If you’re feeling a bit tired after last week, it’s ok, it was your hardest one. The race is getting closer and it’s time to start tapering the training so that you peak on the right day. You will be gradually decreasing the duration and intensity of riding as you get closer to Sunday of week 8. It’s also time to start planning the logistics of your race.
Week 7 – Tapering
The point of this week is not to push yourself like last week, but to slowly start riding a bit less than what you’re capable of so that your body recovers and feels energized on race day. Your Tuesday 60-minute ride should include a hill where you go at a hard pace (HP). You should find a longer hill than last week and cut up your hard effort into 3 intervals, going to talking pace (TP) in between. Thursday is the usual 60 minutes at talking pace (TP) with a 20-minute moderate pace (MP) push. Sunday will be shorter this time, only 90 minutes at talking pace (TP) with a moderate effort (MP) on a hill climb.
This is the last week when you can test out your race-day nutrition. You should drink and eat on the bike when you’re pedalling at moderate pace to simulate race-day conditions. If you’re unsure about how much to eat or need more ideas on what to put in your bidon, check out our series that covers all race-day nutrition essentials.
Service your bike
You did seven weeks of regular riding, so it’s good to have a professional make sure your bike is ok before you go all out at race day. If you don’t have that option, then make sure to check your brakes, gears and chain, and replace any stretched cables or worn pads.
Start planning your race day
As the big day approaches, you should start sorting out logistics to avoid unnecessary stress on the morning of your race. It helps to make a checklist of all the kit and food you will need next weekend, check whether the event start time didn’t change, and plan when you’ll need to leave home to get there in time.