In the run up to the World Championships Charles has been looking for every marginal gain he can find.
One important consideration is that the race takes place in the South of France in high summer with predicted temperatures of 35 degrees.
With this in mind, Charles has been carrying out some rather unpleasant heat acclimatisation training which involves riding on on a turbo trainer shut indoors with no fans and the heating on full! Charles has managed to get the temperature up to about 30 degrees and has been doing 90-minute sessions. With the lack of airflow on an indoor trainer, this has certainly caused the desired degree of hyperthermia and really stressed his thermoregulatory system.
This has important physiological effects which improve the way the body sheds heat under stress, altering factors such as the electrolyte concentrations in sweat, the volume of sweat per hour and importantly the amount of cardiac output devoted to thermoregulation.
By combining this with fasted training (training with no food for the day) these sessions have been useful for weight loss for the hilly course too.
All in all, they have been horrible sessions, but will hopefully pay some dividends on the day!