Putting together a training program is not so simple
When a trainer imagines a training program, he cannot just refer to a complex ready made plan and follow it to the letter without modifying it for his athlete. Such programs are not always fitted to satisfy the particular needs of the athlete who uses it because they are no personalized, which is universally recognized as the cornerstone of most modern training methods.
It is without doubt that the effective construction of a training program is not that simple and requires a thorough knowledge of physiology applied to training and of how the body responds to the stresses of training and the stimuli that training produces.
This type of in-depth knowledge must not be limited to assessing the possible immediate effects of a training plan, but must also consider the most complex aspect of the effects that will occur over time and in the general context of the training program as well as with each of the training plan’s steps.
A cyclist's performance during the competitive season will therefore be the result of a correct balance of training load and the way in which the particular athlete’s qualities are coached by the training program.
So, even before deciding on a training session, the season’s objectives should be analyzed and the year’s training divided into specific periods.
In the world of cycling the year is usually divided into five periods.
The first period is transitionary and “resets the system” by lightening the workload and working on a correct posture.
The period defined as general is the period when strength is trained in general, both on the bike as though cross training.
The Pre-agonistic period is when specific strength is trained, the volume of training is increased and the load is differentiated.
During the agonistic period the focus is on endurance strength. In this period the intensity will be maximum and the races can be used as an effective instrument to reach peak form.
The period with the maximum attention is the one that is defined as Top in which professional athletes train at high altitude and prepare to reap the benefits of their training in their goal races.
Only once this general subdivision in periods has taken place, can a trainer concentrate on the most suitable methodology, also in function of the time available and the characteristics of the subject.
In light of all that we have discussed, it is evident that it is important to have a training program that is strategically constructed for the individual athlete and the objectives that are set, without losing sight of the time at disposition during the week and weekend that can be dedicated to training.