Your Day-by-Day Race Week Plan

Got an A race on a Sunday? Here’s how to tailor your week for maximum performance on race day.

Monday and Tuesday - Chill

Typically, most riders take Monday off following a weekend of training or racing. This week, take two days off in a row.

“A two-day block is more rest than riders are used to so it will remove most fatigue to allow for a ‘super-compensation” training benefit, said FasCat founder Frank Overton. “Coming off of a hard weekend it will be particularly beneficial.”

The hardest thing about these two days? Sticking to the plan and actually resting. Here, as always, we invite you to #FtFP.

Wednesday - Add Spice

Now that you’re rested, go get in some intensity, either by hitting a fast group ride or by doing some short intervals.

“Here, you are keeping your engine revving high and hot, and reminding your legs you are a well-tuned sports machine,” Overton said. “You don’t want to just ride easy for five or six days leading into the event. This is a nice gentle reminder to your physiology that you are in extremely good shape. You’ve got to stoke the fire to keep the engine revving.”

If you’re doing intervals, tailor them to the type of event you’ll be doing. For a road race, it’s 100-percent anaerobic work, Overton said, like 30-second or 1-minute efforts.

If doing a group ride, a spicy group ride with lots of surges and accelerations will fulfill that anaerobic component. 

If your race course is such that threshold power is clearly the important element, then do a short threshold session, such as 2 x 8 min on, 8min off. 

“You can use your zone 4 wattage to regulate this event, but if you have been following your training plan you are going to exceed your zones because you have improved so much,” Overton said. “I coach athletes to go really hard and see what they’re capable of. Often this is a great confidence builder leading into an event.”

Thursday - Easy, peasy

Do 90 minutes or  less of zone 2, making your ride proportional to how much you’ve been training. 

Pro riders will do two hours on an easy day. If you’ve been training 8-12 hours a week, then 90 minutes is fantastic. If you’ve been riding 4-8 hours a week, then an hour is perfect.

“The caveat here is that if you are traveling to a race or are stressed, then just take the day off,” Overton said. 

Friday - Win in the garage and in the kitchen

Take the day off the bike, and spend the time you would have spent training by dialing in your bike and nutrition.

Clean your bike, wax your chain, make sure your sealant is topped off and your bike is running smoothly. Check everything! 

Similarly, make sure your engine will have everything it needs for fuel. Go grocery shopping. Make rice cakes. Prepare food to take with you with your killer set of tupperware. 

Saturday - Open it up!

Generally a one-hour ride with 2-4 short anaerobic intervals is just the thing to prime your engine for the next day’s race. Just 30- to 60- second efforts where your rest time is double the work time.

If you’re doing a gravel race, then hit up a shakedown ride to loosen up the legs, ensure your bike is ready, and enjoy the community.

Openers workout

Note the four 1-minute purple power spikes in the second half of the Opener workout of this FasCat athlete. 

Sunday - Let ‘er rip!

Enjoy the fruits of your labor and all the training — and recovery — you have done. And have fun!

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