Failing on 3rd Interval Day

A bit of a pattern is emerging. I’m working through on SSBLV 1 & 2. By the time I get to the third workout in the week I’m really struggling to finiish all the intervals. Typically I’ll pull out in the last interval. I’ve tried taking a short break and restarting but I’m just cooked. I’m putting this down to age and accumlating fatigue in the wek which also includes a 4 hour club ride which can be a pretty hard (I’m 56)
Sub threshold endurance rides are less of a problem, I’m cosidering substituting an endurance ride for this 3rd workout then at least I’ll complete something instead finishing the week on a low note. Alternatively I could reduce the number of intervals or reduce the power on the planned program but it’s hard to know where to pitch it. Whats the best way forward. By putting in an endurance ride it seems to be changing the plan to a more polarised shape?

Any advice appreciated


I think you should just skip the weekend workout entirely for the time being.

If you’re coming in from no structured training, tacking on just two 1-hour structured rides to your existing club ride is already a huge increase in weekly training stress.

Workouts are generally useless if you have to struggle through them.

3-4 hard workouts at 50+ is a lot, I think most will agree. I can’t do it, at least not beyond a week or two. I ran myself into the same hole you’re describing.

A couple of patterns I like are to sub an endurance workout in mid-week most (if not all) weeks, or to occasionally (like every 4-6 weeks) designate a hard group ride as a “race”, and do an opener workout like Laurel on the Friday before.

The latter gets me to stay out of the trap of riding things the same all the time. This has worked great for me so far - I just hide out most weeks on group rides, then come out and pummel people (or at least myself) every few weeks. So much more fun… Seeing how much harder I can ride these with the right planning has given me a real confidence boost in my program and the path I’m on.

Yeah, what they said. The 4 hour intense club ride should be thought of as an interval day. You’ll probably see good steady gains on one interval day, the 4 hour club ride and 2-3 endurance rides.

I’ll just add to what others have said that you can stretch out plans if necessary. So keep the group ride and do the three main TR workouts over 10 days. That way you’re still hitting all the workouts. Just, instead of skipping Saturday, bump it to Tuesday, bump what you would have done Tuesday to Thursday, and so on. It’ll take extra weeks to get through them of course but if it’s as much work as you can do and recover from, it’ll be the full benefit you’re capable of reaping.

Thanks guys, won’t feel so guilty about dropping the third session now. I’ll play with swapping for a Z1-2 and see how that goes.

If you’re cooked by the third day, and the group ride is a must ride thing for you (maybe this is why you want to get faster), then as you mentioned, work around that and sub an endurance ride in for this third day that you’re failing it.

Or, experiment with how you do if you skip the group ride and smash the intervals.

Maybe you only do the group ride every other week; it could be holding back some gains. Hard to pinpoint here, but worth thinking about.

I wouldn’t jump to saying that subbing one endurance ride in makes it polarized. Polarized is much more high intensity.

Good luck!


1 Like

Are your fueling during the workouts? Personally, I find that workouts > 1hr (ie. the ones you’re failing) are easier if I take in some carbs (gel/sports drink).