Workout of the Week: Neuromuscular Power-Ups

Boost your top-end cycling power and speed—and have some fun doing it—with these short, sharp intervals.

cyclist racing
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This week’s Workout of the Week comes from Ryan Kohler, Fast Talk Labs’ head coach and physiologist. It’s a demanding workout that’s designed to help improve neuromuscular function and muscle fiber recruitment. Kohler said: “As an added bonus, it also allows you to work on your pedaling technique and body position.”

After a 15-minute build warm-up that involves brief accelerations, you’ll hit the main set—and you’ll want to be well warmed up for this! You’ll do six sets of 12-second seated accelerations in a big gear (e.g., 53-15), starting at 50 RPM, aiming to accelerate to over 100 RPM in that short timeframe while keeping good form. 

Kohler said: “You should start with low cadence (50-60 RPM) and try to accelerate to over 100 RPM in those 12 seconds. These are high-force, neuromuscular efforts, so ideally you get the cadence ramped up over the first ~5-6 seconds and then you work on accelerating that through 12 seconds. If you spin out the gearing too quickly, then you should start in a larger gear and lower cadence next time.”

Ride 2.5 minutes at 50-60% FTP between each 12-second interval, really maximizing the rest and recovery here so you can hit the quality as best you can each time. 

You can choose to do two or three rounds of this, taking five minutes recovery between rounds, riding at 60-65% FTP.

Wrap it up with five to 10 minutes of easy pedaling to cool down.   

Workout of the Week: Neuromuscular Power-Ups

Warm-up 

10 min. build from 50-75% FTP 

5 min. @ 55-65% FTP with 2 x 15-sec. accelerations @ 50-60 RPM  

Main set 

2-3 rounds of: 

6 x 12-sec. seated accelerations in a big gear, building from 50 RPM to 100+ RPM

2.5 min. @ 50-60% FTP between intervals 

5 min. @ 60-65% FTP between rounds 

Cooldown 

5-10 min. ramp @ 75-50% FTP 

Looking for more workouts? Check out more Workouts of the Week.

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