How to do a quick 17-minute indoor cycling HIIT workout

Sprintervals! A short but effective GCN workout for building cycling power and burning fat

Clock16:00, Monday 3rd July 2023

What is "sprinterval" training? (a.k.a. sprint intervals)

If you’re short on time, or just want a quick, high-impact workout, Global Cycling Network's sprinterval training is for you. In just 17 minutes, GCN’s former professional cyclist Conor Dunne guides you through a warm-up, a set of super high-intensity 10-second sprint interval bursts, followed by a cool down. This session is perfect for squeezing a quick cycling workout into your day, no matter how time-strapped you are.

What does sprint training work on?

A sprint training session is designed to develop top-end power. The recovery between each effort is only short, so you’ll be working on your muscular endurance too. If you’re looking to lose weight, HIIT sessions are a really good idea. Interval training burns more fat than low-intensity training sessions by increasing your metabolic rate, and thanks to afterburn, you’ll keep burning calories long after you’ve got off the bike.

'warm up' text on a pinarello bike background with red overlay

Warm up the legs quickly from with a gentle spin up to 90% effort

Even for a quick session, you need to warm up. Starting at 2/10, we're going to build the intensity up gradually until we're right up at 9/10. As warm-ups go, it's hard, but it'll prepare your body for the sprint efforts to come.

Top Tip

Use this warm-up to gear up your mind too – there's some serious effort needed for the main part of this short session.

female cyclist with red GCN background and 'intervals' text overlay

Short but intense intervals over 10 mins

After a couple of minutes recovering from the warm-up, we're into the main session. We're going to alternate between flat-out 30-second efforts and easy recovery. This session is only short, so your intensity needs to be at the highest level to feel the benefits.

'cool down' text over a red background with a female cyclist

Spin out the legs and cool down on your bike

Those hard efforts are complete, and it's time to warm down. As we're short for time, spin out the legs at a low intensity for a minute and a half.

Top Tip

If you've got time to cool down for a little longer, take another minute or two - it'll help your muscles recover.

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