11 months ago i started cycling and TrainerRoad. Thanks to TR ive completed two Centurys in the UK, both times better than expected, pretty happy with progress. im now around 3W/kg (280W 93kg 191cm)
No more events planned this year but in 8 weeks im off to Mallorca with a bunch. 4 days cycling -
50km 1200m climbing
Ive done a fair amount of climbing over the past few months on outdoor rides eg 100km 1500 m, longest straight climb around 1000m. The next day just a 90min recovery and legs were dead. To be expected i guess.However, with regards the multiday hills of Mallorca, how should i train to reduce fatigue on days 3 and 4.
focus on sweetspot/build ftp? (lose weight)
increase exposure to lower cadence work- ~70 rpm?
it’ll be fairly leisurely/ social - coffee stop am, lunch stop, afternoon stop, etc but theres no getting away from the climbing over 4 days. All my training /riding over the past 11 months is mostly without stops (on the bike nutrition/hydration)
Whilst not racing there’ll be some friendly competitiveness on the climbs, but realistically i just want to get to day 4 without my legs in bits.
any suggestions on training and rest stop strategy/fuelling, etc would be appreciated.
You will love Mallorca! I was there in March and it was fantastic. In comparison to Scotland I found most of the climb gradients okay and you can settle into them rather than having to fight against them. I’m a little lighter than you with similar FTP.
I would have thought trying to get in a couple of back-to-back weekend rides would be good preparation? Taking the two middle days themselves at a sedate pace with stops for coffee and soaking up the amazing cycling atmosphere would be highly recommended too - on my last day in Mallorca I started to really feel it on the long Puig climb from Soller but found a 15minute coffee stop at the cafe at the Sa Calobra junction made a massive difference to get me home.
I remember this being discussed on a podcast too - be careful with the beer at nights! If you feel some anxiety about the days then a hangover will not help… Save yourself after the last ride! Have an amazing time.
From what you’re saying with regards your experience and fitness, I think you’ll have a blast.
From my experience, most of the mountain roads, which are main roads, are well maintained and they don’t seem to sap your energy. There are no really nasty gradients, save for a few switchbacks on Sa Calobra but you’re almost at the top when you hit those. Just get there early (and I mean early) to avoid the coaches heading towards the port.
Training-wise, I’m not sure what to advise. I went after a winter of Short Power Build and Crit Specialty and I set PBs on all of my favourite climbs. Didn’t really make sense to me but a few forum members pointed out that TR just teaches you to keep pressure on the pedals and turn them over. It’s also worth noting that you’ll have some lovely descending, which does afford plenty of time to get the legs and mind back in the game after a 30/40 minute climb.
I wouldn’t stress about day three or four. You’ll be in holiday mode, love being on the bike and I’m willing to bet that day three and four will be easier than you think. Everyone will have miles in their legs and I don’t imagine you’ll be doing day three at race pace
I just spent a week in Mallorca (Port de Pollenca area) in June - it’s cycling heaven. No matter what route you do, it’ll be an amazing time. I agree with the above, watch the drinking at night if you’re planning on putting in long days in the morning, and maybe alternate between hard climbing days and easier/flatter days, but you just can’t go wrong anywhere on the island. I’m jealous of you, wish I could be back there right now!
Awesome! I’ve done a handful of trips like this, agree with what folks are saying about the gradients, my advice would be try and have 2 big days 2 weeks in advance as a ‘specificity’ training of the 2 big days in Spain if you can (perhaps a big ask, but best case scenario).
If you don’t have sustained climbs it would be best to do it on a flat route with friends and design a route that has 4 20 minute sections or so to more or less get you to the 2500 m. I’d go relatively hard the first day, then for the second come back and do the 2700m facsimile at high zone 2 or tempo and then try and do the last section as hard as you can. This second day of being able to put out at least sustained tempo effort on tired legs is the critical part in getting specificity training + confidence for the trip itself.
After that try and rest heading into the big trip doing some short high intensity efforts.
In my experience this sort of ‘do the sort or riding you’ll do on the day’ training not only works really well physically but gives me tons of confidence and allows me to enjoy the trip more by knowing I have enough in the tank to put in some quality efforts on the key climbs.
