Goal setting is essential for maximizing your results from a cycling training program. This way, you identify a direction and put all of your efforts towards achieving those goals. Knowing what you want to accomplish also means identifying the distances that you need to train for. If you are going to compete in a elite level race, then your training program is going to be pretty intense in order to be prepared. This could mean cycling for 5 hours or more each week. On the other hand, if the race not very long, then your training time doesn't need to be quite as long.
Dividing the year up into periods will also help maximize your cycling training program. For example, you can split it up into thirds, quarters, and so on. A new type of training can be devoted towards each period to avoid getting complacent. If you only train the same way over and over, then your body will adjust and won't progress. You could create a new training program for each season of the year. Mixing up interval training, winter base training, and peak training will vary your training to get the best results.
To avoid over-training, be sure to implement some periods of rest and time away from cycling. This is very critical, as doing too much will eventually cause you to burn out. It will keep your mind and body fresh so you can be prepared for more training. Staying focused during your training is also important. The modern lifestyle can get hectic at times, and it's very easy to get distracted. In order to stay focused during a race, you must be focused during your training.
Always pay attention to what your body is telling you. If you feel that you need to rest for a day or two during training, then don't hesitate to do so. A little rest could help rejuvenate you. For this reason, be flexible with your schedule. Don't feel that you have to follow your program exactly as it's laid out. Pushing yourself too hard could lead to injury, and this will really set you back. Anytime you feel your body breaking down, then take some time off.
A week or two before the race, begin to taper off your training so you have all the energy you need to perform at your best.