Valentine’s Day: Watts love got to do with it!
Concerned that cycling training can often disrupt a loving relationship on Valentine’s Day, the team at Bikmo Cycle Insurance investigated the performance benefits of lovemaking, and how a romantic evening needn’t interrupt your training plan.
Valentine’s Day comes at an inconvenient time of the year. Just as your form is being honed for the upcoming race season, you have to drop that all important training session for a relaxed, heart-themed evening with your significant other. By looking at the effects lovemaking has on the body, the muscle groups used, and how this relates to your cycling training, following Bikmo’s lighthearted guide will let you embrace the love and use this night of passion as a valuable ‘off the bike’ training opportunity.
A tiny bit of science
According to a study published by Université du Québec à Montréal, the average bout of lovemaking lasts 25 minutes and burns an impressive 85 calories. In cycling training terms, this is equivalent to a 5 minute 300 watt threshold interval or, five 1 minute speed intervals. With your leaner physique and improved stamina through regular cycling, you may well be above the average, which is a bonus for both you and your partner.
This increased performance won’t go unnoticed either and should afford you additional brownie points, potentially allowing you to purchase shiny new bike parts or enjoy an extra hour on the Sunday club run.
Which position is best?
According to Highland Training, in their article for Training Peaks, the key muscles used during the pedal stroke are the glutes, quads, hamstrings and calves, with the core muscles giving a firm foundation to work against.
The traditional Missionary position is a winner for this training session, calling on the core muscles of your abdominals and lower back, and arms to support your position, the glutes and hamstrings are activated with each thrust.
The Cowgirl or On top would be the coach’s favourite here. While this position activates the quads and glutes, you can also focus on the core muscles to maintain a firm posture.
Adopt these positions, and be content in the knowledge that your legs and core muscle groups are getting a good workout, which could be worth a couple of places in your next event.
Discretion is key
Obviously, this particular ‘training session’ has to be executed discreetly. With this in mind, there are several important rules to follow, so as not to make your partner aware that the romance is a little one-sided on this occasion:
So, whether you PB on your next time trial, take the road race bunch sprint, smash that sportive, or not…for once, you’ll have had an enjoyable time ‘training’.
And remember, this is perhaps the one time as a cyclist, that you don’t want to come first!