How long should warmup actually take?

I’m new to structured training and joined TrainerRoad only three or four weeks ago. I’m starting with Sweet Spot Base.

In each ride, I’ve noticed that my body isn’t fully comfortable / in a groove spinning at 90 RPMs for the first 15 to 20 minutes of the ride (usually, right about the time the sweat really gets going).

Should I be warming up longer to get to this spot before getting to the “meat” of each workout? As it is, the included warmup (which usually runs about 5-10 minutes) is a good thing, but would I be better off doing another 5 to 10 minutes?

Also, is this weird? It was never this way with running / rowing. I was usually a 2 to 5 minute warmup person.

Finally, I think it’s worth saying two things:

  1. Thanks for having this forum. While I don’t really post, I read it a lot. It is super helpful, and the community seems to generally want to help each other. It’s great.

  2. I have a Whoop Strap. I don’t work for Whoop or have any connection to it. But I did want to say it has been very helpful. Its strain / recovery measurements / recommendations help me with the cycling training. It can accurately predict my relative performance and how I will feel during the workout. A couple of times, I’ve moved harder rides a day or two based on that info. It also replaced my Wahoo Tickr X. I’ve worn both at the same time, and the numbers are basically the same. I highly recommend it to anyone.



Warm-up time is fairly individual. Age, training history, current fatigue, available time and the particular workout ahead can all be factors.

As a 45 yo, I often use the “Extend Warm-up” feature in the app to add 5-10 mins of easy spinning, especially if I have a hard Threshold or higher workout ahead.

Comments on the cast point to a range around 10-30 minutes for warm-up. The time and specific warm-up vary as mentioned above.

It sounds like you could benefit from more time, so might be worth a try if you haven’t already done so.

Not sure exactly why your warm-up time varies with sports other than the potential differences in muscle use and activation.


Thanks, Chad. It helps to hear that it does vary person to person and needing some extra time isn’t a bad thing. I think I may add an extra ten minutes. The first interval will probably be more beneficial if I’m completely warmed up.

And I’m 41. We’re in the same age group with me being in much worse shape.



I’d go one step further and say not only does it vary among individuals but you’re not necessarily going to have the same warm up experience every time. For example, how fatigued you are or what type of effort you’re warming up for can affect how you feel or what you need.

As for extending the warm up, realize that sometimes you’re never going to feel great so you might as well just get on with it. Some of that depends on what type of intervals are coming up. For example, I’m fairly comfortable just ploughing ahead into sweet spot but more likely to want to warm up a little more for VO2 max stuff. Then there are some days I can tell that I’m never going to feel totally ready.

As a general rule, I find the TR warm ups tend to be on the short side, both because they are trying to squeeze in a workout in an hour and from the podcast, it does not sound like Coach Chad is a big believer in long warm ups. Also, in all the podcast discussions of warm ups, I don’t think I’ve ever heard them discuss the mental aspect. Sometimes a guy just needs some time to get in the right head space before doing some work. So feel free to hit the extend button if you feel the need.


A lot of the workout texts also suggest doing the first interval at about 95% of the target power if you need longer to warm up. If you’ve got the time to extend the warmup, I’m sure that’s more ideal, but if you’re time crunched, this is an alternative.