Crit Racing - Intermediate - 8 Weeks

Average Weekly Breakdown
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Breakdown
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours: 07:44

Are you missing that bit of punch come race day? Want to improve your top end speed with limited training time. Here is a program designed to give you a bit of a platform to race on. Hopefully it won't hurt as much and you'll be doing more than just surviving. This program is designed for riders who've raced criteriums before but feel like they've stagnated a bit in their progression. Ideal for B grade riders or Cat 2/3 (potentially even for new Cat 1 or A grade riders).

- 2 x 4 Week Training Blocks
- Program designed to get progressively more difficult but allow for recovery
- Variety of sessions to keep you engaged
- Detailed session plans that are easy to follow
- Detailed Power and Rate of Perceived Effort Guidelines for each session

Sample Day 1
0:30:00
30TSS
Optional: Core Strength

Doing some core strength work will do your climbing. There are a wide array of resources out there on the interwebs. Yoga and pilates are also fantastic activities to pursue. I've included some useful links below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tVeHIDTy6MA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ic0URFZrzw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_nzO_bm05s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2mROpewU414

The one thing I will say is to not try and copy some of the advanced exercises you may see the pros doing. Start with the basics, do them well and go from there. My athletes normally get an assessment from a strength and conditioning coach and then work off an individualised program. If you feel like going down that path, ask around and find someone in your area.

Sample Day 2
1:00:00
74TSS
HIIT: 6 x 30 sec seated max efforts

It's always good to do a little bit of high intensity work. This is a short simple intro into High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). Ride for roughly 15 - 25 minutes to warm up. Then do 6 x 30 seconds, seated maximal sprints. Start each effort from speed of roughly 26 - 28 km/hr, big chainring, halfway down the cassette. You can also do these sessions on a local hill. Recovery time between each effort is 4 and a half minutes.

Note: this won't be enough time to recovery fully, so it will get harder. General riding pace to finish.

This session simulates riding across to a break or going long in a sprint finish.

Sample Day 3
1:26:00
89.2TSS
Sweetspot / SubTHR: 4 x 9min

SubTHR or Sweetspot sessions are the bread and butter of most endurance athletes.
The aim of this session is to tap into that aerobic system, not to exhaust yourself. While knowing your FTP is handy for this session, it is not necessary. If you follow the common sense guide below you will be fine. Once you've done a few of these sessions, you should be able to do the session by feel.

4 x 9min subT with 5 min recovery between each effort

Power: 85 - 90% FTP
HR: 80 - 90% THR HR
RPE: 6 out of 10

You should still be able to breath regularly. Recommended Cadence is 90 - 95 rpm. Go out to a flat road or track where you won't get stopped by traffic lights or intersections. Alternatively, use a home trainer.

Sample Day 3
0:30:00
30TSS
Optional: Core Strength

Doing some core strength work will do your climbing. There are a wide array of resources out there on the interwebs. Yoga and pilates are also fantastic activities to pursue. I've included some useful links below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tVeHIDTy6MA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ic0URFZrzw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_nzO_bm05s

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2mROpewU414

The one thing I will say is to not try and copy some of the advanced exercises you may see the pros doing. Start with the basics, do them well and go from there. My athletes normally get an assessment from a strength and conditioning coach and then work off an individualised program. If you feel like going down that path, ask around and find someone in your area.

Sample Day 4
1:03:00
65.1TSS
HIIT: 4/5 x ( 5 x 30/30s)

10 min easy pedaling then 5 min progressive warm up starting at general riding pace and finishing at breakaway pace. Be careful to get to the final intensity in the last minute. Increase the difficulty slowly. This effort is only to warm up.

Ride easy for 3 minutes.

Then do 5 x 30 second seated efforts with 30 seconds easy pedaling. If you know your FTP the intensity should be 120 - 130 % FTP. But if you don't don't stress its the sort of session where you can do it on feel. Treat each effort as an attack in a race. You'll find out what is a feasible intensity after the first set of efforts.

Take 3 minutes easy pedaling and then repeat the 30/30s 3 - 4 more times depending on how you feel. This is a super hard session. Good luck!

Sample Day 5
0:45:00
15.53mi
18.8TSS
Easy Recovery Ride Short

Anywhere between 45 min to an hour is fine. Go be social. Ride with some friends, go for a coffee.

Sample Day 6
2:00:00
37.28mi
110TSS
Racing

In my opinion, the best way to get better at racing is to race more! Funny that! You will get a little stronger every time but more importantly you will get a better at riding in close proximity to your competitors. Every race is a learning opportunity, you can always try new things. Maybe try a break away, try to catch the sprinters off guard and go with a lap or two to go or perhaps you could save you energy for the sprint.

Try enough things, enough times and you will get a feel for what you are good at and not good at. Use that knowledge to refine your race strategy. And every time you move up a grade start the process again. If the race is cancelled, then feel free to either repeat a session from earlier in the week. Or go for a 2 - 3 hour ride with your mates or on your own. Go on an adventure.

Alex Quirk
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Endeavor Coaching

Endeavor is the passion project of coach Alex Quirk. After helping some riders progress from club racing to the higher echelons of the National Road Series. Alex decided to formalize his coaching activities with the creation of Endeavor Coaching Services. Since then endeavor has propelled riders towards success national and world championship events on both the road and track. We've worked with riders of all sorts: juniors, elites, masters, males and females.