Building a Flexible Training Plan

This is my third season with Sufferfest now SYSTM. The first year I experimented with the various workouts and then last winter/spring I completed the intermediate all-purpose road plan with yoga and strength. I really enjoyed that experience, particularly the combination of riding, strength, and yoga. This winter/spring, I’m looking to continue with structured training but build a little more flexibility into my plan, for job/career and family reasons, and because I might try and get back to playing soccer once a week (fingers crossed). My weakens is sustained (sprinter), though we’ll see what FF has to say next week (hoping I might have improved my weakness to now be an attacker). I was thinking of two possible approaches:

  1. TT 12-week plan (intermediate, with strength and yoga) … the problem here is that there is a week in that span when our kids are off school and it might be hard to train.

  2. Cobble together a plan out of the building blocks … maybe Tempo, then MAP, and then FTP? Not really sure about the order there, but I remember reading that FTP can sometimes be MAP limited and also that the most specific to weakness should be last … I would add yoga and try to add a custom strength plan under this scenario.

Anyone had any experience with these? Or with this particular conundrum?

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@cocoroco I am currently doing the MAP building block - it was definitely my weakest area during my most recent Full Frontal test.

In the past I have usually stayed with the in-season and pre-season training plans. I decided to try the building blocks given that they are shorter and I can very the 2:1 / 3:1 for each block if I chose to do so. I added strength separately and noticed that it doesn’t overlap well with the MAP plan design - basically off by a day - so I will probably delete and restart for a day later. Also strength goes for 12 weeks whereas the MAP plan goes for either 3 or 4 weeks depending on your selection.

Here is a guide to using the building block plans that I found helpful.

How to Use the Building Block Plans

I’d be tempted to do the TT plan and not stress too much about the week when the kids are off and just do what you can. How close is that week to a schedule rest week? Is it possible to alter your start date for the plan to get that week and a rest week to coincide?

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MAP is always a good one to work on as increasing that aerobic ceiling will allow you to improve the other aerobic metrics below that such as LT1, FTP or CP.
As for flexibility we do still offer customised training plans to anyone who enquires. They’re not on the website anymore but you can also schedule a Chat with Coach if you want some more info or suggestions for what training plans to select

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Thanks for the input! My main concern with that period is that it’s entirely possible we get out of town for the week. In which case I might not be able to ride at all … so maybe I’d just start where I left off when we got back?

Thanks @Coach.Andy.T ! Does the order I am thinking of there make any sense given my goals (working on sustained weakness)? And do you think that would be better/worse than just sticking with the TT plan?

I actually would be interested in chatting with a coach but just haven’t pulled the trigger. What is scheduling like for that? It’s a little strange to fork over your money without knowing whether you’ll be able to chat in the next few days or it the wait will be longer!

I think the tempo, MAP, FTP blocks is a good order to go with and may be better to go with than the full TT plan if you know there are weeks where it will be difficult to stick to that plan. However, if one of the rest weeks falls on the week where you’ll find it hard to train, that would be a decent compromise as key sessions wouldn’t be missed. Also the event specific nature of the TT plan if you’re targeting TT events rather than just sustained power as a goal.

As for the chat with a coach, you can book when the call is via a link that will be sent. Most of our coaches have regular availability. For example, I can have calls booked in for 8-10am and 7-9pm on all weekdays (GMT). Normally people are able to book the call in for within a week of booking, often sooner

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