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How To Set Up For Our Training Plans

Prep For 90 Days of Training In TrainingPeaks

To help us all prepare for the upcoming season, our friend Coach Dave Harward has given us two free 90-day plans hosted on the training platform TrainingPeaks. If you don’t have a TrainingPeaks account yet, you can set one up for free. Whether you already use TrainingPeaks or not, you’ll need to set up your heart rate and power zones so that TrainingPeaks can apply your personal metrics to Coach Dave’s plans.

How To Set Up Your Heart Rate Zones In TrainingPeaks

Set up your heart rate zones to get important information for the next 90 days—you’ll want this regardless of if you’re using the HR- or power-based plans. Follow these steps:

  1. Log in to TrainingPeaks (or create a free account)
  2. Go to Settings
  3. Click the Zones tab
  4. Find the Default Heart Rate section and enter your Threshold Heart Rate, Max Heart Rate, and Resting Heart Rate
  5. Open the first drop-down and choose “Lactate Threshold” 
  6. Open the second drop-down and choose “Andy Coggan (5)”
  7. Click Calculate, then click Apply
  8. Rename the zones as shown here:
    1. Active Recovery
    2. Endurance
    3. Tempo
    4. Threshold
    5. VO2Max
  9. Click Save

More Info From TrainingPeaks

Gearhead Take

Who’s Andy Coggan? This guy literally wrote the book on Training And Racing With A Power Meter. His name in the drop-down refers to his method of calculating training zones.

Heart Rate Considerations

Training based on your heart rate adds a level of complexity to your workouts. Some things to keep in mind are heart rate drift (the tendency for your heart rate-to-effort ratio to increase later in your workout) and heart rate response time (your heart rate can’t change as fast as your power).

You’ll want to use your rating of perceived exertion to guide your efforts any time your heart rate drifts outside the prescribed zones. Expect this during intervals shorter than 90 seconds as your heart rate will be constantly changing, and later in your workout as fatigue sets in. Overheating can also cause your heart rate to spike, so manage body temperature as best you can.

How To Set Up Your Power Zones

If you’re using the power-based version of either plan, you’ll want to start by entering your Functional Threshold Power (FTP). If you don’t know yours yet or haven’t tested it in a while, don’t worry—we’ll do a ramp test as one of the workouts in the first week of the plans to find out. Once you know your FTP, follow these steps (if you’ve just set up your heart rate zones, skip to step 4):

  1. Log in to TrainingPeaks (or create a free account) 
  2. Go to Settings
  3. Click the Zones tab
  4. Find the Default Power section and enter your Functional Threshold Power
  5. Open the first drop-down and choose “Threshold Power”
  6. Open the second drop-down and choose “Andy Coggan” 
  7. Click Calculate, then click Apply
  8. Rename the zones as shown here:
    1. Active Recovery
    2. Endurance
    3. Tempo
    4. Threshold
    5. VO2Max
    6. Anaerobic
  9. Click Save

More Info From TrainingPeaks

Once your zones are set, it’s time to train. Enjoy Coach Dave’s Workouts over the next 13 weeks—we hope they help you get ready to crush the upcoming season.