The third partner of TrainerRoad is cycling coach Chad Timmerman.  He’s a level II cycling coach (soon to be level I), 3x CompuTrainer studio owner and great cyclist.  He clocked a 51:28.7 40k TT at 37 years old. I don’t think that’s even his best time.

90% of the workouts on TrainerRoad including our base/build plans are done by Chad.  When you curse a name during a workout it should be “Chaaaadddd!”.

Someone asked Chad a good question the other day and we thought everyone should hear the response. Now, Chad is a busy busy guy and can’t coach everyone on the site individually.  We would like to have him put great tips like the stuff below on our blog for everyone to learn.  If you have some good questions for chad leave them in the comments.  We’ll do posts about them as as time allows.

I have a question about the volume component to the training plans. I’m very familiar with Friel’s training method and as you know, during each week of a training block (especially during the base phase) the volume of work typically increases. I was actually in the midst of building my own plan using Friel’s training bible when I ran across TrainerRoad.  My plan was going to be based on 450 training hours per year, which during the Base 1 phase corresponded to 9 hours of total training in week 1, 10.5 hrs in week 2, 12 hrs in week 3, etc. Obviously the pre-built plans on TrainerRoad are not customized to the individual in term of total training hours week to week (with just one hour workouts Tu & Thu and 1.5 hrs on Sat every single week), so how would you suggest adapting these plans to account for the necessary volume piece?

Many thanks!

Here’s Chad’s response:

I don’t included any of the base mileage in my plans for two reasons: 1 – It’s possible to build a good aerobic base (not a terribly deep one, but one that’s sufficient especially in terms of sub-3hr events) with intensity alone, and 2 – It’s often understood that aerobic mileage is worked on during non-intensity days (Mon/Wed/Fri/Sun) based on each rider’s goals and training time availability, or put simply, it’s very subjective.

With that said, I’m in the process of developing some plans that make recommendations for outdoor workouts as well as low-intensity/base workouts that will be listed as “optional but encouraged” based on available training time. For many riders, 5-6 hours/week is all they have to work with, so it’s almost entirely devoted to intensity, but I acknowledge that some riders to have more time and that time is arguably well spent on base mileage if you want to cultivate a deeper aerobic base.

Finally, for riders with that 5-6hr limitation, it’s a great idea to double up on the weekends by repeating your Saturday workout on Sunday or grabbing next/last Saturday’s workout and doing that on Sunday as an alternative to logging 90min of base mileage which is very low-training-return.

Best regards,