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Indoor Cycling Class Profile: Tour de France 2017 Stage 5

Every July the Tour de France rolls around and never disappoints – from epic crashes to doping scandals, there’s bound to be high drama. And of course — it’s one of the best displays of athleticism, endurance and insane work ethic out there today. Add to all of that the fact that it’s the only cycling race most “normal” people can name off the top of their heads, and it makes the perfect recipe for an indoor cycling class profile! Or even a series of classes….

Much like my other class profiles (see here and here), below I have provided a playlist, high-level graphic outlining the class profile, and also a detailed description of the profile. Since this is based on an actual stage of the Tour de France (stage 5, 2017), you also get video footage that you can show in class, plus the stage profile which shows elevation and whatnot. Onward!


Note the class starts with Bazardée and ends with We are the Champions — the other before/after songs are to be played as people are coming in, setting up bikes, and after class.

Class Structure:

This 45-minute class is based on Stage 5 of the 2017 Tour de France, which was 160.5 kilometers of rolling hills in the Vosges Mountains, ending with a monstrous climb with 20% grades.

This is a RACE level effort – that means your class members should be giving their 100%. Of course we’ll adjust the cadence and intensity throughout class, but the collective goal is to get the best workout possible, so that means pushing past comfort zones and embracing the challenge.

Instruct your riders that there are three focuses this for the class: SPEED, STRENGTH and POWER! We’ll use all three in this stage. This is a series of rolling hills with plenty of time spent descending and on flat roads, then ending with two big climbs — one of which will take us all the way to the finish line.

The class is divided into 10 sections with 3ish minutes per section, the first few sections will be shorter and last few will be longer. Envision it like this (in fact – print this out and paste it to the bikes!):

TriathLauren - Tour de France Indoor Cycling Class Ride

Class Profile:

Okay, enough introduction – here is the class itself. Now get to work!

Warm Up: first 6 minutes: Modified version of the Team Sky warm up! (Bazardee and Steady 1234)

  • 2 minute light spinning/stretching
  • 2 minutes progressive to hardest effort
  • 1 minute easy
  • 1 minute with 3×6 second sprints to fully prime all the musculature involved in cycling

Section 1: Downhill ending with a quick steep climb

  • Sprints! These Heights
  • Sprint at :53-1:08, 1:58-2:13, last one 2:29 to end

Section 2: Quick steep downhill ending with a flat

  • La Puissance
  • Quick legs, over 90rpm, add on some resistance to a 5/10 at the end

Section 3: Flat with a few rollers

  • Paris
  • Paceline drill — work hard the whole time, but each rider takes 30 seconds to push 30% harder

Section 4: Small gradual climb

  • Hall of Fame
  • Keep your cadence at 80rpm and slowly add on resistance all song

Sections 5 and 6: Two rolling hills

  • Superheroes: Climb with attacks out of the saddle: :57 to 1:20 // 1:43 to 2:28 // 2:55 to 3:40
  • It’s All on You: Rollers in the saddle – climb until 1:50, flat road until 2:13, climb until 3:05

Section 7: Very short and steep climb

  • Synthelicious
  • Standing climb to get up this steep hill! Slower cadence for this one, right above 55-60 with lots of power.

Section 8: Continue climbing, finish with a quick downhill

  • Power
  • Hard seated climb ‘til 1:15
  • Stand & climb ‘til 2:01
  • Sit and keep powering up this hill ‘til 2:24
  • Stand & climb ‘til 3:08
  • Back in the saddle for a quick downhill ‘til the end of the song!

Section 9: Flat road, long gradual climb, quick downhill before…..

  • Eye of the Tiger
  • Flat road until :50
  • Long gradual climb, little by little adding resistance until 3:09
  • Quick legs ‘til the end

Section 10: Extremely steep, long climb to the very end!

  • ‘Till I Collapse
  • 1 minute standing climb – hard
  • 1 minute seated – medium hard
  • 1 minute standing – medium
  • 1 minute seated – hard
  • 1 minute standing – max intensity to the finish!

Cool down: Not Giving In / We are the Champions

5 minutes — 3 minutes on bike, 2 minutes stretching. Riders are welcome to take more time if they’d like!

Accompanying Video:

Here’s footage from the race! For the purposes of this class, I suggest starting this video 1 hour and 25 minutes in and ending around the exciting sprint finish at 2:05:48.

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