I would like your opinions.
I’ve got almost 3 weeks to a flat loop race, where I would like to be challenging for the win at the front with my sprint.
My current training week is
Tuesday- Zwift Race
Thursday - intervals
Last session - 2x (3x 4mins@ 110% =280w)
Friday - 90min Z2 Zwift ride
Sun - 3hour + ride
I want to be able to be as fresh as possible and launch my sprint (which is my strength), but currently I’m still not able to hang in with the front pack to the end at the moment as I’m missing the jumps.
So my question is -
Do I stick with building my sustained power, helping me sustain a higher power to leave me fresher towards the end of the race and have more matches to torch,
I’m tempted to try the tabata or hitt sessions to elevate my anaerobic capacity and repeatability, to raise my fitness levels.
Their will be surges in the race, but not as fully intense as a crit (I feel).
Interested in how to apply the right training tool to the situation.
Your thoughts would be appreciated.
Current FTP - 254 3w/kg
If you’re getting dropped during ‘surge-y’ stuff, then make sure you work on it. That ability will come on much quicker than attempts to raise the tide via FTP increases. I’d suggest doing some VO2 max and especially anaerobic repeats ASAP - 30/30, 30/15, 40/20 etc and then rest.
Given the timeframe of 3 weeks I’d say your second approach is going to give you more bang for your buck.
It’s also likely that there are a whole bunch of things other than just fitness that you can improve to give you a better chance of staying with the bunch - cornering, positioning, braking (or rather not braking…) so that you burn less matches.
And last thing is that if you can’t currently stay with the bunch then your goal may be unrealistic. I.e. If you do manage to stay with the pack then it may take everything you’ve got to do so, and you won’t have much sprint left at the end. No harm in having stretch goals as long as you don’t get too dispirited at not achieving them.
In general, I think it never hurts to have a bigger engine (i.e. higher FTP.). Having better sustainable power makes it easier to hang with the group and handle surges and get to the end to unleash your sprint.
The three week time window is the challenge. Is it enough to significantly improve FTP if you just do threshold intervals (tues) and over/unders (thurs)? I don’t know. I would probably give it a shot though as it is addressing a limiter (sustainable power) that you need to get to the end with the group.
The other challenge is balancing fun and structure that can help with improvement and growth. How do you feel on cutting back on the weekly zwift race and do it every 2-3 weeks instead? That would give you move structured interval time during the week, but if zwift races are that ‘thing’ that you really love about cycling, keep it there. Its better to have a sub-optimal plan and have fun and enjoy it rather than cut out the things you love and your enjoyment.
Thanks for all your really quick reply’s. Really appreciate everyone’s insight and experience.
The Zwift racing is basically our season, with 8 races in the season.
I was targeting race 6 as my main goal on the champs-élysées (We’ve all got a dream ).
I have been taking far more interest in the process of planning and periodisation, to learn why different sessions are needed at specific times.
So it’s great that I’ve witnessed my sustainable power build up through the plan which has been super positive experience.
But with only a few weeks to go I agree that maybe to get the best bang for my buck short explosive intervals would possibly be a good addition now.
These three weeks are really two weeks or 2 1/2 at best, as you will need to taper to be fresh for the event. Don’t kill yourself with intervals the week of the race, it will do more harm than good.
Thank you @jordivinas
When doing the 30/30s etc do I just go flat out or do I need to go at a certain % of ftp?
Hard, but not all out. You need to get through the planned workout. If you stick to a prescribed TR workout, my favourites are Ansel Adams +4 and San Joaquin +7, the latter was horrific last time I did it!
I will take a look at those TR workouts, even San Joaquin +7!