I started at Mallorca 312 two times before but always missed the first cut off, so had to do the shorter route 165km. I missed the cut off by about 20 - 30 Minutes.
I’m 38, 203cm tall, 105kg and a ftp of around 250 watts. I haven’t done any structured training since 05/2022.
In 2024 is my next (last) attempt of finally being able to complete the 312. But how do I train for that? And I know the obvious: I have to loose some weight and go down to at least 95kg.
I have a 100km sportive 2.7. so I thin I will first do the 100km race plan. But after that the general fitness plan? Mountain Grand Fondo because the first part is all mountains where I have always been strugling? Or the 200miles gravel grinder to prepare for the length of the race? But does the 200 miles gravel grinder will prepare me enough for the mountains to get to the first cut off in time?
Two more questions:
There is a 1-3 hour endurance ride every week in the 100km sportive plan. That’s for zone 2 training I suppose? That means I should not do a club ride instead because that’s much higher intensity right?
I would like to do running once or twice per week. How do I bet incorporate that into a plan. Do the running instead of a seesion of the plan or do the running in additon? Which days are best for that? The ones before rest days?
That’s still on my bucket list. Envious you’ve had the chance to do it three times…
I’d focus on the mountains - that’s clearly the area you need to improve on to make the initial cut, and from my own experience, it’ll result in you increasing your MAP & FTP, allowing you cover the longer distance quicker by having a faster average speed. For me, the key is to be able to do the climbs at a reasonable pace without killing yourself, so you can recover quickly enough to be able to do the next climb, and the next one. And then have a decent base strength left over that allows you to take advantage of the flats when you get them.
I think you’re right that your weight is the key thing: When I first started taking cycling vaguely seriously, I was in the upper 80s, and getting down to 80 made such a big difference to my ability to go up hills that I’ve never gone above 85 since.
On zone 2 - I’ve never really gone in for this much. I’ve tended to do the Sufferfest training, and then go for a long ride (3-4 hours) on the weekend where I find as many hills as I can to go up as fast as I can. After reading the thread on this forum earlier this year, I’ve tried to do more Z2 stuff (especially over winter), but I struggle mentally with taking it ‘easy’. Must try harder…
On running - I used to run a bit here & there (Park run, a few 10ks, the odd half marathon), but got knee troubles often enough that I don’t do it anymore. I used to just add it in on top of whatever cycling I was doing, but there’s probably a lesson in there somewhere. I’d imagine could swap out one workout for a run or two, but it would depend on what sort of running you’re doing as to which workout you replace.
@Sebastian_V - I would not worry too much about your weight. Focus on fueling with whole foods to support your training efforts. Yes, definitely cut out processed foods out of your regular diet. But endurance athletes need to fuel properly to support their training efforts.
The thing that stands out to me is you FTP. I would be curious to know what your 4DP metrics are and what rider type you are.
I think adding a strength training plan would be beneficial. You are a big guy, let’s use that to your advantage increase your strength.
I would opt for 200 mile gravel grinder plan so that you get adequate volume.
For riding with the club, I think that getting the social benefit is a great thing! If all your friends are in the A group and you have to push it to hang with the group then just sub out one of your MAP-FTP workouts mid week low intensity endurance ride.
For the running you can swap out your active recovery rides and replace those for runs.
Would definitely like to see your 4DP numbers. And if you want you can always book a call we could chat about supplementing your training with strength training.
My last 4DP test numbers were NM 1059 watts, AC 426 watts, MAP 311 watts and FTP 242 watts.
Means I’m a sprinter and I think that’s pretty accurate. I’m pretty ok in everything very short but have my difficulties with everything that is a little bit longer. Sustained is my weakness according to 4DP
I had a thought after @WahooCoach_Corey’s reply about your weight. 105 seems like a huge number to me, but I’d not appreciated the impact that an extra 14cm of height has. It translates to about 86kg for me - so yeah, not as much of a factor as I’d thought without working it out.
For reference, I’m NM 1022, AC 491, MAP 393 and FTP 322. Strength is sustained. Love them hills, provided I can spin up them without going into the red… anything above 15% gradient starts to hurt…
That are some pretty impressive numbers. And roughly what I need to get to.
I used best bike split and I think it’s pretty accurate because in the first parts there is a short flat leading into the hills but after that everything is going up the mountain. So more or less a time trail.
With 95 kilos and 320 watts I would need 4h 5 minutes to the first cut off. Add 15-20 minutes to get across the start line and 5 minutes for the first stop then that would mean I get to the first cut off at exactly 4h 30minutes and that is the cut off time.
