2019 training plan question

Hi. I’m new to the forum and this is my first post.

My main target this year has been cyclocross season in the northeast, but for many reason, my prep to the season was not at all what I hoped it to be. I’ve completed just a couple of races (less than the ones that I have reg’d for) and at this point am probably just going to call it a season with the thought of properly getting ready for 2019 cx season.

I recently (literally last week) brought my riding indoors. Prior to this, I mainly commuted to work as my training (approx 21 miles each way, doing round trip days). I don’t plan to commute too much over the winter, but may add the occasional one way trip, but I expect those to be very limited.

Is it too early to start up for the following season? I was thinking of starting with a base plan and go through each phase as best as I can, with the hopes of being in good enough shape to move myself up in the standings (currently mid-back of the pack).


It’s never too early to start! Base->Build->Speciality is 12 weeks->8 weeks->8 weeks. So it’s a little over half a year from when you start to your peak if you follow the order completely.

Given you are more like 10-11 months from the start of CX season in the Northeast I’d suggest you have time to take a break now and go have fun on your bike, decompress from your racing and then dive into Base->Build. You’ll have to do the overall math on the dates - but you probably have time to do Base->Build->Base->Build->Specialize and hit your peak a month or so into the CX season in 2019

Thanks! I’ll back into when I should start and take it from there. I am a little nervous of sticking to indoors for such a long time though, but I am aware of the higher quality of riding indoors.

@Wera719, @trpnhntr has excellent advice here. A Base, Build, Base, Build, Specialty will have you incredibly strong for your season. Choose an A race and work your way back from that date for when you start this cycle. :slight_smile:

As for riding strictly indoors, as it warms up next year, you can still totally ride outdoors! You can simply substitute an outdoor ride for you scheduled indoor. The best way to go about this is performing a similar workout with similar TSS. Generally, we recommend substituting endurance rides and doing your intervals indoors in order to maintain the structure of those!

Thanks @Ian. I tried following some plans over the summer and basically substituted all of my indoor for outdoor rides. I’ll def try to keep the quality interval rides indoors, but at times, the outdoor ones become a hammerfest with the commuter group. Most of my commutes have a TSS of 100+. I have a powertap on my commuter so i can track those values. I thought that the TSS could be too high maybe because of lack of fitness? Meaning that I’m putting too much effort out for what my fitness can handle. Am I right in thinkning that?

When the weather gets nicer, you could switch to a low volume plan and supplement with 1-2 days of outdoor. Keep the quality high indoors and use your outdoor rides for skill work, group rides, or just having fun. It works a treat for me and gives a good balance.


TSS is based on your FTP and power zones and is a metric that tells you how much fitness you potentially got from your workout. If you are doing it, you can clearly handle it but a high TSS just means it was a hard workout and you may be fatigued from it. As you get stronger, your TSS for the same workouts won’t get lower, you will just have a different FTP that is higher so you will see similar TSS values.

@ian gotcha. thanks!

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yeah… good call on looking at the outdoor rides thay way. Balance is key.

Like @Ian said, you could consider the TSS for your outdoor rides so it tracks with your training goals and schedule - getting involved in a hammerfest group ride during a recover week is very tempting, but could throw things off track if you’re not careful!

Does that include both direction - 100 TSS in 21 miles would be quite intense for a daily commute

@trpnhntr that’s each way…

Do you have auto-pause on? 100 TSS in 21 miles, assuming fairly typical road speeds, would mean you’re doing 100 TSS in about an hour…you should feel absolutely exhausted at the end of such a ride. In theory, 100 TSS in an hour is the absolute highest TSS you can do

Is your power meter consistent with how you’re measuring power inside? Do you have the same FTP setting everywhere? Do you have auto-pause enabled with a ton of stops and starts?

@trpnhntr I do have auto pause on and at times there is some stopping because of lights, but not more than a handful of times mostly. I did an FTP test on my road bike (with pm) in the spring and have been using that FTP result since. I recently got a cycleops hammer trainer for my indoor riding. There is about 1100 ft of climbing on my commutes (each way), so not sure if that will also affect the TSS. I haven’t done an ftp test indoors yet, but I plan to shortly and will use that FTP value for my indoor riding.

Sorry, one last question - how long in time does this 100 TSS commute usually take you?

no worries!! around 1:20’ish

That’s still a really intense ride. My guess is that your FTP is slightly inaccurate or that the pauses are causing some mis-calculations in TSS (not properly accounting for the downtime at 0 watts can inflate TSS a bit). Either way - you’re working pretty hard in both directions. 200 TSS/day is exceptionally high, particularly for a commute!

hmmmm… so now, do I do an FTP test on my roadie? or using the hammer trainer? As for the auto pause, will that also affect my NP?

I’d do an FTP test inside on the trainer and record both the power meter value (via your bike computer) and the hammer value (via however you usually run trainer road - phone or whatever)

Yes - auto pause impacts NP - which then impacts TSS