Build phase now too easy?

I’ve been on TR for more than 4 years now; it has been quite good so far.
Now i’m on week 6 of general build phase and with the ‘new’ plans i find it so much easier to what i was used to.
There are no Vo2 efforts longer than 2 minutes and none up to 120% of FTP; my HR so far never did go over 170 (my max is 185). No workout leaves me done. It just feels easy; and FTP increase shows it too, having improved very little, less than usual.
I just don’t see it working like this; what should i do? I gave a look to adaptive training, yet even switching early access on the plans are the same…
I’m sure it is my fault for not understanding the new changes, yet TR is clearly working much worse for me now. I hope to find my groove again or i’ll consider something else; i have been quite disciplined with the boring trainer and the results helped stick with it. With no results, i might as well just go out, ride and have fun. Or try another platform.
Thank you for any help!


Turn Adaptive Training on - you won’t be disappointed! The training plans start out at an easier level than previously, but as soon as you start the plan and mark workouts as “Easy” then the plan will start to adapt and bring the difficulty up.


I am so pleased that someone else is questioning things.

Like you, I’ve been with TR for several years and would consider myself to be a big advocate of the platform. Since accepting my invitation to the AT feature, I’ve felt really rather underwhelmed.

I do appreciate that ‘not every workout’ needs to leave you feeling shattered but, I believe that with the exception of the past three weeks (COVID recovery), I’ve stagnated like never before.

Since May-June 2021, I’ve seen very few suggested adaptations to my Plan Builder originated plan. Maybe AT knows something I don’t about me as a cyclist but I get nothing from noodling on the trainer for hours on end.

For the month of August I reverted to using TrainNow for workout suggestions. I’d swap the suggestion in on the morning of the workout I didn’t like the look of. I guess this course of action essentially ‘broke’ AT but I did feel like I was getting some stimulus.

Add this to the constant issues I’m encountering with the new App running on an iPad and I’m about done for this season. My A event is in three weeks time and I think it’ll be time for a review.


Well, to me there were a few worrying signs:

  • As stated previously, throughout the whole build phase, there was not a single workout i would define very hard, let alone all out.

  • My FTP progression is reflecting poorer results.

  • I do see by myself when a wourkout is too easy and sometimes swap for a harder one, only to find that one is easy too.

I’m sure they are putting a lot of effort on the platform to make it better; but at this point, on this end, it just feels like marketing BS. All the blurb of AI, deep learning and all the cool geeky terms of the moment are giving me back a worse result for my many hours on the trainer.
Again, i like TR more than all the other platforms i’ve tried over the years; and i’m sure i am missing something on how to get the most of it. But disappointment is growing, and it’s not helping with the dedication and motivation needed to hop on the trainer.


If you want it harder just simply do “baseline” week.
In the first week of training do the hard workouts you think are doable for you and then you will get base for your training levels. Then progress from there.


I’d be keen to know how much of a chance you’ve given AT?

You’re original post said “I gave a look to adaptive training, yet even switching early access on the plans are the same”. They should only look the same until you’ve done a few workouts and let it adapt. After that, if you’re answering honestly on the survey responses and not seeing the plan change, I would contact support because that does not gel with my experience of it.


Sorry, but i fail to understand.
So far to me it goes like this:

  • Pick a plan (i do base I, base II and build normally)
  • Do the ramp test when required (first one normally, and halfway on the build too)
  • Follow the plan
    Before they were very well adjusted according to the test and it felt like that.

I will probably give it a chance BUT: first of all it is not really a standard feature; second, i have been happy and getting results without it: now the regular plans have changed and build is way easier and not really helping me improve.
Maybe i will just treat the last weeks of build as extra base and start a new build phase with AI; but why does it have to start easy and then ask me to say it is easy? With the ramp test (and if it wished all my 4+ years of workouts data available) it should be enough to start pretty close to correct intensities and durations; it was good before without any AI…


You just called it marketing BS and said it’s giving you back a worse result without actually trying it.

You’re right that it’s still in beta, so it’s your call on whether you want to go down that path. It’s understandable if you don’t want to do that right now. Without AT, I do agree that the baseline plans are now much easier. What I was doing before AT was using the workout levels and alternates feature to make my own substitutions if I felt they were necessary. You could try that.


Last thing i want to do is getting into arguments, but:
I did not actually call AT marketing bs, i wrote that it FEELS like it - not the same.
And the wrose results are from the ‘new and improved by AI’ plans or whatever they are called; i do stand by that: the old standard plans made by the coaches were working better for me.
Your suggestion to pick the alternates according to yuor judgment is what i hve been doing the last couple of weeks, more or less. Not ideal by a long shot and not the way a training service is supposed to work; TR itself, just to repeat it again, was working much better for me before.


I agree that the baseline plans feel a bit easier then before. But I’ve also seen stories on this forum on how now everything is doable, people a way more rested and really nailing every workout and see beter gains then with the old plans. Think this is because every individual just need their own stimulus. Might be more for you.

