20 Minute Indoor Cycling Training | Hill Sprints on the Passo Campolongo

20 Minute Indoor Cycling Training | Hill Sprints on the Passo Campolongo


– You ready? We’re going to do some hill sprints up the Passo Campolongo
starting here in Corvara. First up, a warmup. (upbeat music) – Well, thank you very much, Dan. What an honour it is to
be training to footage shot by the Boss himself. Now this one, as Dan said,
is a hill-sprint session. It’s relatively simple,
at least in his outline, but it’s gonna be a tough one to do, so make sure you’re fully committed. It might just be 20 minutes, but we are gonna do a lot of hard work, ’cause in it we’ve got
six maximum sprints, each lasting 20 seconds. And then we don’t get full
recovery in between them either. We’re still riding at tempo, which is definitely the kind of pace that will have you slightly out of breath. After all we are riding
up the Passo Campolongo. Now we’ve got a little
bit more warmup to do. We’re just gonna ride
gently for three minutes, so we’ve got 2:10 left, and then we start the first of our tempo. We’ll probably change
down a couple of gears just so we can feel a
little bit more resistance, a bit more going through our legs. Now, as I said, the Campolongo. It’s relatively short,
just six kilometres long. Average gradient of 6%. And it’s a climb of two halves. So as you’ll see the
first bit, really twisty, pretty steep, and then we’ve
got a nice second section, where we can get up a
little bit more speed. Hopefully, of course. We are relying on Dan at the moment. But that’s where we’ll be able
to open up a little bit more, and get a bit more speed
on those 20-second sprints. If you wanna mimic the resistance that you feel on this
climb on your trainer, then you want to set
it to about 6% average. This beginning bit, as
I said, is quite steep. Grades up to 11%. But I’m gonna have mine
set a little bit less. I’m on a CycleOps Hammer,
and I’ve got the resistance set to equivalent of about 3%, because I want to actually use a slightly bigger gear than normal, just to make it feel as if I’m getting some speed up on the bike. Okay, still warmin’ up nice and gently. You can see the climb. We’re still in the town of Corvara, so this is in the Alta Badia
region in the Dolomites. Very nice pizzeria actually
just off to the left. Does a mean gluten-free
pizza, if that’s your bag. And we’re just gonna wind
our way up very gently, up through the lower slopes of the climb. Now, sprint sessions are great. It’s not just improving your sprint. It’s a way of working really hard, and then tryin’ to recover, clearing out the kind of
lactate from your muscles. Really useful actually for
boosting of threshold power, as well as increasing
that peak power, as well. It does come in handy. Okay, we’ve got 10 seconds now, and so we’re just lifting
the pace ever so slightly up to what is called tempo. So for me now, I’m gonna
have to change down a couple of gears at least, just to get my heart rate
up a little bit more. Yeah, there we go. Just a couple of gears. So if you’ve got a power metre, you wanna be lookin’ at
about 80% of your FTP now, maybe a little bit less. If you don’t have a power
metre, do not worry. As you can see on screen,
effort level is seven, and what we mean by that
is it’s not too taxing, so you are still able
to have a conversation, even if you’re breathing
hard whilst you’re doin’ it. So this just, it opens up a little bit more. You notice that on the screen there we’ve got got cadence suggest at 100 RPM, so that’s relatively quick. I certainly need to pedal
a little bit quicker if I wanna hit that. This is really good
for warmin’ up as well. It’s gotta be a quick warmup, if we’re doing a 20-minute interval, 20-minute session, rather. We can’t spend too long warmin’ up. But, as I say, six 20-second sprints, even though it is 20 minutes, you will know about it when you get off. I can guarantee it. And it’s not so long that
it’ll leave us tired. I think we’re gonna be buzzin’ off this, so if you’re doin’ it early morning, it’d be absolutely perfect, set you up for the rest of the day. Or maybe after work, perfect before, well, dare I say a night out. Maybe not a full night out. Okay, we’ve got 20 seconds now until we hit our first sprint. We’re gonna stick it in the big ring. I’m getting excited. I’ve still got 14 seconds to go. I want you to keep your cadence nice and fast for these sprints. I’m gonna be in the saddle. I don’t wanna get out the
