Being able to time trial could mean securing the yellow jersey or simply making your meeting in time. Here’s some tips.
Tomorrow sees the second of three Time Trials at this year’s Tour de France. But races against the clock aren’t limited to professional bike races – even the most casual among us find ourselves pegged at our power threshold in a desperate bid to beat the grocery store’s closing time or finish our commute in time to clean up before the morning meeting. Next time you find yourself counting seconds, here are some strategies you can to use to achieve at least a temporary victory over time itself.
1. Ride at your threshold:
The point at which you can sustain a high level of power for an extended period of time has been associated with several terms in the past few years, such as AT (anaerobic threshold), LT (lactic threshold) and power threshold. All of them get to the same idea: You want to find the magic point that lets you ride as hard as you can for as long as you need to. Go too fast and you blow up and must ease off to recover; pedal too slowly and you finish with energy you should have used. You don’t need a power meter or heart-rate monitor to find this zone: just ride hard enough so that when you try to speak, you can only get out a few words at a time rather than complete sentences or even long phrases. That’s your optimal extended-TT speed.