Considering TR for my training needs going forward but since I have never tried it before, I thought I’d ask these questions to ensure it will work for me.
Is there a plan or any other single ride feature that will allow me to continuously train even if I don’t have a specific goal? I understand this is a hard one, but what if I just want to maintain weight? Or just spin the legs a couple times a week?
I have been training for long endurance events including considerable amounts of climbing with a coach but if I were to stop with the coaching services, is there a plan to cover that kind of training that will also tell me the recommended amount of outdoor riding, distances, elevation gain etc?
What if I just want to maintain fitness? Is it straightforward to choose a plan for that? Being fairly new to the sport, will I be able to look at the plans and know which one I can choose to maintain my fitness?
Thanks for the help.
There are some maintenance plans for those who are time crunched or just want to keep fit without any particular goals or race targets. That sounds like the closest fit to what you’re looking for.
If you want to target an endurance event with a lot of climbing then there are plans targeted at exactly that, including a century plan and a climbing road race plan (plus various Base and Build plans that you would do before that). You choose the plans based on your goal race(s) and training volume, then tailor or add to them as needed. You won’t see any elevation or distance goals, the training is all structured by power and time. Obviously if you’re going to be doing an event with a lot of climbing then you would want to do some of the sessions outside and on hills to replicate race day.
Edit to add : there is also a thread where you can ask for a referral code to get a one month trial of TR. TrainerRoad Referral Code Requests & Sharing
Suggest giving that a go. My N=1 is that TR is a great resource and gives you the plans and tools to train very effectively without needing a coach. The plans are a great starting point, but I think to get the most out of it you also need to use the forum, articles and podcast to understand how best to use the plans, and how to tailor or add to them to fit with your personal objectives, limiters, training time, history, etc.
Welcome. There are enthusiast plans that don’t follow a specific goal, such as Maintenance Plans or 45-minute “Time Crunch” workouts. However, TR is very flexible and even the structured workouts are meant to be flexible. Most new riders start with the “Sweet Spot Base I” program, but the plans are not absolutely rigid. Since the plans are flexible and set more as a “guide”, you can move weeks if you’re sick; you can skip, substitute, or delete rides if you want to ride outside or want a break; you can add extra workouts from other plans (or even from something like Zwift, which many of us do to break up the monotony if you have both subs); or you can do the plan as-is and reap the rewards.
Riding on the trainer is rarely what any of us would consider enjoyable (certainly not nearly as enjoyable as riding outdoors), but if you stick with TR it is very hard to argue with the results and TR makes it as enjoyable as possible. I have a full time job and two kids… no way I’d be able to get the saddle time and progress without structured indoor workouts and TR programs. The consensus is that 1 hour of indoor training is about the equivalent of 2-3 hours outdoors, and I believe this is generally true.
Like nearly all of us on this forum, I don’t work for TR or have any financial stake in the company, but I’m a firm proponent of solid products that get results, and I fully believe in the TR product, team, and vision. I think you’ll find that this consensus is fairly commonplace on this friendly and informative forum.
Why not give a full base, build and maybe even a specialty plan a go? You might not have any specific goals but it’ll work you towards good fitness for summer next year and then you can try some things out. I’m in a similar situation, new to TR and just started a high volume traditional base plan (although sweet spot base seems to be recommended).
You can always customize your plan.
Assuming you are in the northern hemisphere, now is a good time to start base training.
Jump on the other thread and try it free for a month
To add, it’s the flexible calendar feature that is probably the most important thing for me. The plans are good and developed well however like others have said I think TR works best when you understand the science behind the training. For your goals TR sounds like a good fit.
TR is pretty much infinitely flexible. Whatever you want to do there are probably five or six different ways to accomplish it. I’ll just ramble on about this one…
If you just wanted to spin the legs a couple times a week…a few ways to do it:
1.) Go to the workout library & use the super-cool filter feature to find a suitable workout. Let’s say you’ve got 45 minutes. Ok. Go to workouts…click the ‘Endurance’ box under ‘Zones’ and the ‘0:45’ box under ‘Duration’. Birch is right there at the top. I like that one…click it, load it, go.
2.) If you know the workout you want to do, download WorkoutCreator & create the workout yourself. Personally, I have a 2 hour spin-the-legs workout that’s just 50% FTP for two hours. Strictly a recovery workout. I don’t watch TV often but when it happens I try to make sure I’m turning the cranks doing this workout.
Once you’ve created a workout you can use the Workout Filter to find it. Just select the ‘Yes’ box under the ‘Custom’ filter option.
As a person who is doing TR purely for improving/maintaining health, I could not recommend it enough.
What Ive done is start with ssb then the joy of not being a racer with more specific goals, you have the freedom in dabbling in everything.
TR gives you an insane amount of freedom and its all structured so you cant go wrong!
Sincerely appreciate all your comments, reviews, suggestions and explanations. I got a 30-day trial referral code to explore TR and learn more about it. Thanks guys!
Don’t forget the podcast. There is a ton of information in the podcast. It’s free but it’s worth what I pay for the TR subscription.
I watched the podcasts for 3-4 months before signing up with TR. I’d even say all the free stuff — pods, forum, articles — are worth more than the actual service.
If you had the time to troll the ‘What Workout Did You Do Today?’ topic (5,000 posts!), you could probably cobble together a (very) poor man’s version of any TR plan without even signing up.