seat on the indoor trainer, so I’m gonna really kick
my glutes and my quads. Ready, go! Here we go! 20 second all in! Fast cadence, high power! Come on, commit! 100% effort now! Keep it going, fast feet, fast feet! Nearly there. Whoo! There we go one, interval one. Interval number one. Right (breathing heavily). No rest for the wicked. Now it’s not full recovery,
we’re straight back into tempo. (breathing heavily) With that nice, fast cadence, remember. Try and get your breathing
back under control. Makes a big difference, I think, riding at tempo instead of full recovery. Even through in terms
of the actual effort, it’s maybe not much it, it slows down your recovery significantly. So you can be forgiven for getting a real build-up of accumulated fatigue over the course of even
just the 20-minute session. But there’s only 13:40 to go. Whoo, it’s going quick. That’s why we need 100% commitment on each of these intervals. Flat out. Let’s take a moment
there to enjoy that view. Look at that. Fantastic. This is a great climb,
but arguably this is one of the finest descents in the world. It’s like been tailor-made for road bikes. So if you get the chance,
I thoroughly recommend it. It’s absolutely brilliant. All right, Lloyd is just
gettin’ to the steep bit now. This is 11%. Right, okay. Just 15 seconds now until the next sprint. I’m gonna stick it in the big ring. Suggest you do too. Ready, 100% commitment. I want you to attack this. It’s only 20 seconds, so
every one of them counts. Ready, three, two, one, go! Go, go, go, go, go, go, go! Sprint, sprint, sprint, sprint, sprint! (breathing heavily) (groaning) Five. Three. One, okay, quickly back to tempo. (breathing heavily) Try not to let off the gas too much. Try to get your breath back. Nice work everyone. How are the legs? Yeah, mine are hurting. Just a little bit of a zing. Nothing too bad at this stage. Plenty left to commit for the
next four sprint intervals. I said this will rev you up for the day. Definitely will get
your metabolism racing. Personally I wouldn’t fancy
doing this before breakfast, but you could conceivably, and it’ll give you a real
jump start on the day. You’re definitely dialling
up the pain a notch, if that’s your bag. Right. Just about getting my
breath under control now. It’s been a minute since the last sprint. We’ve got sprint number four next. Just need to get out of the seat. Stretch my glutes a shade. (breathing heavily) I can tell I’m warmin’ up nicely, because just about to
start sweating profusely. But that’s cool, at least I think it is. Right. No rest for the wicked. Concentrate, so I’m gonna
stick it back in the big ring. We’ve got 10 seconds now,
until the next effort comes. Get ready to attack this one again. One, go, go, go, go, go, go! Sprint, sprint, sprint, sprint, sprint! Commitment, come on. Halfway there. Come on, dig in. All the way to the end. Three, two, one, and back to tempo. (breathing heavily) No recovery, no recovery,
come on, back to tempo. Right. I said this was a climb in two halves. We’ve just crested the
first steep section. There’s a little bit of
respite in the gradient now, before the last stretch to the summit. For this region of Dolomite,
it’s relatively low, at 1,800 metres from the summit. But, being short enough as well, and we can absolutely smash it. It’s a fantastic climb. Right. Halfway through our recovery. Well, we say recovery. It’s tempo, remember. But, it feels pretty good
next to those intervals. Bear in mind that we’re halfway there. Once we’ve done this one,
into our number four, we’ve broken the back of it. That clock clicking down
at the top, saying 8:30, that’s not long until we
get to climb off the bike, have a nice stretch, jump in the shower. Still worth thinking
about drinking on this. (gurgling) Ah. Is it just me, or are these
tempo sections getting shorter? We’re nearly ready for
interval number four. Stick it in the big ring. (breathing heavily) Seven, ready for commitment again. Three, two, one, go! Stomp on it, come on! Ah (breathing heavily). Try to keep your upper
body still, if you can. We want power to the pedals. We don’t wanna be pullin’
the bike all over the place. One, and straight back to tempo. (groans) I’ll be with you in a minute. (breathing heavily) Okay, I’m gettin’ there. Just two more to go. How you feeling? Heart racing? Hope so. Breathing hard. But this is about bein’ energised, not totally ruined at the end. It’s enough hard work that
