Peaks Challenge

Training Programs

20 November 2023 – 10 March 2024

16 week training programs

Your dedicated cycling coach Dr. Stephen Lane has developed three tailored training programs (with different volumes of training) to help smash your goals. The programs assume you will kick-off week one on Monday 20 November with some base kilometres already in the legs.

You can download the free PDF training programs below or purchase and download via Training Peaks if you would prefer to upload your data, monitor your progress and use the SMART Ergo files to perform indoor trainer sessions.

Peaks Challenge 2024 Training Program (cover) - Low

Low volume

Averages 10 hours of training a week.

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Peaks Challenge 2024 Training Program (cover) - Intermediate

Intermediate volume

Averages 12 hours of training a week.

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Peaks Challenge 2024 Training Program (cover) - High

High volume

Averages 16.5 hours of training a week.

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To learn more about how to effectively use the programs before getting started, check out Stephen’s Intro to training zones.

Getting started

To compliment these training plans we’ll schedule a series of training rides in the lead up to the event. Plus, our Peaks Challenge training camp is back in early February to help you dial in your preparation for the big dance!

Plus, it is always a good idea to work on building your base fitness before diving into a training program.

Below are a few FAQs on how to integrate the training plan with other rides and how to modify the training plan to navigate any ‘speed humps’ that appear on the road to Peaks Challenge.

Training program FAQs

Which training program should I choose?

Choose the program that has roughly the amount of hours you believe you can complete each week. Typically, for people with limited available time for training due to work and family commitments my recommendation is to ‘’ride as much as you can” each week.

The main rule to follow is to complete the ‘main set’ for each session and just ride easy ‘aerobic’ for any extra additional time you can ride. This might be by adding an extra hour or two on a particular day or performing an extra ride on a day designated as a rest day.

What If I can’t get outside to perform a long ride?

Typically the weekday sessions can be completed indoors but please try and do your best to perform the weekend longer rides outdoors on some hills if possible.

If you are unable to ride for the prescribed duration in the training plan then try to ride as long as possible outdoors and add in some extra duration on an indoor trainer if available. Typically two hours is as long as I would recommend for an indoor session. In this time try to complete the ‘main set’ as prescribed then add some extra time as a ‘free ride’.

Use the hills and group ride features on platforms like ‘Zwift’ or try a platform like ‘FullGaz’ that has video recordings where you can ride climbs like Hotham and Falls Creek that are part of the Peaks Challenge course.

Is it okay to miss a specific training session if I want to participate in a scheduled training ride?

There is great benefit in riding with other people who are training for Peaks Challenge, so I would always suggest joining a ride if you can.

We will do our best to align the training ride session with what is in the training plan. However, If the session does differ then focus on trying to get in the prescribed duration for that week to keep with the progression of volume in the training plan.

What are the benefits of the training camp and will it suit my riding ability?

The training camp is a great way to test your fitness and gain some confidence in your ability in the final lead up to the event. The camp caters to all abilities ranging from 13 hour target riders all the way to 8 hour riders.

The camp will help you determine your suitable ‘pace group’ for the event and provides information sessions including nutrition and key course tips. It is a great way to learn all the tips and tricks from experienced riders a month out from the event!

Can I ride more than the program specifies?

Yes! The weekly training durations are only a guide. If you have the spare time and it’s a nice sunny day get in some extras!

Just be mindful of any key sessions that are in the coming days. Some sessions are about ‘quality’ and focus on making you faster. Save some legs so you can did deep and gain the benefits of a harder session.

What if I'm not feeling it and miss a session?

If you need rest… rest.

If your body isn’t up to the challenge of a particular training session, then be smart and rest. You may need just the day off or may be a couple of days to get over a sickness. Taking a break for a couple of days, let the body ‘absorb’ the training and then resume training when you feel better.

Consistency is the key to improving fitness but recovery is just as important so don’t be scared to take an day off here or there. If you do miss a session or two don try and make them up. Just continue on with the program. If you are off for an extended period then start easy and ease back into it with some aerobic riding before you attempt any intense sessions.

Training tips & resources

Training Session: 2 x 20 min 90% FTP efforts

Dr Stephen Lane talks through one of his favourite training sessions 2 x 20min @ 90% FTP.

In this video he discusses how to approach the efforts and the key things to keep in mind when you are incorporating it into your training whether it be on the erg or on the road.

Build phase tips

Stephen talks about the key sessions of this upcoming training block and how you can tailor them to best prepare for your target time at Peak Challenge.
Stephen will bring you through getting some bigger climbs under your belt and dialing in your hydration and nutrition.

Projected finish times

Stephen runs through how you should be feeling after a big functional threshold training block and the importance of recovery weeks.

He also covers some tips on how to decide what your target finish time will be based on existing Strava times. It’s important to have a clear plan in mind of what pace you’re aiming for before event day.


Pacing Tactics

In this video Stephen and James Garriok (9-hour wave leader) discuss pacing tactics and talk you through how to get the best of out our body on the event day.

Stephen and James help you prepare a sound game plan for the big day and give you an insiders tips to the ‘do’s’ and ‘don’ts’ on how to achieve your best ride time.

Event Nutrition

Learn everything you need to know about your nutrition pre-ride, during and post-event.
You’ve done all the hard training so it is important to get nutrition right on the day so you perform at your best. Get all the expert tips so you can feel confident taking on the gruelling 235 km course in March.

Bike Check 101

Don’t leave your bike service/check till the final hour. Stephen runs through when you should get your bike serviced and what you should being checking. 

The last thing you want is a mechanical at the start of your ride. Don’t keep on putting this task off, book in your service early!

Packing essentials

2022 training camp highlights

Course tips

Join Stephen for an on location video where he covers all the critical points of the Peak Challenge course.

Falls Creek to Harrietville

Video #1 covers from Falls Creek to Harrietville, including the first decent and what you should look out for.

Harrietville to Anglers Rest

Video #2 covers from Harrietville to Anglers Rest, including hitting the Meg, CRB Hill and refuelling at Dinner Plain.

WTF to Falls Creek

Video #3 covers the final leg of Peaks Challenge as Stephen journeys from the iconic WTF corner up the grueling back of Falls Creek.

This leg will either make or break your goals and aspirations. 

Last chance to ride the legend. Your time is now!

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