Two Great HiiT Workouts For Cyclists

Do these bike routines when time is tight and you need to get faster.

Bicycling |

Do these bike routines when time is tight and you need to get faster.
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By now you’ve heard all the (well-earned) hype surrounding high-intensity interval training, or HiiT for short. These short, very intense workouts boost your aerobic and anaerobic fitness, improve insulin sensitivity, burn off dangerous belly fat while helping you maintain lean muscle mass, and of course, make you faster and stronger on the bike. They’re also a Godsend when you’re strapped for time and have to make every second count.

Quick ‘N’ Dirty 30s

Thirty seconds is the ultimate HiiT duration—just long enough that you can really ramp it up full throttle, but not so long that you fizzle out before it’s over. Experienced riders can follow the Dirty 30s as they’re prescribed here; beginner cyclists should extend the rest interval to 90 seconds. (Advanced riders can shorten the rest interval to 30 seconds.)

  • Warm up for 10 minutes.
  • Perform an interval training set:
    • Push your effort as hard as you can go for 30 seconds.
    • Pedal easy for 60 seconds.
    • Repeat four times.
    • After the final interval, pedal easy for four minutes.
  • Repeat the entire sequence two more times for a total of three interval sets.
  • Cool down for five minutes.

Descending Miracle Intervals

Olympic coach Gale Bernhardt, author of Become a Fat Burning Machine prescribes a type of HiiT interval she likes to call “miracle intervals”—not because you need a miracle to finish them, but because they deliver the high intensity, fat-burning, top-end fitness benefits of traditional HiiT bouts without completely flogging you. “I like giving longer recovery intervals because you can really generate high, all-out power for each ‘on’ interval,” says Bernhardt.

  • Warm up for 10 minutes.
  • Perform this Descending Interval set:
    • 45 seconds all-out fast (4:15 easy)
    • 40 seconds all-out fast (4:20 easy)
    • 35 seconds all-out fast (4:25 easy)
    • 30 seconds all-out fast (4:30 easy)
    • 25 seconds all-out fast (4:35 easy)
    • 20 seconds all-out fast (4:40 easy)
    • 15 seconds all-out fast (4:45 easy)
  • Cool down another couple of minutes if needed.

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