As a cycle coach one of the most important things that I've found that governs the success or failure of my client’s preparation for big event like the SCODY 3 Peaks Challenge is their commitment. Now commitment a fairly broad topic. So what I’m going to discuss here is one of the main issues that many of my clients face when they are about to commit to a serious block of training.
How much training is required to ride the SCODY 3 Peaks Challenge in under thirteen or ten hours? Forget anything that you’ll see that offers you super fitness by exercising for 20 minutes a day. That only exists in TV infomercials. You see, there is no holy grail to getting fit quickly, especially for a serious endurance event like the SCODY 3 Peaks Challenge. And, believe it or not, I believe there is no “naturally gifted” sedentary person out there that they can just jump on a bike without doing any form of prior training and expect to get enough fitness in just three weeks and then successfully ride the SCODY 3 Peaks Challenge in under thirteen hours. Look, there might be someone out there but I’ve yet to come across one in all the time I’ve been coaching people. And, if I was to find someone they would be a very very rare exception.
So you’ll need to commit around ten to twelve hours a week for twelve weeks to prepare yourself to ride the SCODY 3 Peaks Challenge in under thirteen hours. More if you want to do a sub ten. For a sub 10 you’d be looking at around ten to eighteen hours a week. There are a few exceptions to this. If you have come over from another endurance sport or if you have previously committed to this volume of training before then you may not need to do as much, but that’s about the only two exceptions that I can think of.
The main reason why people fail themselves when they try to commit to a block of training like this is actually to do more with what they don’t do rather than what they are going to do.
So now that you know that you’ll need to train between ten to eighteen hours a week (depending on your target ride time) you’ll actually need to make this time available. And… this is where many people come unstuck. If you aren’t currently making this amount of time available to train then there is a whole lot of stuff that you’re currently doing that you won’t be able to do if you commit to this training. Remember, it’s all about what you won’t be doing. Whether it’s playing taxi for the kids on the weekend or making that eight am meeting at work on Wednesday, all these things will impact your ability to commit to the training.
So rather than blindly kicking off your training in a hope that you’ll sort out these scheduling conflicts when they arises, you’re better off addressing them before you start your training. In my experience these conflicts, if left unresolved, will result in you feeling frustrated that you aren’t getting your training done, your workmates frustrated that you’re meeting with them in your cycling knicks, that is if you actually manage to make the meeting. And... your disgruntled partner being angry at you for being outsourced to do your kids weekend taxi service.
So the first thing to do before committing to the training is to work out when you’ll find the time to do your training and then work out what and who is going to be impacted by it. Once you figured this out you’ll need to go to each of these “stakeholders” and get their buy-in well ahead of time. As part of your planning set some time aside to talk to your family and work mates and let them know what you are doing. Then get it sorted out before you start your training. Negotiating who’s going to operate the kid’s weekend taxi service at 5:30am on a Saturday morning while pumping up your tires in the garage will never result in a very favourable outcome. And... whatever outcome you do reach in the garage will usually also result in restrictions being imposed on any future negotiations to do with your training time. Anyone that understands how to negotiate will tell you that you need to come from a position of power. The garage at 5:30 am in the morning is not a good place for powerful negotiations.
The great thing is that I’ve done a lot of the initial hard work for you. I’ve created both a sub 13 and sub 10 hour 12 week training plan for you. In it I’ve already working out how much training and what sort of training you’ll need to do week by week in your build-up to the SCODY 3 Peaks Challenge. All you then have to do is get your diary out and find out if you have any up and coming work events, social gathering, meeting and taxi services that are going to conflict with the training plan. Nothing worse than trying to get in a long ride on Sunday after attending your friend’s all-nighter birthday party the day before. Right?
The training plans can be downloaded here from our CyclingWorkoutOnline website:
So there you have it. Stakeholder buy-in. Get it right and you’ll fly through your training with ease. Get it wrong and you could be facing a nasty disagreement with your family, friends or boss or perhaps all three.Click here to download a free copy of our 12 week SCODY 3 Peaks Challenge training program