Training Plans for Beginners

You've bought the e-bike, signed up for a charity ride, and (maybe) even the weather is on your side. All you need to do now is get in the miles and come the day of your event you'll be flying. Or maybe you won't even be on the start line. You see, with an extra 250 Watts of power from your bike's motor it's easy to get carried away and do too much, too soon. Especially if it's been a few years since you took part in regular exercise. The old cyclist's mantra of 'getting in the miles' could end up doing you more harm than good. What you need is a training plan tailored to beginner's. And remember, no matter how good you were when you were something-teen, if your age now begins with a number higher than 4 and you haven't kept up your youthful athleticism then you really should consider yourself a beginner. (We won't tell anyone. Honestly.)


Search online for cycling training plans and there's no end of choice. However, as a experienced cyclist myself, many of them have me questioning exactly who the authors consider to be a beginner. A good training plan should challenge you but not leave you laying on the sofa watching the ceiling spin after every ride. At best, doing too much too soon will kill your motivation and at worse could result in injury or serious health issues.


Below are three beginner's training plans that are available for free and that steadily build up the amount of time in the saddle and won't have you wondering how much a barely ridden e-bike would fetch on e-Bay.


Cancer Research UK

Cancer Research UK (or CRUK) have a training plan desigend to get you to a state where you can ride 30 miles after 8 weeks. If that sounds daunting then fear not, the plan includes a mini-plan to make sure you're ready for the main plan. Does that sound like a plan? It's a 6 week very gradual build up but there's no reason why you couldn't repeat the 6 week 'lead-in' plan if you feel you aren't ready to move up to training for 30 miles.


The plan can be downloaded as a PDF for you to print off at home:'s.pdf




Red Bull

Red Bull is best known for sponsoring extreme sports, like mountain bikers hurling themselves off cliff ledges or that bloke who parachuted from the edge of space, so coming across this plan was certainly a surprise. Like CRUK, Red Bull have chosen 30 miles as your target mileage and they too have spread the plan over 8 weeks. Week one is three 30 minute rides and the volume builds gradually. Red Bull use Rate of Perceived Exertion (or RPE) to give an indication of how hard you should be riding. Most of this plan is at a RPE of 4 - the sort of pace where you could still have a conversation. As the plan builds you are encouraged to go as hard as RPE 6 on some hills but it's definitely been designed to let you build your fitness and enjoy your riding.


The plan can be downloaded as a PDF for you to print off at home:'ss-cycling-plan-training-guide




Cycling UK

The Cycling UK beginner's plan is a bit more ambitious in as much as the goal is to be able to ride 60 miles after 10 weeks. The only real difference between this and the CRUK or Red Bull plans is the length of your weekend rides, starting at 15 miles in week one and reaching 60 miles by week none.


There's no PDF of this training plan:

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