Recommended plans - 1800km event

Hi All,

I’ve recently finished the 2 week trial plan and enjoyed the workouts and would like to take out an annual subscription but don’t really see any training plans that would suit my particular requirements.

My goal race for the year is an 1 800km/30 000m ascent unsupported bikepacking event in August with my target being to finish within 11/12 days. Obviously I need to spend plenty time in the saddle with long 8/10/12 hour days in preparation thereof.

I pretty much have 32 weeks till the event and have thought about breaking the training down into 1 x 8 week followed by 2 x 12 week programmes.

The 200 Mile Gravel Grinder and the Mountainous/Hilly Grand Fondo are 2 plans that spring to mind but should those be preceded by a 6/10 week Fitness Kickstarter?

Thoughts and recommendations would be appreciated.

Hi Thug, and welcome to the forum.

I am aiming for a 324km ride in June and using Sufferfest for reverse base training. Where I used to do big base miles in the winter the switch to specific training rides in the spring for racing, I am currently working on specific training needs and will increase my mileage as the spring comes.

For this I am using the fitness kickstarter and finding it great fun and seeing decent percentage gains in power numbers. Personally, I wouldn’t want to be on a static trainer for more than two hours, so longer rides will be outdoors, but supplemented with indoors rides focusing on weaknesses.

So, yes, I would do something like the fitness kickstarter, then choose another plan that complements longer outdoor rides once this has been completed. Another benefit of the Kickstarter is the Half Monty and FF tests to help guide power targets.

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Welcome @Thug, your plan seems pretty solid to me (full-disclosure: enthusiast, rank amateur, not a coach). You’re right that the stock plans, though varied, are not really designed for multi-day events like yours. The way you plan to stitch them together really does make sense and you can’t go wrong with the Fitness Kickstarter though if you’ve already got a decent level of fitness you could probably jump right in with one of the Building Block plans that come in 3 or 4 week blocks.

I assume you’ve already submitted yourself to the Full-Frontal 4DP test. That really ought to be your starting point if you haven’t because it will set the metrics for all your future training. There is a FF prep plan that is a standalone or you could do the one that includes the Half-Monty (a SUF designed ramp test that includes a constrained effort component to provide you with 3 important metrics. HM is done, as a pre-test during the FF prep and will give you a solid sense of your metrics and of the pacing that is critical to a good result in FF).

That said, because your goal event is truly EPIC, if you aren’t comfortable building/designing your own plan, you might want to consider purchasing a Customized Plan. I’ve never used one myself, but I’ve been a Sufferlandrian for a pretty long time, and I’ve heard nothing but good things from people that have used them. Again, welcome to Sufferlandria. You can never leave :slight_smile:

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Thanks for the welcome @Glen.Coutts and @Supereggtooth

Although I’ve just had a 10 day break off the bike, I’ve had a solid past 4/5 months after acquiring the IDT and subscribing to Rouvy.

I haven’t done the 4DP yet but have done the HM during the 14 day trial.

Your suggestion of a customized plan does make sense due to the nature of the event.

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FWIW, I’d also highly recommend the Mental Toughness Program. I’ve used it to great effect, several times, in getting crystal clear on event goals (as well as just deciding to pursue certain events at all) and planning toward them.

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I was surprised at the cost of the custom plans. For such a unique event like yours, it would be money well spent as they are very cheap for what it sounds like you will get. I’m still well within the confines of what the existing plans offer when it comes to getting back to a good fitness place, but when I am fit enough to ride outdoors and “ride till I’m dog tired and lost then find my way home again” I’ll probably get back into multi day events as they are a lot of fun. Although I’ve never done one as long as yours, the MTP that Glen recommended will definitely help. If you’ve ever “bonked” on a long ride, imagine trying to get out of that feeling 10 days in a row. Good luck, hope you can post some photos when you get it done!