Smashing TT Club Championships, acheivable goal or not?

Thanks for the encouragement @Maxim!

I am pretty certain I may dig deeper, just have to spend some time finding a balance in order not to dig too deep too soon.

  • Aquiring some sort of high end equipment, either borrow or rent, is something I plan on doing. Also plan for a renewal of drivetrain and BB bearing in my existing bike, as well as upgrading the gears (currently Ultegra 6600).
  • Thank yo for the tip, will make sure to read it.
  • I know, have done a bike fit for my regular road riding, and it is something I am considering. Although I am ready to invest time and mental capacity into this, I am not sure how much money I am willing to spend. A bike fit could however prove better value for money then equipment upgrades, but I might try to get someone qualified to evaluate my current position first and then see what investment will yield the highest speed increase.

Also, I forgot to mention earlier in the thread that the course starts with approx 3,5 km @ 1,5% average incline (some sections @ 3-4%) in the first 4 km, thus I think a weight reduction will enable me to go significantly faster in the initial part of the course.

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Thanks for the tips @flongchamp!

Actually I tend to keep my TT bike permanently on my trainer during winter, as outdoor rides here up north during winter is not really feasible. I just need to spend some more time in TT position which I up until now have not done very much of. Looking at getting a new TT specific saddle, as the one I had before was no good, thus I have been using a normal road bike seat for a long time. My sitting knots are quite wide apart, thus I should get a rather wide TT saddle as well to get comfortable. Use 155 mm width in road bike saddles.

Will definitely try the workouts you mention. I haven’t tried too many workouts yet, so its great getting feedback on which works best in TT mode.


Allright, time for a little update on this “blog”. Sorry to all of you not interested!

Short Story (click here to read)

Gains from last FF (9th of March) following 6 weeks of structured training (Tos prep advanced), ToS, and 2 weeks of almost no cycling post ToS:
NM: 1418 W (+97 W)
MAP: 450 W (+17 W)
FTP: 348 W (+17 W)
AC: 610 W (+42 W)
A little disappointed with FTP and MAP, but still feel goal should be within reach.

Started Time Trial Advanced plan yesterday. Selected advanced due to 3:1 ratio, extra-volume on weekend rides may be cut if strapped for time. In addition I am experimenting with TT position, and feel I am making progress. Will also see to some equipment improvements to acheive goal.

Long story (click here to read)

So, it has been 3 months seen this thread was started. Since then, there has been a trainingwise unstructured Christmas holiday, before undertaking the 6 week ToS prep plan. I selected the advanced plan, including yoga and MTP. I found the rest weeks and almost two taper weeks being too laid back, thus decided to occasionally add or change workouts to somewhat increase the training load. Felt like I responded well to the training, and could have taken a higher load. Still pleased with the plan, as I am getting accustomed to structured training, it is preferrable the load being a little too low than a little too high.

Then there was ToS. Tough first stage, and cruel second. Great suffering. Apart from stage 7, the rest of the stages were somewhat easier (still suffered though!). Managed to do all workouts at 100%, and was very pleased with that.

Post ToS was unfortunately two weeks with very little cycling. Aimed for FF on 6th of March. Did Primers the 5th and felt great and ready to crush it, and even repeated some MTP. I was really psyched to do a great FF! Then I woke up with a stiff neck/shoulder on the 6th, could hardly turn my head in any direction, and tilting my head backwards was possibly the worst. Bummer! Made an attempt at FF, but after the 5 sec efforts it was perfectly clear to me there was no point to continue. My neck was hardly any better the 7th. A little better the 8th. It was far from perfect the 9th either, but I just decided; Let’s do it! No Primers, no mental prep, just do it!

NM: Almost unclipped, did not feel 100% comfortable with the gears, but managed to put in a good effort. 1418 W (+97 W, +7.4%)
MAP: Set a pace aiming for 5% increase (+22 W), assumed to be a realistic target. Unfortunately had signal failure with power surge 2 min into the MAP, which knocked me out of rythm and it took some time settling back at the same power and cadence. 450 W (“only” +17 W, +3.9%)
FTP: Aimed for approx. 7% increase (+24 W). Here too I experienced a signal failure with power surge 2-3 min in, which knocked me off track. It felt like forever, but managed to more or less keep it up throughout. 348 W (+17 W, 5.1%)
AC: The single worst minute of FF. Just went for it standing, sat down for a bit, and then got back up trying to squeeze out the last drop. 610 W (+42 W, 7.4%)

Continue as Time Triallist with sustained strength, and sustained effort weakness.

