Failing Red Lake +8 consistently, want to get advice

Hey all, I have restarted Sustained Power Build MV twice now, failing part way through Red lake +8 each time, I would normally just continue and chalk it up to not having a great day but I am worried that if I cannot finish Red Lake +8 I have no hope for the following Raymond +7 and Elephants +4.
I am currently doing a 2 week block of VO2 focus to see if that helps but wanted to get some outside perspective as well.

I was able to complete it last year at basically the same FTP I have now, so do I just need to quit whining and muscle through it? Please give me your suggestions/critique as I am definitely over thinking it!

Maybe try it at 95%. If you can finish that, then give it another go (after a rest) at 97%, then up to 100%. If you can’t ever finish it at 100%, perhaps you need to retest your FTP; it could have dropped for some reason.

So many possibilities - lingering fatigue from the previous workout, or the previous training block… and, 6-min VO2 intervals are a big step up from the 2-3 min versions you may have just hit previously. It may just be something you have to work thru gradually… (don’t keep restarting the block - just keep going and see if you can break through it over a couple of weeks of various but similar workouts).

Starting out at a lower intensity for the first interval or two is good advice; might try that. I do assume if you’re starting this block that you’ve done the ramp test and have a fresh FTP # you’re working from?

One thing I know for sure you don’t want to do: don’t presume the success or failure of a future workout on what happens today. It’s crazy how much things can vary from day to day. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve had great hard workouts the day after I just failed one, or had terrible workouts when the run-up to it seemed “perfect”. Ya never know…

Here are my notes from Red Lake +8 during Sustained Power Build last year: “Absolute killer.” :slight_smile: I can see that I took a 1.5 minute break in the middle of the 3rd interval and then turned the intensity down to barely above FTP for the remainder of the workout. This workout came a few days after a Ramp Test gave me the highest FTP of my TrainerRoad career. That combined with the novelty of this type of workout made it too difficult to complete.

I think it is acceptable to turn the intensity down on this. You may also want to turn down the intensity in Raymond +7 and Elephants +4, at least for the first few intervals. Perhaps by Elephants you will have become accustomed to this type of workout and you won’t need to turn down the intensity so much.


For workouts like this that are above threshold where you have doubts, I’d suggest self-pacing the intervals rather than adhering to the exact wattage.

So instead of trying to hit the exact target, try and pick a wattage in the same physiological zone that you believe you can hold for that duration across the entire workout. In other words, make sure you feel like you are above threshold, but worry less about the exact wattage.

Hitting 103-105% for the whole workout is going to be a more effective workout than trying to hit targets and failing half way through.


Thanks for the suggestions! I am finishing up this week with Mills, Dade +1 and finally Spencer. Already feeling stronger from previous VO2 workouts so hopefully I can get through these as well. Ill do a FTP test after a rest week and see how it goes, probably start it down a few% and bump it up during the workout if it feels doable.

SSMV Build phase and this is my first week.

Red lake +8 was the most difficult workout i have ever done. I just did my ramp test at the beginning of the week and My FTP raised around 15% now suddenly this badass with new ftp. I did not quit but power fluctuations everywhere.

I start well with 100 rpm and keep it there for 3 minutes and then try to hang around 95 rpm. I usually finished the interval out of the saddle. I hope this will help where i am worst at; climbing …