HIIT cycling workouts to boost your strength and endurance

Incorporating HIIT outdoor cycling workouts into your routine will not only provide variety and excitement but also help you achieve your fitness goals faster. Let’s take a look at 5 such workouts.

View All Images Cycling workout ideas
Make cycling more effective with these HIIT ideas. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock
Manasvi Jain Published: 16 Aug 2023, 08:59 am IST
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Cycling is a fantastic way to improve your cardiovascular fitness, burn calories, and enjoy the great outdoors. While leisurely rides can be enjoyable, incorporating high-intensity interval training (HIIT) into your outdoor cycling routine can take your fitness to new heights. Whether you’re a seasoned cyclist or just starting out, there’s something truly special about hitting the open road on your bike and challenging yourself with invigorating intervals. Let’s take a look at five challenging and effective HIIT cycling workouts.

Cycling is a highly beneficial form of exercise for women, offering a wide range of physical and mental advantages. A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that women who cycled regularly had a lower risk of developing heart disease and experiencing heart-related events such as heart attacks. Furthermore, cycling is an excellent way to manage weight and promote healthy body composition.

Also read: Want to burn calories for weight loss? Try cycling everyday

Cycling also offers women a low-impact exercise option that is gentle on the joints while still providing an effective workout. This is particularly beneficial for women with joint conditions or those who may be recovering from injuries. A study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine indicated that cycling was associated with a reduced risk of knee pain and osteoarthritis in women.

cycling for knee pain
Regular cycling workout can help deal with knee pain! Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

HIIT outdoor cycling workouts

1. Flying 40 Intervals

Flying 40 intervals are a popular choice among cyclists aiming to enhance their sprinting power and speed. Here’s how you can perform this workout:

* Find a flat stretch of road or a dedicated bike path.
* Start with a 10 to 15-minute warm-up, gradually increasing your intensity.
* Once warmed up, cycle at a moderate pace for approximately two minutes.
* After two minutes, go all out and sprint as fast as you can for the next 40 seconds.
* Recover by cycling at a relaxed pace for two minutes.
* Repeat this pattern of sprinting for 40 seconds and recovering for two minutes for a total of 5 to 8 intervals.
* Finish the workout with a 10-minute cool-down, gradually reducing your pace.

2. Tabata Intervals

Tabata intervals are known for their short, intense bursts of effort, making them an excellent choice for time-constrained individuals. Follow these steps to perform a Tabata interval workout:

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* Start with a 10 to 15-minute warm-up, gradually increasing your intensity.
* Find a flat or slightly inclined section of road.
* Begin by cycling at a moderate pace for four minutes.
* Once the warm-up is complete, go all out and pedal as fast as you can for 20 seconds.
* Recover by cycling at a slow pace for 10 seconds.
* Repeat this pattern of 20 seconds of high-intensity effort followed by 10 seconds of recovery for a total of 8 cycles (4 minutes).
* Conclude the workout with a 10-minute cool-down, gradually reducing your pace.

cycling cardio
Try these HIIT cycling workouts to build endurance! Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Also read: Indoor vs outdoor cycling: What should be your pick?

3. Attack Intervals

Attack intervals are designed to simulate the surges and changes in pace encountered during competitive cycling. Here’s how to perform an attack interval workout:

* Begin with a 10 to 15-minute warm-up, gradually increasing your intensity.
* Find a route that includes a mix of flat roads and rolling hills.
* Start cycling at a moderate pace for five minutes.
* When you encounter a hill or incline, attack the hill with a burst of high-intensity effort, maintaining a fast pace until you reach the top.
* Once you reach the top, recover by cycling at an easy pace on the descent or flat section.
* Repeat this pattern of attacking the hills and recovering on the flats for a total of 5 to 10 intervals, depending on your fitness level.
* Finish with a 10-minute cool-down, gradually reducing your pace.

4. Hill Charge

Hill charges are perfect for building strength and endurance. Follow these steps to perform a hill charge workout:

* Begin with a 10 to 15-minute warm-up, gradually increasing your intensity.
* Find a challenging hill with a moderate to steep gradient.
* Start by cycling at a moderate pace on flat terrain for five minutes.
* Once you reach the base of the hill, charge up the hill with maximum effort, focusing on maintaining a steady cadence and breathing rhythm.
* Reach the top of the hill and recover by cycling at an easy pace on flat or downhill terrain.
* Repeat this pattern of charging up the hill and recovering on the flats for a total of 3 to 5 intervals, adjusting the intensity based on your fitness level.
* Conclude with a 10-minute cool-down, gradually reducing your pace.

cycling workouts
Cycling up and down the hill can be an effective workout. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

5. Endurance Ride

While high-intensity intervals provide an effective way to boost your fitness, endurance rides are equally important for building stamina and improving overall cycling performance. Here’s how you can incorporate an endurance ride into your routine:

* Choose a longer route or plan to spend a significant amount of time cycling.
* Start with a 10 to 15-minute warm-up, gradually increasing your intensity.
* Maintain a steady pace at a moderate effort level throughout the ride.
* Aim to cycle for 60 to 90 minutes, gradually increasing the duration as your fitness improves.
* Focus on maintaining good form, staying hydrated, and fueling yourself adequately.
* Finish with a 10-minute cool-down, gradually reducing your pace.

So, hop on your bike and get ready to push your limits and experience the thrill of outdoor cycling like never before!

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About the Author
Manasvi Jain Manasvi Jain

Manasvi Jain is a professional writer with a keen interest in spreading awareness about various health and wellness issues through her articles. She writes well researched articles by connecting with various doctors and health experts. ...Read More

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