A little disappointed with FTP and MAP, but still feel I am on track for my goal.

What comes next?
Yesterday I started the Advanced Time Trial plan. I realize it might not be realistic to complete the full length of the weekend rides, but aim to cover the efforts and cut back on the extra volume if strapped for time. The Intermediate plan with shorter weekend rides was considered, but I think I need the 3:1 ratio of the Advanced plan to get me to where I want to be. My experience from the ToS Advanced prep plan was that my body seems to handle the 3:1 ratio quite well too, making it a no-brainer.

In addition I am both working on my TT position. Focus until now has been on spending time in position nad keeping my head down. Did entire race part of Team Scream in TT position the other day (in level mode), quite pleased with that. During today’s workout I experimented with different positions in the saddle, when it suddenly came clear to me that I should shift my position forward. I tried moving and tilting my saddle forward a little and the position felt both more comfortable and efficient, enabling me to straighten my back some more. Next, I will try to raise the saddle to increase power to the pedals.

Equipment is also part of the equation. To facilitate a better position I have acquired a TT specific saddle (ISM Adamo), making it more comfy in TT. Recent position testing also indicates the aerobars are too short which means I need to get new handlebars (current is a one-piece handlebar with low flexibility; integrated stem, base bar, armrests, and bars)
When it is time to move the TT bike outside, I will change the drivetrain to reduce potential loss (current is old, I’d be surprised if several watts cannot be gained). Even bottom bracket bearings will be changed, as well as crankset changed from 175 mm arms to 170 mm arms. Aim to be testing waxed chain instead of lubed for less friction too. If I can find a cheap disc wheel I will maybe get that too, or maybe tro to rent or borrow one.

Summing up, if things go more or less according to plan, I may be able to really smash the TT Club Championships in early June (date yet to be decided).

I welcome any input on gains made, potential gains from plan selection, or other improvements to be made. Any of the coaches weighing in would be especially welcome.


You may be interested in the most recent (episode 154) episode of the Fast Talk podcast which is all about time trials:

Sounds like an excellent tip, thanks!

Not been to the forum for a while, time for an update.

Allright, mid-plan (or 2/3-plan) Half Monty done and dusted. As I have only done FF before, I did not really know what to expect from HM. Felt kind of good leading up to it, so I was hoping for a slight increase in FTP and MAP. Ramp done, I felt I could have suffered for a tad bit longer, but I guess that is just how the story usually goes.

FTP - 384 W (+36)
MAP - 488 W (+38)
LTHR - 151 (-4)

Noticed during the 20 min constrained HR part there was a difference in power output depending on cadence; I am usually a high cadence kind of guy, but noticed that the power range increased by 20 W at the same HR when I reduced my cadence. Could this somehow affect the end result for FTP?

Needless to say, I am very pleased with a 10% increase in FTP and nearly 8.5% increase in MAP, but looking beyond the results, I believe the Half Monty inflates my numbers somewhat compared to what I may have managed in a Full Frontal. I am a bit sceptical about reproducing the same numbers in FF, although training with the new numbers will for sure induce a lot of great suffering for further gains, so hopefully I will be able to. Still, I do not expect much gains in numbers beyond the HM in my next FF.

On the equipment side, I have acquired a new base bar (Zipp VukaBull TT carbon bars) and aero bars (Deda Parabolica Uno) to allow for a greater amount of adjustment to my TT position, looking forward to mount those. Also, I have got myself a new aerosuit same as the national team uses. If it is good enough for them, it should be good enough for me.

In summary, I feel everything is getting in place for a good performance, the priority now should be to get the TT-bike off the trainer and out on the road to do some real-life time trialling adjusting to outside conditions. Not having a power meter for the TT bike is of course a challenge in the run in, but should still be able to get some quality workouts in. The main challenge is probably that a date has not yet been set, crossing fingers it will be this side of summer, as it will be tough to maintain the fitness level across the summer holidays.


@Magnito Welcome back! I would interpret the lower cadence at higher watts as positive. Great results!

Thank you @JSampson! I guess you are right.

Still, with the HM numbers I am now rather terrified to do The Bat coming up on Thursday, a workout I have always enjoyed (type 2 fun, you know) but now fear is going to absolutely destroy me.

Also, I notice that most rides for the remainder of the plan are inspirational/drills. Could the reason be to adapt to new numbers from HM? If it is, I don’t really see how I may get additional gains towards end of program.

@Magnito You earned those numbers - you deserve to be there. Stay focused and if you need to dial back a bit on The Bat then take it down 5%. I doubt that will happen.

