Feedback and clarification

I would love a workout program more suitable for my needs and age (66) so I need some clarification/justification on why I am doing these TR workouts. SSB2 High volume.

History…in August 2016 (63 years old and recently retired) purchased my first roadbike after doing mainly commuting in my working years and a weekly 10-30 km gentle ride with mates.

I progressed very quickly and I have strava segement pbs I can’t get close to now which I got in those first four months…basically over the last two years I have not improved even though I do over 10000km a year and over 200km each week but they have all been mainly Z2 rides. I keep up easily on weekend group rides,

The reason I thought I would start TR plans was to see if I could improve again. My first ramp test FTP was 202 and my latest just recently was 221 so it has worked BUT I wonder why do I put myself through 5, 15 minute SP intervals and in a few days time I have these VO2 intervals with sprint sessions ( FLUME) I think it is overkill for my needs…I don’t want to race.

Has anybody any ideas what sort of plan would be more suitable for my needs. I am currently on high volume SSB2. Completed SSB! low level to begin with.

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Your FTP is the power you can put out using aerobic metabolism in a steady state. It’s limited largely by how much oxygen you can process and how much lactate you can clear.

VO2 max intervals are the maximum power you can put out while still relying primarily on your aerobic metabolism. Your body can’t clear all the byproducts fast enough for it to be steady state, but it’s still aerobic in nature.

If you go through SSB 1&2 and Sustained Power Build you’ll be a menace on your group rides. Stick to those types of plans and you won’t be doing any ‘wasted’ work.

Hey Skulbow!

Even for a non-racer, VO2 max work can have a huge positive impact on improving your FTP, which will make you faster out on the road. While these intervals seem uncomfortable, that is actually their purpose. When the body gets used to a certain type of stress, that type of stress stops generating significant adaptation in the body. You need to mix in different types of stimulus so that your body is constantly trying to adapt. This adaptation process is what makes you faster.

If you’re feeling “gassed” by these workouts, our Head Coach Chad Timmerman suggests the following adjustments for Masters athletes who need a bit of extra recovery time. This will leave you fresher and more ready for the next workout.

  • Your week of workouts doesn’t have to be seven days. If you’re struggling to make gains, your body probably needs more recovery to allow more adaptation. Add the extra days of rest while maintaining the rest of your intensity. You’ll then need to adjust your training plan accordingly.

  • Doing your training sessions in the morning? When your Thursday session rolls around, has the fatigue from Tuesday’s heavy workout worn off yet? If not, try pushing that workout to an evening ride instead. Sometimes just a few extra hours of rest makes the difference. Any more adjusting may call for you to increase your ‘week’ of workouts.

  • The typical training plan includes three weeks on with one week of active recovery or taper. Feel free to manipulate this; Chad’s plans are designed to be flexible. Maybe two weeks on with one week off will better suit the adaptation capabilities of your body. You can simply swap week three and four, then repeat that recovery week again in lieu of week six’s planned week.

  • Maybe the active recovery sessions during the recovery weeks are still too much work. If this is the case, slip in some days where you’re completely off the bike, and perhaps it won’t be necessary to make any adjustments to your plan.

If you still feel that this plan is more than you’re looking to take on, you can look into the Traditional Base Plans, which are more steady-state endurance oriented. Keep in mind though that they will not generate nearly as much adaptation as our other plans.

Feel free to reach out if you have any more questions for me!


This jumps out for me, high volume plans are a load of work at any age, why not drop it down to the mid or low plan?

Also, it’s hard to be motivated to do these workouts if you don’t have a goal. Why not pick a few sportives over the year to enter?


I’m just going to say this. Sweet Spot Base II High Volume! You Sir, are a monster. There is no way on Gods green earth that I could complete that level of work.

Can’t add anything productive to what has already been said but I’m wishing you all the best with future VO2.


I’m a 62 year old female and find that 3 workouts per week is too much with not enough recovery time. I also lift weights twice a week and swim once a week. I think 2 rides a week would be enough to show improvement and have enough recovery time.

I’m not out to race just to keep up with my friends on rides. I only race in the local Senior Games once a year just for fun.

Would be nice if you could choose the number of rides per week and just have the TR plan take longer. To do this now, you would have to spend a fair amount of time with adjusting the calendar. I actually liked it better before the calendar was introduced because I could ride them in order on my schedule.

Is it better to just skip a ride a week or do all the rides but stretch out the time.

I have been riding the past two winters with TR and have seen performance gains and generally have liked the training. During the warmer months, I primarily bike outside and only do indoor rides if it rains all week.


That likely depends on available time to any target event.

  1. Drop a workout if you need to hold to the overall number weeks in the typical plan.
  2. Stretch the plan and include all workouts if you have more time or no time constraint for an event deadline.

Just to echo some of the comments above, I’d definitely recommend a LV or MV plan. There is very little time to recover on a HV plan and the build phases aren’t any easier.

The VO2 work is very taxing given the amount of time you’re training on the HV plan but would likely feel much more manageable with a couple more rest days each week.

At your age and fitness level, consistency is everything and there’s no reason you shouldn’t see even more improvement on a LV or MV plan with appropriate rest for maintaining the workload.

Good luck with your training!


So using this idea to adjust for more frequent recovery (2 ON, 1 OFF vs 3 ON, 1 OFF) … I assume that also makes all build and specialty blocks 9 weeks instead of 8 weeks?

Yep, that’s correct :+1:

Hi Elise. Physical stress from other activities, such as strength training and swimming are very real. You need to account for these stresses and not feel like you are failing in any way by not doing 3 (or more) TR workouts in a given week.

Given that your goals that don’t include an “A” race/event on a fixed schedule, I would use @mcneese.chad option (2) - stretch out the plan of choice - accounting for the amount of cumulative stress across all activities in determining what TR workouts to include/re-order/move in a given week.

Bob and Chad,

Thanks for the feedback. I will stretch out the training and do 2 rides per week.