Are over-under workouts suppose to be this hard?

I did Carpathian Peak +3 today, and I’d done it a year ago too.

Two massively different experiences at virtually the same FTP then and now. I was cal restricting then and cracked it on last year. The whole thing felt like a massive brutal slog fest. Really nasty and I was dreading it today.

Today was a peace of cake - the only bad part about it was knowing that I was on a long 20 minute effort and won’t be going anywhere for a while. I had been cal restricting this block but this week I had two days where I loaded up before the heard workouts, like 2 to 3k cal over like a pig. But the workouts the next day felt like I was a proper boss. DHL guy interrupted me on last block so I had an extra 30 sec rest but it was near the very end and felt fine anyway. Probably would have needed 25min or 30min intervals to really get into a mess.

Sometimes it’s just about energy availability and not stamina. I felt like my Petit yesterday was worse as I’d cal restricted the day before. Wasn’t horrible but I had that slightly drained ‘don’t want to be on the trainer’ sensation slightly nagging away on each push of the pedals.


I’m so happy found this thread. I feel like less of a failure now. I’m new to Trainerroad road and made it through my first two over under workouts but couldn’t make it through McAdie last week. I have Palisade scheduled for tomorrow and am scared. After reading through this I’m going to make sure I have my fan on full blast and a ton more fluids.


Have a read and welcome to the club:

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I haven’t done McAdie +1 yet, but have it on my calendar on a week from today (I’m doing SSB1 mid volume right now). I am little scared since I didn’t make it though the McAdie where the “under” was the 2 minutes instead of the “over”. I have Over- under today and am mentally planning for them. I just feel better knowing I am not the only one who struggles with them. I didn’t know I could adjust the percentage down, but hope I don’t have to result to that.

There are many Over-Under threads on the forum, I’d suggest giving them a read for both mental and physical tips & tricks to help you conquer these workouts. :+1:

Abdominal cramping is a sign of inadequate hyrdration. Be vigilant of the hydration and electrolytes. Good luck!

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Fuel as well.

I had a bastardised version of Palisade this morning (same work but reduced recoveries/ warm up/ cool down to get to 1:15), and found the first interval hard.

On waking I had a gel, finished a carb mix bottle before first interval, RPE was definitely less for rest of the intervals. Not enough to crank up the intensity, but I really struggled through the first interval, less so as it went on.

Threads like these are why I prefer SSB HV… although the vo2 max intervals in build are probably going to slap me in the face.

Yup. Same deal, I did SPBHV and SSBHV and the last few minutes of the ramp tests were becoming so terrible I had to switch to a different protocol! The saving grace is that VO2 fitness comes along relatively quickly so it shouldn’t suck for more than a couple of weeks.

I will, however, admit to doing a bunch of O/U workouts on purpose (wtf?!?). I did them the previous year before joining TR and OMG were they horrible! Ha! So I bit the bullet hard and trained to turn that weakness into a strength. If you took a poll of the most loathed/feared workouts it’d probably be a 50/50 split between O/U and VO2max.

Over-unders are my Kryptonite! I don’t think I’ve finished one as prescribed yet. Give me just about any other type of workout and I’ll get through it.

Oddly, over-unders are my bread and butter. It’s the workout the following day that ends up tearing me to shreds because of the latent fatigue.

Now put me on 2 or 3-minute VO2 intervals and I’ll rarely complete them as prescribed. The intense fluctuations of my heart rate up and down that quickly just crushes me. Feels much more steady with over-unders for me.

I find over under easier than holding threshold or high ssweetspot. I’m mentally weak and like the short segments

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Over unders should be NAMED instead PAIN over PAIN.

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Did Palisade today after a 7W FTP increase half way though SSBMV1 (Running alternate 3:1 work/rest variant) this week.

Hardest workout I’ve ever done…period! HR constently peaking around 95% of max. Over/Unders are not my strenght. Also, probably not smart increasing your FTP throughout SSBMV1, because the workouts are already getting harder every week.

Not looking foreward to McAdie +1 next week.

You’re a rare breed. I’m the exact opposite. Give me a 9 min interval @ 105%FTP, I’ll nail it. Give me a 9 min over/under interval that fluctuates between 95% and 105%FTP and I’m smashed.

I think it’s a mental thing more than anything - being able to deal with that really uncomfortable “recovery” section. I like to go hard, settle in and when I recover, I just noodle.

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Yep, me too!

I don’t mind over and unders, I certainly don’t find them easy but I much prefer them to long intervals at or just above ftp, those are just mind numbing.

You aren’t the only one. I prefer supathreshold efforts over overunders every time.

Actually I’m beginning to wonder if I can just replace my overunder workouts with supathreshold efforts at 105% for the same time.

+1 on the miserable side here :joy: absolutely botched Palisade today, did 2 full sets of U/O, next 2 were a joke, didn’t even attempt the fifth one… Granted I have been in the sick house for a week but still, U/O are mean :rofl: