Do I keep adding Volume or start to add intensity?

My slow increase of adding training volume feels pretty good. I’m currently on a modified GBMV where Tue/Thu I have added Z2 to make the rides 1hr 30. Wed is now a 3hr Z2, Sat I have added Z2 to make it a 2hr ride and Sun is a 4hr Z2 ride. I feel pretty good so far in terms of recovery and being able to produce the effort needed for the upcoming interval rides. I’m not sure whether to keep adding more Z2 or start loosing the added Z2 on interval days (Tue/Thu/Sat) and replace it with more intensity by seeing if the +1/2/3 versions bump the duration up to 1hr 30.

Any advice or thoughts would be great.

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Kind of depends if time is a limiter for you, either in terms of other commitments (work, family, etc) or psychologically (willingness to spend more hours on the bike!). If it’s not, then continuing to add more Z2 volume to a MV plan is a great way to build a bigger engine with very little risk of overdoing it.

If you can’t spend more time on the bike for whatever reason, that’s when I’d look at adding intensity. I thin the best way of doing this would be to look at the difference between the MV and HV versions of the plan you’re already on, and start to transition towards the HV plan. Can do this one day at a time - e.g. just swap Tuesday’s workout to the HV version. Once you’ve adapted to that then swap Thursday as well, until gradually you’re on the HV plan. Or on a hybrid that’s somewhere between the 2 if that’s what’s right for you. What you’ll typically find is that the HV version is usually longer but at lower IF e.g. a 2 hour VO2 Max workout instead of a 90 minute Anaerobic workout. If you just add more intensity by doing the plus versions of the MV workouts I think you risk overdoing it, as the plus versions typically raise the IF of the workout by doing the intervals at a higher intensity and/or by increasing the ratio of work to recovery.

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I think I could push to 15hrs at most without getting divorced by the Wife :rofl: But in terms of handling it mentally, I totally love getting on my bike and am itching to get back on it the following day.

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@cartsman 's reply covers the intracacies of the TR workouts fairly well.

The only additional point I’d like to make is that generally you are going to be pretty limited in how much VO2 and threshold work you can do in a given day or week. So increasing this is risky, if you go over your limit you won’t know it right away but will put yourself into a pretty big hole in a relatively short period of time.

Adding endurance time is a great way to increase volume once you’ve hit this limit, and something you’ve already discovered you can do as a relatively logical progression.

The reason I make this distinction is that just because you have essentially been training X hours of intensity a week and Y hours of endurance. You’ve slowly increased Y over time and haven’t seen any negative impacts. Increasing X is much harder to do and should be done in smaller increments with more time to adjust and assess the impact. So if you want to increase X try bumping one workout a week for three weeks and see how it goes before you adjust a larger amount

Ah OK, that makes sense just starting off with only one +1 workout for a bit and then going from there. I guess whatever I add I need to keep consistent in order to keep gradual progression of training stress? Rather than just doing a +1 as and when I can and possibly not having an upward line of accumulated stress?

Adjusting the training plans in this way requires a better understanding of the goals of the workouts than simply extending cooldown and adding additional endurance time

For instance the 2nd and 3rd Tuesdays in GBMV are Baird +6 and Bashful +6 which are both 90 seconds on 60 seconds off, but go from 120% to 122%, and then have some endurance work after the intervals.

You could either increase the number of reps per set from 5 to 6 or 7, but keep the intensity and work:rest ratio the same, or add a fourth set and then essentially remove the endurance time at the end, keeping the workout at the original 90 minutes.

However, I just did a quick skim of the workout catalog and it looks like you’d need to build those yourself - there don’t appear to be any premade workouts that would fit your needs for those specific examples

It sounds to me like you’re quite sensible about it. Personally I’d think you’ve worked up to 12h with already good intensity now, so that’s solid.

Here are some more impulses:

Is there something off the bike that you can do to improve training (nap, food prep, mobility/strength?)

Can you do a second ride (as short as 30min) of endurance? - this one really does it for me

Do you need to increase more now, considering that the plan is getting harder throughout the weeks by itself? Can you “just” hold on, let it sink in, and enjoy the Progression like it is now? You can always make the next step and add more time in the next base-build-cycle.

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I’ve had some great advice and guidance from other TR members on the Forum to get me to where I am now, so thanks to all who have helped.

So I should of mentioned the stuff I do off the bike also: Tue/Thu/Sat i do a leg focused muscular endurance circuit and Wed/Sun I do an upper body circuit using just bodyweight exercises. I stretch everyday for 20 mins apart from rest days. I initially started stretching due to an old injury and eventually the stretches just turned into cycling specific ones.

I guess I dont need to up everything right away as one of my pre req’s to meet a goal has been taken away from, not just me, but everyone (BC not awarding points for the remainder of the year for races).

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