Words: AC Shilton  Photo: Robert Conroy

BIG-GEAR INTERVALS to improve climbing

On a long, gradual climb, alternate between pushing a big gear at a lower cadence for one to two minutes and spinning in an easier gear for five to 10 minutes. Climbing in harder gears improves your peak pedal force, which helps stave off leg fatigue during long ascents when you’re in a smaller gear.

TABATAS to improve sprinting

After a warm-up of at least 15 minutes, sprint as hard as possible for 20 seconds. Coast for 10 seconds. Repeat six to eight times, then cool down. These short-but-searing efforts train your body to recruit more muscle fibres—something you’ll appreciate while hurtling toward the next road sign.

ATTACK INTERVALS to improve time-trialling

Warm up, then ride as hard as you can for two to three minutes (you’ll be flagging by the end). Then ride easy for two minutes. Do up to three hard efforts total; cool down.

The workout raises your threshold pace, which roughly corresponds to the intensity you can hold over a one-hour TT.