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Finding the training plan that's right for you

When you subscribed to The Sufferfest app, it was a clear signal to The Minions that you were serious about structured training. They were so inspired by your dedication that they cracked open a bottle of Real Pagne and sat down with our partners at APEX Coaching to create a series of FREE training plans to help you maximise your Return on Suffering. Over 30 Sufferfest / APEX plans are available through TrainingPeaks.com, with the 10 original training plans also available in The Sufferfest app in downloadable PDF format.

Improve Your Weakness. Develop Your Strengths.

These Novice, Intermediate, and Advanced Plans have been tailored to address your primary weakness as identified by the 4DP Full Frontal fitness test. If you haven’t yet completed Full Frontal (you need to get on that, by the way), there are more generalized, non-4DP plans available for each experience level.

The plans includes a mix of indoor and outdoor workouts (which can be done indoors if the weather isn't playing along) and build fitness progressively through blocks of high intensity followed by periods of recovery and reduced intensity.

The plans are designed specifically for the time-crunched athlete, with weekday workouts under 60 minutes and longer weekend rides. Note: the average weekly training hours listed do not include the optional yoga and mental training plans you may wish to add to your schedule. Instructions for doing this are found in the first yoga and MTP workout descriptions of the plans.

The plans finish on a high note, with the last week bringing you fit and fresh into Full Frontal, which allows you to see exactly how much you've improved across four key metrics. After finishing the plan, you can begin a more advanced plan straight away.

Novice Plans (Average of 4.25 hours/week)

These training plans were designed by APEX Coaching for athletes and enthusiasts who...

  • Are new to the rigors and demands of structured training.
  • Have trained fewer than an average of 5 hours/week in the previous ~3 months.
  • Only have 3-6 hours/week they can dedicate to training over the course of the next ~3 months.
  • Have a nascent yet burning desire to CRUSH their goals by putting in a maximum amount of effort in a minimum amount of time.
Intermediate Plans (Average of 5.25 hours/week)

These training plans were designed by APEX Coaching for athletes and enthusiasts who...

  • Have previous experience with structured training plan or have been riding consistently for more than 2 years.
  • Have trained fewer than an average of 8 hours/week in the previous ~3 months.
  • Have up to 10 hours/week they can dedicate to training over the course of the next ~3 months.
  • Have a nascent yet burning desire to CRUSH their goals by putting in a maximum amount of effort in a minimum amount of time.
Advanced Plans (Average of 6.5 hours/week)

These training plans were designed by APEX Coaching for athletes and enthusiasts who...

  • Have previous experience with structured training plan or have been riding consistently for more than 2 years.
  • Have trained more than an average of 10 hours/week in the previous ~3 months.
  • Have up to 12 hours/week they can dedicate to training (but often less) over the course of the next ~3 months.
  • Have a burning desire to CRUSH their goals by putting in a maximum amount of effort in a minimum amount of time

N.B.: Each plan has 3 different levels of yoga—from beginner to advanced—that can be added, based on your previous yoga experience.  Simply follow the link in the Yoga Workout Description on Day 2 and chose the level of yoga that is right for you.

 

Targeted, Short-Duration Plans
 
Speed Demon Plan (3 weeks)
  • Averaging 6.5 hours per week for 3 weeks.  
  • This plan is for Sufferlandrians that have already done a good deal of training and need some fine tuning before race day.
  • The Speed Demon plan includes yoga, because a Speed Demon needs to be flexible to get aero!
Volcano Climbing Plan (3 weeks)
  • Averaging 7.3 hours per week for 3 weeks.
  • This plan is for Sufferlandrians that have already done a good deal of training and need to find top climbing form.
  • This plan includes yoga, because you don't want your core strength to let you down when the road goes up.
Full Frontal Prep Week (1 week)
  • This plan guides you through the ideal training week to ensure you are ready to crush Full Frontal to the best of your abilities.
  • This plan includes yoga, so that you're limber for the big test.

