I intend to sign up for a race on August 8th 2020, a 220 km route with 7,400 vertical meters (Tour Des Stations), and plan to use TR’s training plans all the way till then. My question is what experiences any of you have with putting together plans with a ride 42 weeks ahead in time as a goal, as putting together base+build+specialty “only” covers 28 weeks.
I have started on the SSBMV1 this week, and plan to follow through with base 1 and base 2 (a total of 12 weeks). It makes sense to go into the race on the back of an 8 week specialty phase, which should be preceded by a 8 week build build phase. This gives a total of 6+6+8+8=28 weeks, i.e. there is a 14 week gap between the end of my planned base phase and when it makes sense to start on the build phase:
- October 21. - December 1. (6 weeks): Sweet Spot Build Mid Volume 1
- December 1. - January 12. (6 weeks): Sweet Spot Build Mid Volume 2
- January 13th - April 19th (14 weeks): ???
- April 20th till June 14th (8 weeks): Sustained Power Build - High Volume
- June 15th till August 7th (8 weeks): Climbing Road Race (Specialty phase) - High Volume
For the 14 week gap period between mid January and mid April, there will be plenty of time to do cross country skiing, so I imagine following one of TR’s low volume plans to allow for more time outdoors.
What plans would make most sense to fill the gap period with, base or build? Perhaps repeat SSBMB2 (6 weeks) and then do a build phase indoors before starting the sustained power build (8 weeks)? Any and all useful insight is appreciated!
One possibility would be to assess where your weaknesses are and insert a block of training to help remedy the weakness.
Look at your power curve … are you lagging more in a particular area?
Use the time to become a more rounded cyclist.
I am taking this approach and filling my gap with Sustained Power Build
I would follow your 12 Base weeks with an 8 week General Build, then repeat SSBMV2 (hopefully at a higher FTP than the first time around) before going into Sustained Power build as planned. That’s your extra 14 weeks covered
Other option is to do an extended Base where you mix in some Traditional Base alongside the SS work for variety and a different stimulation. Particularly given the length of your target event, you need to be doing some sessions over 2 hours. E.g. follow your 12 weeks of SS base with 8 weeks of Traditional Base, then do another 6 week block of SS Base before going into Sustained Power Build as planned. If you have time then possibly sprinkle in a few really big weeks in there where you just go do a load of zone 2 riding, like 15-20 hours of it.
Other thought is why the shift from MV Base plans to HV Build and Specialty? Have you done HV plans before? They’re seriously tough so unless you have solid experience of doing that much volume and intensity and prospering on it I would have thought it made more sense to stick with MV throughout and then supplement with long endurance rides which build up your volume without as much stress (and as above are going to be necessary for a 220km event anyway)
And last thought is that across 42 weeks you’re almost certainly going to have some scheduled or unscheduled interruptions. Sickness, holidays, work trips, etc. So maybe worth building in a bit of a buffer to your plan to cope with that.
Looking forward to responses as I’m in the same boat & inexperienced with structured training.
I’m 45 weeks out from my A race (Shenandoah Mountain 100) & just set up my calendar. Started with SSBLV which I plan to repeat, then Sustained Power Build LV followed by Marathon LV. It leaves me 4 weeks. I figure that’s a pretty good buffer & as I get closer, we’ll see how many weeks I actually have to fill.
@WildWill One possibility would be to assess where your weaknesses are and insert a block of training to help remedy the weakness.
Good point! I am relatively speaking useless on shorter efforts, so this may be a good time to work on sprint-like efforts. May even make sense to combine with cross country skiing.
@cartsman Other thought is why the shift from MV Base plans to HV Build and Specialty? Have you done HV plans before? They’re seriously tough so unless you have solid experience of doing that much volume and intensity and prospering on it I would have thought it made more sense to stick with MV throughout and then supplement with long endurance rides which build up your volume without as much stress (and as above are going to be necessary for a 220km event anyway)
Valid point, the reason for me ramping up the volume from April is that in Norway, outdoor cycling is possible again from March/April, depending on when the snow melts. I usually rack up 60-75 hours/month in the summer half, but only 25-35 in the winter half.