I’ve also seen the benefits of AT and how it adapts the workouts. They start easy because the system needs to get to know you. You really have to give it some time and perhaps even nudge it in the right direction. With the workout alternatives it’s really easy to select a workout that targets the same systems but is a bit harder.


There is just one simple problem with this logic - by doing year over year exactly the same, you cannot get better every year by the same amount. Even if the TR plans are now easier for better compliance.

My suggestion was:

Pick a plan (let’s say build)

Do the ramp test (I do not want to start this as it was widely discussed on the forum)

Follow the plan:
SInce TR offers AT and workout levels, and you know the workouts are too easy for you, during first week pick manually workouts that you think are on par with your current fitness. If you have finished them, treat them as baseline for your progression. TR plan gives you a template of what kind of workout you will be doing a given day. For example: if your workout for this week is Kabati ( Sweet Spot 3.0) pick manually (using workout alternatives for convinience) other workout that is better suited to your abilities, for example alternative will be
Three Fools -2

So TR plan gives you overall structure but you choose how you want to progress with the workouts.

1 Like

Indeed, i’m not asking to train the same and keep improving; i’d like to go back to the same FTP i was after last build or thereabouts. I was 260, now 239. In the last 4 years i was passing 250 after base and build. If i was feeling that i was putting in the same effort and getting inferiors results, i’d look somwhere else; but i do feel i’m training lighter so that is probably not a coincidence.
By the way, with the current plan, i struggle to even get in the ‘green’ zone in fitness page; before i was using it to make sure i was not risking overtraining.

If it goes down this route, i’d seriously consider switching or just preparing a plan myself; after all by now i know the ‘overall structure’ of both the plans and the workouts.
And it is clearly NOT how they market the product: they clearly state that the system uses all the data to assess your fitness and progress in order to present you with the best program and workouts for you.
From my understanding (never tried it) Xert does this and much more, and have been for years.
For an overall structure i already have Friel’s book too…

So i will give AT a shot; if indeed it works as advertised i’ll be as happy or more as i have been in the last few years with TR.
If not, probably time to move on.


this is the way


Basically it does - if you have done vo2 max lvl 5 and marked it easy it will push harder workout next time. Currently it works this way with plan builder. You can use alternatives when doing “old” plan. I cannot elaborate more because I am not using any of the plans and even rarely the workouts as I take a lot of pleasure for managing my plan and workouts myself.

And xert is completely different thing, and despite many pros it has never worked for me as a tool and I was never convinced to use it.

if you aren’t pushing yourself hard when it needs to be hard, you have no one to blame but yourself.

I’m not saying it’ll work for everyone (or even me in the long term with TR) but I’ve went back to my pre TR (coached) style of training with ERG switched off. On days when I find it too easy I have the freedom to push that little harder but on day I’m not feeling it I can go that little softer.

There might be several reasons for this.

  1. Compliance. If people sign up then fail a bunch of workouts, they are more likely to quit
  2. Psychologically it is better to see yourself improve from a 1 to 6 than worsen from 10 to a 6
  3. More likely to find the right level. If I start at a 10 but fail to a 5, it might be that I am actually a 6 but my legs were fatigued from previous failures.
  4. New people to the product probably have lower levels. People who have been using TR for a long time can choose an alternate that will get them to the right levels after a couple of workouts.

The question remains - why can’t it use historical workouts to figure out where to start? Well, that could be because the context of when you completed it matters. It also doesn’t know if you thought it was hard or easy. It also doesn’t know why you failed specific workouts. Historically, I have completed long SS intervals. If I tried one now, I would probably fail because I have not focused on SS recently. However, I have also failed SS workouts when I had my FTP set too high. It could probably look at the most recent month and get closer, but that is dependent on what you did in the month.

And here is the real beauty of AT: You think the new training plans are too easy. Someone else might think they are too hard. With AT, you can both get to the right intensity.


You need to be using plan builder for AT to adapt your plan. Looking at your PLs versus the plan, you’d be getting some adaptions.

If you’re basing the critique of the plan on your last ramp test, it looks like you only did one zone 2 workout in the 9 days prior. That would certainly leave me feeling flat and underperforming the ramp.

Gonna second some of the advice given above, turn on AT and give it a try and if you think certain progression levels are too low, do a workout where you can “level up”. As an example, I’m finishing CX specialty HV, and before the phase my anaerobic was rated 1.0 because I hadn’t done any workouts all year. I felt like those workouts would be way too easy, so instead of the ramp test I did an anaerobic level 4.0 workout and that established a better baseline for AT to work off of. I’ve gotten to level 7.0 with those and I’ve found the workouts to be pretty spot on for challenging.

The other bit of advice, since I know build and specialty can make endurance rides really easy. When I felt up for it, I’d do a longer endurance session rather than the scheduled easy z2 workouts. Just figured some extra endurance doesn’t hurt (as long as it didn’t affect my key workouts).

Also keep in mind, if you do turn on adaptive training, you’ll only start to see adaptations in your current phase, so if you’re in build, it’ll adapt build but won’t touch specialty until you get to that phase