How to train for a 24-hour team race

Four training tips to help you complete a day in the saddle

Are you planning a 24-hour race this year? If you are, Elliot Lipski from Trainsharp Cycle Coaching’s (trainsharpcyclecoaching.co.uk) gives us some advice on how best to train for a team endurance event.

1. Endurance speed and will-power

This event requires endurance, speed and will-power. You’ll need a lot of endurance to be competitive but being a team race means it isn’t about holding a specific power for 24 hours straight, rather how well you are able to recover from and repeat your efforts.

2. Develop muscular endurance

My top tip is to work on your Zone 3 capacity — this is the level you develop muscular endurance. Working just below your second threshold power (FTP) will improve the body’s ability to utilise fat stores efficiently as a fuel source and reduce lactate production.

The intensity of these types of sessions are such that you should fully recover from the training stimulus within 24 hours, enabling for regular and progressive training in the build up to the race.

3. Hold a steady output

On race day, you should be able to hold a steady mid–high Zone 3 power output. This is more than you could do for six hours straight because you’re recovering between efforts.

4. Fuel your body

You will use up much of your body’s glycogen stores. As a guide, you could be using over 1,000kcal per hour, so you might not feel like it in the middle of the night but keep eating!

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