Training for an event 8 or 9 months away

Cyclocross has become my primary discipline. In the area I live, those events don’t begin until the end of September, which is about six and a half months away.

I have completed Sweet Spot Base 1 already. I plan starting on SSB 2 in five days.

My question is this “Should I have completed SSB 1&2, Short Power Build, and Cyclocross Specialty all before my first cyclocross race? Or should I be in the midst of Cyclocross Specialty during the racing season?

Thanks for your thoughts!

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Hey there!

This will all depend on the length of your CX Season. It’s important to ask yourself “When is the last race of my season?”

A common practice for a CX racer is to complete the Specialty Phase, and then repeat Weeks 7 and 8 of Specialty for the remainder of their season. We recommend this form of “extension” for a maximum of 8 Weeks. Towards the end of that 8 weeks, your peak may start to diminish, so keeping this extension around 4-6 weeks may be be helpful for allowing you to finish your season on a good note.

My favorite way to schedule my training is to work backwards. Start with your last race of the year and back up 6 weeks. Then, schedule your Specialty Phase at the start of those 6 weeks prior to your final race of the season. This can be done by clicking the “end date” field of the “Add Plan” menu and selecting the correct date on the calendar. Once scheduled, Specialty should end a full 6 weeks prior to your race date. You can then Copy/Paste Weeks 7 and 8 to cover those 6 weeks.

Then, scrolling back in time on the Calendar, schedule the Short Power Build Phase to end right before the Specialty phase begins.

With that, you are now able to observe how much time between now and the start of Short Power Build that you have to work with.

To fill this time, you have a few options:

Extra Build:
You could explore General or Sustained Build to help focus on components of fitness that you don’t typically have time to develop. You could do either a 4 week block or an 8 week block depending on how much time you have to fill. This is the more strenuous option, but if you are able to handle it, it will reward you with the most significant gains.

Extra Base:
If you feel that doing this much build will be tough for you to manage during the season, doing an extra SSB II phase can be helpful to allow you to build up an even bigger foundation for your season. This would be the recommended progression for athletes that are newto structured training and racing.

I hope this was helpful! Bet of luck with your upcoming season :slight_smile:


That’s a long time to be hammering the trainer - especially (I’m assuming) thorough the summer.

If you have plently of time to ride, may I sugg filling a bit of time with a Traditional base II or III block once the weather improves wherever you are. This could be before or after SSB2. A lot of rides on these plans are much easier to take outdoors than the SSB/Build plans.

These blocks are only 4 weeks so easy to slot in.

This should give you a break from the trainer and possibly allow you more chance to dabble with your CX skills a bit earlier in the training season.

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Thanks for the help! I’ve applied your advice.