Active recovery between workout

Hello everyone, first post here, and i’m beginning my first TR workout tomorrow.
i’m choosing 3 workouts/week to begin but i also want to add some active workout between each (maybe once a week). Any advice for me ?
good or not ?

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Depends what you mean - if you mean should you add some extra TSS on the days between the LV days then yes if you feel ok. Maybe start with things like Taku/Taku -1, Lazy mountain of the -1 version or Pettit-1. You could add some endurance like Pettit/Bald Knob etc which wouldn’t effect your core workouts but it wouldn’t be recovery exactly. IF you mean off the bike then go for a walk - I walk regularly when the weather is ok - does wonders for my mental health in winter when I spend less time riding my bike outside, burns some calories and gets me out the house during our lovely UK lockdown version 3!. :grinning:


I should have said more recovery workout instead of active recovery, just spinning legs zone 2 between my workout. Do you think it’s a good idea ?

Certainly - although there is plenty of intensity in the LV I don’t think that 3 days a week is enough on the bike to get the consistent training needed to develop a big aerobic base (unless you are are a triathlete and can get it from lots of pool time and some running). So any extra TSS you can get will help - so the 60 min zone 2 rides like Petit/Beech/Bald knob/Baxter-2 etc are very useful. You don’t want to go to mad though as the intensity in LV is no joke! :laughing:

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I think it’s a excellent idea!

For what it’s worth, I do the same. It helps me big time. Some easy zone 1 or 2 spinning between intensity days does wonders for the legs. Way more than sitting on the couch.

Another benefits, it’s an easy and safe way to add volume.

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Z2 isn’t recovery.

If you’re just starting out, better to go too easy than too hard. Try Dans or Lazy Mountain -1 @ Z1 and go from there.


I would highly doubt that it makes a real difference whether you do a workout around 50% and one around 60%. Especially in the 30 to 60 minute time range.

I mean just look at Lazy mountain (Z1) and Colosseum -3 (Z2). Both are 60 minutes in duration. 24 and 33 TSS respectively. So 9 TSS difference. For a half hour workout the difference will be even lower. Taku -1 (Z1) 14 TSS and Taku (Z2) 19 TSS. Both 30 minutes. That’s nothing.

So yeah, whatever feels good.


If you need recovery, adding endurance rides will delay that recovery.

If you’re feeling fine and don’t need recovery go ahead.

You’d be surprised when you’re on the rivet with regards to CTL.


Nah I wouldn’t. The typical TSS range of a low volume base plan is somewhere between 200 and 300 TSS. The typical error margin of a turbo is around 2%. So you do the math on the difference 5-10 TSS per week might make. Add resistance mode or outdoor workouts to the mix and you are looking at way more/or less.

At some point it’s worth to use our brains rather than blindly following a dogma. If OP wants to add some easy TSS to his weeks it’s perfectly fine. (Recap: He specifically said not active recovery). The only thing to consider is how he actually feels. Whatever he adds, it could be too much or just fine. Obsessing about 55 or 57% of FTP won’t help with that.

Edit: looking at OPs profile picture, he doesn’t seem to be a stranger to riding bikes and his appearance suggests he is fairly fit. At least if that’s a somewhat recent picture.

The title of this thread specifically says Active recovery.

I stand correct jdman wrote that.

It isn’t always about directly TSS. I, personally, could feel a huge difference between Lazy Mountain, Pettit -1 and Pettit that was much more dependent on how smashed I felt from the previous day or the first ride that day if I was doing 2-a-days. It came down to the power levels I needed to hit, not the TSS. I could have extended Lazy Mountain to get the same TSS as Pettit / Pettit -1 and felt different by riding at a lower power output longer. YMMV of course.

Op: I do active recovery on Monday’s and started with Lazy Mountain -2 (45m z1) and over time switched to Lazy Mountain (60m z1.). One other weekday I do a light endurance ride and have been using Pettit -1 (~45m z1, ~15min z2.). If you want to add straight Z2 / endurance its not to hard to search workouts and filter by zone and duration. There are a bazillion z2 workouts and its really a matter of picking one that has the desired ‘interval’ length for your attention span that day (i.e. pettit has 14-16min blocks before changing, baxter -1 is 2-4min before changing power, but both stay in z2).

I suppose the bottom line with all these things is go on what your legs feel like…if you are smashing it out of the park on the intensity days in LV then add some zone 2 - if your struggling a bit add some zone1 spins if really struggling stay on the sofa! :laughing:

I am just finishing my own recovery week I did Fletcher, Brasstown, Baxter, Whorl, Colosseum and will do Baxter today - with a run on Monday before the Brasstown day and one on the day I did Whorl…plus some easy walking…my legs now feel good. That say I have been doing a version of SS base with more SS and a weekly o/u. When I start build which I may delay due to doubts over UK TT (I may just do a 3 week block of subthreshold stuff like Mount Baldy/Kaweah etc) then I only use Whorl between the VO2/super threshold days to get a bit more recovery. Mind you I have been running/cycling/tri training for 30+ years.


We are on the same page. An arbitrary percentage wouldn’t be a predictor for success nor failure. Listening to your body and adding those easy minutes and hours as appropriate is key. Also quiting those workouts as required is important. Pretty sure it’s even in the ride notes on some of those rides.

Welcome! Drink the TR KoolAid and never be the same again. :laughing: for the better!

On the bike active recovery has never benefited me as much as other forms of active recovery. Especially during build phases. A 4km /40min (flat) walk gets just enough blood into my muscles.