HV or MV for SSB, Build, Specialty?

Hey guys! I’m about to join Trainerroad after a long time, but I’d love to hear some advice in terms of my training.


  • I’m 26 Y/O and currently have a fair amount of time to train (10-15h/week). I started with cycling in 2016 coming from weightlifting, and I’ve always struggled with endurance (Great sprint power but horrendous FTP).
  • From 2016 to 2019, I was never totally consistent because of work, life, etc. My overall best was an FTP of 222W in 2018 weighting 70kg (3.14w/kg).
  • In 2019 I moved to a new country to study and stopped training (gym and cycling). By January 2020, I was 74kg and fat.


  • I finally decided to go back to train in January, and my first FTP test was 150W and 74kg (2.03 W/kg).
    Since January, I did the Zwift FTP Builder that brought me to 180W and 72kg (2.5 W/kg) in April. The toughest week was 547 TSS.

  • Starting in May, I decided to do something kind of similar to traditional Base in Trainerroad to target my endurance weakness. I Did a lot of Z2 training with around 10-14 hours a week and a weekly TSS of 400-600.

  • This week I did a test an found an FTP of 208W, and I’m currently weighing 64.8kg (3.21 W/KG).

I’ve decided I want to get more serious so I’m joining Trainerroad and I’m targeting a couple of races this December. I’ve figured out that I should probably do SSB2>BUILD >SPECIALTY CLIMB. But I’m unsure whether I should go with High volume or just Mid Volume? Right now, I have the time and commitment to stick to either plan, but I feel afraid of the weeks with TSS over 600 as so far I’ve been averaging 500. On the other hand, I want to maximize my chances of reaching 4w/kg.

First great job on the weight loss and ftp increase.

You’re probably doing yourself a favor with starting with MV or even LV. You can always add extra endurance on the days like in the MV plan if you feel fresh and can do all the key workouts.

Based on your history My guess is that starting a structured TR plan is going to give you another nice boost in your FTP (regardless of volume)

If you haven’t done much intensity/intervals in the sweet spot and threshold range, the last ~6 weeks I’d even recommend to start with SSB1.

Your goal at this point is much more to find a recipe that works and that you can build from, rather than to max gains over a short time with a potential risk of doing too much too soon.

I really think you should consider starting with LV and adding endurance days when you feel it (but still gradually).

MV and HV can be a big ask for some people and may be better considered as part of a long term plan and not jumped right in to. Having 10-15 hours to train is a lot different than actually training for 10-15 hours.

SSB can be quite brutal without you realising it. There’s no rest on a trainer so a 1hr session is maybe two or even three hours outdoors. Not only do you have to manage the work-recovery cycles through each week and plan but also the long term, chronic, fatigue that builds up.

The general recommendation on here, and one I subscribe to, is to start with Low Volume and add to it once you get a feel for what it’s doing to you, either with another workout or maybe a long Z2 ride outdoors if the weather’s nice. Much better mentally to complete the prescribed workouts than going for MV or HV and skipping workouts. You won’t have time now for the full 28 weeks of Base-1, Base-2, Build and Speciality so probably best to use Plan Builder to work things out for you.

Whichever plan you do go for be sure to write copious notes against each workout so you can look back and figure out what works, what doesn’t, etc. Easiest way to do this is to refresh your Calendar then click on the workout you’ve just done, then click on the workout in the dialog box that appears. This will bring up a new page in your browser that summarises the workout - power/HR during each interval, power in zone, etc. Scroll down and there’s a “Notes” field you can use.