The topic of formulas and their inherent value has been mentioned previously on Cycling in Alignment. This short bonus episode is meant to clarify that formulas are a useful starting point in cycling and training. Formulas can help you race a faster time trial, to gauge how many bottles per hour you need to consume during a long ride in the mountains, how many intervals to run at what pace for a given result, and how long a break should be taken in between.
However, formulas can have flaws or limitations. The critical piece is to make allowances for alterations and compensations. We, as coaches, are trying to help the athlete refine their instinct. Formulas are a tool in a tool chest, which athletes and coaches can use as a starting point. However, formulas don’t account for varying road surfaces, grades, weather, even the unpredictable nature of each individual’s biome.
There are so many opportunities for an athlete to be led astray by strictly adhering, religiously, to a formula. A formula is a proxy for experience. As always, the goal of this show is to help guide you towards the alignment of scientific athletic pursuit with the right relationship of mind and body.