Should we mimic workouts when racing?

Hello guys,

I’m new to TR and I was wondering if we should try to mimic our TR workouts when racing…?

For example, I did the Antelope +4 workout this morning with 6x10 min SS and 5 min to recover in between intervals.

In an MTB race, should I try to do something like that? i. e. On a long climb, should I do 10 min of SS followed by a 5 min easy spin, then do another 10 min of SS, another 5 min easy, and so on…?

Overly simple response, but that sounds exactly backwards to me.

  • The statement usually follows the “Train like you plan to race.” ideology.

This understandably varies from phase to phase, but you should be following a plan that applies at least some level of workouts that align with your expectations of how you need to perform in a race.

Each person, event and discipline will have variation, but you can see key aspects that apply in the TR plans to the intended use in the event. You can adjust plans with different workouts as needed to better prepare for the efforts you think you will need.

We need to take our training and then use it in the event. As such we can apply power and efforts within the range of power and duration we did during our training.

It’s about growing our strength, but also learning what we can do with that strength.


Simply put no if it’s a RR because your “plan” may not follow what others want to do. Like Chad said above. Use your strength from training to race.

If it’s a TT then maybe…you can dial into sustained efforts, holding certain power on flats, rollers, etc. My TR plan for Oceanias 40k TT, is building the strength necessary to execute my race plan for the day.


Definitely shouldn’t even consider building in an easy spin to climbs during races! Fastest way up a climb is steady power all the way, the only real question is what power to hold, and the answer to that depends on your fitness, the length of the climb, the length of the race, and whether there is a natural opportunity to recover afterwards (e.g. you can go a little harder on a climb that is followed by a non-technical descent where you can recover than you would on a climb which is followed by a flat section where you need to keep pushing watts).

As Chad said, you adjust your training to fit the race. If your race includes a 20 minute climb then look to do some 20 minute intervals in training so that your brain and body get used to it.

Only time I would consider mimicking workouts when racing is if it’s a B or C race that you’re basically just treating as a workout and might alter your tactics accordingly. E.g. you might decide to go on an early break in a road race because it enables you to get a chunk of time working at threshold even if it has a fairly small chance of succeeding. Or if you’re on a team you might volunteer to spend the day pulling at the front and shutting down breakaways to help your team-mates. Doesn’t really apply in MTB though where it’s an individual race and there’s no draft benefit, the only way to ride those is hard and steady with the only recovery being on descents steep enough that it’s not worth pedalling.


Races are flat out, especially MTB. When the gun goes it’s time to put the hammer down!

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Key takeaway: “Train like you plan to race”

Thanks @mcneese.chad :ok_hand:

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“The only way to ride those [MTB Races] is hard and steady with the only recovery being on descents steep enough that it’s not worth pedalling.”

Beautiful quote :point_up:
Thanks @cartsman :+1:

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