Advice for race training phase order

Hey guys! I’m looking for some advice.

I’m new to Trainer Road, and 4 days into my first training plan - I dove straight into Climbing Road Race Specialty Phase, as the early season will be starting in about 8 weeks.

I’ve got a B race in 7 weeks from now, another B race in 10 weeks and an A race in 12 weeks. They’re going to be a mix of GranFondos and licensed races.

This past year I’ve ridden 11,000km in the same race region and done a few GranFondos and events, therefore am already very comfortable with the terrain and the mentality needed for long-duration harder efforts. I’m at an FTP of 255 just from friends/group ride intervals and long days on the bike; in other words I haven’t followed any long-term structured training programs.

I figure it should also be mentioned that I’m also following a full distance IronMan training with a coach, but am using TR to complement the cycling side and prep for the cycling races beforehand (in other words, I’m not using TR for TT prep, only climbing races, crits, etc).

My question is this: Should I stop the Specialty phase, do a Build phase for 4 weeks, then the Specialty phase for 8 weeks (which would have the specialty phase finish right when the A race is planned)?

Or should I continue what I’ve started and finish this Specialty phase, then restart at the Base phase, then Build phase, then once again Specialty, so that I find myself peaking while competitors are starting to fade?

What are your thoughts?
As it goes without saying, my time is valuable and I don’t want to waste it doing something silly!

Thank you!

(PS: Does the Build phase have a significant increase in expected FTP improvement over the Specialty phase, or is the Specialty phase also capable of increasing my FTP?
Ideally I’m just looking to increase my FTP, as I’m comfortable on the endurance side of my current FTP. Would that be the Sustained Power Build I need to take a crack at?)

After some more digging around, I’ve found this article describes my situation almost perfectly.
So if I were to do the 12-week proposal and finish the specialty phase at the ‘A’ race day, would I start again from scratch (Base > Build > Specialty) in the middle of the season?

Scenario 2: (Rebuild) Races Spaced 7-16 Weeks Apart

In this scenario, upon completion of your Specialty phase, you will backstep in your plan as far as you can and pick up there. This is what we call a Re-Build, but in some cases, you will only have time for a partial Re-Build.

  • If you have 7 weeks until your next event, you will pick up on Specialty Week 2.
  • If you have 12 Weeks until your next event, you will pick up on Build Week 5.
  • If you have 16 Weeks until your next event, you will pick up on Build Week 1.
  • If you have 22 Weeks until your next event, you will pick up on Base II Week 1.

Apology for only skimming the ling posts, but have you looked at the new Plan Builder?

It is meant to handle these types of questions.

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Thanks for your reply!

This is the first I’ve heard about the new Plan Builder.
I’ll check it out right away!

Edit: Plan Builder is fantastic! It’s exactly what I needed! :smiley:

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Very good, glad it helped. :smiley:

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