High-Intensity Starting Strategy

High-Intensity Starting Strategy If you're going to race a bike for 3 to 6 minutes, what's the best pacing strategy for a strong sprint to finish? A study published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise attempts to answer that question by analyzing the performance of 7 male volunteers who started peddling slow, at an even rate or fast.

Each cyclist's performance was measured during the final minute of their ride, when the effort was all-out. The fast starting strategy significantly enhanced last-minute performance during the 3 minute races because it got the rider up to maximal capacity quicker. No strategy worked any better than the others during the 6 minute time trials.

True Strength Moment: Most bike races last longer than 3 to 6 minutes. If your pacing strategy won't affect the power you're able to put out at the end of a longer race, go with what makes you most comfortable. Just be sure to save up enough muscle glycogen to power your way across the finish line.
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