I Didn’t Follow the Recipe, and I’m Appalled It Turned Out So Awful




Can’t I just drink some beet juice instead? :crazy_face:


Agree. And somehow they aren’t perceptive enough to realize they can’t cook.

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Your point about folks often not “following the recipe” is valid, but the general analogy to cooking does not hold.

Cookies will taste the same no matter who is making them (assuming the directions are followed). But everyone is going to respond differently to a cookie cutter training plan.

Athletes are not Toll House cookies!


I actually think that the problem is that the recipe (the training plan) doesn’t always fit the raw ingredients and the cooking environment available (the physiology, initial fitness, nutrition and time for training and recovery).

The problem is that it is much easier to estimate the success you might have with a recipe, than with a training plan. Most people will be aware enough of ingredients to realise that you can’t make spagetti bolognese without some sort of pasta, but many won’t realise that you can’t do good endurance training without quality rest.


Training is definitely like cooking. Everyone’s an expert when someone else is doing it :wink:


One way training is analogous to cooking is the difference between a trained cook who understands the basics in play versus someone who is just following a recipe but does not fully understand what is going on.

In cooking, there are basic precepts and techniques underlying cooking that once you know them, you do not need a recipe. A trained and experienced cook can be given an assortment of ingredients and, using their knowledge of what will happen if various ingredients are put together and prepared in various ways, they can create something tasty off the cuff.

On the other hand, someone just following a recipe who does not have true cooking knowledge is guessing once they stray from the recipe and the result is basically up to luck rather than design.


It’s just a cold salad. If you decide to cook it, you didn’t follow the recipe. :smiley:

That’s the whole point in the OP though. The complaints at issue aren’t from people who followed the plan to the letter and fell apart, it’s the ones that usually add over & above the plan to their own detriment.

  • Sugar is great and I love the way it makes cookies taste, why don’t I just double the amount compared to the recipe?

  • Hard intervals and intensity make me stronger, why don’t I add my hard group rides on top of the TR LV plan?

That is more typical of the deeper dives we see here on the forum and on the podcast.


Sounds a lot like FTFP to me. I hate FTFP.


Sure, but the ‘why’ matters to some while not at all to others. TR does a fair job of including at least some ‘why’s’ via the Description and such within their workouts. IF… people bother to read those, they can learn something at least.

TR used to include the Weekly Notes that were additional insight to the higher level planning of which workouts were applied to a given week. Yet another step higher (and still present) are the Plan/Phase notes. Point being that TR offers a fair bit of info right at the fingertips of the users, that is some level of educational opportunity. It’s surely not the scientific or experiential foundation that some people might like, but it’s plenty for many and a whole lot more than nothing. And then there are all the other educational tools TR offers (podcast, blog, forum) that are worth the time.

All those items offer the chance for a person to better understand the plans at their face value, and potentially make adjustments as needed. Swapping TR workouts for outside rides is the key place that seems to cause issues for many users vs the pure addition that happens in many cases.


and always make notes for yourself, for the next time you use the recipe!


Indeed. I make notes for nearly every ride I do on TR. I have a template that is the headers for topics I try to hit each time. Range of stuff that covers the before/during/after of the workout. I revisit them at times to hopefully learn what I can from prior experiences. I don’t re-read all of them, but the ones I do are enlightening most of the time. :+1:

Exactly, I mean can anyone really be surprised that the recipe for this bologna cake doesn’t turn out?

I get what OP is trying to say. If you don’t even try to follow the plan, that’s on you. But it seems glib to just blame every user who has issues with the TR plans without even thinking, “hey could it be possible that for those users, the TR plan is more bologna cake instead of chocolate cake?”

  • Who made this claim? The OP used a statement that was far from claiming EVERY USER.
  • I’ve said it happens in some cases but never claimed all. Truth is that there are examples of users AND TR causing issues here. The OP just seemed like a funny observation to me and not an entire write-off of criticism of TR.

Is there a ramp test or something that I can do to see how good I am at cooking?

Sure, the original post just kinda gives off this vibe:


It’s called a cook out. :grinning:


Maybe not actual cooking, but how thin can you slice an onion?

I think the slices a proficient cook would slice will be a lot thinner than a novice cook.

Or maybe how high can you flip and catch a pancake. Flip The Pancake, FTP test😜

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Whatever, nerds. I’m getting Chipotle