High Volume Training Plan Mega-Thread

As someone new to HV plans I thought it would be nice to have a place where people can share their strategies for attacking those long trainer rides and tough weeks.

Feel free to share:

  • Entertainment choices
  • Nutrition strategies
  • Recovery optimizations
  • How you cope when life gets in the way of your training plan
  • Anything else that you have found useful in your experience

IMO the most important factor of a HV plan is not the training but the rest and nutrition (and time) required to support the training.

Eat a LOT.
Sleep a LOT.

Nail these two, in addition to reducing all other stressors (physical mostly), and you should be able to complete a HV plan.


I am also new to HV and agree with @Captain_Doughnutman. I eat a ton of carbs (steel cut oats, brown rice, beans are staples).
Focus on micro-nutrients from spirulina, leafy greens, quinoa, etc.
Supplement with vitamins (D, C, magnesium, calcium, zinc, bcaa).
A couple times I could feel myself getting a little run down and possibly getting sick and would follow this emergency protocol…

  1. Zicam immediately
  2. OJ with spirulina
  3. Lay around and refuse to do any chores around the house :grimacing:
  4. Take an Alka-Seltzer cold night time and go to bed very early
  5. Sleep 10-11 hours
    The next day I would be 100%.


not a TR user, but I’ve been getting ~15hrs/week this fall – most of it on the trainer.

what has been said:

  • eat enough
  • sleep at least 8hrs/night
  • naps after weekend workouts
  • back off – 5 days a week should probably be below AeT (or about 75% of FTP). the extra volume has to come from the low intensity, not from trying to add more tempo or sweet spot.
  • I don’t need music or videos or Zwift. Do enough 2 hour trainer rides, your head just gets used to it.

Secret weapon :point_up_2:



You have WAY more mental strength than I do…or want! :wink:


I did HV last year, and stopped midway through the build. During sweet spot base I found I just needed to make sure that I was eating lots of carbs. Weekend breakfast would be something like a box of Ego waffles (6 of those bad boys), then made sure I was drinking maybe 3 20oz bottles of gatorade on the bike, and then an EFS Ultragen shake after the workout.

I found that I felt great throughout SSB doing that, but the hard thing to me was there was nothing that went above SS during the HV base, so when the build started I couldn’t do the intervals that were above 100%, especially with how long they wanted them to be. After about 6 weeks of the build and feeling worse I went back to individualized coaching.

Had I not done that it would have probably been okay for me to mid volume and just add volume to keep the hours up. Build or speciality would have been too hard for me to complete but SSB was totally fine.



I’m about to end week 3 of SSBHV1, 53 years old and have been cycling for circa 30 years. I’ve not done HV before and what I’m finding is that I’m going into some of the higher TSS sessions with a feeling of dread as my legs are feeling pretty sore but once I’m actually into the sessions I am finishing them, I have 100% compliance so far which I’m very pleased with. I fuel for every workout bar Pettit and following a recent smart trainer purchase I’m riding at over 90rpm virtually all of the time. On my old dumb trainer I’d be considerably lower than this, maybe this is contributing to the soreness. Other than this it’s going well, no illness, sleeping well etc.


Reading the comments here and on other threads I get the impression that people are playing it a bit too cautiously.
I picked up cycling in March and went straight for the mid volume plans. Nailed pretty much all of the workouts.
Consequently, I signed up for the high volume SSB1 plan some weeks ago. Again nailed every workout. Wasn’t too hard to be honest. Every now and then my legs felt a bit flat at the beginning of the workout but that mostly had changed by the end of the warmups. Again nailed all of the workouts.
I did most of the rides in a fasted state. During the rides I only had water and coffee. Like I always do. In general, I did not change my nutrition for the plan.
Sleeping was down to 4-5 hours due to private/work obligations. But that was okay.
When it comes to entertainment it’s only music for me. Steven Lewises playlist on Spotify is my go to choice.
In addition to cycling I went for a few weekly runs. Which was fun. Though I guess this was the reason for the flat legs every now and then.
So long story short. I think people can get away with way more base volume than they think they can. Build is similar though mentally a bit more taxing. I keep them to mid volume. Almost done with the first half of SBPMV.


