I'd love a plan that was between SS Base and traditional base

Traditional base is a bit too many hours and is a bit weird with only 2 week day rides and SS has a bit too much intensity for me early season. It could be called the Goldilocks plan (!)… Mainly high end tempo I guess. It seems there is a lot of chatter about not doing too much intensity at the start of the year especially for masters riders and it’d be nice to have a designed plan rather than having to improvise things. Thoughts?


For organizational simplicity sake, I prefer that TR keep the number of designed plans the way it is and continue to allow full customization/improvisation. If they create too many plans, it’s only going to muddy the waters as to what plans are for what and for whom? Keep the baseline plans simple and let people deviate from them as needed. This is a strong principle in my military/business experience. All plans should be kept simple and expect deviations as the situation dictates.


I’m not sure you could get away from SS workouts without needing plenty of more saddle time like Traditional Base has. I agree SSB has a bit too much intensity, particularly the o/u workouts. I hate having to suffer through o/u workouts so early in the season. I’d love to see SSB 1 MV closer to SSB HV.


I think its time to get a coach if you are looking for a plan in between the plans that TR has set up. When you try to be everything to everybody you slowly lose your effectiveness. I think same goes for TR in their approach. Refining their plans they have already in place rather then developing new ones. Most users know that over the past several years TR has made changes to the workouts in each of their standard plans. I think that TR is an effective platform the way it is.

With the introduction of the plan builder TR gets one step closer in allowing users to completely customize their own plans. Overtime with its development i am sure you will be able to customize the plans it has now even more instead of it basing everything off of the standard plans they have already built. As it stands now you can customize the basic plans they have anyway you want by replacing any of the given intervals in the standard plan with their vast array of interval in their library by using the calendar.


You can easily design your own plan - start with which ever you think is closer to what you want then edit it. Add more SS work, take out the u/o, plop in a long ride, etc.


Yes, that’s basically what I’m doing. I’d love for Chad to weigh in on the science of what some have been chatting about on the forum, such as focusing on longer intervals, heart rate caps, slightly lower SS levels etc…

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As you get into your 50 and 60s they become extremely tough. That’s one of the reasons why :wink:


Yes, I’m 44, I like them but too much intensity will just add up to too much fatigue pretty quickly.

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I’m no expert, but the more I read from various sources and hear from experienced people, one of the key things you may want to play with as much or more as the workout RX’s themselves is your FTP number (or alternatively, try starting intense workouts by ticking the intensity level back by a few percent, at least for the first couple intervals to see how it will play out).

The ramp test draws substantially on VO2 max and anaerobic effort. If you’re strong in those areas, you’ll get an inflated FTP number that will make O/U’s and threshold workouts un-doable. You may get through the first interval or two, but that’s about it.

I’m new to TR, though not structured training. My experience has been that once I went from SSB1 to 2, with more threshold and OU workouts, my compliance has fallen off. I’ve become pretty confident my FTP is inflated, so I’ll be taking some of my own advice these next couple weeks to try to find the right zone.

Note also for us older folks (I’m 57), three hard workouts in a week is too much for the vast majority of us. Simply swapping one weekly prescribed workout for an aerobic one might solve some ills, too.


That’s interesting, I’m a highly anaerobic rider so the ramp test is maybe giving me a figure that’s too high. I can get through the O/U threshold workouts but it aint easy and they do seem to cost me a lot. Maybe reducing my ftp value is the way to go. Thinking about it I think it’s about 10 watts lower than tested.

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Yeah, hope that works out for you. I seem to be able to call on my full VO2 max any time, and can ride a bunch of 120% repeats and it’s really not that challenging. But, give me a threshold or OU workout based in the same FTP and it’s no dice.

I think you need to know how you fair on the ramp test, some will test low, others high. That takes a few goes at the test and might depend on your natural strengths and weaknesses or even how well you’ve responded to previous workouts.

On my second ramp test I tested at 242W but the subsequent workouts, including O/U felt easy as if they were really under/really under so I raised my FTP to 250W and since then workouts have felt on the cusp of being doable.

If you’re looking for 3 TR sessions a week and a plan ‘off the peg’, you could take Traditional Base Mid Vol II and remove the long Sunday rides, then you get roughly the same TSS and ramp rate as SS Low Vol 1 but almost all in mid-high tempo. Or, take Traditional Base Low Vol III and remove the Tuesday threshold sessions for a similar result?


With regards to too much intensity, I think people feel this way because they likely have an FTP that’s too high and for vanity reasons won’t accept it. Do the ramp test, get a number you feel is from a solid effort then attempt a couple of weeks of the workouts. As long you are healthy check how they feel, it could be the SS workouts are ok but THR and V02 are too hard, if so just drop those down a bit.

One of the key things is to remember you are working in a range not a single number. Pin those ranges up, you can drop the % to stay within that range.


Base is the easiest and least specific part of a plan. Decide the number of hours you have in a week to train, and do as much intensity as you can sustain and recover from. That is likely all SS for midweek and as long as you can go in z2/z3 on the weekend

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I’m exactly the same.

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I’m 45 - this happened to me.

Get yourself hydrated, fueled and rested and head down to the well and get yourself an FTP60 number (the max power you can truly hold for an hour).

Base your training off of that. It’s a game changer. It was for me, and I’m a completely different rider because of it.

When the TR ramp test told me I was FTP ~305, my FTP60 number was 275. Almost rode myself into a deep hole.

I’m currently at FTP60 285. I’m becoming a disciple of Seiler on this: your hour of power tells the truth.


Oh they are, I just hate them in January when my first race isn’t until late April. It’s too much suffering too soon, lol.

You could also try a different FTP test that isn’t so vo2 max dependant.
Another possibility for the increasing fatigue is to insert more frequent recovery weeks.

So interesting, I think this is key thinking about it. I wasn’t cheating on my FTP number but I always knew I couldn’t actually hold my “FTP” from my ramp test for an hour. I’m going to substitute my actual hour FTP in as my FTP and get back on the SSB plan and see how that goes.