Ötztaler Radmarathon & Plan Builder

Hi I have a new goal to ride the Ötztaler Radmarathon (238 km, 5.500 hm) and was wondering what you think about the plan builder results:

sweet spot base I
sweet spot base II
sustained power build
sweet spot base I
climbing road race
sweet spot base I

When I trained for my half ironman I think the longest ride was 1:45h on trainerroad and the race went very good with a time of 3h. But following the plan builder now my longest ride would be 1:30h and the race about 10-12h that seems strange?!


I would redo the plan builder with your A Race as a ‘Gran Fondo’ which will put you on the century plan for your specialty and give you some longer rides.

Regardless of what you do, for something this long I would substitute longer Saturday rides (however long you feel like, 3-4h min, 5-6h+ preferable) to get a feel for being in the saddle that long and making sure you have a good fueling strategy. On a ride like this comfort and feeding are going to be the things that will hurt you the most.

  • Make sure to read the weekly tips. There are Sweet Spot workouts set for the Sundays in most training phases. But many also recommend longer and easier rides for substitution on the Sunday rides (assuming default days used).

You can also consider this type of substitution for any phase and any workout as you see fit. I know we have a thread or two talking about long events like this. I can try a search to find them later, if you want to read them.

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yes 2 hours

you mean instead of the 1,5h hour rides to ride longer?

Yes, look at the example I linked.

It all goes to the time you have, and your potential preference with your goals in mind. Choose the one (long and easy or shorter and harder) to suit your needs. I like to alternate each week and do the short Sweet Spot one week, and then do the Long Endurance the next week. Keeps some variety and works on different systems.

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does radmarathon mean gran fondo, or what is the translation? thanks!


yes I think so :slight_smile:

Nothing to add except that ÖR is a great event. Well organized and brutal. There is no “shorter alternative”, you either do the whole thing or you simply DNF. Beware of the Timmelsjoch, it will shredd you to pieces if your’e not prepared.



Just to emphasize what others have said: try to get those long rides in. Preferably outside in the mountains. Long rides with sweet spot intervals should be a key workout the last few weeks/months. I’m usually not a fan of the “just ride” approach, but in this case and especially when you’re not planning to go super fast, I think it’s the way to go in order to build some “robustness” and also experiment with nutrition and clothing(!). [Did the Ötzi in 2018 myself.]

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I think the literal translation is Bike Marathon but yes, the meaningful translation is Gran Fondo.

You and @Jonathan and @Nate_Pearson should really do the AlpenBrevet Platinum. The route should be public when registration opens in a couple of weeks, but the gist of previous years is 264km with 6831m of ascent across 5 Alpine passes:
Sustenpass, 2224 m.ü.M. (meters above sea level)
Grimselpass, 2164 m.ü.M.
Nufenenpass, 2478 m.ü.M.
Lukmanierpass, 1914 m.ü.M.
Oberalppass, 2044 m.ü.M.​

You have to go fast/fastish because there’s a time cut off at the aid station after Nufenenpass. If you don’t make it there in time (min 21mph avg speed), then it’s the Gold route for you, just 4 passes with the last two of Platinum replaced with Gotthard and Gotthard’s cobbles on the ascent, peaking at 2180m, and part of the descent.

I’ve done the Gold the last couple of years, but this year I have a conflict.

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Interesting thread and question. Maybe see you there. I will apply as well.

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I LOVE THIS IDEA!!! I have Gravel Worlds that day but maybe in 2021! any takers @Nate_Pearson !? Dang if we’re stuck in the swiss alps I might be able to talk my way onto a podcast to! #Goals!

Thanks for the rec @mountainrunner, putting this on my extended calendar!!!



I’ve done it just twice (Gold both times). The first time had glorious sunshine for awesome vistas as you climb the switchbacks and dry roads for the fantastic descents, but a heavy rain storm starting about 20mi from the finish that you exited about 16 miles later, which meant you dried off and rolled into the finish town that had seen no rain (and wouldn’t). The second time, it rained almost the whole time, save 3 of the four ascents (again Gold) when it got hot and most stripped off layers for the climb, though never very hard, but the downhills were in the rain. The last bit, Gotthard, was a strong wind (tail or head depending on the part of the switchback), but near the top, temperatures dropped to no more than 5 C, light rain, heavy fog with visibility no more than 30m, while descending on cobbles. Not the cobble section pictured, though, that was early in the ride. (I don’t know what happened to my pics, this was the only one I could find.) The point is, the weather is fickle there.

Ok thank you so much for your help but the workouts are still quite short aren’t they?

what duration are you thinking off

Did you guys train with trainerroad for the event what was your trainingplan like?

So far I would do the two ~1hour workouts as they are and choose a longer alternativ for the 1,5h ride.

  • Depends on your needs and available time.

  • TR is not necessarily setup for the ultra distance type of rides and races specifically. It is primarily aimed at time-crunched athletes, looking at events ranging around 1 hour up to 8-12 hours for the longer events (full distance triathlon, centuries, gravel etc.)

  • With the time limits above, their common recommendations cap out around 3 hour rides (although there are many in the catalog that exceed that).

So, for those stepping into events well beyond those common bounds, you have to get a bit creative. I recommend reviewing some of the other ultra threads around here, for some great advice, directed more towards your needs.

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Yes, you should be on the podcast. And yes, that sounds like fun but that’s a ton of climbing!!!

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No and yes. The first year I was focused on ultramarathons (did a 46km / 2700m ascent the the prior Saturday, plus 2x62km and Zermatt Ultra that season) with cycling as a cross-train / for fun. I was doing TR Sweet Spot. For the second year, I was training for IM and AlpenBrevet was my last long ride (done on my road bike, not Tri bike) before my IM two weeks later, so the training was focused on IM and not AlpenBrevet.

Just chiming in here to say that last year in Gran Canaria I found myself briefly riding with the winner of last year’s Ötztaler Radmarathon, who was there coaching some pro CX riders. He was spinning up the climb and chatting to our tour guide, I was 10 watts over threshold (and I’m not heavy). That man was so small, it was awesome.

Really depends on what you’re used to. I think it might be dangerous to emulate other people’s training. I guess the best is to start where you are and gradually build from that, add 20’ to your long rides each week etc., add some minutes to your SST work every week etc. Don’t know what your background is. Actually if you envisage a time of 10-12h then your race pace will almost certainly be lower than SST so perhaps do tempo climbs instead of SST in your longest rides (“train as you race”). At any rate, the event is so popular that I’m sure you’ll find lots of training plans/recommendations online :slight_smile: .

I did half of the route (Susten, Furka, Grimsel) and if it is really 21 mph I will reconsider my hobby!