Our 100 mile sportive training plan


31.01.19 at 11:59 am

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We caught up with head of cycling performance at leading cycling training facility Athlete Lab , Tom Shanney, to put together a 100 mile sportive training plan to help you on your way to achieving or improving your 100 mile performance.

All new customers who purchase an annual Ultimate or Performance bicycle insurance policy in February will be offered a free pass to a session at Athlete Lab worth £30. You’ll also be in the the chance of bagging a whole month’s free access. Not to worry if you don’t live nearby though, one of their top coaches will work remotely with you and develop a top notch training plan tailored just for you.

100 Mile Sportive Plan

Consistency and structure are key to a successful plan. Following a training plan will help you optimise your time, stay on track and improve all areas of your cycling performance. Working around a 4 week structure is a good template to use when building for an event. Week 1 is a moderate week to assess your current fitness, power levels and to ease you in to the plan. Week 2 is a more sustained week, building intensity into your training. Week 3 is the hard week and will push you out of your comfort zone just before a 4th week dedicated to recovery and adaptation.

Prudential Ride London

How to use this training plan:

The 100 mile sportive training plan -which you can download as a pdf below- sets out a series of training sessions over a 12 week period. Each week is rated as “Easy”, “Medium” , “Hard” or “Recovery”, but the training sessions will ask more from you as you progress. The training sessions take place either indoors or out on the roads, and ask you to focus on your cadence and intensity.

Indoor: Using a turbo or indoor training facility such as Athlete Lab. Measure effort using power output (W), functional threshold power (FTP)  or rate of perceived exertion (RPE).

Outdoor: The focus of outdoor sessions is to just get out on the road, get used to time in the saddle and improve bike handling. You should aim to increase the duration steadily, getting close to the distance you’d be expected to ride on the day.


A low-medium will be around 50-70 RPM

A medium cadence around 70-90 RPM

A medium/high cadence 90-110 RPM

And a high cadence 110+ RPM

Intensity Ratings (RPE)

Rating Description
0 Nothing at all
0.5 Very, very light
1 Very Light
2 Fairly light
3 Moderate
4 Somewhat hard
5 Strong
6 Hard
7 Very Hard

Very, very hard

Key Session types:

Tempo Sessions: These are longer sustainable aerobic efforts at tempo pace. They improve aerobic capacity, pedalling efficiency & cardiac output.

Example Power Zone 2/3 – 75% to 90% of FTP. Heart rate: 66 to 75% of max. RPE: 4 to 6 .  Block length: 10 to 30 minutes.

Threshold Sessions: Medium length intervals just below and above your threshold. Improves lactate threshold, sustained race-pace power & cardiac output.

Example Power Zone 4 –  95 to 105% of FTP. Heart rate:  76‑ to 85% of max. RPE: 6 to 8.  Block length: 10 to 15 minutes.

Strength endurance sessions: Longer intervals at a medium to low RPM. The aim is to work on increasing your muscular strength. This will be beneficial for climbing ability.

Example Power Zone:  3/4 – 75 to 100% of FTP. Heart Rate:  66 to 85% of max.  RPE: 5 to 7.  Block length: 10 to 20 minutes.

Your 100 Mile Sportive Training Plan:

You can bookmark this page, or print the pdf off for reference. Click to open the training plan.

Yellow Jersey 100 mile sportive training plan
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