Suggestions for managing training around time off before starting a block of racing?

Taking a 10 day trip (no cycling) and then will have the first race of the season 9 days after I return, also racing the next 2 weekends consecutively, one weekend off and then 3 more consecutive weekends of racing.

I have re-jigged my plan around this time off period with the goal to get at least 6 hours each week and to delay the start of specialty with Anaerobic workouts until I get back (I would suspect any anaerobic gain I would get from 1 to 2 workouts would fizzle out with 10 days off the bike.

Any thoughts or suggestions for how to best manage that time before and after the trip leading into the race? Have a lot of TSS packed into the few days before and after the trip to try and maintain a minimum of 6 hours a week and not see my CTL drop by 30 points.

A bit concerned about this period given how closely it falls to the start of racing.

Hmm, my first thoughts looking at that calendar:

  • I would make that last workout before the break harder. Assuming the Vacation is going to be relatively restful, you might want to go in tired the use the vaca to recover. But don’t force a long workout the day before leaving if it will cause more stress that required.
  • That first workout coming back looks a little hard to me. You’ll likely be pretty stale so I’d just do a 2hour endurance ride then throw the intervals in during your long ride on Sunday the 12th.
  • While on vacation try to be lightly active just to stay ‘awake’. A short jog or two, maybe some light, activation-type lifting.

I wouldn’t worry too much about this. Your body doesn’t know your CTL. If those rides fit in your schedule, then that’s fine. But I know my wife wouldn’t be too happy if I left on a 3.5hr ride the day before a 10 day international vacation lol.

In the end, it looks like a B race so don’t stress too much about it. You’d rather go into the race a little undercooked than really trashing yourself to cram training in around the vacation.

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Even more true with the back-to-back-to-back race weekends that follow.

As suggested, I’d make the 11th a moderate day, then add some intervals during the long ride on the 12th.

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Ahh yeah I forgot about that. In that case, I’d definitely rather go into this one undercooked and use it as a sorta opener for a good week or so of training before resting for the consecutive race weekends.

Thanks for having a look heres some more context!

So that last workout is actually on the day of flight but flying in the evening, so it would be my only day I could do more than a 90-115min workout.

So just for more context Kabati is a 3.0 Sweet Spot if I am successful with my workouts leading up to the trip my Sweet Spot should be 5.4 (current is 4.7), Would you still say its too hard? Is it because its sweet spot rather than Z2 or Z3?

As above maybe Z2 or Z3 for the 11th instead of the low level Sweet Spot? Any thoughts on 29th-1st (keeping in mind the 1st is the only day I can get a long ride in).

Will be in Lisbon, hear its uphill in all directions kind of place and will be walking around a lot, will bring running shoes and maybe some gym clothes to do a bit of jogging, squats, lunges kind of thing.

If it’s not an “A” race, then treat it like any other “intensity” training day. Try to be “kind of” fresh for a B race is not going to move the needle enough to justify disruption of other training around the race. And another approach is to go into a B race with a really high level of training stress and see what you can do. I’ve actually had some surprisingly good race results at races scheduled right at the end of huge training blocks. It’s a nice final cherry on top of a big block. And good prep for stage racing where everyone is racing with fatigue.

Already some great replies… +1 the recommendation to do intensity the day before you go (rather than a long ride) and another +1 to just do a chill “rust buster” endurance ride the first day back. Second or third day I’d add in something like bays to wake up the legs.

As for the training after your return… you’re going to be racing into shape. I wouldn’t go crazy the first week back leading into that first race. Maybe just some 30-30s and a low key tempo. Your races should be the hardest effort of the week. If you try to cram in the intensity you “missed” all you are going to do is fry your legs for the race. And race fees are to expensive for that. :grinning:

One question I have… what is the big picture here? Are there more races in the extended future?

Big picture race calendar is:

Mixed terrain road race April 14th
Trip May 1st to 10th (no cycling)
Road race May 19th
XCO race May 26th
Gravel race June 2nd
Road race June 16th (tenative)
Gravel race June 23rd
A Road Race June 30th*
XCO race Aug 11th (would be my 2nd A race but TR won’t let it be as too close to my A road race)
Mixed terrain gravel/road race date TBA in Aug
XCO race Sept 15th
XCM race Oct 5th (tentative may do the 80km version, haven’t done it before)
Oct-Nov CX season usually ~5 weeks of double header races often with a few weekends falling consecutively.

There are a few other potential XCO and road race dates but they are either at courses I don’t like or involve a bit more travel so will likely opt out.

But ~11 races on the calendar between now and November.

So for the 11th and 12th would something like Quail (Achievable Z2) and Perkins (Achievable Z3) be better rather than Kabati and Chiayi?

So for the week leading into the race I have Black Giant -1 (2.3 level ANR) and the rest is just Z2 riding (Aspen and Column). Adaptive training had wanted me to start Anaerobic work the week before my trip but from my understanding is it would have been a waste so swapped those pre-trip anaerobic workouts out.

Don’t want to cast doubt on a training plan so my first and utmost advice is to stick with what has worked for you and take commentary like mine with a grain of salt. These are personal antidotes with what has worked for me in the past. Last thing I’d want to do is throw a wrench in someone’s plan.

I see the last race in June is listed as an A race. For me… I would block your season April to June and then August to November. After the A race in June this would be the natural time to take a week (or two) and fully recover before a quick ramp up for the XCO race (a race that is important to you.

You have a lot of races leading up to your A race (five… well six if you count the one before vacation). As mentioned these are HARD efforts and you need to recover from to ensure the quick turn around. During this first block what kind of workouts won’t tax you but still give you training stimulus?

As for the workouts… I would drop black giant and push Chiayi to the Tuesday in its place. Do a chill ride that first Saturday back and leave the rest of the plan as is. But again… that’s me.

Can I ask what plan you are on to be getting anaerobic workouts? You seem to have some solid volume and seems like your races are of decent length.

Starting April 23rd its Masters Rolling Road Low Volume Specialty phase but as I have that 10 days off on the 3rd week in I swapped the first 2 weeks of anaerobic for sweet spot, May 1st will be VO2 and then start Anaerobic May 14th still gives 7 consecutive weeks of anaerobic workouts before the A race, I don’t think I will miss out by skipping the 3 weeks of anaerobic around the trip as 10 weeks seemed like a lot.

Can’t fit Chiayi (4 hours) on a Tuesday, just don’t have enough time around my work day to squeeze in more than 115 mins after getting home from work and having supper. Always do those long 3+ hour rides on the weekend.

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I really like endurance rides with all out sprints in them coming back from this type of break. Good mix of plasma kick start and muscle engagement

I’d do that the day I get back, endurance without sprints the next day, then proper intensity as the third workout

As for the run in ahead of time…really depends how fatigued you want to be for the vacation. If you don’t mind being run down for the start then go very hard in the proceeding days. For me, I like to have energy and mental focus for vacations so I don’t truly bury myself ahead of time. Have to pick what the important thing is for your energy, no wrong answer here

Bottom line, you don’t lose much with this short of a break. Enjoy the time off and focus on training after you’re back

My bad. I meant the sweet spot workout kabati. :woozy_face:

Alright this is what I’m thinking, swapped Kabati for a hard start 90 min SS workout at the same level 3.0 just for time.
Have the VO2 on the last day and then when I return Z2 with bursts (actually a stretch for me as I’ve been progressing through 3-4h Z2 workouts) and then what I think it the easiest 4h workout.

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