Tour de Wattbike with Alex Dowsett

June 30, 2023 5 min read


As the mainstay and marquee event of the pro cycling calendar, anyone who’s ever gotten on a bike proper will no doubt have dreamt about what it’s like to ride a stage of the infamous Tour de France.

This year, former WorldTour pro rider and Grand Tour veteran Alex Dowsett has designed a series of workouts for the Wattbike Hub that will give everyone at home a taste of the Tour.

Drawing on over a decade of pro riding experience, Alex has carefully curated this quintessential taste of the callout stages of this year’s race. Best of all, you won’t have to commit hours – this tempting tasting menu will get the job done in eight stages, each under 45 minutes, charting the heady heights and peak pressure moments that make for a complete Tour de France experience.

Buckle up, la Grand Boucle is upon us.

Tour de Wattbike

TDF: STAGE 1 // Hilly stage // 42min30s

Stage one packs three categorised climbs into its final kilometres. Not one for the sprinters, this will see puncheurs like Mathieu van der Poel and Wout van Aert mixing it up with the pure GC contenders with a penchant for punchy finishes – like Tadej Pogacar – in an action packed first act.

Alex’s Top Tip: A real rogue Stage 1 will throw a surprise early Yellow Jersey wearer. Some will be trying to save their energy, some will be maximising their chances of a career defining stint in Yellow. Short punchy climbs is the name of the day.

As a Hub+ subscriber, you can add this workout to your 'Shared Workouts' here.

TDF: STAGE 4 // Flat stage // 43min5s

The closest you’ll get to the intensity of a pure sprint finish without rubbing elbows, this stage is for pure sprinters and will give you a taste of life in the lead-out train. Flat out fast just gets faster – have you got the legs to make the line?

Alex’s Top Tip: Sprint stages are a slow burn, the anticipation, the jostling for position intensity increases all the way to the very end culminating in an all-out sprint for the line. Imagine your leadout train getting quicker and quicker and then launching from the wheel of the final rider for that last 200m sprint.

As a Hub+ subscriber, you can add this workout to your 'Shared Workouts'here.

TDF: STAGE 6 // Mountain Stage // 41min19s

This edition of the Tour gets down to brass tacks sooner rather than later, hitting the high mountains only six stages in. Today sees riders taking to the slopes of the iconic Tourmalet before a summit finish at Cauterets in an early test of riders’ ambitions. Who will come out on top?

Alex’s Top Tip: Got to save something for that final climb where time gaps start appearing. Keep pushing right to the very end of the session as the riders will!

As a Hub+ subscriber, you can add this workout to your 'Shared Workouts'here.

TDF: REST DAY // 40mins

Active recovery is the name of the game on the rest day – don’t expect riders to be putting their feet up. They’ll be spinning their legs to keep things moving, and so should you – we’re only halfway, and there’s a time trial coming. Keep those legs primed and ready.

Alex’s Top Tip: These days mess with the space time continuum, cherished by grand tour riders to maximise recovery as best they can to feel as fresh as possible for the next stages. An easy spin to make sure the legs are loose tomorrow is all part of the routine on a rest day

As a Hub+ subscriber, you can add this workout to your 'Shared Workouts'here.

TDF: STAGE 16 // Time Trial // 13min35s

Some fans catch a nap, but for real riders the time trial is special. Dubbed ‘the race of truth’, it’s only you and the road in an exhibit of pure speed. There’s no aero gains to be had on a Wattbike, sure, but you still need to be able to pour on the power to get across the line in the fastest possible time. Have you got a need for speed?

Alex’s Top Tip: When the pack crosses the line together everyone is given the same time. A TT day is an opportunity to put seconds, sometimes minutes into the opposition. A far more consistent effort than other days involves riding at and around your FTP mainly.

As a Hub+ subscriber, you can add this workout to your 'Shared Workouts'here.

TDF: STAGE 17 // Mountain Stage // 33mins15s

Here it is: this year’s mammoth stage. With over 5,000m of climbing and steep 20% slopes on the menu for the riders in France, our session will give you a taste of relentless gradients and endless uphill stretches. Find out what it takes to reign supreme in this dizzying test of mettle in the mountains.

Alex’s Top Tip: One of the main GC days, time to properly invest your effort today to reap the rewards tomorrow. For the top 10, this will be a super nervous day where the race can be won or lost and these efforts reflect that ten fold

As a Hub+ subscriber, you can add this workout to your 'Shared Workouts'here.

TDF: STAGE 20 // Mountain Stage // 38mins50s

Tour de France Race Director Christian Prudhomme has described this stage as, “likely to cause indigestion” – on the penultimate day, packing in five categorised climbs is anything but the easy run in, with the opportunity for upset abound. Whether you’re defending on to a race lead or challenging for a podium spot, this stage will be a spicy one, so be ready for attacks at any moment.

Alex’s Top Tip: Brutal day, the toll the TDF takes on the riders is colossal, both mental and physical stress. try and endure today, even if the numbers aren't what you'd hope to see try and get to the finish!

As a Hub+ subscriber, you can add this workout to your 'Shared Workouts'here.

TDF: STAGE 21 // Flat Stage // 23min25s

For the GC, the deal is already sealed. This is the day the riders have been dreaming of: Paris, and the inimitable Champs-Élysées. There’s nothing quite like the atmosphere of a later summer’s afternoon as hundreds of road-weary riders make a victory lap of France’s picturesque capital, looping the Arc de Triomphe in literal triumph. You’ve earned it, enjoy the moment – but beware, the finish is a fast one for the sprinters.

Alex’s Top Tip: Enjoy it as the TDF riders will be, an iconic setting for one of the biggest sporting events on the planet. Thoroughly recommend watching the stage whilst the peloton is rolling up the cobbles of the Champs!

As a Hub+ subscriber, you can add this workout to your 'Shared Workouts'here.

Where to ride?

Head to the Wattbike Hub app (you can download from the App or Google store), navigate to the 'Workouts' and find the 'Tour de Wattbike' category.

If you're a Hub+ Subscriber, you can also add the workouts via the links above to your own 'Shared Workouts' section so you can edit the session to suit your training needs.

The perfect partner

The cutting-edge Wattbike Atom is more than just an indoor trainer. With precise power reading and insight into pedalling effectiveness, it’s an athlete-approved training tool that will make you fitter and faster in less time.

You might never leave the house with an Atom, but you’ll take the fitness and form you’ve built everywhere, on every ride you go on – including the Tour de France’s most iconic routes.

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