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Calling all Masters: World Track Championships Preparation

The World Masters Track Championships are the pinnacle event for Masters track riders and the 2016 Championships is getting closer with just under 54 days to go!

For those who are looking towards the 2017 Masters Games in Cambridge, NZ - the Championships are not too far off for you also, with just under 255 days to go!

Further ahead, the 2017/18 UCI Masters Track Cycling World Championships will be held in Los Angeles (USA) with dates to be confirmed.

Before reading on, at the bottom of this blog we have two short questions about your training program in the lead up to the Masters World Games /Championships for both Manchester and Cambridge events - if you have the time, we'd really appreciate the feedback in the comments below!

Nothing could be more motivating than watching the Olympic Games events over the next few weeks!

So, if you’re looking for that extra bit of motivation - just turn the telly on and watch as the world’s finest track cyclists take to the newly laid wooden boards of Rio.

What you will notice in watching the Olympic Track Cyclists is just how finely tuned they are and near-perfectly prepared for their events.

We want to offer you some thoughts and advice to ensure you’re prepared for the World Masters Track Cycling Championships whether they be in Manchester this year, or the Games in Cambridge next year.

Manchester - World Masters Championships

When: 1st - 8th October 2016

Where: Manchester, England

Weeks until commencement: 7

Cambridge - World Masters Games

When: 21-30th April, 2017

Where: Cambridge, New Zealand

Weeks until commencement: 36

Training Progression

If you’re preparing for Manchester, whether that be for Sprint or Endurance disciplines, or a combination of both, with less than 8 weeks until start date, you will be wanting to make sure you’ve done a solid amount of training up until this point.

You'll also want to make sure you are in a training phase that encompasses an-aerobic and speed work elements, whilst still tapping into your aerobic system.

When we look at periodisation, we break up the annual training plan into phases and cycles and focus on specific areas of development.

This ensures each athlete progresses throughout the season and has the best chance at producing his/her performances for their targeted event on race day.

We’ve written a blog on Periodisation to help you understand where you need to be now, as you progress towards the World Masters Championships.

Whilst every athlete’s program will vary, generally the training phase that are focused on in the lead up to an event only really differ between disciplines.

For Example:

A sprint athlete will work on aerobic development at the start of season.

Couple it with strength in the gym and progress into the anaerobic/strength-power phase before working on the anaerobic and ATP-CP system whilst focusing on speed prior the tapering period.

This is similar to the endurance athlete, however the volume is subject to change.

You will find that endurance athletes will generally spend shorter periods working on the ATP-CP system, and instead will make up this time with anaerobic and aerobic based efforts specific to their events.

If you’re preparing for Cambridge, you are more than likely to be working on your aerobic and an-aerobic systems whilst developing strength and power in the gym at this present point (36 weeks out from competition).

Whilst you’re working on these systems don’t forget to focus on technical development - which might include practicing tactics, standing starts, pacing and entry lines which are all important and fundamental to success.

Nutrition & Recovery

Nutrition plays a fundamental role in recovering the body, but also in maintaining a race-ready physique!

We have a two part blog which discusses the importance of good nutrition, and offers sound advice on how to maintain nutrition for performance in the lead up to major events.

Nutrition Tips: Part 1

Nutrition Tips: Part 2

When you’re planning for good nutrition around training and racing, keep in mind these 3 factors:

  1. Hydration - When you’re on the go it’s easy to forget to drink water to keep yourself hydrated, but also to aid in recovery. Plan ahead and try and ensure you replace any fluid lost through sweat immediately after training/racing. A good way to measure this is to weigh yourself pre and post training and any differentiation is the quantity of water you’ll need to drink immediately after the session.
  2. Quality food sources - In this day and age, there’s an unprecedented amount of choices around food options and with the rise of gluten free, spelts and organics and a range of other food types it’s easy to get caught up in commonly advertised food trends (e.g. paleo diets etc.). Keep it simple, but at the same time have a good understanding of where your food comes from and how it’s been sourced to arrive on your plate. The more you know about where your food comes from, the easier it will be to find quality fruits and vegetables, meats, grains, dairy etc.
  3. Keeping it balanced - There’s no one magically way to maintain a healthy nutritional repertoire, just remember to eat in moderation! Cutting out all of your favourite foods is usually unsustainable in the long run, so plan to have a ‘cheat meal’ once a week where you can relax and enjoy your favourite meal. Throughout the week, eat healthy balanced meals which have quality proteins, carbohydrates and fats, and stick with your plan - keeping your goal ahead in the forefront of your mind.

Equally important to good nutrition, is good recovery.

If you don’t recover properly, a number of things can happen such as:

  • An inability to improve and drop off in performances
  • Increased risk of illness due to an impaired immune system
  • Inability to sleep well
  • Mental and physical exhaustion
  • Increased risk of injury

Our Olympic Physiotherapist, Mark Stokes highlights his top 3 recovery strategies to give yourself the best chance at bouncing back and progressing your training, which are:

  1. Hydration
  2. Nutrition
  3. Sleep

Outside of these 3 fundamental recovery habits, there are a number of ‘1 percenters’ such as wearing compression gear, participating in ice baths and getting regular massage.

Having good recovery practices will help you achieve better training gains at your next session, giving you the ability to put out quality efforts with less fatigue. 

It will also ensure you perform well at racing sessions, therefore maximising your recovery opportunities will ensure you continue to achieve the results you are chasing. 

Training Program

Having a training program to follow is extremely important to progress and reach your goals - this goes without saying.

However, we would like your feedback and comments to find out just how prepared you are in the lead up to either of the Masters Worlds events as highlighted above.

So if you don’t mind answering the following questions, we’d be grateful for the feedback which we will use to survey the demand for a World Masters Training Program specific to either of the two World Masters Track Championships events. 

Simply type your answers in the comments box below: 

  1. Are you training for Manchester Worlds or Cambridge Games?
  2. Do you have a training program to follow that is specific to either of these World events?

We look forward to hearing from you! And feel free to share with other Masters riders. Thanks :) 

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