Weekend Reading: 3 Training Tips for Frequent Travelers

This week I had to shuffle my schedule in a way that many career professionals will find familiar. I was in Colorado Springs Monday and Tuesday, and then I traveled to Las Vegas, Nevada, for the Interbike show Wednesday through Friday. And while Interbike is all about bikes, I knew I wasn’t going to get much riding done between meetings. My three-day rest period provides a good illustration of how you can adjust your training schedule around business trips.

Plan training block around travel:
While it’s easy to fit training into some business trips (sometimes easier than when you’re at home…), other times the days are so busy that trying to cram in training leads to more stress than it’s worth. Knowing Interbike would be wall-to-wall meetings, I looked at the trip as a three-day recovery period from my La Ruta training. That meant planning my workouts before and after Interbike accordingly. I stacked three back-to-back training days (Sunday, Monday, Tuesday) beforehand, and I’m planning on doing a big ride here in Las Vegas today before I go home to Colorado.

Give yourself something to recover from!
Not only did I complete three back-to-back days on the bike before a known 3-day break from riding, but I also made sure to dig really deep during that training block. On Sunday and Monday my rides were shorter (90-120 minutes), but included SteadyState and ClimbingRepeat intervals (lactate threshold workouts). On Tuesday morning, the CTS Coaches, Trek pro Russell Finsterwald, and I set out to break the record time for the 70-mile “CTS Staff Meeting” ride in Colorado Springs. From a training perspective, I was looking for a steady, hard endurance ride of about three hours. Check out this video update on the record-setting ride. I was in a world of hurt in the final 30 minutes, just like I remember feeling in the final 7-8 miles of team time trials back in the day. It was worth it, though. We crushed the old record by completing the 70-mile loop in 2:48! Besides setting the new record, I also accomplished my goal of ‘emptying the tank’ before a known 3-day recovery period.

If you’re planning a pre-trip training block, you can follow a similar pattern: 1 or 2 days of intervals with a challenging endurance ride the next day. If you do intervals on back-to-back days, try to do harder intervals on the first day (VO2 or Climbing) with slightly easier intervals on the second day (LT or Tempo). This way you accumulate the workload necessary to achieve adaptation, and you can complete each workout with high quality.

Remember you’re still an athlete when you’re traveling:
If you’re using a trip as a recovery period, you have to make sure you actually get some rest. Remember that you’re always an athlete, even when you’re outside the environment of your sport. That means you still have to eat like an athlete, hydrate like an athlete, and sleep like an athlete. Travel will be less disruptive to your training if you can stay more consistent with these habits.

Meeting with passionate cyclists who work in the endurance sports industry brought one thing into great clarity for me: the challenge of balancing sport with career and family doesn’t go away even when your career and sport are related. That balance is a hard one to find for everyone, which is why I’m so proud of the coaches we have at CTS. They understand training at such a depth that they can accommodate even the gnarliest of personal schedules and still deliver incredible performance improvements for their athletes. Whether you’re a business traveler, working parent, a CEO or a working a swing-shift, if you have the desire to take your performance to the next level, a CTS Coach can get you there.

Have a Great Weekend!
Chris Carmichael
CEO/Head Coach
Carmichael Training Systems

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