Recent Flo podcast with Steve Neal

Yes. That is correct.

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I’d agree, but it seems you can do it by following traditional base and then build. At least, thats my interpretation as I’m doing traditional base right now.

Yea for sure, I think TR emphasizes SSLV too often without explaining maybe longer term goals because people like to see FTP gains and new people get those right away. I would guess that most people who start with a SSLV/MV plan based on a TR ramp test are actually doing threshold intervals.

  1. Steve doesn’t use FTP as a marker - I still haven’t wrapped my head around it.
  2. HR/RPE/TTE – honestly, he workouts seem very easy. And boring. Took me a while to appreciate that I was getting better without feeling smashed.
  3. I was able to do threshold workouts (sometimes) prescribed by TR base on Rolling Road Race “build” at the 300W level. Sometimes I’d nail them. Sometimes I’d backpedal a few times. Sometimes I’d washout.
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maybe people like you, but rest assured there are people at the other end of the bell curve and TR ramp test can just as easily underestimate. It all depends on where you are on the bell curve.


I would say based on this thread The FTP Challenge most people’s FTP is set to high if we define it as say a TTE >45mins, it might fit on the bell curve in terms of how TR has defined their training plans but it seems like what we are finding is that when push comes to shove people can’t actually ride at their “threshold”


Actually, let me clarify my answer to this question:

I answered a question about FTP, but the question was really about threshold intervals… and the answer is, I have done ZERO threshold intervals. None. I have done lower sweet-spot/upper-tempo work, I’ve done a lot of endurance work, and Vo2 work mostly in the form of 30/30s … but he has not prescribed any threshold work. Maybe he will in the future, but I’m kinda thinking he won’t.

This is really the point of why I worked with him. I truly come into every workout feeling relatively fresh. I was doing too much threshold and every six weeks I’d hit a wall and be toast for 4-6 weeks, then I’d pull myself out of it and start making gains again, and then go right back into a 4-6 week trough. It was his description of “adaptive training” in his first podcast with Flo that led me to reach out to him. I honestly felt I was doing it wrong - or, maybe I was doing it right, but it just wasn’t working for me necessarily.

I have a hunch age has something to do with this, and I didn’t have enough experience to adapt in the correct ways on my own. More than anything, Steve has given me the confidence to do low-wattage work and believe that I’m making progress. When I did it on my own before, I didn’t think I was getting anywhere. This is only my opinion.


FTP is a proxy for lactate steady state (lactate threshold, MLSS, etc), and even if lactate is measured in a lab that doesn’t mean you can go from “just riding around, or only done max 20-min intervals” to holding it for >45 minutes as there is a strong mental component to going long/deep.

That’s all I’ve got to say, I’m not going to debate it.

threshold work has a place in some training plans, but perhaps not for the type of racing you are doing.

Didn’t see it above but who is Bob referenced at the end of the podcast?

This sounds so similar to what I’ve been going through. I’ll be doing some testing with Inscyd in October and my coach will set up a training plan based on my results. I have a feeling (I hope) it might resemble your plan that Steve has set up for you.

I remember hearing the first Flo Cycling podcast that Steve did and I really liked what he was saying. I think I ended up listening to the podcast 5 or 6 times in total. I’ve had the same feeling every time I hear Sebastian Weber talk, too.


The ride is marked private but i get the idea and I appreciate the information.


Should be public now.

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thx, so basically Spruce Knob +3 or Golgotha or Wright Peak with some minor modifications.


It looks like your HR is c 155-162 in these; thats higher than .83 of HRMax?

I believe the thesis is that it increases muscular endurance - not specifically sure.

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Thanks for all these answers, it’s been really fascinating so far. Good to know you haven’t done any 3x20s!

I think my other main queries are about when you go over threshold. Steve mentioned that if a rider has a good base, it only takes a small number of sessions (or a couple of races) to get the top-end power required for races.
You also mentioned needing repeated power for 3 minute climbs, and doing 30/30 workouts.

  1. How many times a week would you do high intensity sessions?
  2. How far out from your event would you start high intensity, and how long would you do it for before tapering?

(This is important to me as I got dropped on lap 2 of my last hilly road race)

I think there was a bit more nuance to what he said. For the kinds of workouts he prescribes, 3 minute steps with fairly big jumps to test max aerobic power (not FTP) work well. However, I think his bigger point is that the appropriateness of a workout prescription relative to either FTP or MAP will depend on the connected testing protocol. You can’t consider workouts and testing protocols independently of the context in which they’re used.


Not if his HRM is 200!


Leading up to the race, we only did intensity once a week - and then it was 30/30s limited to 60 - 75 mins inclusive of warm up / cool down. I also did a practice race (a 60 minute road race) and he counts that as intensity.

I worked with him for two months before the race, and we didn’t do any intensity for the first month. None. In the month leading up to the race, we did it once a week as I said above. Also, there was very little need to taper because I never really was fatigued.

The one thing Steve has hammered into my head is that these short, spiky seemingly anaerobic bursts are not really anaerobic. They’re aerobic. And while I felt I had to consistently drill my 3-4 minute power, doing so limited my ability (due to fatigue) of more broadly developing my aerobic system. So, counter-intuitively, by working at endurance pace for longer, or working at lower sweet-spot/high tempo range while just touching up my high-end power it actually increased my ability to drill 3-4 minute repeats and recover from them. I didn’t really believe this to be the case until I experienced it.

I never would have thought it would have worked. But it did.

In the two months leading up to the race, I never did a single Vo2 interval that was longer than 30 seconds. True story.


Here is what my workouts looked like the week leading up to race day:

Day 1: 2:30 endurance ride
Day 2: 3:00 Endurance/Sweet Spot ride (45 min endurance / 15 sweet spot - repeat x3)
Day 3: Off
Day 4: 70 mins Vo2 - 30/30s with warm up / cool down
Day 5: 2 hours endurance (I only did 90 mins due to time crunch)
Day 6: 45 mins endurance ride
Day 7: Openers - 1 hour ride at endurance pace…every 5 mins a 5 second sprint.
Day 8: Race day