Plan builder question (climbing versus rolling road race)

So I built out my second half of the year training blocks with plan builder for a local gravel series. Most races appear to have pretty decent sustained climbs so naturally I thought sustained power for the build phase would be better. Plan builder put me in rolling road race (assuming due to answering race type as gravel). Should I roll with it or figure out how to adjust the training type? Thanks

  • If you are aiming more steady state approach, I think changing the Event Type to “Gran Fondo” will get you the Sustained Power Build, and likely Century Specialty.

That or you can manually override the actual phase already on your calendar as you see fit. Not sure it makes a big difference which path you take?

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This past year I did precisely as @mcneese.chad suggested above, and felt better trained for my first event in April. I eventually acknowledged that I’m not at the front of the race, so following moves is far less important to having a “good result” than being able to put down consistently high (for me) power. If I recall correctly, I ended up with a combo of General build and Century specialty.


@mcneese.chad, I would assume the rolling road race is a more well rounded plan? I figured the sustained power would give a change up of training as I’m technically building to peak x2 this year.

I suppose I should disclose that I’m doing the short course routes of the series so most races are ~2 hours give or take. I suppose intensity will be higher.

  • Not sure I’d say that, but maybe? It depends largely on what a person needs & wants. If all you do is more regular and steady work, RRR might be the wrong choice despite what might seem more “universal”.
  • This is more appropriate to consider IMO. Mixing between different training focuses makes general sense to me in the aim of keeping some variety in for your body, but also your mind. It’s not necessarily best to stick to the same thing all the time.
  • Higher than what, exactly?

At 2 hours, there might be some “spikes” depending on the route and how you aim to ride in packs. But at 2 hours or so, without more info… I’d still think that Threshold and slightly below may well be a priority.

@mcneese.chad, I guess pacing compared to a 4 hour event? New to racing and really cycling too (less than 3 years) so pacing this duration will be new to me.

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OK, 2-4 sure can matter, but is not important at this time unless you have a frame of reference with them both. Sounds like you may not have that, so I’d suggest ignoring that aspect.

Considering the demands you actually expect like duration, effort, riding more “solo” vs chasing the pack, and such are more useful at this time. Honestly, if you are this new, it won’t likely make a huge difference which plan you end up with. It may well be more important to just get into a plan, do the workouts, recover and get some perspective as you move forward.

There can be pros to either direction when you start splitting hairs, but either of those directions should lead to better fitness and potential performance. It’s not practical to aim for a tight level of specificity without a bit more experience or at least with guidance from some more directly familiar with your potential event demands.

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Amateur cyclist, professional overthinker. I suppose you are correct, as long as fitness is increasing, it doesn’t matter. I guess I’m in my head about wanting to excel at climbing since I’ll likely descend slower. Thanks for all the input @mcneese.chad and @pkwell

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For sure, feel free to pick any focus you’d like. Sometimes that is more about what is “interesting” than the specifics.

You are starting a journey of self discovery. You can try anything, and then pay attention to how you react and what you take from it. This is a process of trial, error and hopefully success. I don’t think there is a “wrong answer” so you can choose whatever speaks to you most.

Good luck and keep us informed on your progress :smiley:

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