Starting 18 weeks of Sweet Spot, only 16 weeks to A race

I applied the sweet spot training plan to the calendar and it runs right up to my A race event. I figured it would, but I wanted to complete the full strength plan. Should I just cut off the back end to allow enough time for peak training?

Based on the way I applied plans and how I performed at Marathon Nationals last year, I think I’d be more suited to do more intensity as found in the XC training plan only 2-3 weeks before Marathon Nationals. Does that sound like an okay plan?

Jake looked at my file from Nationals and gave me some tips on what to try this year, I just need a little guidance on how get the plans to mesh in the time I have left.

With only 16 weeks to your A race I would probably not recommend the weight training this close to it. It is important to get some good base training in which you need to be doing now and then like you said get your interval training in. At least 4 weeks of intervals which only leaves 12 weeks of base. The best course of action maybe 10 weeks of base (sweet spot training) and then a 6 week interval plan.

I can help set that up for you if you’d like.

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Sorry for the confusion, I just finished the weight training, so I am starting the base training now and I actually have 18 weeks until Marathon Nationals.

Last year I felt I lost a little bit of something when I did the Marathon MTB Plan following the Sweet Spot Plan. It may have been fitness, endurance and/or sharpness in the anaerobic range, I’m not sure. Therefore, I might lean towards 4 weeks of XC interval like efforts mixed into distance, because Palo Duro doesn’t have much as far as long climbs or sustained efforts.

I just listened to the “Build a Big Base with Sweet Spot Training” podcast so now I wonder if I should be taking the 4-6 weeks off the end of the plan or keeping the harder weeks by taking it off the beginning of the plan.

Jake, I trust your judgement, take a look at my calendar and move stuff around or let me know what you recommend.

So right now you should just focus on the 18 week of sweet spot plan like you have in.

What we can do is also rearrange a few workouts based on the events you will be doing leading in. Most likely won’t and shouldn’t do 3 hour rides the day before a race. How long and what type of events are these early season races? I know Valley of the Sun.

The other thing we should do is put in TSS for these events. The best thing would be to build your CTL all the way up till 3 - 4 weeks before your event. This is when you want to have your peak CTL. Leading into this point and following is when you do want the intensity, specific to your event and efforts you will be making in your goal race. More anaerobic work maybe important so that is what we should make sure is in the plan. Less riding so you can recover better between these workouts. These should also make you sharp!

So lets take this by 6 weeks block in the coaching subscription. Let me know about El Paso Puzzler. We can adjust around and after that. And then we can also adjust before, around and after Vallley of the Sun.

I see a regeneration week after Vally of the Sun which is good, unless this trip to New Orleans include not riding? That is something also we can adjust your training plan around.

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That all sounds good. I can readjust the training plan around races well enough, but we may need to look at my vacation depending on if my wife will let me bring a bike or not. :wink: I’ll let you know if I need help there. A few of the races I have on my calendar are still tentative, including Valley of the Sun.

Otherwise I’ll just touch base in 6 weeks to see if there’s anything I need help with.

One more question: when you reviewed my season leading up to Nationals last year, you mentioned possibly bumping up the TSS to drive the CTL a little higher for this year. Do you have any specific tips for me to apply this? So far I’ve just bumped up the duration of zone 2 and weekend rides and added one more interval if it’s a sweet spot or tempo interval ride during the week. Should I aim to add a certain amount of weekly TSS, except recovery weeks?

The best way to bump the CTL a bit is by adding zone 2 and maybe making your weekend rides a bit harder / longer. The easy way to see how your CTL will react is by plugging in your planned TSS for all rides (which are for the Training Plans) and races.

Then you go into the Dashboard of TrainingPeaks and look at the performance manager chart. You can make the setting for the last 180 days and next 90. So you can see where your planned CTL will be based on the workouts you have in. So you should hit your peak 3 - 4 weeks out from Nationals. So you can plan to see how much TSS you need to add to hit your mark. Does that make sense?

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That makes sense. I’ve played around with the ATP and understand the PMC, so I should be able to figure out how to bump those numbers up a bit. I’ll work at making the weekend rides a little longer and a little harder.

Thanks for all of the advice Jake.

Looks like USAC moved Marathon Nats to September, so now I have too much time to my next A event (MTB Nationals). I have plenty of other races scheduled before then so I’ll focus on training for those, maybe make one of those an A event and start planning backwards from Nats now.