40+ Masters mountain bike 5-7 day stage race training plan

Consistency – Strength – Skills – Intensity - Recovery

This plan is designed specifically for the 40+ Masters racer with a goal to excel in a 5 – 7 day mountain bike stage race.

A 20 year old athlete has different natural abilities and training requirements than a 40+ year old athlete and will thrive on a different training plan. The most obvious change with age is a slowdown in recovery. With age there is less time and room to absorb training mistakes. A Masters athlete excels on a targeted and specific plan. This LW Coaching 40+ Masters mountain bike 5-7 day stage race training plan works on a three week training cycle, two training weeks then one recovery week, to match fitness development and recovery cycle of the Master athlete. Athletes “age” at different rates. This Masters 40+ plan might be appropriate for a 30-year-old with naturally slow recovery.

Completing the 12 week LW Coaching Masters 40+ Cross Country Mountain Bike Base Training Plan and the LW Coaching Masters 40+ Cross Country Mountain Bike Build, Peak and Race Training Plan prior to this LW Coaching Masters 40+ mountain bike 5-7 day stage race training plan is a recommended way to stack these training plans.

Consistency: This the most important factor for a Masters athlete. “Use it or lose it” is a big element in continued performance with age. The more frequent recovery weeks in this plan promote increased consistency by keeping the athlete below the over-training, injury and burnout threshold.

12 week strength maintenance program: This Masters training plan contains a 12 week strength maintenance program to maintain muscular strength and bone density established during base training. Muscular strength increases resilience to injury, contributes to consistency and keeps you in the game as you age.

Weekly technical ride skills practice: Weekly skills practice is in this plan. Use it or lose it definitely applies to technical mountain bike ride skills for Masters. Stay smooth, ride efficiently with no mistakes, make up time on descents in races.

Weekly intensity sessions: This Masters 40+ mountain bike 5-7 day stage race training plan contains weekly on the bike intensity sessions to increase speed and power building towards race day with neuromuscular power, threshold and VO2 max intervals.

Race execution practice: Endurance sessions contain specific fueling practice and guidelines covering calorie intake, hydration balance and electrolyte balance. Stage race pacing guidelines and race pace practice sessions build towards race day. Recovery techniques are practiced to dial in a successful routine to use at the stage race.

This plan is paced by Power (watts), heart rate and perceived exertion. A heart rate monitor is recommended to follow this training plan. A power meter is an optional (and highly advantageous) extra. A power meter is not required to successfully follow this training plan but power pacing guidelines are included with every session. Most cycling workouts in this plan contain both power and heart rate pacing instructions. In week one you will set heart rate zones, power training levels (if you have power available) and a performance benchmark with a field test. This test is repeated in weeks 6 and 8 to track performance improvements, power increases and check your heart rate zones are accurate. Visit the LW Coaching website to ask training plan questions on our forum, read mountain bike specific training articles, learn new workouts and see what events our coaches and athletes have been racing.

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