How do practice crits fit into structured training?

I did SSB I and II over the winter, and then slowly went off structured training for a month or so and did fun rides (at varying intensities). I did an FTP ramp test and lost 10 W compared to April (253 W vs 243 W), so now I want to get back into structured training with a build phase. My question is how to work in races into this plan? I have a weekly crit I like to go to practice my bike handling, sprints and just have fun. There’s a couple of race series I want to do (intelli, gateway), but I don’t race every weekend.

How would you fit those into structured training? Just add them to the TR plan without changing anything? Extra recovery? This will be the LV plan.

For reference, I started structured training with a PM this January @ 213 W FTP, and am a recently upgraded midpack cat 4. At my peak in april, I was 4.0 w/kg @ 253 W (63.2 kg), now I am 3.73 w/kg @ 243 W (65 kg).

From my perspective I throw them into my weekly plan and treat them as a training ride mentally. I go out as hard as I can usually and just take the extra stress on as a means to improve. I know my body and how it handles the stress, e.g. when I think I have over done it I will back it off a bit. If you race sunday for instance, take the Monday off or go for a light spin. Or spin home after the race. Easy though.

It’s good that you treat it as having fun too. Relax, enjoy it and prep for your A race. There’s a recent podcast that covers A, B and C races and how to handle them. See if you can track that down.