No cyclist really wants to “bonk” on a ride and suffer to get back home, BUT it’s one of the most POWERFUL TRAINING tools I recommend with my CYCLO90 Road and/or MTB Training when you are preparing to PEAK your fitness for an upcoming event, race, or epic.
I set up my Singlespeed Niner One9 yesterday with a MONSTER GEAR (34×18) and unexpected HEAT over a very tough course for 3 hours, preparing for SingleSpeed-A-Palooza in 2 weeks. My launching pad for my big events of the year.
Yah, I bonked and struggled to make it back without wanting to stop and it was exactly what I wanted to have happen. A critical test of mental and physical toughness and the launching pad of a very rigorous set of goals from Palooza to my XTERRA King of the Hill to my 70.3 over the next 6 weeks!
WATCH, and I’ll tell (and show) you why I use BONK RIDES…
*I’m using this BONK RIDE approximately 2 weeks out from SingleSpeed-A-Palooza, using the CYCLO90 In-Season MTB XC Plan to peak my fitness and MAXIMIZE my gear and strength. This will be the ONLY bonk ride I do between now and that goal and you can just as easily do this sort of ride with the C90 ROAD SYSTEM as well.
Training and Nutrition Tips:
1. I suggest only using “bonk rides” of “disadvantage rides” once every few weeks along with your CYCLO90 Base and even more for your CYCLO90 In-Season Road or MTB Training. This is an ADVANCED LEVEL training technique and should not be used by novice or inexperienced cyclists.
2. Bonk Rides are primarily a PEAK LEVEL style training that should be used about 2-6 weeks out from your primary goal and ONLY when your body is fit enough to handle the “breakdown” during the ride. This is NOT to be used the week prior to an important event, such as during taper. Ideally, you want to do this sort of ride SOLO, but if you do not feel comfortable with that, then use a training partner or plan “and exit strategy” BEFORE YOU DO THE RIDE.
3. Bonk Rides or in this case my “Disadvantage” was unexpected HEAT and a VERY LARGE GEAR for the terrain I was trying to overcome. (I purposely added more gear then I will likely use for SSAP–I did this on purpose.) This lead to the subsequent breakdown during the ride, as predicted. However, this BREAKDOWN and mental and physical drill of “JUST KEEP PEDALING” followed by good recovery and nutrition is what allows my body (AND YOUR BODY) and brain to LEARN how to overcome “walls” and “mental/physical obstacles” that are inevitable on many BIG EVENT RIDES. This is the real PURPOSE of these bonk ides, is to condition your mind and body to OVERCOME these obstacles when it really matters. PRACTICE!
4. NUTRITION: Usually 3-4 weeks out from a big event, I use the FAT-LOSS MENU PLANS from Cyclo-FUEL Nutrition to drop about 3-5 lbs. (Which I have.) I however DO NOT recommend trying a bonk ride while using the fat-loss plan from FUEL as for most, it’s just too much load. Instead, I recommend the MAINTENANCE PLAN from Cyclo-FUEL during this phase and then switching to the PERFORMANCE MENU PLANS from Fuel for the final week (taper) prior to your event. This will not only help you get LIGHTER and LEANER prior to your event, but coupled with the TAPER TRAINING in C90 IN-SEASON and the performance nutrition plan from FUEL–you’re energy stores will be at MAXIMUM for your event!
Rider Review Using CYCLO90 and the Power of Bonk Rides and Recovery:
“I also “bonked” this weekend. Much earlier than 1:20 in though. Body just felt sluggish and legs didn’t want to go anymore. Got home, did Cyclo-Recovery and Loose In-5, ate a healthier meal for dinner. Got up the next day, got in another Recovery stretch, got on the bike and set several PR’s on a loop I do all the time.”
–Justin Sackett using CYCLO90 Training.