Training advice for 2 minute KOM event

Thank you for the detailed responses to my suggestions. It helps narrow our focus on training strategies for you to win the KOM this year.

So the climb, instead of being 10% for 2 minutes is 5% for half and 15% for half. Do you have a distance or better, a gpx profile, of the climb? It would seem that to match your riding style, the first 5% section would be higher cadence in the saddle @ MAP and the second section would be the lower cadence, higher torque and probably still in the saddle due to traction. Think of G.O.A.T in terms of cadence and torque. It is not necessarily NM power (like a 10 second sprint in Cash Register using the ATP-CK energy system) but the neuromuscular coordination at a low cadence and developing power through the pedal stroke.

When you do low cadence, high torque climbing, do you drop your heels in order to engage the glutes and hamstrings? Thanks to a comment that Sir Neal Henderson made in one of his workouts, I realized that I can do that and get more power climbing.

With those ideas in mind, some of the Big Gear MAP workouts in SYSTM would probably be good for the ‘hard workout’ during the week. In a 3 week train/1 week recover cycle doing one of those each of the first two week, then an AC workout on the third week would probably fit well.

The training volume does seem low and easy with the 80/20 split. I did the time crunched cyclist and triathlete plans as well as the SUF and SYSTM training plans. I found that due to fatigue from the higher intensity rides during the week, I was skipping the lower intensity ones, which hurt my FTP and MAP. Now, focusing on several Zone 2 rides and one QUALITY Zone 4/5 ride, my FTP and MAP are both improving rapidly. Outdoor riding on the weekends may see a longer Saturday ride that has some higher power areas (because of hills and headwinds) but I don’t purposely put intervals into that training. My current volume is still only 8-10 hours a week. It was a surprise to me to see this change after doing a lot of higher intensity intervals. But the science (Zone 2 creates more mitochondria making the muscle more efficient) works across the spectrum of riders from enthusiasts to pros.

Again, you have some time to be able to see if one or two higher intensity sessions per week is giving you the power gain you are looking to achieve. It is highly individualized.

Nutrition on the bike, 400kcal (100g of carbohydrates an hour) is realistic although I would slowly progress from the current 200kcal (50g) to see what works for you.

At 8-9% body fat and 70kg you are probably close to optimal. Going to 68kg (dropping 3% of your body weight) may not be as beneficial since it will cut into the body’s energy stores and also start affecting other metabolic processes. Again, you can figure out what feels good and doesn’t affect performance.

It may be that on the recovery days, if you feel hungry, you need to increase your caloric intake a little (250 kcal), especially if you feel a ‘brain fog’ or fatigued. On the hard ride days when you can’t meet the caloric intake off the bike, realize it and at least focus on macros (protein and complex carbohydrates). That is one reason I like to have a recovery day prior to a hard workout (to fuel up) and a Zone 2 after (to help re-fuel without using a lot of energy).

I know you asked about training plans… would the gravel 100 mile plan work as a foundation? Longer miles on the weekend, and in general, 3 workouts during the week?


Here is the Strava segment used for selecting the winner each year: TBT Race - KOM | Strava Ride Segment in Județul Brașov, Romania

I… don’t know. Should I keep my heels dropped throught the whole motion or go from a dropped heel to an extended toes position as I push on the pedals? I wasn’t aware of this, will research some more.

Indeed, I will experiment with this ratio and see how my body responds.

That may be true. I will not do a hard effort at losing weight, I’ll just try to cut the sweets (fingers crossed). That should account for 1000-2000 kcal a week.

Good idea, thanks.

I would really like some longer rides, but unless there’s a holiday, I simply don’t have the time. Will check out the gravel plan. I was thinking about using the criterium plan as a foundation, but I just end up replacing most of the rides anyway, in line with the plan described in my previous post and with whatever Suff videos match my training focus for the day.

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Also, if anybody is interested in visiting Transylvania (Romania), checking out medieval villages, fortified churches and citadels, while also taking part in a cool MTB event, you should check this out. There’s a lot of easy singletrail, you get to pass through several medieval churches, as well as through a barn-turned-restaurant (photo below). Also, the Fagaras mountains are nearby, with some epic and remote all-mountain trails (along with bears and European bison).