Training Specificity. What does that really mean? If you want to be good on the TT bike, make sure you are riding the TT bike and building in threshold efforts that are steady and strong. Becoming a better climber will take work on the climbs. Sprinting faster requires producing force for as long as possible.

I had a chat with a teammate today about climbing. I was headed out on a ride and planned to do a lower elevation climb where there is no snow. He suggested a route with a more difficult climb on the way. I thought about it for a moment and agreed. I've always wanted to be a better climber but haven't always put in the dedicated time on the hills. Generating watts while climbing in a low gear is much different than generating watts on the flats in a high gear.

So I headed for that more difficult climb on the way out and focused on my body positioning more than my output. My focus was right where it should have been, neutral back and strong leg extension using the powerful glutes to their maximum. Imagine this...my output was right up there higher than I would have anticipated.

As I watched the power I noticed that with conscious focus on a strong and stable position my perceived effort was lower for a given wattage. However, as soon as my attention was not on neutral and stable positioning the watts would drop.

Lesson for the day: practice the skills you hope to improve. Ride the TT bike. Climb hills. Sprint at high speed. Focus on cadence. Ride trails that challenge your ability.

Posted on March 11, 2014 .