Bike training: How to improve your acceleration

It’s time to get familiar with microbursts! They’ll boost key muscles and make you faster


Three great ways to make some big bike gains are to work on your handling skills, press the power down uphill and accelerate out of corners. 


For the latter – acceleration and being able to get the power back up to speed – a great way to do this is to complete a set of microburst intervals. These efforts can be between 10-30secs but need to be full gas to maximise the effect. Try and do these outside when you can, so you can really maximise the power. On a triangle loop also works well, so you have three sets of corners to work
on your skill set.

‘Why should I do bursts’, you ask, ‘I’m a triathlete?’ Well, they’re a great way to attack different muscle groups, work on your skillset and adapt to better pacing.

What muscles do you use and tone when cycling?

Improve your cycling technique for standing uphill climbs

When you look at the overall effort, you’ll be working at 85-90% of your threshold, but the great thing about this session is that the next day your body won’t feel smashed.

Aim to complete around 8-10 sets over a two-month period, and on a road bike to really maximise power transfer.


Microbursts – maximal efforts, sprint out of the saddle, power the pedals, no control. Hit it hard!


15mins easy@90-100rpm


30mins moderate

Every 4:40mins do microburst intervals out of the saddle for 20secs max effort


15mins easy @90-100rpm

Adapt for beginners

Change the 20secs fully out of the saddle to 10secs out/10secs in. Once the body gets stronger, try and complete the whole duration out of the saddle.

Adapt for Ironman

Increase the 20secs to 30secs and build the blocks every week up to a 1hr maximum duration.



Bike session: how to get better at riding aero

Bike interval training session: how to pace the bike leg

The long bike ride: An advanced 3.5hr bike session for experienced triathletes