Author Topic: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'  (Read 654 times)

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« on: August 15, 2019, 11:20:43 am »
I'm on the market for a training plan - I've really struggled to source plans from British Cycling (https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/knowledge/training-plans), as everything seems geared around short form racing. I don't really want to start paying for a plan if a good resource is available elsewhere, especially as British Rowing used to make very good ones available.

Diet I can take care of.

My situation is that I currently place mid pack in Cat 4 crit races and cyclocross, I'm about 10-15 kg overweight, and have until next May to get down to 80-85 kg, get fast enough to meaningfully participate in Race Around the Netherlands next May. In the meantime I will also be doing RRTY, and some cyclocross, though the cyclocross is mostly just for fun. I have a turbo trainer I can use for intervals, and I have a heartrate monitor I can use for UT2. A power meter is not within my budget at this point.

I am a bit frustrated by how difficult it seems to find a decent training plan online. All the usual resources tell me to go and pay for a coach, telling me obvious stuff like 'combine long sessions with intervals' without pointing to any actual schemes. Any pointers would be appreciated.
YACF touring/audax bargain basement:
https://bit.ly/2Xg8pRD


Re: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2019, 11:35:41 am »
I've been watching some videos on You Tube by Dylan Johnson. If you can get past the spotty-kid look, he seems to know a thing or two about structured training, and isn't afraid to share some training block specifics. Most of his racing looks to be off-road endurance.

A lot of the actual plans that work are hidden behind paywalls for good reason - they're people's intellectual property.

I'm working on the assumption that I'll have to write my own plans, based on Joe Friel's book and the fact that plans are mostly (always?) based around a 7 day week, and that doesn't really work for me as I'm pushing 60 and need more in the way of recovery. There are some ready-made plans on TrainingPeaks for endurance, but they can be quite spendy, and I think taking the principles offered by the likes of Joe Friel, and Dylan Johnson and rolling my own might well be the way to go.

ETA: I got put onto Dylan Johnson when I watched his video where he rips apart the plans/workouts on Zwift.

quixoticgeek

  • Mostly Harmless
Re: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2019, 11:46:51 am »

As well as the fitness, don't forget to train the soft skills. These include efficient bivvying, and finding food on the route (Hint: RatN has a 200km leg with buggerall food available).

I'd also suggest training your stomach is important.

The climbing on RatN is all at the end, yes there's only 5000m of climb in 1900km, but about 4000m of it is in a single 90km stretch. Them limburg hills are brutal, one of them is 22%. Get some practice on the steepest hills you can find. They are short, sharp, and punchy, But they surprise a lot of people.

Finally for RatN, expect headwinds, so train for them, get comfortable slogging into a headwind for a couple of hours, it'll come as less of a shock when you turn left at the google datacentre that way.

As for how to train for ultraendurance, if you come up with an answer, let me know. I want to try the TCR again next year, I've got 49 weeks to lose 20kg, and get fit...

J
--
Beer, bikes, and backpacking
http://b.42q.eu/

Re: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2019, 12:13:06 pm »
I'm not convinced that I will change much for next year.   For the last 5 years I have mixed TTs and audax with some level of success.

When I started with a coach 3 years ago he introduced a lot more threshold/high intensity work, made me work harder on my commutes, but left the long weekend rides largely unchanged.   During the Winter I was doing structured work on the turbo 3 days a week, commuting, and doing one long ride - 5-6hrs every weekend.   I believe that the turbo work made the biggest difference as my cruising/audax pace is significantly faster.

I'm still racing to the end of Sep, but will then break from the structured work until, probably, January when I will have 4 months before RAtN.   Last year I put on half a stone on my break but that did include 10 days in Italy without a bike.

Zed43

  • prefers UK hills over Dutch mountains
Re: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« Reply #4 on: August 15, 2019, 09:20:17 pm »
I like TrainerRoad and its training plans. But they recently increased their pricing to $20 / month which would make me look for other options if I was starting out.

mattc

  • n.b. have grown beard since photo taken
    • Didcot Audaxes
Re: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« Reply #5 on: August 15, 2019, 09:51:00 pm »
I'm on the market for a training plan - I've really struggled to source plans from British Cycling (https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/knowledge/training-plans), as everything seems geared around short form racing. I don't really want to start paying for a plan if a good resource is available elsewhere, especially as British Rowing used to make very good ones available.
Do the British Rowing plans cover ultra events?!?       [nothing is impossible ... but I reckon rowers are mostly focused on much shorter events than cyclists. Generally.]

