by Konnor Lee
As an athlete, I find myself struggling to create and stick to a training plan time and time again. I’ve tried to commit myself to a completely aerobic training plan many times only to lose motivation to keep going. It was only this weekend that I realized that, despite what my coaches have been telling me, a completely aerobic training plan is not for me.
For those who seek to be faster, stronger bikers, or athletes in general, here is a quick breakdown on how to create a training plan:
Step one: Set a goal for yourself.
Whether your goal is to become a faster biker, build a strong body, or to impress a special someone, everyone must set a goal when creating a training plan. You have to know where you’re going before starting the engine, let alone setting up the navigation. This brings us to the next step.
Step two: Figure out how to reach your goal.
There are two types of exercise: aerobic and anaerobic. Aerobic exercise is the production of energy with the use of oxygen. Think long distance running. Anaerobic is the production of energy without oxygen. This is generally done with greater intensity. Think weightlifting. It is important to incorporate both aerobic and anaerobic exercise in your training plan. When considering how much of each you want to do, you should consider the goal that you have set. Let’s say that my goal is to become a faster long distance biker and maintain general fitness. Biking is an aerobic exercise, which means I should incorporate lots of biking into my training plan. However, while biking will greatly strengthen my cardiovascular endurance, I should also consider strength training. Weightlifting should help me with that.
Now that we’ve figured out what we need to do, let’s set a plan. It’s best to create weekly plans that stay consistent throughout the week, especially for a high school student like me that needs to take things a week at a time. I’ve decided to commit an hour and a half every weekday and two hours on Saturdays, leaving Sundays to rest (everyone needs a rest day!). I will have two days of just biking at a medium intensity, three days of weightlifting, and one day for a long distance biking session. This is what my plan looks like:
Monday: Weightlifting, working on pushing muscle groups (chest, triceps, shoulders)
Tuesday: 17 miles of road biking
Wednesday: Weightlifting, working on pulling muscle groups (back, biceps, some shoulder groups)
Thursday: 17 miles of biking on the canal
Friday: Weightlifting, working on legs (super important for me since my goal here is to be a faster biker!)
Saturday: 25 miles of biking on the canal
This is a great plan! We can now move on to step three.
Step three: Start working!
You have your plan and you know your goal. All you have to do now is make a good playlist and start working!
I wish you the best luck in your training endeavors. My last piece of advice is: everyone has off-days. If you show up to the gym feeling groggy and weak, it’s okay. Everyone has those days. The best thing to prevent bad days is to endure the bad days so that you can leave feeling like you made the most of what you could. I think the worst feeling is starting a workout feeling awful and quitting halfway through only to get home knowing you didn’t sweat nearly enough to deserve a refreshing shower.
What are you waiting for? Let’s get to work!