Muscle Tension Intervals

Are you taking part in a weight training program for cyclists?
Are you looking for good workouts to do on the trainer when cycling through the winter months?
Do you use free indoor cycling apps but don’t have a workout that you can easily do?

Why Should I Build Muscle On My Bike

Muscle tension intervals are a great resistance workout that you can do any time during the year, and it really changes things up for you on the trainer, keeping it fresh and fun. More importantly, these exercises strengthen all of the stabilizer muscles throughout your legs, making you less likely to injure a ligament or tendon. These intervals are like lifting weights on the bike. Aside from injury prevention, you will also get stronger legs! Stronger legs means more watts, which means more speed. I hit up my third session of muscle tension intervals, or MTI’s, today. Below is an image taken from WKO4 cycling analysis tool.

The three sections where my power picks up into zone 3-4, that’s the interval, and my cadence drops to about 60-65rpm. This was a 3 x 15 minute, and I worked up to this by doing 6 and 10 minute reps previously. This is a great on the bike workout when you’re going through an Adaptation phase for lifting.

You can also see that my Level 1 time is almost at 10%, which is what I shoot for on any ride. Keep those legs moving, or you may as well be on the couch. Not really, but I rather be putting out watts and getting quality in as opposed to coasting. It’s the nonstop aspect of a training ride that MASSIVELY BUILDS ENDURANCE for road racing. If you don’t believe that, you may not believe in the value of the long ride; but I do. I also enjoy eating more, and more pedaling equals more caloric burn, which equals more pizza. Proof is on the IG.

How To Perform Resistance Workouts on My Bike

All you have to do is put yourself into a gear that is slightly too hard versus your normal pedaling style….so 60-65rpm, and do 3 sets of 6 minutes, focusing on making smooth circles. Recover in Zone 1 or 2 (0-75% FTP) for the same duration before moving on to the next interval.  Make sure that you really focus on the form and push and pull on the pedal. If you have any knee pain, stop. Once you can complete the 6 minute intervals, you can move on to the following sequences: 3 x 10 minutes, then 3 x 12 minutes, then 2 x 15 minutes, and 3 x 15 minutes.

You can also do these when you are on a fartlek cycling ride. A fartlek ride is one that consists of a little bit of everything, so throws these into the mix when the road has a slight hill, and mash that big gear. Freestyle MTI’s will build strong, lean legs.

Are you ready to become a stronger and faster version of your current self? Contact me if that sounds like a transformation you want to see happen. I was overweight and feeling like a blob before I found cycling. Things have changed in my life and I am so grateful for that; I’d love to help you reach as many of your goals as possible, no matter how small or grandiose you think they are. No better time that today to GET STARTED!

Brendan Housler is one of three coaches for Collaborative Coaching, based in Tennessee. We coach athletes of all levels, so whether you are hitting your first gran fondo next year, just trying to finally drop your neighbor on the weekend ride, or winning a national championship, contact him today to learn more about how you can get faster! Check out his links below:

Personal Blog, aka Sasqwatts
Racing Palmarès
Send me a message on Messenger, or email me at heyobrendan@gmail.com