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As Tour season starts, pro cyclist Chris Opie explains how it’s done.
No time to do sprints and a long session? “I often build sprint intervals into four-hour rides to sharpen up for a race,” says Opie, who rides for the Canyon Eisberg team. “You can use a turbo trainer for short, hard sessions which will pay off on the road.”
“Minimise your surface area on windy roads. Aerodynamic or ‘aero’ positions can feel uncomfortable at first but you get used to it. Simply tucking your head down and getting low over the bars will let you get the benefit.”
“If you often average more than 15mph [24km/h] on your rides, it is likely you will benefit from aerodynamic equipment, such as deep-section wheels. If your rides are hillier, it makes more sense to invest in a lighter frame or wheels.”
“If you’ve got a favourite route, change your pacing to see what works. Often, riding at a more consistent effort, both up and downhill, may well mean that you complete your ride faster. You’ll feel better in the second half, too.”
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