 

 

Triathlon Training Plans

 

Sprint Distance Triathlon Plan
  • Averaging 6.3 hours per week across all 3 disciplines.  
  • This plan is best for those looking to complete a Sprint Distance triathlon with limited experience OR for those new to triathlon.
  • This plan includes pool swims, track runs and yoga.
Olympic Distance Triathlon Plan
  • Averaging 7.3 hours per week across all 3 disciplines.  
  • This plan is best for those looking to complete an Olympic distance triathlon with some experience.
  • This plan includes pool swims, track runs and yoga.
70.3 Triathlon Training Plan
  • Averaging 10.25 hours per week across all 3 disciplines.
  • This is a 12 week plan that is designed to end on Race Day, meaning you want to start this plan exactly 12 weeks before your Half Iron Man.  
  • This plan is for Sufferlandrians who have experience training for triathlon and are capable of handling a large training load (Includes pool swims, track runs, outdoor rides and yoga)
140.6 Triathlon Training Plan
  • Averaging 12.75 hours per week across all 3 disciplines.
  • This is a 16 week plan that is designed to end on Race Day, meaning you want to start this plan exactly 16 weeks before your Full Iron Man.  
  • This plan is for Sufferlandrians who have successfully completed a Half or Full Iron Man before and are capable of handling a large training load.
  • This plan Includes pool swims, track runs, outdoor rides and yoga.

 

Cyclocross Plans

 

Novice Cyclocross Plan
  • Average of 4.75 hours per week
  • This plan is for Sufferlandrians who are new to Cyclocross and want to improve both their fitness and technical skills.
  • This plan includes outdoor skills sessions and yoga.
Intermediate Cyclocross Plan
  • Average of 5.75 hours per week
  • This plan is for Sufferlandrians with previous Cyclocross looking to take their fitness and technical skills to the next level.
  • This plan includes outdoor skills sessions and yoga.

 

XC Mountain Bike Plan

 

Intermediate Cross Country MTB Plan
  • Average of 6.2 hours per week
  • This plan is for Sufferlandrians with mountain biking experience looking to take their fitness and technical skills to the next level.
  • This plan includes outdoor skills sessions and yoga.

 

Bonus Training Content:

  1. Yoga For Cyclists: Our in depth guide for each yoga workout in your training plan and its purpose.
  2. Eating to Suffer, A Nutrition Guide: Our in depth guide on how to properly eat to SUFFER.  

Read more about our training philosophy and training plans here.

 

OUR TRAINING PARTNER: APEX COACHING

Sir Neal Henderson, coach to superstars like Rohan Dennis, Evelyn Stevens, Flora Duffy and others, has been the chief architect of The Sufferfest workouts for years. His capacity for inflicting pain is matched only by his determination to get exceptional results from his athletes. It was inevitable, then, that we would partner with Sir Neal and Sir Mac Cassin at APEX Coaching to create our new training plans. When you follow these plans, you're getting access to the same expertise that has helped athletes gain World and Olympic titles as well as Grand Tour stage wins and leader’s jerseys.

APEX Coaching firmly believes that the quality of training is far more important than the quantity, making them a perfect partner for our own philosophy of maximum effort and minimum time. APEX firmly believes that finding the best balance between high intensity work and quality recovery is the key to making the greatest gains in fitness. APEX also believes that Polarized Training is the most effective strategy to improving performance, meaning they never prescribe weeks and weeks of “base” training with no high intensity work, and you will never have weeks and weeks of doing only one type of interval. Finally, APEX Coaching believes that health always comes before fitness, and that maintaining a balance between athletic pursuits and life’s priorities is key to long term success.

Read more from Coach Mac Cassin

Mac Cassin has been coached by Sir Neal Henderson since 2009 and is a coach at APEX Coaching, with a focus on masters and junior racers. As an elite cyclist who also has to balance the demands of ‘life’ with his goals as an athlete, Mac has a deep understanding of how to get the most out of those who have limited time to train. Mac has raced at the World and PanAmerican championships and holds several US national and state titles. His studies were in Integrative Physiology from the University of Colorado and has worked as a research assistant in the CU Neurophysiology lab.

 

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