I don't have a pure answer to your question, but there is a view that in physiological terms,  training for long-ish rides is pretty much the right training for 600mile+ rides.
Idai - of Elliptigo and fasted riding fame - wrote about this somewhere, I think.

You want legs that are well equipped for 6-8 hilly hours. Then you need to practice/test the logistical stuff that becomes more important on the multi-day stuff - fuelling, pacing, drink, equipment etc etc ...
Has never ridden RAAM
---------
No.11  Because of the great host of those who dislike the least appearance of "swank " when they travel the roads and lanes. - From Kuklos' 39 Articles

simonp

  • Omnomnomnipotent.
Re: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« Reply #6 on: August 15, 2019, 11:42:08 pm »
I like TrainerRoad and its training plans. But they recently increased their pricing to $20 / month which would make me look for other options if I was starting out.

If you stick with them then the price you pay is supposed to stay. I am paying $99 per year. Have to say I think that’s incredible value (even with the pound tanking). I also think it’s a mistake if it results in inflating prices for new users to fund development.

Zed43

  • prefers UK hills over Dutch mountains
Re: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« Reply #7 on: August 16, 2019, 05:50:38 am »
Yes, good strategy to keep your loyal customers. I'm also still paying the $99 / year.

bludger

  • Randonneur and bargain hunter
Re: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« Reply #8 on: August 16, 2019, 01:31:37 pm »
I'm on the market for a training plan - I've really struggled to source plans from British Cycling (https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/knowledge/training-plans), as everything seems geared around short form racing. I don't really want to start paying for a plan if a good resource is available elsewhere, especially as British Rowing used to make very good ones available.
Do the British Rowing plans cover ultra events?!?       [nothing is impossible ... but I reckon rowers are mostly focused on much shorter events than cyclists. Generally.]

Unfortunately it seems it's no longer available, but Concept 2 and British Rowing released these plans for their 'great row' event a few years ago. The marathon one was very good.

https://www.docdroid.net/0cjvye5/the-great-row-training-plan.pdf

Recommended. If you can stomach long ergs that is!

Cheers for the suggestions everyone.
YACF touring/audax bargain basement:
https://bit.ly/2Xg8pRD


CrazyEnglishTriathlete

  • Miles eaten don't satisfy hunger
  • 3x Brimstone ancien 3x Pendle/Tan Hill DNF
    • CET Ride Reports and Blogs
Re: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2019, 02:28:41 pm »
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Long-Distance-Cyclists-Handbook/dp/0713668326

Simon Doughty's book was my resource as a developing Audax rider. 

There are two things I added to this:

1) a structured weight training program - through my local gym, to build up leg, back and particularly leg-back connective strength so that I was (and am still able) to keep a stable power transmission

2) time trials (50 and 100 miles) to have the mental discipline to keep going on relatively boring terrain at a relatively high speed.

Once I've got used to riding 200km, the extra distance hasn't been about leg strength, watts, but about two things - the head (keeping going mentally) and the stomach (finding a feeding strategy that works).  Simon's book helps a lot with that, but the best way is to find what works out personally.  I've found pretty much everything that's been written about eating on long distance rides to be laughable, as after 8 - 12 hours most people have to learn what works, so putting in a couple of 300k or 400k events in the rest of this year would help, if you haven't already worked out what food works.

Eddington Numbers 125 (imperial), 168 (metric) 518 (furlongs)  111 (nautical miles)

Re: Training plans for 'ultra endurance'
« Reply #10 on: August 30, 2019, 06:53:10 pm »
The reason coaches get a lot of business from mere mortals is precisely a result of what you’ve found. Ie, it’s quite difficult to find structured plans for free on the internet.
I have used a coach on and off for the last few years and it is without doubt the best way to get fitter if you’re time crunched. It is generally accepted that most people’s hard rides aren’t hard enough and easy rides not easy enough. I generally did 3-4 one hour turbo sessions a week and then a steady 3 hour ride at weekends. The hard sessions were generally something like: 10 minute warm up, interval sets for 20 minutes (3 or 5 minute efforts with 1-2 minutes in between), rest for a bit, another 20 minutes of intervals and then a cool down. All sessions like this done on a turbo for clinical efficiency. Not fun, but over winter it works well for me. Also has the bonus that my wife knows I am unlikely to be knocked off my bike if it’s stationary in the garage....
Having a coach also helps with motivation. I have the will power of a crack addict and knowing that someone will be looking my numbers over the next day helps make sure I wander to the garage in the snow to get my session in.



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