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Open AccessArticle

Training Characteristics and Power Profile of Professional U23 Cyclists throughout a Competitive Season

1
Department Sport Science, University Innsbruck, 6020 Innsbruck, Austria
2
Spragg Cycle Coaching, Exeter 03833, UK
3
Training and Exercise Sciences, University of Applied Sciences Wiener Neustadt, 2700 Wiener Neustadt, Austria
4
Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine and Nursing, University of the Basque Country, 48940 Leioa, Spain
5
Exercise Science Laboratory, School of Kinesiology, Faculty of Medicine, Universidad Finis Terrae, Santiago 8320000, Chile
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sports 2020, 8(12), 167; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8120167
Received: 11 November 2020 / Revised: 13 December 2020 / Accepted: 15 December 2020 / Published: 17 December 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Periodization and Programming in Sports)
Background: The purpose of this study was to investigate differences in the power profile derived from training and racing, the training characteristics across a competitive season and the relationships between training and power profile in U23 professional cyclists. Methods: Thirty male U23 professional cyclists (age, 20.0 ± 1.0 years; weight, 68.9 ± 6.9 kg; V˙O2max, 73.7 ± 2.5 mL·kg−1·min−1) participated in this study. The cycling season was split into pre-, early-, mid- and late-season periods. Power data 2, 5, 12 min mean maximum power (MMP), critical power (CP) and training characteristics (Hours, Total Work, eTRIMP, Work·h−1, eTRIMP·h−1, Time<VT1, TimeVT1-2 and Time>VT2) were recorded for each period. Power profiles derived exclusively from either training or racing data and training characteristics were compared between periods. The relationships between the changes in training characteristics and changes in the power profile were also investigated. Results: The absolute and relative power profiles were higher during racing than training at all periods (p ≤ 0.001–0.020). Training characteristics were significantly different between periods, with the lowest values in pre-season followed by late-season (p ≤ 0.001–0.040). Changes in the power profile between early- and mid-season significantly correlated with the changes in training characteristics (p < 0.05, r = −0.59 to 0.45). Conclusion: These findings reveal that a higher power profile was recorded during racing than training. In addition, training characteristics were lowest in pre-season followed by late-season. Changes in training characteristics correlated with changes in the power profile in early- and mid-season, but not in late-season. Practitioners should consider the influence of racing on the derived power profile and adequately balance training programs throughout a competitive season. View Full-Text
Keywords: cycling; racing; volume; intensity; periodization; performance cycling; racing; volume; intensity; periodization; performance
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MDPI and ACS Style

Leo, P.; Spragg, J.; Simon, D.; Lawley, J.S.; Mujika, I. Training Characteristics and Power Profile of Professional U23 Cyclists throughout a Competitive Season. Sports 2020, 8, 167. https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8120167

AMA Style

Leo P, Spragg J, Simon D, Lawley JS, Mujika I. Training Characteristics and Power Profile of Professional U23 Cyclists throughout a Competitive Season. Sports. 2020; 8(12):167. https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8120167

Chicago/Turabian Style

Leo, Peter; Spragg, James; Simon, Dieter; Lawley, Justin S.; Mujika, Iñigo. 2020. "Training Characteristics and Power Profile of Professional U23 Cyclists throughout a Competitive Season" Sports 8, no. 12: 167. https://doi.org/10.3390/sports8120167

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