110% this

I’m just about to finish HV1 and this is a real concern for me. I’m still planning on starting HV2 since I need to have faith in Chad, but would be interested if anyone else has had the same issue when they moved into build

@hale1986 It was also an issue for me. Coming of SSBHV and starting SPBMV I had a really bad time doing the first VO2 workout in week 1.
Therefore, I replaced all the VO2 workouts of the first 3 weeks with easier ones (115%) and started the plan all over again. The O/U and 108% workouts are/were fine though. The strength endurance from SSB really prepares you for those. You just need to get that in your head.
I am now in week 3 of SPB and have nailed all of the workouts so far. FTP is up 5ish watts by now.

Are you young? An ex-pro? Or did you under test your FTP? :slight_smile:


Yes and no.
My progression was SSBL/MV > SPBHV > SSBHV. I found going from a Threshold plan back into SSB that the intervals were definitely not long enough. I effectively had to quit the TR HV plan and devise my own SSBHV plan. If you are going to repeat the Base-Build phases just be aware that HV might make you stronger than you thought possible and some plan adjustments may have to occur.

That said, doing 12 weeks of only sub-105% workouts definitely left my high end power flat. The last few minutes of the ramp test were a disgrace.

If you feel like this is the case, and you have the time, you can always take 2 weeks and do Coach Chad’s VO2max primer progression to get your engine fired up. Or just endure the first few weeks of the build plan.

Aside from that, this seems to be (naturally?) turning into a SSBHV thread. Has anyone started/completed a HV Specialty plan? :thinking:

1 Like

Are you young? An ex-pro? Or did you under test your FTP? :slight_smile:

I’m atleast not an ex-pro and i usually overestimate. I have the same feeling as Joey. Used a few years build up to and +250TSS above SSBHV weekly TSS with increased SST and Z2. But when i see people who has been training allot longer and strugle with HV plans i think its individual how much load you can absorb, also consistansy with high load over time with no big down time is important… I’m not a good sleeper when i see people get 8h+ (my avg for big plans has been down to 6h with days way below 5).

I do try to be a “100% athlete” with eating before/during/after and going to bed at same time every day all days which has increased my sleep time some.
All workouts before work.
Also no alcohol.

Nothing? No podcasts? Books? This blows my mind! Without some kind of entertainment I doubt I could do more than 1 hour indoors a couple of times a week. And I always think of myself as fairly mentally strong, I’m normally the one still pushing the pace or keen for one last extra climb at the end of a long ride when others are flagging.

I really think that people are selling themselves short when they are going for a lower version plan. If you are able to spend the hours, I think almost everybody could get away with high volume base. That’s at least what i experienced and I consider myself by no means special.
I picked up cycling this year in February. Hell, I bought the bike last year in July or so. Life is also pretty much what you would expect from a 30 year old. Challenging job, long commutes, and a busy private life.
Sleep, I don’t have too much time for, so I end up sleeping 5ish hours during the week and 8ish on the weekends. It’s just what it is.
Nutrition I keep simple. During the week I normally skip breakfast and lunch. So I end up doing most of my workouts fasted in the afternoon. Afterwards I eat. On the weekend it’s a bit different as I have to sit down with the SO to share a meal. Unless I workout early I don’t do fasted workouts there. Food itself is exactly the same she is having. So the usual stuff. Nothing endurance sports specific as she is not cycling nor running. I also don’t supplement with bars and gels or whatsoever. Never needed it for a 2-3 hour rides.
FTP, I think it’s quite accurate. I don’t test anymore but self-assess based on training performance. I think I have a pretty good feeling what threshold (like in Lamarck) should feel like. Based on that I set my FTP.

So yeah, just the average joe keeping it simple and enjoying cycling.

1 Like

So you sleep five hours a night, eat a meal a day during the week, train fasted, have high life stress, and have been riding since February?

I would guess either that A) you are missing your genetic potential to an almost hilarious degree or B) your FTP guess based on no testing isn’t nearly as good as you think it is, and you’re doing all your training at like 20% lower intensity than listed. Because all of that together would massively undercut even what TrainerRoad themselves have said about the plan.

Why not do a couple of FTP tests in the next few weeks? Ramp test and one of the longer ones, and really dial it in?