Which training plan if you have more than one race focus?

HI all,

I expect this question has been asked before but I can’t find an answer that covers it…

I race both Crits and Road Races but am not sure which are the best Build and Speciality plans to follow. I am a relatively heavy rider at 83kg and having had a few weeks off, an FTP of 300 watts. I hit a max 5 sec power this season of 1400 watts so I am naturally more suited to Crits but during the season I found that whilst I could nearly always make a break in road races, staying with it or being a useful participant was always a struggle.

Am I better off doing a plan that focuses entirely road races considering where my weaknesses lie or should I try and do a bit of both e.g. Sustained Power Build followed by Criterium?

Thanks in advance. I love the podcast, forum and training plans (basically all things TR).

I’d definitely suggest General Power Build instead of Sustained though - it matches closer with both road races and crits than sustained does.

For Specialization it really depends on your preferences.

The classic advice is train your weaknesses and race your strengths. I’m not sure I fully agree with that as I think it depends more on what you want to do well at. So…think about what results are most important to you and pick the specialization that fits with that.

As an example - I race crits, road races, and time trials. I usually do General Build and Rolling Road Race. This is because my best shot at results is almost always going to be stage races and road races. I can survive in a crit but don’t have the risk tolerance to really mix it up in a technical sprint - so my only hope there is a breakaway and having the 2-5 minute power necessary to initiate a break and then make it stick over the following 20-40 minutes is closer to the needs of road race breakaways

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Without sounding like a total a-hole, all this says is you have a high 5-sec power, not necessarily “naturally more suited” to one particular discipline of racing more than another. You’ve got the jump to make the break in either crit or RR but you still have to produce high power to stay away.

Crits (and any pack races) are more often than not how much power can you conserve rather than how much power you can produce. Of course if all crits come down to a sprint then you’ll have that tool to use…if you’ve positioned yourself correctly AND conserved that power to use at the correct time.

I’m no expert in training plans but I think Sustained Power geared more toward TTs than anything.

Thanks for the rapid response guys. I meant General Build. I think Sustained was just in my head at the time so miss typed, but good to know that it’s the right way to go.

Captain_Doughnutman - Yup i completely agree. I don’t think you’re being an A-Hole! What i should have said is that I am ok at repeated short sharp efforts <15 secs (within my current category… all things are relative!)

Re-reading your OP, I’d give the Rolling RR plan a go. It’s got enough in it that your 5-sec jump isn’t going to diminish but should increase your higher length powers. Good luck!

Solid advice that aligns with my typical advice regarding prioritization. It’s tough (impossible?) to be good at everything, so get clear on your strengths and how they relate to your intended race outcomes. Then, train accordingly.

Sounds like you already have a good punch, so perhaps train your sustained power in order to be a more productive member of a break, or simply to hang in there, then unleash that sprint against a small group of equally fatigued riders instead of a bigger field containing relatively fresh opportunists who’ve managed to hide 'til the line.

Thanks for confirming Chad.
Love the work you guys do. I have learnt a lot listening to your podcast on my commute and I’m now looking forward to a productive winter period!