235km, over 4000+VM, with 3 HC climbs, thoughts on Sustained and Century vs Sustained and Climbing plans

Peaks Challenge Falls Creek is the event, in Victoria, Australia, just in a discussion for the 2 planning methods above and was wondering if any coach could offer advice.

For the record I’ve done the event twice,

2014 10hrs 53m with just general fitness
2015 9hrs 51ms with fluid trainer using HR zones, long rides and commutes

Im thinking Sustained and Century with one long ride a week, may supliment some commutes for lighter TR sessions, but mainly trying to determine difference between Century and Climbing.




I’m also planning on doing this event and interested in any advice from the coaches re the appropriate plans and additional training that might be helpful

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Using the Base Build Specialty focus, this is what Im planning.

I have two more weeks of Sweet Spot, then will start Sustained Power Build - High Volume which takes me through to end of this year and then Century High Volume leading up to the event in March.

Hopefully Ill be a beast by then :slight_smile: I have noticed significant improvement already and was surprised with my power and endurance last week on Falls Creek, Hotham and Tawonga Gap.

As its coming into Summer and great time for riding outdoors, will need to match a few outdoor rides along the way.



Sounds Similar to my plan, actually its the same…I will swap out some of the easier indoor days for Commutes and one long ride outside on Sat or Sun…I completed a Base, Sustained and Climbing road race once before Amys Gran Fondo and could not believe how much I improved…Good luck

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I am in a similar boat but entered into Audax ( 250km – 4,200m of climbing Hotham/back of Falls Creek/Tawonga Gap).
Currently in the final recovery week of Sustained Power Build (Mid) and deciding on either Climbing or Century for the Specialty plan. Starting next week will mean I complete the plan the week prior to the event (Jan 26 2019).

I initially had the Climbing Road Race in the calendar, however, I have now changed to the Century plan based on discussions in a recent podcast (Ep 184??) and a more detailed analysis of last years event data.
With the climbs ranging from 30min to 2hrs, the Century plan would be more specific to my event containing more Sweet Spot and Threshold workouts while Climbing RR has more higher intensity Anaerobic and VO2max efforts. I often get these higher intensity efforts on my outdoor group ride.

Just having a search for the discussion in the podcast. In Ep 185 Nate talks about his preparation for Leadville having no longer than 2hr sweetspot rides and raising FTP and operate at a lower % of FTP is they way to go well in the longer races. Is that the discussion you referred to Tim? If not, i’ll keep looking.

What is VM?

Vm is Vertical Metres or how much climbing. :):grinning:

I also am entered in the Alpine Classic, and asked the question about speciality phase earlier, and received the reply that Century was better suited that Climbing Road Race. CRR includes more over-threshold work to deal with attacks, and that Century was better suited to the demands of the Alpine Classic and 3 Peaks.


I am searching the podcasts notes now as well and can’t seem to find the discussion I was thinking about. Perhaps I read something online and something in a podcast triggered that thought?? Only just started listening to Ep 185 so hadn’t reached that point yet. Interesting point though.

1hr 4min I think

I’m planning with 3 Peaks in mind as well as Fitz’s Challenge. I’ve also landed on the Sustained + Century plan, rather than the Climbing plan, but also adding in some longer outside rides. Seems to be the best fit, especially given my goals are around completion time, rather than racing the distance.

Thanks for referring to the podcast number. I remember Nate saying that too.

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Hey there,
For those that used TR as their main training for three peaks, any feedback/comments as to how effective it was that you can share? What would you change if anything?

It’s a long way out but I’m targeting next years event and would really appreciate any feedback!


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I didn’t use TR as my main training for 3 Peaks in the end, but instead used HPTek’s intermediate training plan available from the event website.

Personally, i looked at the options available and decided to run with this plan, developed specifically for the event by a respected coach (Dr Stephen Lane), who is also one of the 8 hr wave leaders each year.

Not taking anything away from TR, i just felt more comfortable with the volume and specificity of HPTek’s plan. Having said that, i like to train indoors during the week, so for many of the weekday rides i looked for a TR equivalent or i created them in Workout Creator. During the weekend i stuck to the planned outdoor rides. As we approached the end, we were doing some big hours on the road. The other thing i did was to train on the GPX routes of the three major climbs using Tacx Desktop App. I am in New Zealand and couldn’t ride them myself, and the longest duration climb where i live is 20 mins, whereas Mt Hotham is 90mins plus.

So a bit of mix and match worked for me at my first go at the event. Got around in 8:46 and was stoked with that. If i wanted to prepare using TR more, i would use SSB 1&2, Sustained Power Build and Century, and supplement them with a long distance/hill repeats workout in the weekend if possible, and if you can’t get outside, then ride the GPX routes on the app of your choice.

On the day, sticking with the wave leaders of your targeted time is a great strategy for success. They know the right pace to achieve your goal. Working out the typical watts/kg you will need to do for the climbs to achieve this, and training on hills to sustain that level for 90 mins plus will help you start the race with some confidence.

It’s a great event, so enjoy the experience and the best of luck

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First up, wow, awesome time!!!

Thanks for the detailed response, lot’s to think about, really appreciate you taking the time to write it!