you will know about it. It will pay dividends. But it’s not gonna leave
us totally annihilated. This is perfect, if you
don’t have much time. If you’ve gotta hit the gym in the hotel. If you haven’t got he luxury
of your own bike even. You’re just on some random exercise bike. I feel for you if you are. We’ve all been there. I love a sneaky GCN training
session in a hotel gym. Even if you get some weird looks, when you’re so out of
breath, dripping with sweat. And there’s someone next to you on one of those leg-spreading machines. It’s always awkward, but, concentrate. That’ll help. Right. 20 seconds now until our next 20-second sprint. It’s not long to go on that clock. Look, 5:51. Stick it in the big ring. Get ready to lift the effort up. And go! Smash it, smash it, come on! Give it everything! Nice, fast cadence. Just 100%. Get those legs workin’. Get every last drop out. And straight back to tempo. (breathing heavily) Our last two minutes of tempo riding now. Try and get that breathing
under control, if you can. (breathing heavily) I’m gonna sip. (groaning) Again, we want total commitment. But don’t forget this is the last one, so everything gets left on
your pedals on this one. ‘Cause after that we’ve just got a beautiful cool-down period, where we can try and compose ourselves. (breathing heavily) You can hear my breathing’s
pretty hard now, even though my power is staying
exactly the same at tempo. I’m in the same gear. But that recovery in between sprints just isn’t quite enough at tempo. Okay, we’re starin’ down
the barrel of the last one, so I’m gonna stick it in the big ring. Get ready, this is it,
this is the big one. Three, two, one, go, go, go, go, go! Here we go, 20 seconds! This is it! Out of the saddle! Come on, leave it all on the road! Two, one! Oh, my word, there we go. (groaning) High fives all around, everyone. That is all the hard work done in this 20-minute interval session. You’re definitely gonna wanna
see it through to the end. If nothing else, just so your legs don’t feel too wrecked
the rest of the day. You can’t leave on a sprint. Just join me for this nice
2 1/2-minute cool down. (breathing heavily) You can admire the view. Wonder why Dan’s not
riding in a straight line. Maybe he’s still recovering
from the last effort, as well. (groans) Fresh snow on the ground,
some blue skies, perfect. Now no matter what your
objective is on a bike, whether it’s racing, even if
you’re into endurance riding, sessions like this really help, because the worst thing
you can do when training is to get stuck in a rut,
whereby you do the same training day in day out, week in week out. And you will inevitably reach a plateau. So even if you’re after
endurance for 300-mile rides, you’ll probably find that
mixing in sessions like this could actually pay real dividends, even though the two
couldn’t be further apart than the 20-second sprint
and 300-mile endurance. But you hear a lot of
people commuting to work and they reach a plateau. But even though you
ride as hard as you can, if you don’t do things
that are just a little bit outside the box, a little bit
outside your comfort zone, you won’t see the gains that
you could otherwise make. And this one, this one’s a
good one, this feels good. I feel energised. (groans) I’m not too ruined, not too ruined. Well done, everyone, just 30 seconds of spinning to go now. You can see Lloyd has pretty
much reached the top for us. Very kind of him. I don’t know about you,
I’ve enjoyed the ride. Absolutely fantastic climb. (breathing heavily) I said at the beginning that
the descent is even better. So if you stick with us just one moment, we’ll give you a shortcut
to GoPro footage of that, which is definitely worth a watch. Just before you go there, though, do make sure you subscribe to GCN. We’ve got loads of training
videos on our channel. All free, of course, all our content. If you subscribe, you’ll always be in the right place for it. And then, well, if you wanna
do more training right now, there’s another crackin’ video there, filmed on one of the
classic Alta Badia climbs. But if you do want that
sneaky little GoPro descent out of Campolongo, I would
definitely click down there, and maybe just warm down for
another five or six minutes.