That sounds correct, and actually they discussed this briefly on the podcast.
But to me this is not two different camps/theories…but there is one grand unifying theory at work here. Seiler’s work that observed the 80/20 intensity distribution was done on a different set of athletes. To be competitive on a national or even regional level requires a level of training that requires that level of intensity distribution.
But let’s do a thought experiment…if a cyclist is training 30 hours a week (not an unusual load for a professional cyclist)…and following an 80/20 intensity distribution…about how many hours will be intense work? About 6 hours.
Now, would the averge pro cycylist be doing 10 intense hours if they could? Yep. For sure. But 6, 7, 8 hours is just about all the human body can handle. So the pro cyclist is doing what a pro cyclist’s body can handle intensity-wise & filling in extra training with less intense work because they can absorb the training & the training still provides enough stimulus that there is adaptation.
The weekend warrior is just doing the training the elicits the most adaptation first. The 6 intense hours. The other 24 hours of training is super easy. So easy that the weekend warrior doesn’t even train at all…but to the extent that additional training happens it should not be intense.