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How To Increase Training Volume
Increasing mileage doesn’t always translate to an improvement in performance on the bike. Generally speaking, your fitness will improve by spending more time in the saddle. If however, you desire to continually make the small steps necessary to be truly competitive, well that requires a bit more physiologic savvy.
For starters, don’t continuously increase your mileage. Every few weeks, level off your weekly mileage before adding more volume to your program. Occasionally, when you reach a comfortable level, say 150-200 miles per week, stay at that volume for several weeks. These periodic plateaus will help you to regenerate physically and mentally before another volume increase. These plateaus will vary in length based on age, fitness, ability, and past training methods. Periods of steady mileage, or even decreased mileage, will help you recover and become physically stronger. Gains are made during rest, sleep, and recovery.
Determine the upper limit to the volume (mileage) that you can handle, mentally and physically, at whatever stage of your cycling career that you are in. If you aren’t careful, and don’t set realistic goals, you put yourself at risk for overtraining or an overuse injury. Remember, that everyone is different, age and experience level should always be taken into consideration.