Rough Draft to a Training Plan

My husband and I have been researching various websites and YouTube channels of cycling experts while working on a training plan for our upcoming bike races and tours. I made a rough draft of a training plan several weeks ago that I’ve been loosely following and it seems that I wasn’t too far off the mark. Apparently, the basics of training for a marathon are similar to those of a century:

  • • Intervals at the track or on a trail
  • • Hill repeats
  • • Long run/ride to spend time on your legs/time in the saddle
  • • Easy recovery runs/rides

I’m sure we’ll make plenty of adjustments as the weeks progress, but for now things seem to be working pretty well.


Overview of the Week

Before getting into each day’s workouts, here’s an overview of my workouts from this past week. Scroll beyond the infographic for daily details…



Cycling: 40 miles
• Average speed: 15.7 MPH
• Bike: Life Fitness Lifecycle GX Spin
• Surface: N/A
• Elevation gain: N/A
• Start time: 8:42 AM
• Location: basement
• Weather: 64° in basement (feels like outside was 27°)
• What I wore: bike shorts and jog bra

Physical therapy stretches: 3 times per day

Even though riding with the Gravel Rats would have given me the perfect distance for the day, I just wasn’t motivated to layer on the winter gear for another cold ride. I opted instead to stay inside on my spin bike which worked out well since my right knee started hurting about ¾ of the way into my ride. I was able to get off the bike and walk off the pain and finish; however, the pain returned after I finished my ride and lingered for the rest of the day.

I’d initially irritated my knee during my fiasco of a ride on Friday when my electronic shifters’ battery died leaving me stuck spinning like crazy the final 7 miles. It had felt fine all day Saturday so I was surprised when it started bothering me during my workout.  Luckily, the pain was short-lived and hasn’t bothered me since.



Strength training: 1 hour of total body

Walking: 5K
• Average pace: 14:48 minute/mile
• Elevation gain: 199 feet
• Start time: 8:35 AM
• Location: neighborhood streets
• Weather: 38° (feels like 34°) and sunny, climbing to 40° (feels like 36°)
• What I wore: capris, l/s shirt, down coat, ear warmer headband, gloves, and mittens (took coat and mittens off halfway through)

Physical therapy stretches: 3 times per day



Cycling: 30 miles
• Average speed: 12.6 MPH
• Bike: Specialized Roubaix Comp
• Surface: paved
• Elevation gain: 1,601 feet
• Start time: 10:49 AM
• Location: W&OD Trail Ashburn/Leesburg loop with Thomas Mill and Woodburn climbs
• Weather: 50° and partly cloudy, climbing to 58°
• What I wore: bike long pants, s/s jersey, arm sleeves, jacket, and winter gloves

Physical therapy stretches: 3 times per day

Don’t let the sunshine fool you, the breeze cut right through my spring weight jacket and I was cold until 11 miles in when I started climbing Thomas Mill – I’d skipped wearing my winter jacket for fear of getting over heated while climbing. It was during this ride that I decided I was done with the cold. LOL Of course, if I’d been running I would have been thrilled with the perfect running weather.



Strength training: 1 hour of total body

Physical therapy stretches: 3 times per day, plus 1 hour of physical therapy



Walking: 4 miles
• Average pace: 14:57 minute/mile
• Elevation gain: 152 feet
• Start time: 6:04 AM
• Location: neighborhood trails
• Weather: 47° (feels like 43°) and foggy
• What I wore: capris, l/s shirt, down vest, ear warmer headband, and gloves

Cycling: 20 miles
• Average speed: 13.7 MPH
• Bike: Salsa Warbird
• Surface: paved
• Elevation gain: 564 feet
• Start time: 12:54 PM
• Location: W&OD Trail
• Weather: 50° (feels like 45°) and cloudy
• What I wore: bike shorts, l/s jersey, light jacket, and fingered gloves

Physical therapy stretches: 3 times per day

Like most Thursdays, it was a double cardio workout day. First up was an early morning virtual walk with Kim before seeing clients. Later, I headed outside for intervals on my bike.


My first ever intervals on my bike went well. After a 12-minute warmup riding to where I planned to start my intervals, I did 4 x 1.75 miles on a section of the W&OD Trail that’s at a 1-2% grade. After each interval, I rode back to the starting point and immediately started the next interval. I had a headwind on every interval so I really wasn’t able to pick up my speed as planned, but based on my heart rate during my interval versus rest cycles, I was right where I needed to be. Once finished with my fourth interval, I added 2 extra miles during my cool down before riding home to finish at a tidy 20 miles.



Strength training: 1 hour of total body

Walking: 2 miles
• Average pace: 14:42
• Elevation gain: 97 feet
• Start time: 8:53 AM
• Location: neighborhood circle
• Weather: 49° and sunny, climbing to 51°
• What I wore: capris, s/s shirt, velour jacket, gloves, ear warmer headband, and visor

Balance and stretching: 45 minutes

Physical therapy stretches: 3 times per day



Cycling: 50 miles
• Average speed: 11.9 MPH
• Bike: Salsa Warbird
• Surface: gravel
• Elevation gain: 3,612 feet
• Start time: 10:26 AM
• Location: 2023 Grinder Nationals course
• Weather: 54° and partly cloudy, climbing to 64° and cloudy
• What I wore: bike shorts, s/s jersey, arm sleeves, ear warmer headband, and fingered gloves

Physical therapy stretches: 3 times per day

Our training plan calls for long easier rides on the the weekends. We feel that because our races are on gravel, it’s important to ride gravel on the weekends since we mostly ride paved during the week. Because of the foothills leading to the Blue Ridge Mountains, it’s impossible to ride on the western side of our county where the gravel roads are located and keep it easy, though. We opted to ride one loop of the 2023 race course to familiarize ourselves with the course; however, the 2024 course won’t be released until early May so there’s no guarantee we’re riding this year’s race course.

I actually felt pretty good when I completed the 50-mile loop, but couldn’t imagine doing it a second time. I’ve got six weeks until it’s show time which motivates me to keep training hard.


Last Week’s Blog Posts

In case you skipped checking in on my blog this past week, here’s what you missed…


  • • Are you currently training for any races, and if so, how much time do you spend per week training? ~ Sooo much time…
  • • How’s the weather where you live? Has it been a windy March in your neck of the woods? ~ It seems like it’s been windier than usual here, but maybe it’s just because I’ve been out on my bike more than any other spring.
  • • Did you run in race this weekend? ~ no


And that’s my rundown… Have a great week!




I’m linking up with Deborah at Confessions of a Mother Runner and Kim from Running on the Fly for their Weekly Run Down. Be sure to check out not only the hosts’ posts, but those of the other great bloggers joining in on the fun!


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