The Day-by-Day Periodization Strategies of a Giro d’Italia Podium Finisher

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Gabriele Gallo Department of Neuroscience, Rehabilitation, Ophthalmology, Genetics, Maternal and Child Health, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy
Centro Polifunzionale di Scienze Motorie, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy

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https://orcid.org/0009-0001-5481-7003 *
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Manuel Mateo-March Sport Science Department, Miguel Hernández University of Elche, Madrid, Spain
Spanish Cycling Federation, Madrid, Spain

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https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4418-8263
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Andrea Fuk Department of Movement, Human and Health Sciences, University of Rome Foro Italico, Rome, Italy

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https://orcid.org/0009-0000-1028-0518
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Emanuela Faelli Department of Neuroscience, Rehabilitation, Ophthalmology, Genetics, Maternal and Child Health, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy
Department of Experimental Medicine, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy

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https://orcid.org/0000-0002-9093-8021
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Piero Ruggeri Department of Neuroscience, Rehabilitation, Ophthalmology, Genetics, Maternal and Child Health, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy
Department of Experimental Medicine, University of Genoa, Genoa, Italy

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https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5939-1489
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Roberto Codella Department of Biomedical Sciences for Health, Università degli Studi di Milano, Milan, Italy
Department of Endocrinology, Nutrition and Metabolic Diseases, IRCCS MultiMedica, Milan, Italy

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https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1608-1899
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Luca Filipas Department of Biomedical Sciences for Health, Università degli Studi di Milano, Milan, Italy
Department of Endocrinology, Nutrition and Metabolic Diseases, IRCCS MultiMedica, Milan, Italy

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Purpose: The aim of this study was to describe the day-by-day training and racing characteristics in preparation for the Giro d’Italia of 1 world-class road cyclist who achieved a place on the podium in the final general classification of the Giro d’Italia. Methods: Day-by-day power meter training and racing data of 1 study subject (road cyclist; age 25 y; relative maximum oxygen consumption 81 mL·min−1·kg−1; relative 20-min record power output 6.6 W·kg−1) covering the 152 days leading up to the podium in the Giro d’Italia final general classification were retrospectively analyzed. Daily load, daily volume, and intensity distribution were considered. Results: During training a pattern alternating “hard days” versus “easy days” was observed, as significant amounts of medium or high intensity, or load, were not performed for more than 2 consecutive days This pattern was achieved combining high volume (>4 h) with a significant amount of medium and high intensity within the same training sessions. During training, when training load and intensity increased, the density of “easy days” augmented. In 1-week stage races and the Giro d’Italia, 3 to 8 consecutive days with significant amounts of medium and high intensity were performed. A high number of training sessions with small amounts of medium- and high-intensity volume was observed: 38 days accumulating 3 to 10 minutes at medium intensity and 29 days spending 1 to 9 minutes at high intensity. Conclusion: These data provide novel insights about the day-by-day periodization strategies leading to a top 3 in the Giro d’Italia general classification.

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