Our approach is based on an ongoing understanding of the interdependence between exercise volume, intensity, frequency, specificity and the adaptations that result from multiple combinations of these variables


Scientific

The human body is highly adaptable and will alter its response to any kind of external stress whether this be exercise, altitude, nutrition or temperature. The stress produced by focused training triggers various genetic signaling mechanisms that begin the process of a rider getting fitter, stronger or faster. The magnitude of improvements will depend on how much (volume), how hard (intensity) and how often (frequency) the cyclist trained and their focus (specificity); whether that be general fitness, strength, power or speed.

The following two examples illustrate what happens at opposite ends of the training spectrum. Endurance training is characterized by longer rides performed at low to moderate intensity. This type of training produces adaptations which include mitochondrial proliferation, greater muscle capillarization and alterations in carbohydrate and fat metabolism. Interval training, which is conducted at higher intensity, puts the body under greater stress which leads to a unique set of adaptations which include higher VO2max and improved lactate tolerance.

Progressive

The training of a fitness component involves repeated exposure to overload (training sessions) followed by adequate periods of rest and recovery. It is the combined effect of multiple training sessions and recovery that produce a training effect. However over a certain period of time (usually 4 weeks) training sessions can become less effective as the rider becomes accustomed to this specific form of work. In 1980 the seminal work in this area was completed by Tudor Bompa and his theory on Periodisation combined with Seyles General Adaptation Syndrome (1950) has become the basis for all modern endurance training programs.

Our training philosophy is aligned with these time-honored principles

Broadly speaking our approach looks like this:

Weekly: Training a specific competency 2 to 3 times per week produces reliable results. If you are looking to improve power then 2 to 3 power-specific training sessions should be completed with appropriate recovery.

Monthly: Set appropriate volume, intensity and duration for the first week of training. Then overload these same training sessions week-on-week.

There is overwhelming evidence that working in 4 week training blocks produces consistent results when targeting strength, power and speed. Most riders are well served by spending a little bit longer than 4 weeks building endurance but everything else can be developed within 1 month. Now since training for strength is different than training for power or speed it becomes clear that there are certain phases which link together if you want to reach peak condition. Our experience shows there are 5 key development phases if you want to go from resting on the couch in the off season to winning races. Our 5 Phase approach is summarized below.

Working progressively through each of these 5 Phases will ensure optimal physical condition.

Targeted

Knowing that training volume, intensity and frequency will trigger specific adaptations is only one part of the training puzzle. Further, not everything from the Lab translates well to the road. So having access to, and experience with, a library of training sessions that has been carefully curated over many years is clearly an asset. At VirtuGO we have significant experience at the highest level of the sport. Our investors, management team and consultants have all worked with World Tour cycling teams, won numerous World Titles, Grand Tours and One Day Classics.

We have taken the best, most effective training sessions from our collective experience and are making them available to you. These training sessions simply plug into our 5 phase approach.

VirtuGO 5 Phases + Training Session Library

We are also going to provide you with the key to knowing how this system should be used. For example:

What is Full Capacity and how many combinations will get the Pros ready for the Spring Classics?

What are 40/20’s? When are they best used?

What are Spike Climbing efforts? Who benefits most from these?

Most serious riders would have heard about Over-Under training sessions. But what is the best way to progressively overload them?

What are Phosphate Sprints? How many can be performed at the end of a long, hard training session?

The following table shows you what training sessions should be completed and when?

Proven

Michael Rogers
VirtuGO CEO Michael Rogers is a retired Australian professional road bicycle racer who competed professionally between 1999 and 2016, for the Mapei–Quick-Step, Quick-Step–Innergetic, Team HTC–Columbia, Team Sky and Tinkoff teams.

He is a three-time World Time Trial Champion, winning consecutively in 2003, 2004 and 2005, and won Grand Tour stages at the Tour de France and the Giro d’Italia.

Daniel Healey
VirtuGO Head of Sport Science Daniel Healey is an Exercise Physiologist and Sports Nutritionist with wide experience across the International High Performance Sport Network. During the London Olympic cycle he was Director of Sports Nutrition at High Performance Sport New Zealand.

In this role Daniel lead a team of specialist Nutritionists and Dietitians that serviced over 500 Olympic level athletes in all sports across the North and South island. In 2013 he accepted the role of Head Sports Scientist at the BMC Professional Cycling Team. The success of BMC created an opportunity for Daniel to work with internationally renowned cycling team manager Bjarne Riis and from 2014-2015 Daniel was Head of Sports Science at Tinkoff-Saxo Professional Cycling Team.

In 2015 Tinkoff-Saxo were victorious at the Giro d’Italia and numerous other one day races. Daniel holds a Bachelor of Health Science (BHSc) and Masters of Sports Science from the University of New South Wales, Australia. He currently resides in Freiburg, Germany.

Bjarne Riis
VirtuGO investor Bjarne Riis is a former professional road bicycle racer who placed first in the 1996 Tour de France. For many years he was the owner and later manager of UCI WorldTeam Tinkoff–Saxo.

Other career highlights include placing first in the Amstel Gold Race in 1997, multiple Danish National Championships, and stage wins in the Giro d’Italia.