330km with 20min climbs. Best Plan?

Hi guys,
I’m new around here so need to dig into your large brains to avoid wasting precious time.
I am just finished rolling road race plan and I am seeing a nice bump in FTP; 200 to 231 in the last 4 months (@90ish kg). So nice newbie gains! I dont have much time though as I have a job and 4 kids.
My question is. …As I finish this plan, designed for a 140km hilly road event next weekend, what do I do next? My next event is a 330km ride across Ireland which I feel I am totally unprepared for but it’s only 8 wks away. I was thinking of doing climbing road race as it has 2x20mins climbs at 10% and as a bigger guy hills are my nemesis, but I also think I need distance as I dont do many 100km ride.

1.Plan A is climbing road race (LV masters) with sunday long ride 100km+
2 Plan B is just ride hard twice a week zwifing/train now (tues sat)and do 3 good endurance rides(wed, thurs, sun)? I wont always get 5 day though but one can dream.

Any advice from you ultra people out there? My time is important and I was to keep up this momentum as it is such a buzz seeing the progress from trainer road.

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I would definitely not pick climbing road race but something like gran fondo if you pick a specialty at all


I’d do sustained power build (LV masters) and add in as much extra endurance as you can manage. If you’ve just done a specialty phase, going back to a build will work quite nicely. Maybe look at the alternates for each workout and pick one that tends towards longer intervals.


Thanks I was set on that one but ill reconsider now. On a side note I would love to see some stats on the various plans. Im fairly sure trainerroad could tell which is the most effective training plans for ftp, v02, endurance etc.

Just the one block then for 6week? I found the build the hardest phase of my first plan and noticed i got my best gains there so i kinda like that idea.

That’s a big step up from 100-140km to 330!

It’ll likely be a gruelling endurance test to go the distance; endurance work (maximising saddle time) is one of the things I’d be trying to work on in the time remaining, along with figuring out nutrition, and perhaps fitting some lower gears to help you on those climbs you’re concerned about, so that you can ride them at as low a power as possible.

You’ll also want to make sure you have really great recovery going into the event, so that you feel super fresh and are gagging to ride. It can be tempting in the lead up to a challenging event to bury yourself with training, thinking you need to bump up your fitness as much as possible, but if not very careful (& deliberate about it) by pushing too hard too near the event and not allowing time for great recovery you’ll just carry a load of fatigue into it and not be able to put out the performance you’d hoped for and be capable of.

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Is this 330km in one day or across two days? Either way I’d keep a long endurance ride in your schedule once a week. I do ultra distance events, my main event is 2100km this year. During training I generally don’t go over 5-6 hours for my long rides. But I do do build up events, longest 400km at this point in the year. I am great believer in the long endurance ride for building fatigue resistance.

Don’t neglect intensity either as that’ll help you up any hills or through more challenging terrain.


Hella endurance and hella SST

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Thanks for the help guys. I think you are right. I think Ill do the build and focus on a 4 to 6 hr long ride at weekend and really dial in the endurance and nutrition.

Ive done one 20hr relay race ( high intensity and then 2hr break) so its pretty different as I’ll be aiming to just do zone 2 for this effort. Like you say it’s a big jump up. It scares me, but tbh thats the attraction of it.

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Oh, you’ll likely go more intense than that over the distance of your event. Just keep below threshold as much as possible and save it for when it’s absolutely necessary, for instance a really steep uphill. You’ve only got so many matches to burn, use them wisely over such a distance.

Nutrition is often the downfall over the distance you’ll be riding. Dialling in food, drink absolutely a good idea on your longer rides. But be aware things don’t always scale up to these longer durations and distances. Be prepared to adapt if necessary during the event…

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Hi Johnny, welcome & congrats on the FTP bump! What was your last build block? Hey if it gave you good gains, why not try something similar again?

Otherwise, I agree with @Chop_Stick’s suggestion. Make sure the extra endurance work doesn’t impact following interval sessions. The obvious way to add endurance is to add an extra day, but when you run out of days you could tack it onto the end of an interval workout in the one session. Don’t be afraid to rearrange the days to optimise recovery so you can get the hard workouts done. For me, endurance work is more tolerant of fatigue but when pushing the distances up it also creates more fatigue than intervals do, & the fatigue hangs around longer. How many hours of extra riding are you doing on top of your current plan?

I’ve done the general base -» sustained power build combo (not masters version though) & I think it worked pretty well with adding a fair bit of solo endurance & the occasional group ride. At least once a month I like to get out for a 200km ride for an adventure & so I know how my body feels. Yes I push workouts around in the calendar to accommodate the additions. Also I’ve found it valuable to do exercises off the bike to strengthen my back.

Six weeks is a pretty long duration for a block, especially if you’re adding extra, & fatigue can creep up. Consider taking a recovery week (or part week) in the middle, just to freshen you up a bit for the final weeks of hard intervals.

Have you thought about how you’re going to ride this? Don’t be afraid or ashamed of dropping off the back of a group if you need to go over budget up those “gentle” rises just to stick with them. If you’re expecting to do most of it solo then clip-on aero bars will be beneficial for at least those headwind sections, just make sure you get used to being in that position prior.

I agree with @AldridgePrior on gearing. When I read the two climbs of 10% for 20 minutes in a 300km ride I thought that’s screaming for mountain bike gears. Where do those climbs appear in the ride? At 250km in, a 10% grade is going to feel a lot harder.

This is a lot I know, more than you asked for, but what you’re embarking on is such a big step up compared to what you’ve done so far, & there’s a lot to consider that doesn’t come into play on shorter rides. Let us know how you get on next weekend too, & especially the couple of days after; that distance might be a good starting point for any extra endurance work you add. :muscle:

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I have to say you guys have summed up this topic very nicely. Thanks guys I really appreciate this.

Its kinda like a one Stop shop for all the topics I’ve been researching (googling) the last few weeks. My takeaways are :

Training Plan: stick to what is working…likely general build & Sustained Power build. Masters to accomadate more z2 work.

Endurance: Im doing 2 to 6 hr rides on a sunday, this us my social rode and the main motivator for my workouts. I will do the masters program and make the endurance rides longer (within TR plan) and stretch out these sun long rides to get in a few 150m+ before the event. I seem to be able to handle 3 intensity rides so far so these longer rides should be manageable. I do use RLGL and find it matches my preceived fatigue fairly well.

Nutrition: I have been doing well getting about 80g per hr on the high intensity rides but havnt nailed this for group rides. I’ll focus on this and the type of fuel over the next few weeks.

Big climbs: I’m not going to worry aboit this too much. Inlive in a hilly area so more group rides =more hills. Generally over 1000m per 100km.

Gear: I dont have a big gears casette so i think im stuck qoth a 32. I dont think I will be getting anymore aa i just bough a shii assioma power meter and thats my enough spent!! I’ll manage as they are within the first 60km or so and then the climbing isnt too bad.

Thanks so much for the input.
I’ll put my progress and lessons learned here in a few months. Might help another newbie sometime.