He rides over 40,000 kilometres a year, hitting the road 3-5 times a week for up to three hours during training periods, as well as undertaking three core-stability sessions. Use his tips to saddle up this summer:
Correct your cadence.
For optimal efficiency try to ride at as high a cadence as possible: 85-95 revolutions per minute (rpm) when climbing, Evans says. On the flat, aim to stick between 80-110 rpm.
Intensify your intervals.
Evans does road sprints at 50km/h for 500 metres with 30 seconds rest. In longer sessions he’ll keep his heart rate at 160bpm for the duration of the ride, as well as incorporate 5-8 “threshold” efforts at maximum intensity, with 5-10 minutes between each effort.
Seat of your pants.
“Riding in your saddle uses less energy when climbing, but getting out of your saddle gives you more power,” Evans says. Stay seated as long as you can and then turn on the power when you need it, he advises.
Many cyclists develop muscular imbalances in their legs over time. To get equal power in both your pistons do 15 one-legged squats on each leg. To develop your core strength, do the squats on a wobble board, while holding a medicine ball. “It’s tough,” Evans warns.
To avoid seizing up between sessions it’s important to stretch your lower back, hamstrings and quads. Evans recommends the downward dog yoga pose: start on your hands and knees in the crouched “dog” position with your back arched and face looking up. Your hands should be flat on the floor, knees slightly parted. Push up with your hands, bringing your heels to the floor if possible. Your back should be straight, with your head inside your arms looking through your legs. Hold for 5-10 seconds.Cadel: Close To Flying (Hardie Grant Books), by Cadel Evans and Rob Arnold, is out now.