The plan doesn’t change after the test. Recovery and drills are just as important as the intense efforts and while you might feel that they are are not leading to improvement they definitely are.

True @JSampson, I produced the numbers, now I must own them!

Just played around a little with Cycling Power and Speed (as posted by @Coach.Neal.H above). I have no idea of my CdA, so i used the default frontal area (0.509 m2) and estimated my Cd to 0.45 based on the average speed (43 km/h) and power (306 W) of my personal best. According to that CdA I need to produce an average power of 365 W to get an average speed of 46.3 km/h needed to get below 27 min.

Based on my recent HM I guess that should be possible if I am able to dig a basement in my basement for the duration of those 27 min. Did Long Scream at an average of 352 W for 31:22, so I guess it should be possible to do.

Accidentally bought a disc wheel today as well. Better go fast :grimacing: :grimacing: :grimacing:

Great progress. My goal is to get similar numbers to you, but not for time trial, so I can go all day in gran fondo events and not be on my limit.

Keep us posted, I’ll be cheering from the (virtual) sidelines for your podium success. Also interested in anything you’ve learned worked or didn’t work in your training plan to hit your goals.


Hi Martin,

I target this TT now because I think I have a shot at winning, and have never won anything in cycling so just want to know if I can do it. And although a TT is most fun when it’s done, long rides are my favourites and I’m expecting benefits for that purpose as well. Don’t think I will be able to repeat last year’s 540k this year unfrotunately, but expect to get some long days in the saddle still that may indicate fitness improvements from last year.

The primary lesson learned is basically having a structured plan and sticking with it. This is my first plan, previous training has at best been loosely structured but mostly ad hoc based, thus having an actual plan has been a game changer for me. I expect that after completing a few of the “standard” training plans, going for a custom plan with increased intensity and/or volume may be necessary to avoid stagnation, but that remains to be seen.

Will keep this post updated, thanks for the virtual cheer @Fezzek!

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Finally, a date… errr… date range for the TT Club champs have been set. And the event has changed. From TT race, to segment chase.

Huge blow to my motivation! :tired_face:

@Magnito Make your own race - I did that several times during the pandemic. You can ride alone or with friends. It is a good way to continue to test yourself. Design the route, pre-ride and then set a date and time to hit it hard. Good luck!

Than you for the support @JSampson. I know that’s what I have to do, still I was hoping for some good ol’ fashioned rivalry, nerves, banter, and everything that goes along with a good contest.

The route is all set, we are urged to ride alone, a range of ca 2 weeks is set. I just need to get my motivaion back up and go out there and smash it. And I really want to, it just feels harder to do in some odd way right now…

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Allright, the official results are in, and it actually looks like I won my first race (that wasn’t really a race) with the following PR effort:

The conditions were quite all right I think, and the legs felt good. I did unfortunately not have a power meter (would have been interesting in terms of analysis), so had to go on feel alone. I were slowed by traffic on a couple of occasions, which means there is still seconds to be shaved off.

Made another try a week later (forgot my TT helmet, just had a Spesh Evade II intended for warm-up) at a time with less traffic to attempt to shave off some seconds, but did not feel as good then. Comparing the efforts though, just over 13 km into the course I was on par with PR, but did not manage to keep it up and lost 5 sec/km on average for the last 7 km.

Although not meeting my (quite ambitiuos) SMART goal of completing the course in 27 minutes, I am of course pleased to win (which was my less SMART goal). A couple of lessons learned as well:

  • Keep focused and keep applying positive self talk all the way to the finish. You may surprise yourself with what you can achieve. Even though you don’t feel good, you may still be fast.
  • Be well prepared. Forgetting my TT helmet could have been avoided by better preparation (should have paid more attention to the MTP, I know).

In addition, I think I can improve a lot on TT position and keeping aero. Staying aero on the trainer inside is a whole different story to staying aero when having to keep your eyes ahead on the road and alert of surrounding traffic. Something to work on for next year! :+1:

Thanks a lot to the Sufferfest and their Time Trial plan for helping me achieve this win!


That’s an amazing effort. Great work.

Brilliant story, even better result, thanks for sharing your journey!

@Magnito Wow, fantastic effort! Well done. :+1:

Thanks guys. It was a nice journey, happy to share.

Tempted to sign up for a TT race in the end of August which uses the same course to see if I am able to improve even more. May come a little early though, considering summer holidays are around the corner, with 4-5 weeks of limited training possibilities, leavin approx 4weeks to prepare. Could perhaps work with the 4-week FTP special focus building block plan? Or would the MAP plan perhaps be better for increased speed?