In this second phase, you will be working on only one thing and that is improving your power output and efficiency at anaerobic threshold. The cadence goes up a bit to 90 rpm on your endurance rides and your intervals and the intensity also goes up a bit to the top of zone 4.
Threshold Interval (T.I.)
This is a 15-minute interval done at time trial pace. Fifteen minutes is the ideal length to hold a very high pace that is long enough to keep your body in the right zone throughout. You could do longer but your power would drop off and you would not be training at the highest possible intensity. If you go shorter you end up moving into VO2 max territory, which comes in the next cycle.
Find a nice steady grade that lasts at least 15 minutes. Once the interval ends you should turn around wherever you are, go to the bottom rest for a few minutes and start over. Keep your body relaxed and your pedaling smooth and steady.
I like to treat each one of these as a time trial, trying to beat my personal best power. If you don't have a power meter, you can use distance as a measure so long as you do the interval on the same stretch of road under similar circumstances.
Two to three intervals per workout with at least 10 minutes of recovery.
Phase Two Schedule
- Monday: off or easy (bottom of zone 1) recovery ride
- Tuesday: T.I. Start with two and build up to three.
- Wednesday: T.I. I can't get into all the benefits of doing back to back interval days but so long as you keep your cadence above 90, you will be ok with this.
- Thursday: endurance
- Friday: recovery with 20 minutes of H.S. Add 10 minutes every time you do a H.S. interval till the end of the program so that your end total is a full hour.
- Saturday: endurance ride
- Sunday: T.I. Never do more than three. If you could do a fourth, you are not going hard enough.