How to start training after a long break?

Very short version: I blew myself up during Covid. Trained a lot (for me) and reached a new fitness level. But then was so sick of riding I never did anything with it and have taken a year plus off the bike.

How do I start back again? A TR plan seems like way too much from ground zero. Maybe just 30 minutes rides until I have some kind of “base”?

Would welcome any feedback on how others have approached similar situations.

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I’d say the number 1 priority would be to enjoy riding.

So imo the best would be to just ride whenever - however you want.
And not pushing yourself to ride if you don’t want to.

I would add a bit more structured ( although easy ) workout after a month or two.

Since you have some experience already, challenging yourself and pushing to the limits could be enjoyable from time to time, but be careful to do it rarely and to not hurt yourself or create too much fatigue.

When I come back from a long time without riding ( after injuries ), I always want to ride fast but I have to force my self not to.
I think it’s the key part.

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If I’ve had a break, then the first thing I do is low intensity for a couple of weeks just to get back into the routine more than anything. Traditional base 1 (low or mid volume) might be a suitable re-introduction

It sounds like you are fairly motivated to start riding again? Assuming you have an history of training I think you can ramp up volume quiet fast. As you suggest, start with something short to get your body comfortable on your bike again. You can then increase your time on the bike to your liking, maybe 15 minutes at a time as often as you feel is appropriate. Listen to your body, ramp up or ease off accordingly.

After a couple of weeks you could consult TrainNow to add some intensity. If you are healthy you can add some intensity pretty soon. You can keep doing TrainNow until you want to follow a plan; give it as much time as you like.

It’s been a while since I had any longer time off from riding but I usually find it easy to get going again. some base is still left in the body and will surface pretty soon when I start riding again.

I’ll need to look into TrainNow. I think that was just starting to roll out when I stopped riding.

I took basically two years off riding when my kids were toddlers. I did a bit of riding but nothing longer than 40 minutes.

I just started back with 30-45 minute rides for a few weeks, built up to an hour, and then some 3-4 hour rides with people I knew who were never “fast” or would be willing to wait for me. I did a week long bike touring trip (averaging 14 mph on flat roads) a few months after I started which was basically like a training camp. Doing 30 hours at zone 2 killed my butt/hands, but brought a ton of fitness back. Then i started doing some group rides getting my butt kicked and eventually came back to intervals 8 months after I got back on the bike.

So, ride short, then longer, then for fun - and then when you want to keep up with your friends again start doing intervals.

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