I get in 2–3 1-hr sessions during the week and these days and I can actually show up to my local club ride/race each Saturday now. The latter wasn’t the case for several years when the kids were younger.
I do TrainNow for every workout. I’m having to do 2 sweet spot workouts (45-55mins out of 60 mins) and 1 Threshold workout (25-35 mins out of 60 mins). That’s my time-poor ‘base’. I’ll start swapping one sesh for VO2 soon. It’s weird not doing any zone 2 but why bother when I only have 3 hours during the week?
This keeps me in a FTP range of 270–300W. Not super high but keeps me in touch (I currently live in a flat area so W/Kg doesn’t matter nearly as much, but it’d be around 3.6W/Kg). I would love to get my FTP higher again but it is what it is. It took a few years but I’ve accepted it and know that higher watts may be in my future as time opens up again. Age be damned.
You could probably do more hours, wake up earlier; we all could. However, I do not adapt well to more hours. I just dig a hole and get sick. This sounds like it could be true for you, too.
As for the kids’ hobbies and teams, we let them do a few and say no all the others. It’s our opinion that they need to learn how to manage their workload and commitments, too, just like us adults. As teenagers, they’ve dabbled in lots of things by now and know what they really want to pursue. Yet, there’s always more. I’m also in the US now but grew up in England. It’s a shame that sports and many hobbies aren’t set up the same. I could do all the sports I wanted because they were at school or the coach (bus) left from school, etc. Here, it’s money money money just to access a decent level of sports unless your local middle/high school happens to be state/nationally ‘good’. $3–4k for a volleyball or soccer club season… sorry kid, no. $800 for that regional choir… OK, sure (but damn).
On a more personal note, on one hand, I’m glad I did lots of hobbies and sports. They’ve had an additive effect to each other. However, I be lying if I didn’t admit that I’m jealous of someone that picks 1, maybe 2 things, focuses on them, and masters them. I’ve told my kids this. They can enjoy lots of things but if they want to master something, they’ll need to say no to other things. It’s also OK to not do that, just enjoy a variety. Autonomy for them, their choice.