Training plans versus Building blocks

I recently completed an MTB marathon training block, finishing with an FF assessment. The FF results improved from the mid-way half monty assessment, although with varied success as FTP improved by 3% and MAP by 11%. My rider type also changed from Pursuiter (from FF done after my first season starter training block which is some months ago, incidentally my NM and AC both improved by 15%) to Sprinter, again identifying sustained efforts as a weakness. I was somewhat disappointed about the relatively lower increase in FTP compared to MAP/NM/AC, and hence I was wondering about the following:

  • Are the training plans are tailored to your individual weakness, completion of training plans would thus focus on improvements within this area? In other words, would my training plan for MTB Marathon (as my chosen discipline) be tailored to address sustained efforts.
  • Alternatively, does your chosen plan/discipline (road mountain, road century, dirt cyclecross, MTB enduro, etc.) determine the key areas of focus during the training block? Hence, for MTB marathon training block the focus is more on power (AC and NM).
  • Finally, for my indoor training program (weekdays are weekends mainly reserved for trials) to continue improving fitness and prepare for future MTB events, do I complete:
    • An FTP building block to improve on my weakness or
    • MTB training plan, tailored to my respective discipline. Knowing that the plan will include FTP improvement workouts.

If somebody can perhaps assist, or just let me know I am overthinking it all.

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Excellent questions and not overthinking it at all IMO. My belief has been that SYSTM takes your 4DP test results, compares them to what it considers optimal for your selected goal, and adapts the training plan to best prepare you for that goal. What I haven’t seen is what it considers optimum for that goal and what a plan’s targets or intended improvements are for your 4DP. That seems to be exactly what you’re asking for. That would be great to know and would make it possible to better evaluate your progress toward that optimum. And, knowing that, you could decide on what you building block you might subsequently do to further target your relative weakness.

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