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"After such an intense season, it is important that each rider takes a break of three weeks. During this time it is key to wind down, regenerate well and to build energy again for the next season."

Photo: Sirotti


11.11.2015 @ 07:30 Posted by Emil Axelgaard
At the beginning of the pre-season, BORA – ARGON 18 Sport Director Enrico Poitschke gives some insights how the pro riders develop their form after the break. Now after enjoying a bike-free off-time for a few weeks, the riders have all been back again in training since early November to build up towards their highlights in 2016.


"We raced from late January to mid-October," he told his team website. "After such an intense season, it is important that each rider takes a break of three weeks. During this time it is key to wind down, regenerate well and to build energy again for the next season. This off-time is very important and that's why we make sure that every rider takes a long enough break. Most of our riders get back into training in the first week of November. Some riders who had a lot of race days or who we noticed to be especially exhausted after the long season are asked to extend the break by one week.


"In those first weeks, it is more of a basic training rather than an intensive or specialized training. The riders should start with an easy basic and strength training. After two weeks the intensity will gradually increase. Stability training is necessary with the aim that the back and abdominal muscles are strengthened again – because they are usually neglected during the season. This first phase of the training is the same for all the riders for about three to four weeks. From December on, other training stimuli are set for the riders who are supposed to be in top shape in the spring."


The diet is always a difficult issue during the off-season.


"Actually, it is even intended that the riders gain some weight and add body fat in the season break," Poitschke said. "That is also part of a good recovery. Sometimes the riders compete on the edge during the season with some very low body fat ratios. It is important that this is re-built before the season starts again. Adding to the fact that it also stabilizes the body’s defenses - especially now in the winter months, when a higher infection risk exists.


"The greatest danger is over-motivation. That is why every rider should be careful with starting too intensively and should rather concentrate on a smooth build-up. We observe such an over-motivation especially often with young inexperienced athletes or riders who are dissatisfied with their last season. They are then extremely motivated for the next season, causing key errors already in training that will cost them in the future.


"Firstly, we give general guidelines at the beginning of the preseason training. This includes in particular that every rider knows when his first race is planned. During the first pre-season team meeting at the end of November we will be more specific. We'll have individual meetings with each rider to fine-tune the build-up and the structure of the racing program. On this occasion, the current level of training is being questioned and possible errors in training are detected early."



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