If anything don’t overthink it. The climbs are generally neither too steep or too long, but just perfect to ride an enjoy the scenery. You can make them hard or take it relatively easy, there are no killer climbs where your gearing tops out and you’re stuck grinding 60rpm at 300 watts.
I always try to reduce travel related stress as much as possible. And as others have mentioned, be mindful of the evening program. Having one too many can make the difference between a solid next day or flushing out all those refueling carbs.
Fueling strategy is easy: Almond cake (Petra or Alcudia), Sardine sandwiches, orange cake in Soller. If you bonk, get one of these:
As others have said, Mallorca is a fantastic place to cycle and I am jealous.
The only thing I can add to the good advice above, if you go down Sa Calobra, don’t stop at the bottom. Turn around and head back up the hill and stop at the coffee shop by the aquaduct. I think climbing with warm legs is easier than climbing with post cafe legs.
Have a great time.
3w/kg is plenty for everything I did in Mallorca earlier this year; my rides were typically shorter and I think 90km was our maximum but we were running and swimming too, for a week, and it was the 70.3 route so had a hill. I think you’ll have a blast! The advice others have given you already is great; take it easy until you’ve settled in, try to keep the normalized power low by not going too hard on the hills and you’ll have more fun on the last two days. Don’t have more than a pint in the evenings and get to bed early.
I will be out there myself in September it is fantastic and you will love it. Agree with everything here but one thing I have found to really help on multi day riding there is nutrition.
Most of us will finish a ride relatively empty and dehydrated and replace the deficit/liquid over time. Fine if you have the time but not if you are jumping on your bike day after day. I now try to over feed and drink on the bike when riding multi days so that I am not as empty when I finish and this has really helped me the next day. Also, unless you are cooking yourself you may be struggling to get the right post ride fuel in which is another reason to make sure you have eaten well on the bike.
Though expensive (unless on offer) I have found that SIS beta fuel works well. I doubt that I am riding hard enough to burn all the carbs it provides so I believe this partly provides me with the overfeeding I want.
I’ve completed quite a number of 6-11 day cycling holidays over the last few years. If there’s a group of you then that competitive nature will kick in on the climbs. If you want to be consistent over the 4 days, my advice would be to let them go if they want to drill it! Just pace each climb low sweetspot/tempo. Trust me, you’ll enjoy the holiday more and will be able to take in the views instead of just suffering, wishing the end of each climb was in sight!
As already mentioned, fueling is important. Eat little and often. I try to take in 20-25g carbs every 25 mins. This is on the light side side but I seem to get by alright with this. Don’t forget to fuel post ride. No need to go over the top though!
Training wise, sweetspot is your friend. I don’t really like the sweetpost plans on TR. The low and mid volume don’t contain enough sweetspot and the high volume too much. If it were me, I would try and get in 3 back to back days sweetsport in the week (60-75min sessions) and then a couple of longer sessions on the weekend (outside sessions would be endurance with 40-60 minutes worth of sweetspot building this volume as the weeks go by). I find that going above 92% ftp is a bit too much for back to back days. Try and choose workouts close to 90% ftp. Build them up each week so there is less recovery time between intervals until you can ride 40-60 min at 90% ftp. If you can ride for 40+ mins at 90% ftp then, when you are away, you’ll know that 85% will be relatively easy for you!
Off to Alcudia On Saturday and was hoping that somebody could recommend a guide cycling tour I could do i am normal a allowed one or two days ‘me’ time while on family holidays but I am not trusted to get lost on my own I am only 46. So I need to find a place who would guide me and rent me a road bike and recommendations would be great
There’s so many options for both rental and trips it is hard to say. Some of the hotels advertise pickups where you pay to get taken somewhere and dropped then head home any route you wish. I know a popular option for this is to get picked up in Pollenca/Alcudia and get dropped off at Andratx.
If you don’t have anything booked now it’s probably easiest to just go and ask when you get there.
An option for at least one of your days would be the Lighthouse route. I think it’s impossible to get lost as it’s the same road there and back. Plus there will be numerous other cyclists on the route as it’s very popular.