With 2-3 solid Base Blocks or at least legitimate base fitness in your legs, the next progressions in a traditionally periodized training approach are Build training blocks which bring with them more specialized fitness.
In all of our Build blocks, intervals start to take on a more wide-ranging set of objectives, especially if you're coming off of a Traditional Base plan track as opposed to our Sweet Spot Base plans. But of the three, the General Build block represents the most widely-encompassing, even distribution of work.
These Build blocks (low-, mid- and high-volume) were developed for riders who don't overtly label themselves as steady-state or short-power athletes and instead seek a blend off all types of power with the aim of building higher forms of conditioning very evenly.
This blend of build conditioning is best suited to all-around riders competing in stage races - on the road or the dirt - road racers that face less severe rolling courses, and “combination riders” who like to dabble in a number of disciplines over the course of their competitive seasons.
Short Power Build
The Short Power Build blocks were designed for those riders who place relatively greater importance on anaerobic power development but will still face their fair share of muscle endurance work.
The mildly reduced focus on sustainable power focus is directed into a further emphasis on VO2 Max work since it shifts the scales more toward maximum aerobic power and slightly away from higher sustained-power efforts.
In addressing the needs of this slightly different breed of rider, these blocks present a training mix that still addresses sustainable power but gives greater attention to short, high power and really short, really high power.
Criterium and cyclocross racers and nearly all forms of mountain bike and track riders will be well served by these particular Build blocks.
Sustained Power Build
Finally, the Sustained Power Build blocks shift their emphasis to developing greater sustained power through the use of strength endurance work, lactate tolerance workouts and a healthy dose of maximum aerobic power intervals, i.e. VO2 Max work.
These muscle-endurance-heavy blocks were constructed with riders of a more steady-state nature in mind; riders who don’t necessarily face as many short-power demands as rolling road racers, mountain bikers or criterium riders.
Multisport athletes, time trial specialists, century and gran fondo riders, and climbing road racers are all good Sustained Power candidates.