Adaptive Training vs Pre-Judgement Day Training Plans

Without Skynet’s involvement, Coach @chad would have us starting SSB Mid Volume 1 with a Ramp Test, followed by Obelisk (E 1.0), Tray Mountain (SS 4.0), Starlight -2 (T 4.0), and McGregor -5 (SS 3.1). After a 5% increase on my last ramp test (back up to where I was in the spring) the first week of SSB Mid Volume 1 has been adapted by AT down to Obelisk (E 1.0), Seneca Rocks -1 (SS 2.0), Mono (T 2.0), Glassy -3 (SS 1.2).
The question is, if Trainer Road plans have always been designed around an appropriate ramp in training stimulus, why should the first week of a plan get adapted down so drastically? My worry is that this will have me doing too little work, with the AI slowly adapting from there. I’ve never had an issue going through the traditional progression in the past, even after long training pauses. I don’t think that Coach Chad would have designed a plan with workouts that were a training level *2 too hard for a cyclist who just set their FTP. I mean, these workouts are based on an appropriate % of FTP and decades of exercise science.

From what I remember from their podcast right after they released AT many moons ago, they admitted that the first week with a new FTP was potentially too much intensity at this new fitness level. They have a lot of data on their end and I think were seeing users failing workouts right after setting a new FTP because while their FTP was accurate, the body just wasn’t quite ready for the intensity/volume on that first week.

Not saying what is right or wrong, just repeating something stated on the podcast however long ago to try to explain why the first week is different, toned down. You can always just mark them as easy, feel great about being able to say and do that, and then let AT smash you from week 2 on.

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I think they still need to sort out this reset to 1.0 stuff that happens sometimes when your FTP changes. I don’t think that is the intention. Best thing to do here is to not adapt the first week. Do you workouts as prescribed, unless you want to go harder, and your progression levels will catch up to where the plan intended and you can adapt from there if you please.

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Thanks guys, I’ll go through the first week and see what adaptations result. If the first week feels too easy, and my “easy” responses don’t trigger a significant plan adaptation, I’ll change week 2’s workouts to “stretch” alternatives and go from there.

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Please feed back how the week went.

The threshold and sweet spot workouts did feel a bit easy for threshold and sweet spot. But, I couldn’t say they felt “easy” in the greater scheme of things, so I recorded “Moderate” in the post-ride surveys. It doesn’t appear that has triggered any plan adaptation for next week, maybe only a recording of “easy” would do that? Anyway, I’ll see how week 2 feels, I can always bump up the intensity on the last set or two if need be.

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For what it’s worth I’ve been manually swapping to more difficult workouts when they feel too easy even when adaptive training says it’s a stretch.

I’ve done this on at least a dozen workouts and never had any issues. I agree the first two weeks area joke after your ftp test.