The Tour of Cambridgeshire is Britain’s biggest Cycling Festival. Over the weekend hosts a variety of events. Training for the tough Tour of Cambridgeshire events requires some key fitness components.
One of the events is the Gran Fondo which is held on fully closed roads and is a qualifier for the World Gran Fondo Championships. The distance is 100 miles for Men and 67 miles for Women and over 60’s. There are also Road races and Sportives which use the same distance although sorter options are available.
The event is super fast due to the terrain being pan-flat so you will need to train differently to make sure you have the specific fitness needed for this challenge. Living in Norfolk which is also flat I am fully aware of what fitness demands will be needed. I first completed the event in 2022 with a time of 4h 17 min.
When to start training for the Tour of Cambridgeshire
The earlier you can start training for the event the better. That said you want to make sure you continue to build fitness through intensity and volume up to race day. The event is the first weekend of June so there is no point starting training in January but then doing nothing throughout March and April for example. You want to make sure when you do start that you keep the motivation right up to the event. A great way to do this is through some sort of accountability. This can be 1:1 with a coach or just having a training plan to follow. If you are coming from a good level of fitness then mid-May gives you 8 weeks until the event which is perfect to peak your fitness and taper ahead of the event.
What training to do for the Tour of Cambridgeshire
If you can start in January then working on your base fitness is a great start. This means some long easy rides which will set up for the higher-intensity session. If you are unsure how to train then check out the Ride Harder Plan which will teach you to ride efficiently and train smart meaning you will be faster on the bike for LESS effort and have MORE spare time available.
As you get closer to the event you want to build on your muscular endurance. This will mean plenty of Tempo and Sweet Spot efforts so riding right around 75 – 90% of FTP. You want to target the specific demands of the event as you get closer.
Here are my Top Tips for Training for the Tour of Cambridgeshire
As with any training plan, this is also the most important. No matter how much you train consistency is key so you should not delay in getting started. The best training plan is only effective if it is executed! The earlier you can start the better so don’t delay and start your training today! You need to find what works for you, whether it is hiring a coach, or buying a training plan can all give you accountability.
Long-term consistency trumps short-term intensity
2 Work on your Muscular Endurance
This is one of the training abilities and is crucial in completing this event. It is basically the ability to apply a constant force to the pedals. This event is tough and long so you will need plenty of this type of training in your plan. Long Tempo and Sweet Spot efforts will help build this.
3 Plan a flat training loop
With the event being super flat you will want to get used to that constant pressure on the pedals. This means that you want to ride on as flat a route as possible. Any steep declines where you are going to be free-wheeling are to be avoided.
4 Reduce any stopping on training rides.
Not stopping during the event is crucial if you want to achieve a fast time. Plus once you find a group that is riding at your pace then you want to keep with them. During your training rides reduce any stopping to a minimum or remove them altogether. Learn to carry the nutrition that you will need and to consume it on the go. Try to mimic the event as much as possible.
5 Join a cycling club
Not only will this help push you harder than you may do on your own. It will also teach you to ride in a group and hold a wheel. This is essential for the event with so many people on the course and to assist you with drafting.
Unsure of what training to do and need further help?
Tour of Cambridgeshire 100mile Training Plan
I have created specific sessions within this training plan to target the demands so that you are able to complete this challenge in your fastest time! It allows for a longer weekend club ride so you can still ride with your mates and there are midweek turbo trainer sessions. This plan is not designed to be easy however based around your custom training zones so that you will be training within your own capabilities. You will arrive at the start line knowing you have done the work!