Using an IF of 65. I have never used IF before, so I don’t know if that is too high for such a long race or too low. I can certainly go harder for the first climbs to manage the cut off easier but not sure if that would be sustainable in the longrun.
That’s quite a big jump in fitness from 242 to 320 watts. Haven’t done much sport in a while, so bigger gains might be possible. But that seems to be huge jump. Even having 12 month for it.
Did the half monty because I wasn’t sure if I paced everything correctly. And my FTP and MAP are totally different. I lost the chain of my bike maybe a minute or 2 in the constrained effort part. Not sure if that messed up the results. Had to pause for maybe 15 Seconds. But if I’m right that could only mess up the ftp and I’m not sure if it does because that has been before I reached my heartrate zone.
According to that test my MAP would be 346 watts and my ftp 285 watts.
What should I do now? Do another test in a couple of days? 4dp or half monty (without loosing the chain of the bike then…) Or use the 4dp values or the half monty values?
Start an hour before the official start time, you still get your time and it takes some pressure off you to make the 1st cut off. Loads of people do this. Gravel grinder 200km and build the z2 base in the November and December. Loads of core work.
Fuelling is really important, jumping in and going along with groups and no hanging around food stops any longer than necessary.
Can you please tell me a little bit more about how that works with starting early? Don’t you have to pass the starting gate in order to get a proper time?
I think my main goal is to get fit enough to be able to pass the first cutoff with a regular start. But if I don’t manage to get as fit as I need to be it would be a great to have a plan B in order to make it to the first cutoff in time.
Coming from Alcudia to the start you have to turn right from the main street and queu. I think that is the point where you say just turn and start the race and still get a time?
As a previous participant, couple of questions for you about M312, if you have some time to answer?
In November & December, how much Z2 would you recommend building up to? About 75% of the total distance perhaps?
Setting off an hour before the official start time sounds like a good plan.
If I do this, presumably my official time starts from when the official clock starts?
Any issues doing this with the organisers/police/marshals etc?
Did you find the GG plan got you through ok? Is there a need to add time to the scheduled Z2 workouts?
@Sebastian_V - Hi, I was also going to sign up for is ride in 2024. Could I what company you used? I see a few different offers from destination sports, sunvelo and a few others. I will also look for training programs as well as training will be new for me.
First, if you can, you should retake HM. You need to finish in one go. Second, you need to work on sustained efforts. Lots of Zone 2 work. I mean hours of it. Riding with the Group is the key. Learn how to be in and a part of the pack. You’ll learn a lot. Also, learn how to properly ride up and down climbs as part of the group. Sprinting is great for races that use them, but a 200 mile ride needs different skills
Just jumping on this thread to see how you are getting on with your training @Sebastian_V
I have signed up for the 312 in 2024 and just started the gravel grinder training plan. Am 90kg with an FTP of 285W (was 300W a month of two ago but took a hit due to illness).
Planning on trying to get plenty of long Z2 rides in the next few months … tricky at the moment as I live in Scotland and it is -5C out there today. Will need to figure out how to acclimatise for the heat in April as I heard it was baking last year for the 312.
Hope all is good and would be awesome to hear your progress!
I’ll add my experience with attempting the 300km route from Around the Bay (cycling event in Australia, mainly flat with a few hills in the middle).
First things first fueling during the ride itself, fueling during the ride is absolutely key and I found that having custom alerts setup to drink regulary, eat regularly and have a gel regularly is so important. I did this on my first attempt and was feeling really good at the 200km mark. But I failed by not having enough food with me on the ride and bonked hard shortly after 200km. On my second attemp my custom alerts didn’t work as expected and having to remember really stuffed things up and ended up bonking hard at 150km. Getting your fueling strategy is so important for rides of this length.
As you already know time on the bike is key and you’ll probaby want to start your training at least 6 months out from the event aiming for around 10 hours a week (this is advice provided to me from these forums and found it helped). If you can do a bit more that would be great (but i probably wouldn’t exceed much beyond 15 hours). As others have mentioned strength work should be incorporated and I would also look at incorporating mobility exercises as well.
Even at 105kg, at this stage I wouldn’t worry too much about your weight. The best thing you can do is just starting eating a bit better as well as controlling how much you do eat as well. This will provide the biggest weight loss benefit. Especially when you really get stuck into your training.
One question though, why would 2024 be your last chance to do this ride? will you be moving further away? Even into your 40’s you’ll still be able to complete the distance. While I was on my ride I was meeting and talking to people who were pushing late 50’s early 60’s who were doing the 300km route for Around the Bay.