Struggle Step Up Training Tips

With the cycling event season fast approaching - and Struggle Dales in less than 12 weeks - it's time to buckle up that Boa and step up your training. Here's our tips to up your Struggle training... 

sportive spring training tips

Step Up Your Milage 

Don’t get stuck in a 60 mile rut! It’s time to start extending your weekend rides passed 100km. Start by upping your distance 5-10 miles each week so you can confidently ride 100 miles by 10th May - giving you time to taper down and freshen up for Struggle Dales.

If family commitments means you’re unable to up the miles on a given day, try doing double days at the weekend. Back up your Saturday ride with an extra Sunday morning spin. This will get you used to the feeling of riding with tired legs - like 90 miles into Struggle Dales! Be sure to factor in a rest day or active recovery on Monday. 

How to build a successful training plan 


Park Rash Struggle Dales sportive

Step Up Your Elevation

You can’t avoid those steep ascents any longer! It’s time to train for the demands of the event by seeking out your steepest hills and smashing them. Try to replicate the Struggle Dales route by finishing your long ride with a steep hill at the end when your legs are tired. 

Why not use the hills to practice your climbing techniques; if you like to climb out of the saddle, why not practice your seated climbing for effective riding on longer, gradual ascents.

If you're not used to climbing out of the saddle, practice this essential skill for times when the steep gradient forces you to your feet.  

Struggle Dales climb guide 


Turbo training for sportive cyclists

Step Up Your Intensity 

Start lifting your ceiling and unlock a bit of that top-end fitness. A great way to do this out on the road is through hill reps - which are ideal Struggle-specific training.

You can rep your favourite local ascent or create a hilly loop; hitting the climbs full gas and recovering on the terrain in between.

Inside, there’s loads of intensity workout on Zwift. Why not download our Struggle Specific Zwift Sessions.



Step Up Your Nutrition 

New research is discouraging riders from under-fuelling or fasted riding in favour of high-carb fuelling. The pro peloton is speeding up; researchers are suggesting it's down to fuelling, with pros taking on 100-120g of carbs per hour rather than the traditional 50-60g.

At Struggle HQ, we never leave home without Maurten Drink Mix in our bidons, a few Maurten Solid energy bars and a mix of Maurten Gel 100 and Gel Caff 100. The Maurten products are designed to increase carb intake without any stomach issues. 

The Technology behind Maurten

Off the bike, it’s essential you take your diet seriously in order to fuel each training session, maximise training gains and avoid illness. Eating a nutritious diet off the bike, including upping your protein and carb intake, is essential when you're stepping up your training. 

Cyclists guide to Caffeine


Recovery training

Step Up Your Recovery 

Which leads on nicely onto recovery; protein is essential to recovery - especially straight after a hard session or long ride. Whether it’s a nutritious lunch, a protein shake or a boiled egg, prepare your post-ride nutrition in advance to maximise your optimal fuelling window straight after exercise. 

Step up your sleep as you increase your training and don't overlook rest days and active recovery. The only training you’re benefiting from is the training you’re recovering from. Stop binge-watching that Netflix series and go to bed one episode earlier. Top tip: avoid caffeine, alcohol and sugar during the evening to improve your sleep quality. 

Are you overtraining?

Sign Up & Step Up

Need a goal to motivate you to step up your cycling? Get your name on the Struggle Dales start line on 19th May. 

Sign up to Struggle Dales Now

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