TRAINING DISTANCE FOR YOUNG CYCLIST
For a young developing cyclist under age of 20, one needs to be careful not to over train if rider wants to reach his peak potential after 20.
Let me give a personal example, when I was a child, I loved eating fried bread crust, so I asked my mother to make large quantities everyday for me.
However, after eating so much daily for a while, I could not force myself to eat it anymore in fact I don’t even want to look at a plate of fried bread crust now!
Same principle applies for cycle training, when a young cyclist trains hard in high volume from middle to high school, there is often significant improvement quickly so both parents and coaches want to continue push him even harder.
But after a while, the improvement slows dramatically and may even result in performance decrease along with fatigue as well as losing interest in cycling.
So, it is very important to keep firm within target cycling distance range at young ages which will lead to future growth.
For a young cyclist, immediate race results should not be the main target but rather continuous improvement.
Based on following table, the maximum training distance for current age is always less than minimum distance of next year, so cyclist can steadily improve with increasing mileage.
Also, the reason training volume for middle to high school students are set surprisingly low so it is easy for them to ride more frequently in shorter distance.
This table is designed to develop professional cyclist from young age, as young cyclist reaching age of 22, maximum training distance increased to 32,000 km per year which is double of the range just 3 years prior.
This is why often World Tour races can be won by U23 riders who able to performance at highest level with the significant increase training mileage after age of 19.