Building a Climbing Base

I’m not a good climber.  Anyone have a suggestion for a workout plan that will help me improve?  Thank you in advance.

I’m working to improve my climbs too! 

I’d definitely look at some of our new Flexible Training Plans. Personally, I decided on the FTP Builder first, and then I’ll most likely start the Build Me Up plan. Hopefully that helps!


it is a trite adage but to climb you need to climb.  i wouldn’t do a work out plan but focus on hill repeats – if you are after power climbing, do the surrey hills climbs as well as the king/queen of the mountain (on those, since they are short, really push for a high wkg and go all out as no need to pace); longer then the epic is ideal (skip the radio tower as that is just a stupid grind) and adz. alternative between standing and sitting climbs as well as doing a steady pace (on a long climb) or pushing out intervals at high wkg relative to your FTP. on that point, my boyfriend is an amazing climber with about 1% body fat, and he has been using the world hack and just doing adz, accelerating one bend, resting the next – basically fartliks (he doesn’t necessarily do the full climb, just sets like an hour to work out) … and the new per bend timing is brilliant for motivation and tracking progress.      

i also look for high ratios of ascent to distance to get used to the accumulated fatigue, so we did a number of 100 km rides with 2000+m ascent on zwift this spring.   

you also need to get outside, as a stationary trainer doesn’t use the same muscles.  

and focus on your timing gains, not overall time. the zwift algorithm frustrates me – i am little & light so i naturally overtake on the climbs putting out relatively minimal effort–but then today was pushing 3.4 wkg on the flats and unable to keep up with guys going at 2.5. so if you are not light, your climbing times may seem frustratingly slow. 

Gary D - Thanks for the advice.  I like the Climbers Paradise workout.

Stacey - I agree with your comments, I just recently moved to a new area and in our prior area we averaged 1500 to 2500 feet but now I’m lucky to get 600 so I was looking for a training program or workouts that would help to build back up that base I had.