Intervals for XC MTB'ing - Advanced

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Intervals for XC MTB'ing - Advanced


Frank Overton, FasCat Coaching

All plans by this Coach


7 Weeks

Typical Week

1 Day Off, 5 Bike, 1 Other, 1 Strength, 1 MTB

Longest Workout

4:00 hrs

Plan Specs

cycling mountain biking advanced masters weightloss power based hr based tss based

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Includes Structured Workouts

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XC Mountain Biking is all about short anaerobic power output! As such This training plan starts by working on your race start and quickly moves into Zone 6 Anaerobic Work. There are endurance mountain bike hammer rides on the weekend for training and technical skills practice. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursdays are for 1 minuters, VO2’s, threshold and the diabolical Tabatas.

You'll start and finish the 6 weeks with a Field Test to set your training zones via the included FasCat Wattage and Heart Rate Zones Sheet. This way you'll be sure to ride at the correct efforts and you can measure your improvement too! Plus, this plan includes all the "marginal gains" details to get even faster: Recovery Techniques, Rest Days, Yoga, Foundations, and best of all, Strength and Conditioning - all you need is a physical therapy style rubber band and MOTIVATION! There are instructional videos in the plan for you to follow along at home.

This Advanced plan is for the rider with 1-2 hours a day to ride during during the week and 2-5.5 hours on the weekend


Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Breakdown
Average Weekly Training Hours: 08:36
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours: 08:36
Average Weekly Breakdown

FasCat Coaching

FasCat Coaching

FasCat has over 14 years of experience coaching road mountain cyclocross and multisport athletes, mostly between of 30 - 60 years old. "Working men and women" that need balance and flexibility for whatever life throws at them. Before we design any training program we consult with the athlete first - how much time do you have to train - what do you have coming up?

We coach thru a custom designed training plan, monitor your progress thru your data and give feedback based on our expertise.

Sample Day 1

Field Test: 20 minuter

20 Min Threshold Effort up a climb or on an uninterrupted stretch of flat road to determine training zones
For more info:
Find an uninterrupted stretch of road, free from stop signs/lights or longer descents. This needs to be a repeatable effort as you may test throughout the season.
Your goal is to put out the most power you can over 20 minutes, but also to be smooth & consistent as you perform the effort. Don't blow up in the first few minutes! Ask me for wattage pacing guidelines.

Sample Day 2

Zone 6: 2 sets of 3x1 min ON, 1 min OFF

Complete these intervals at FULL GAS! Warm up and cool down in Zones 1/2.

Sample Day 3

Tempo 3 x 15 minutes

3 x 15 minutes ON (zone 3) 6 minutes OFF
Perform the Intervals by riding between 76-90% of your FTP. You should feel like you are working but not "suffering"
For More Information Please Read:

Sample Day 5

Zone 5/VO2 Max: 3 minuters

2 sets of 3 x 3 minutes ON 3 minutes OFF; 6 min b/w sets
How To Perform VO2Max Intervals Properly:
The Right WAY and WRONG WAY:
Choose a flat to slightly uphill stretch of road that lasts at LEAST 3 minutes. Go back and forth if its a hill or continue on if flat-ish. Avoid downhill sections

Warm up and cool down in Zones 1/2.

Sample Day 6

Zone 6: 2 sets of 4 x30 seconds ON, 1 min OFF

Complete these intervals at FULL GAS! Warm up and cool down in Zones 1/2.

Sample Day 8

Tabatas! 20/10's

2 sets of 8 x 20 sec on 10 sec off Full Gas!! 
15 min rest b/w sets
170% of your FTP (yes, they are hard)
Some of the best race specific training. A 2:1 Work/Rest Ratio makes these extremely taxing, but will make you FAST!
Read the Training Tip here:

Sample Day 9

MTB Race Start Practice

From a Standing Start, continuous for 10 minutes: - 15 secs, FULL GAS SPRINT, Zone 7 - 45 sec, FULL GAS, Zone 6 wattages - 2 min, Zone 5 wattages - 4 min, Zone 4, - 2 min Sweet Spot - No rest inb/w whatsoever; DON"T let your power drop! You are simulating a FULL GAS MTB Race Start

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