Pro Cycling Training Secrets With Elia Viviani

Pro Cycling Training Secrets With Elia Viviani


– I’m out here in Italy
and I’m wildly excited, not just because the sun
is shining and it’s warm, I’m not wearing a single thermal layer, but I’ve been invited to come out and ride with Elia Viviani at the
Montichiari velodrome. And I’m pretty excited,
’cause it’s been a while since I was on the track. (thumping bass music) Elia Viviani is undisputedly
one of the world’s fastest sprinters with
a prestigious palmares across the road and the track. In his spare time he’s also
been working with Bikevo, a startup software company for training, and its because of them that
we’ve been invited out here to Italy and the Montichiari velodrome to get up to speed with Viviani. He is the defending Olympic
omnium champion on the track, and the Tokyo 2020 Olympics is just around eight months away. So let’s get in there and
see how his training’s going. (rhythmic rock music) Right, Elia. We’ve made it finally to the velodrome. I’ve managed to blag myself a bike, and I’m quite looking forward
to gettin’ on the track, because it’s been a
little while since I rode. 2012 is the last time I rode on the track, apart from when I penny-farthing. I’ve got a few questions
I want to ask you. So when it comes to the start of the year and you’re planning out
all of your season goals, how does that look? Do you plan it all in one big calendar, or do you aim for certain
small targets at a time? – Yeah, the training is the main part, but it’s also the last
things you want to plan. You plan the goal, and
then you go back to see how you can arrive there on the top of your shape and everything. You go in the specific training schedule when just you know which one is your goal. The biggest goal in the
season, every season, it is Tour de France. This year it is the Olympics, so in Olympics year and back 2016 when I won that gold medal, and then is the best feeling
you can have as an athlete. So it’s quite easy to understand
which one can be the goals, but is not really easy like
that to plan arrive there in the best shape you can
have, the best body, fit, in that moment. So it’s all about planning,
doing everything perfect and hope nothing go
wrong, because you need to be ready all from that. – You mix road and
track phenomenally well. You win on the road all
year long and you win on the track as well. How do you do that? What’re the big things? How long does it take? Tell me everything about
it, I want to know it all. – Yeah, the big problem from the track is I don’t race a lot on the track, so that’s mean I can train a lot, but I don’t, when I go
on the track for racing, I don’t have really some
point like on the road. On the road you do 80-90
race days per season, so on the track I never
go more than 20 days. Likely is on my natural because from when I am 11, 12, I do both. Every week I just do my
training on the track and I really feel okay to jump from track bike and road bike. Yeah, the technical part I just try to use the same position, then that help me to don’t have something
traumatic when I jump from one bike to the other bike. But mainly, track is part
of my normal preparation, also for the road. Also when you don’t see me from long time to don’t race on the track,
but I’m train on the track. Because it’s something I really
need, also for my sprint, and that help me a lot. – So these days, with all the
training software available, do you think it’s possible
to accurately predict when you’ll be in top shape
and when you won’t be? You know, how you’ll feel on that day? – Yeah, absolutely. So, in that plan, when you
understand, when you realize which one is the goal that
need to be the moment, the period where you
need to be on the top. So normally as a pro rider
you just thinking about two periods with really,
really high shape, where you have your main goal. Some season you can plan three, but is never really works well because all the preparation you need to do to arrive on the top is really a long period of preparation. And you need to plan also a rest period in the middle of season. So normally, yeah, I try
to choice always two period where can be a period of
month, a month and half, where you try to be always there. – So you mentioned having a rest. For younger riders watching this video, is the rest for your body, physical rest, or is it for mental rest? – I think it’s more mental
because if you think the body, all the long season you work every day, so probably the body can go still. Also when you feel tired
it’s more with the head, because you arrive at the hand one piece, or probably you gain your
goal, or you lose that. So is the head that decide
if you are tired or not. So, mainly. So for sure that you can
go extreme with the body, but when you do rest,
it’s good for everything because with the body you start from probably a lower level, but really more motivated
to gain more fatigue. And that is really important. I think in the last few years, well y’know the modern cycling is
not just about few month, it’s from January to December. So the rest is even more important. Because you need to listen your sensation, your feeling, but, yeah, rest is part of the training, for sure. – Training has changed loads. Like I started cycling in the 90s, and I’m pretty sure, judging
by how old you said you were when you started cycling, it
was also the late 90s as well. How much has changed for
you and what modern methods have you experienced over recent years that have made an affect on how you ride? – Yeah, mainly, not just the cycling, but also the preparation
is all more specific. So I turn pro in 2010 and
already from the last ten years a lot of change. I think that technology
in the last few years is really a big part of our training, of our season, because
with all the days we have, power, heart rate, speed and cadence, and all you have in this computer, you can just analyze everything
and try to doing better. – Making little changes. – Yeah, it’s not a complete change, because a rider is a rider. The technology help the
cycling, but the base of cycling are always the same. – It’s always a traditional sport, it’s always happening on the road. – Absolutely. – I’ve always thought that I
was pretty quick at sprinting, even on the track. How well, though, do I
compare to the current Olympic omnium champion? Right, let’s get up there. It’s been a while since
I’ve been on the track. After a brief roll around the banking, mainly so I could have a chat and enjoy the feeling of speed that you get when not riding a
penny-farthing on a track, we’re going for a one lap race, from a rolling start. So roll around for one lap, and then start with 250 meters to go. – [Man Standing On Track]
Three, two, one, go. Go, go, go, go! (heavy bass music) One more to go guys, one more to go! Go, go, go, go! (suspenseful music) (shouting) – Well, clearly if I want any chance of beating Viviani, I am
going to need to train. Let’s take a little
look at the Bikevo app, which Viviani aided the development of by using his personal training data from the run-up to his gold-medal winning Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Bikevo is an algorithm-based software that has the ability to
adapt to user-generated data, to then create tailor-made
bespoke training programs that are available in
the palm of your hand. Simply download the app
and set up your season. You do this by running through
three pages of data input, which mainly outline
your training history, your available training time, the dates of the events
you’re training for, and then finally the types of events that you’re going to be riding. Once you’ve done this, you will need to complete that critical
power testing protocol. And that will assure
that accurate sessions are prescribed to you. But even this can be done within the app. To get a little bit more
background information, we were able to talk to Davide Cassani, a well-known professional
rider from the 1980s and 90s, now a highly regarded coach. But more importantly, one of
the key players at Bikevo. Could you explain a little bit about the origins of Bikevo and
how the data from Elia was fed into the app and how that then is relayed on to other riders? (speaking Italian) Elia, a massive thank you for taking the time out of your training to show us how to ride the track again, remind me how hard it was. – You’re welcome. – Talking all things
training, all things software and everything. Good luck for 2020. I look forward to watching
you at the Olympics. – Thank you. – Get on and train. Go. – I go.
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