Every rider is different, regardless of cycling experience, with a wide range of strengths and weaknesses that are defined by body shapes, muscle structure and metabolic abilities. You will have likely seen these differences when out on your local chain gang ride. Some riders are naturally gifted on climbs, gliding away effortlessly as if gravity has less effect on them but in a sprint to the city limits they might be spat out the back. Riders that are strong on short rides but as the kilometres rack up so does the suffering.
The key to improving as a rider is focusing on areas of fitness that are holding you back, this is easier said than done. Unless you have the luxury of working with a cycling coach and identify weaknesses most riders will base their training on how they feel during a ride or after a training session.
As not every rider has the same physical profile. Generic cycling workout plans are unable to offer the possible improvements that can be achieved with a tailored plan.
While any form of training is better than no training, for the best results efforts must use focused drills and training to strengthen the zones requiring improvement. Any training should also be supported by a structured volume and intensity to meet training goals and allow the body to recover properly.
Bikevo understands this and has developed the Bikevo app to help cyclists of all abilities to train effectively. Bike Personal Coach, Bikevo’s virtual personal coach, assesses your athletic attributes and fitness level, developing a customised training schedule so you can increase your performance during your rides.
How it works
To find the areas that need to be targeted for training Bikevo need data regarding your current condition, goals for the season and how much time you can dedicate to training. Bikevo then uses a Critical Power test which has been developed by some of the worlds leading cycling trainers to measure your current fitness. The test can be performed on an indoor trainer, smart trainer or spin bike or your regular bike if you have a heart rate monitor and/or a bike fitted with a power meter.
1. The training
Using the data from the Critical Power test, Bikevo creates bespoke training plans. These effectively target the areas you need to work on based on the goals set or the types of events that you are training for. These easy to understand training plans are scheduled to suit your availability and programmed so you can achieve your season goals. As you complete workouts your fitness progress is tracked on the training app and Bikevo adjusts your future training schedule to reflect your progress against your training plan.
2. Track your fitness
As all your training is managed through a phone app you can check graphs and data covering your cycling type, progress and other useful fitness metrics like heart rate and power zones at any time. Follow up Critical Power tests are also performed to measure your improvements and calculate the training load for the next period of workouts.
3. Equipment needed
To perform the Critical Power tests you won't require much in the way of additional equipment. Although Bikevo recommends using an indoor trainer, smart trainer or spin bike (with ANT+ or Bluetooth) for the most accurate results, you can also do it outside on your regular bike. An Apple or Android smartphone is needed to run the Bikevo app and a GPS device can be used to record your rides, in fact, the only extra accessories you may need to purchase is a heart rate monitor to record your riding effort and a cadence sensor. While it is not necessary for the workouts you can connect a power meter to Bikevo. Including power data in your training table allows you to train accurately and give more result metrics.
How to get started
If you are looking for an effective approach to improving your performance or want to get the edge on your riding friends, Bikevo can be downloaded for free on Apple iOS and Google Android. When you register an account with Bikevo you can take the first test for free and access the Bike Personal Coach features for 30 days at no cost.
The Bike Personal Coach comes as a package that includes adaptive personalised training tables and self-evaluation Critical Power tests for setting your baseline fitness and to measure training progress. The training program is available as a subscription for €99 per year.
This article was written in support for Bikevo.