Another "how should I restart" question

So: past TR user here, loved the program but decided to use a coach for my first half Iron and I’m glad to say it went great. The past TR work helped me come into the coaching process reasonably fit, especially on the bike, so with the coach I spent about five months focused mainly on the run and it really paid off. Hit all my goals (sub-six overall, sub-two on the run), and came within four minutes of my stretch goal (finished in 5:34) even while spending a total of 17 minutes in transition. (Hey if you’ve never tried freshly sliced tomatoes on your T2 BLT you don’t know what you’re missing…)

But, that was a month ago - now I’m back on TR using what I learned from the coaching process to prepare myself for the Savageman aquabike on September 15th. That’s 14 weeks away, but I’m also going to be on vacation for the first two weeks of July. (I’m pretty good about getting some runs in on vacation but I basically lack the discipline to get much out of the the “spin bike in the hotel gym” deal.) I’ve been going fairly soft in workouts since the half Iron (which was on May 5th), basically all unstructured so I feel reasonably fresh both physically and mentally.

So here’s what I’m trying to figure out: I’ve got three weeks before vacation and then eight weeks between vacation and my race. Do I rely on the base I built training for the half Iron to do three weeks of build now and then a specialty plan for the eight weeks up to Savageman (which has about 6k feet of climbing in its 56 mile bike leg), or do I do three weeks of sweet spot base before vacation and then do a build plan leading up to the race?

(Or is there so little difference between these two approaches that I should basically just htfu, stop distracting myself with the TR forums, and go do a workout???)

Your aerobic base should be somewhat intact as it is. I think I’d go in with sustained power build low volume (probably) and do the first three weeks, then take your recovery week and do whatever you can during vacation. When you come back, work the second four weeks of sustained power. Then you can do four weeks of specialty. I’d do the first three weeks and then a single taper week, probably week 8. Half Iron, Century, 40kTT, or maybe climbing RR would be options to shake things up.

Fact is you shouldn’t be nearly as fried in prep for an aqua bike since you aren’t running and you should ride the aqua bike at a higher IF than the 70.3 since you don’t have to run. I’d probably go with one of the road plans over the tri plan, just do it on the tri bike (obviously).

The aqua bike just isn’t going to be as taxing as a 70.3 in prep or recovery, so I think you can afford to be a bit more aggressive with your bike training than I would recommend for a triathlon.

All makes sense, thanks! I did the ramp test today, pretty happy with the result. I’m starting a low volume general build plan on Tuesday instead of sustained build. I’m planning to approach Savageman as more of a fondo than a multisport race. I’ll be using a road bike and basically just riding it for the climbs instead of caring (much) about my overall time. So I like that idea of three weeks of Climbing Road Race to follow a more or less full block of general build.

There’s some gorgeous riding out there in western Maryland and I mainly just want to be strong enough to enjoy the ride and put some times up on the Strava segments for the climbs that I can be happy with. Much appreciate your feedback!

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