What plan to prep for a 5-day climbing camp in mid-February?

I’m super excited for the five-day training/climbing camp I booked for mid-February and am thinking about how best to get myself as ready as possible for the 300mi and 35,000ft of climbing in store for me?

I’ve ridden 8-12hrs/wk, 5-6,000mi/yr for the past 4-5 years, and am in week five of SSB MV right now, headed into a rest week after this weekend.

Two things are concerning me a bit: (1) I’ve never done a 300mi week and (2) having a bit of a buggy knee for the last month or so.

For (2), I’m starting the SoCalBikePT program to address some activation and imbalance issues that are probably behind it, plus working on my shoe/cleat setup.

For (1), should I switch over to Trad Base HV, drop the intensity and focus on getting more time in the saddle each week? I’m in the PNW so between short days and the rain, getting in many long outdoor rides between now and then will be hit or miss at best.


I’ve recently moved to a lumpy area and have done some Alpine climbs too, and I’m gradually getting better at it. So my advice would be: 1. change to a climbing cassette, especially if you have knee problems. I have 11-34 (+ a semi-compact) on my relatively heavy bike and I never regretted it. You might be ok with a 32 or 30 as well. The big advantage is that you can keep your cadence up which lessens your fatigue, and it will put less strain on your knees. I find that if I can stick to >80 rpm on 6-8% then I’m not too slow and I can keep going. 2. Related to this, practice some low cadence riding at high power. Basically, once you get to >10 or >15% your cadence will drop, and for me fatigue comes very quickly at that point. I still need to work on my strength at lower cadenced and I’d be interested to hear what others here have to say. 3. See if you can lose a few kg of weight before you go.


If you’re doing 8-12hrs/we you’ll be fine, no need to push to HV. I’d move to sustained pwr build next and make sure you put in a bit of taper or rest wk just before your camp.
I normally do a 10 day Alps climbing camp in the summer and this approach has seen me well for many years. In the taper / rest wk, keep the intensity up but drop the volume. Stick to these basics and don’t over think it - its training.

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I recently set up my plan with AT and it seems to be helping w my progession. I would be curious how AT changes your plan if you stuck a 5 day stage race as climbing road race as an a event. If it adapts, just get on that program…

Good luck!

Thanks for the recommendation - I put in a climbing road race / stage race, popped it in polarized, and I like what it put out - more hours and TSS, but seems approachable… I’ll report back on how it goes.

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All good stuff. Climbing is no problem - all of my rides at home are 1,000ft/10mi, with a lot of double-digit ramps in there… The climbs on the trip seem to mostly be single digits and I plan to bring a 34/34 low gear. I’m actually working on improving my out-of-the-saddle climbing comfort - I tend to only get up when giving it 110% instead of using it as a way to stretch and hit different muscles for a minute, so I’m working on that. And yeah, doing what I can to drop 5-kg or so between now and then if I can.