm riding” with 2 minutes easy between each.


5-10 minutes relaxed easy spinning

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