• Ally Mackay

Personal Training. Week 6

Hello and welcome to the ADAM COPLEY: PERSONAL TRAINING weekly blog.

Here you will find weekly updates designed to educate you on strength and conditioning for cycling. Over the coming weeks I will be covering all aspects of conditioning your body for cycling and how it can benefit you in terms of comfort, speed, and improving your riding. So, without further delay. Let’s get right into this week’s entry!

Riding bikes is the best thing in the world, right? We are here because we love it, but do not let that stop you from trying new things and having an open mind about exercise.

Last week I couldn’t really be bothered with a long road ride (my MTB is in the bike shop at the minute) and I wasn’t sure I wanted to run instead.

So, I decided to combine the two and do what is apparently known as a “Brick session”. No, I have not heard of it either. I went out on a flattish 23 mile ride, straight into a 3 mile run and do you know what. I absolutely buzzed off it. It was like discovering something completely new, well it kind of was discovering something completely new, but I was absolutely amazed at how good I felt afterwards.

I will be adding this into my training from now on. Running has become a part of my training and I can confidently say that it has changed my riding in a positive way.

So, this week I want to give you a couple of ways you can change your riding up, and make it more interesting if you are getting bored:

1: Short, intense loops:

Try riding shorter, more local and more intense loops. Explore the local area for loops you can link together, create a lap and walk them to see how long they are. Once you have done this you can get a pretty short and intense 12-mile loop in relatively close to home. Think XC training. You want a good mix of single track, a bit of descending, some flat spiny sections and some punchy climbs. These loops are tremendously fun and rewarding when you complete an hour of power on the bike.

Give them a go and see how you enjoy them.

2: Less miles, more climbing:

Get on Strava and plan out a route that is relatively short (no more than 15 on a mtb, no more than 30 on a road bike) But is full of hills. The increase in climbing over distance will give your legs a pure burning sensation and you will feel stronger than ever after a few rides at this. One of the biggest things I noticed adding a road bike into my training was how easy climbing on a mountain bike became. A typical road climb is 15 minutes minimum of solid effort around the peak district. This made my climbing speed on the mountain bike much quicker. Doing more climbing on the bike will make a difference though whatever bike you use. So get out there, and get climbing.

3: Brick sessions:

These are my new favourite thing. Get out on the bike and plan a decent route that leaves you tired but not absolutely f*&ked, once you are in put the bike somewhere safe, change your shoes and get out on a run. If you are new to running you may want to throw in a few days of just running but if you are a relatively fit cyclist you should be able to get a few miles in on the flat without being destroyed. Honestly, this is amazing, just do it!!

While we can’t drive to places to make our riding more varied, we have to adapt, hopefully this blog gives you a few great examples of ways to do that. And I hope you find something fun (and painful) to occupy your time.

As always you know where I am if you want to get in touch:


Istagram @acopleypt


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