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HIIT for Cyclists: All you need to know

Think of HIIT as a specific approach to your fitness goals.

HIIT for Cyclists: All you need to know
Written by Editorial

At Spoke Herd, we speak to a lot of cyclists about their purpose. Beginner cyclists want to achieve better cadence. Professionals want that extra edge over their competitors. Most others want better health and physique while riding for fun. Different measures for different purposes, right? 

Well yes, specificity in fitness regimes is truly important. However, here is a solution that can be adopted by the masses. And this shall get them closer to their goals. We are talking about High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT).

What is HIIT?

Think of HIIT as a specific approach to your fitness goals. It involves short bursts of intense exercises or cardio. This is specially designed for you to exert a lot of pressure and force for short periods. 

What does this do?

How do you adopt the HIIT approach to your fitness regime?

As exciting as the approach sounds, remember it is extremely taxing. On the physical front, adopting HIIT needs proper planning. You must build a solid base built on higher intensity and lower recovery time. 

We at SpokeHerd suggest that you progress at these two facets for at least four weeks. By then, your body is in a position to bear the HIIT workload.

What a general HIIT session should look like?

You can end the session with a minute of cycling at a comfortable pace. A 5-minute cool-down is the bare minimum to let your muscles relax after the intense session.

A typical HIIT session should not take you more than 45 minutes. Its purpose is to maximize your body’s potential in shorter bursts. Ideally, you need to ensure you have proper nutrition and quality recovery after a HIIT session.

How can HIIT benefit you?

Drawbacks of HIIT

How can we maximize the potential of the HIIT approach?

The following are simple measures to maximize the benefits of HIIT training.

Easing into the training regime

As mentioned earlier, preparing the body to meet the demands of HIIT training is important. This can mean incremental progress in intensity for a month or two. Gradually easing into the HIIT regime is important or else burning out is common. 

Apart from increasing intensity, there are other simple nuances to learn along the way. Like increasing food intake, spacing out rest intervals, and adhering to it. 

Keeping a training log

HIIT is more specific than any other training protocol. The rest periods need to be clocked, the distance needs to be penned – HIIT ensures detailed progress.

By keeping a training log, you can measure progress over time. Are you riding more at a higher speed? Has your rest intervals reduced? How has the overall volume progressed? All these questions are answered by a well-maintained training log.


How you fuel the body to undergo HIIT training is more important than the training itself. Lack of quality nutrition is directly related to reduced results. Likewise, optimal nutrition can maximize your body’s growth potential.

Given the high intensity of this training approach, eating slightly more is always better than slightly less. And when you push your limits on the cycle, you can feel the calories burn.

Now, you know how HIIT works and how you can reap its benefits. What next?

Plan your training regime, have a progression scheme and push yourself to the limits. With ideal nutrition and quality sleep, your cycling journey will see an immediate spike in performance.

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