Group Speedplay Drills
Several variations of group speedplay exist, some of which are listed here.
Goal: Improve your lactate threshold and develop repeatability in sprints
Where: Flat to gently rolling road with a slight tailwind or gradual downhill preferred to enhance your top speed.
How: As the group rides down the road, riders take turns, jumping and attacking, with the group pursuing.
"Easter Egg Sprints". Everyone draws a number before the start of the ride (hidden in an Easter egg, as we usually do this ride usually around on Easter) numbers should start from 1 and go up to the number of riders on the ride.
Each rider keeps their number a secret. The ride is at an easy pace, designed to keep everyone on. Once everone is warmed up, after a desginated distance, the rider who drew #1 attacks when they want (no one knows who or when they will attack). Pack gives them 30 seconds and then chases them down. The chase continues until the rider is passed by one of the chasers. Everyone then eases up and regroups.
Once #1 is reeled back in, #2 can attack, but he doesn't haven't to attack immediately, they can wait up to several minutes, whenever he/she feels ready, or that the course/terrain, etc gives them an advantage. This continues until all riders have attacked. You keep number secret so no one knows whose turn it is, thus suspense is created and maintained.
As the gear choice should be moderate, but pedal cadence must be 110 rpm or more. Speed, power and acceleration are the key elements, not heart rate.
This workout builds up high levels of thigh-burning lactic acid, training your body to tolerate and dissipate it more efficiently. If you have to, shift into a lighter gear to maintain the cadence, but don't let the intensity of the interval drop. Keeping your cadence up will train your body to adapt to high-speed efforts. Spin easily to recover from each interval.
Another variations of this is called "Roll Ups". In "Roll Ups", riders determine their jumping order in a different manner, usually by the "ride coach". Jumps and chases continue as above.
A third variation of this is called "Hare and Hound". In the "Hare and Hound",riders determine their jumping order in a different manner, usually by the "ride coach". Jumps and chases are different, in that the rider attacking tries to attack away from the group with a great deal of emphasis put on the element of surprise(Like the track racing drill "guess who goes"). The riders in the group are expected to counter immediately (or nearly so) and try to form a "chase group".
Caution: Speed training is stressful on the body and must be performed with recovery in mind. During those weeks you perform speed intervals, reduce your overall training hours.
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