Can you go 'too easy'on a recovery week?

Hi all, currently doing LV general build plus following a running plan with 3 runs a week (so one rest day a week). After plateu in FTP for last 9 months or so, started to see some gains (introducing Rattlesnake as my V02 workout of choice I think has been difference (thanks Doughnut), but that’s another thread!).

However on week 7 and wheels starting to come very loose if not totally off and SO looking forward to the recovery week next week…so with that in mind - can you go TOO easy on a rest week? I planned on not even following the week 8 (recovery week) rides, just maybe going for 1-2 easy hour rides outside with my boys (ages 11 and 8 so NOT hard!) and 1-2 gentle 45 mins runs.

This would be significantly lower TSS than normal (as expected), but also quite a bit lower than week 8 of the plan - would this have an impact…or just stuff TSS (and related CTL) and soak up the rest and recovery!!!

Just thinking one VERY easy week in every 4 would make it very hard to grow CTL over time?

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I don’t think so. Some folks claim they don’t feel good that first ride after recovery, so you might want to consider that, but I doubt you will lose fitness during a recovery week doing what you are planning on doing.

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I think recovery weeks can be very individual so it would be hard to give specific info. However, in general, I think that the more in the hole you are going into a recovery week then the less work you should do during that week. Also, if you are a beginner or have lower fitness then you may need a lower recovery week to fully recover. And, if you have high life stress outside of TR then I would do less work during the recovery week.

Though these are probably just guidelines and ultimately the best recovery week is one that lets you shed the fatigue from the previous loading cycle and while also not so flat that you can’t get back to work the following week. So what exactly that means to you may need to be experimented with and learned.

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I dont think you can go “too easy”. The goal is to recovery, light spin everyday gets the blood flowing and helps you recover. The goal is to rest so that adaptation can occur. With that being said the first work outs back will be harder esp if you have an ftp bump.

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I saw something from Coggan on another forum debating the actual need for a recovery week, essentially only needed if you’re tapering. 2-3 days normally enough to be ready to go again was mentioned.

I guess it’s not just about the physical but also about the mental needs.

Personally, I just need those easy weeks. After a training block averaging 700+ TSS per week it feels so good to have an easy week.
Obviously physically but also mentally. Having an easy week with little structure is superb. It helps me to maintain the right mindset for when it matters with the next big training weeks.

To hit home OPs question. I guess it doesn’t matter much whether you ride a bit more or a bit less during those weeks. As long as you give your body and mind enough room for recovery it’s all good.


Absolutely :+1:

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I would say tone it down if you feel you need to. Do what your body tells you. If mid week you feel good then pick it back up. Take Monday and Tuesday completely off. That might be enough to get you ready again if at least just to get on track with the recovery week workouts.

Some recovery weeks I feel shot but, others I feel really good and might do a little more. I try to stay around the recommended TSS but they’re all just guidelines. In general keep the intensity down.


I agree with these that say to listen to your body and tone it down if you need to. You might even find that if you do that, you don’t need to take the whole week off.

Also, TSS and CTL can be useful tools but don’t let them take on too much importance. don’t let them be the tail that wags the dog.

My view is it’s far more important to focus on execution and the purpose of the workout. Like, if the purpose of the workout is just to get some very easy activity while shedding fatigue, tSS will be low, and you’re not doing yourself any favors if you go harder (to get more TSS) if it makes you more tired than you want to be afterwards. Similarly, if you’re trying to get a long endurance ride in, you’re not helping by going harder to get more TSS. Your CTL is higher but you just got the wrong adaptations and maybe accumulated too much fatigue.