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Why Train?

Home / Physical Preparation : Planning for Performance

Knowledge level: Beginner

Sportive

Article posted: 15/01/2013

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There are many reasons why people are taking up the British Cycling Sportive Training Plan. To improve their fitness, to enhance their lifestyle, to spend time with like minded people or just to have an excuse to buy shiny new toys.

Our knowledge base of cycling, in house experts and Pro and Olympic riders makes our plan unique and guaranteed to deliver you to your sportive start line in the best possible condition. However, what are the specific benefits will you get out of structured training and why train with the British Cycling Sportive Training Plan?

There are three main factors why structured training works. If we have mental, physical, and social wellbeing then we become much happier people. If one of those areas starts to decline it can have an impact on any of the other two and we start to become frustrated mentally, physically and or socially.

Mental

As humans we all live by some sort of rules to structuring our days. The structure for some people might be fairly loose or they might live their days with each hour planned out. Either way, everyones’ lives have a degree of rules and structure even if they’re as simple as getting up and eating meals.

In that structure people will accomplish their daily tasks and move towards future tasks. This might be eating three nutritious meals a day, it might be completing a two hour training ride  but accomplishing tasks is key to contentment.

So how does training benefit us psychologically? The British Cycling Sportive Training plan gives you a structured plan with stepping stone goals to help you attain your personal targets. It removes the barriers of having to plan your own training sessions and, with the backing and expertise of British Cycling, you can be reassured that every workout you do takes you one step nearer to achieving your future sportive goals.

Physical

Our bodies react to the way we live, have you ever seen an Olympic medal winner on the start line out of shape? This is because their bodies have reacted to the demands of their event and have been shaped by their training and lifestyle to be optimal for their sport.

To complete a sportive your body will change and adapt to the demands of the training. From complex physiological adaptations to your cardiovascular and muscular systems to more fundamental and obvious changes. For example, your saddle might hurt you when you first start cycling but after a while this starts to become less and less of an issue as your body adapts to sitting in that position. Structured progressive training provides the stimuli your body needs to adapt and, equally importantly, the recovery time for those adaptations to take place.

Social

Nearly everywhere we go we socialise. We talk on the phone, text message and even occasionally talk face to face. This process is part of learning and surviving in the world we live in. Making new acquaintances, asking questions and gaining knowledge is an essential part of our continual development.

Training on your bike towards a specific event might be new to you but, with the support of British Cycling, you can be sure of getting the best possible information, advice and knowledge. Cycling is also a very social sport and joining a club or finding some friends to train with will enhance and facilitate the training process. You’ll find a complete club resource at British Cycling and the Social Cycling Groups page exists so that like minded people can interact with one another and start their own cycling group.

Top 5 benefits of training

Daily routine

Once you’re in the sportive training plan you will be in a routine. Life will be arranged around training and structure will fall into place week after week. Family and friends will start to understand the process, see the benefits and it’ll become easier as time goes on.

Better sleep

Once you have your routine and you are cycling more often your sleep pattern will improve. This is because you have healthily stressed your muscles and they need time to recover, sending you away into a deep natural sleep.

Better diet

After you have had your initial gains through cycling more, you will become aware of your eating habits and changing these inline with your cycling training. By doing this you may lose some weight or become better at recovery from exercise.

Better moods

Exercise increases those good feeling endorphins, after a ride you will take a shower and feel great. The more your exercise the more you will experience these good feelings.

Social group

After a while of training on your own you will be fitter, lost some weight, and maybe getting a little bored. There will be many cycling groups in your area or you could start your own with British Cycling. You’ll be doing what you love and making friends into the bargain.

By taking to your bike and following the British Cycling Sportive Training Plan, you won’t just become a stronger cyclist but also a healthier, happier and more social person.

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