Increased Aerobic Decoupling During Recovery Week


I’m on the recovery week of the first half of Short Power Build and the plan has me doing short endurance workouts, with me completing Whorl this morning and Pettit on Tuesday. On Saturday it is Townsend.

I started training back in September and completed traditional base mid-volume, moved on into Sweet Spot Base Low Volume, and as noted I am on short power build.

I’m looking over my workouts and I not an elevated aerobic decoupling, with an 8% on Pettit and 6% on Whorl. BTW, I’m not engaging in the form sprints as I would have done in September. After all of that work, I would have expected seeing fairly low values as in my previous Pettit workout I was at 1% (about a month ago).

So, I figure these are the possibilities as to what that means:

  1. This rest and recovery week is due and this is a sign of the hard work I’ve been doing
  2. Absolutely nothing, two points is not enough to make such a judgement
  3. Short Power Build is returning your power bands & cardiovascular system
  4. Is there something funky going on lifewise?

Looking over the data and comparing to my AED over the course of this training season I guess it is in line with what I was seeing towards the end of TB back in November but not with more recent endurance work.


in my experience this is totally normal. Sometimes it winds up seeming like it’s because i’m more rested (so heart rate response faster), sometimes i wonder if it’s because things like plasma volume go away quickly, but also come back quickly once you start trainign again (same reason the first workout post-rest week can feel real bad).

I think the thing to do is pay close attention to how you feel. rest weeks are hard to plan out and you kinda gotta go by feel. After seven days you might still be tired, and/or after 3 days you might be good to go. The body doesn’t always cooperate.

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IMO, endurance workouts like Pettit and Whorl are not really worth worrying about AD since they’re not long enough to sample from. Anything longer than 2/2.5 hours AD can become more of a useful tool, and even then it’s shaky because the metric is highly influenced by a number of variables outside of your own fitness. Maybe use heart rate and HRV trends to see if something else is going on like sickness.

I feel you about recovery weeks, though. Even rest days. Always feel blah and my metrics are all over the place. It’s probably nothing to worry about if you can rule out sickness.

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Morning Hrv and O2 looks good. I’m not concerned everything else seems good, more curious and looking to geek out on this stuff. Thanks.


You’ve only been training for 6 months. Your aerobic engine is probably not well developed and that’s playing a roll in elevated decoupling. So many factors that I can’t speak to on a scientific level.

I would ignore it and move on.

When I look back at decoupling during the rides you mentioned, in 2019 it would generally be around 2% to 4%. Now it’s like -2% to -6%. My engine is so much more developed. Here’s a comparison of two Pettit rides at similar points in 2021 and 2019.

Pettit from March 2019 (FTP 295): 3.9% decoupling / PWR/HR 1.36 / 185w NP / AVG HR 137

Pettit from yesterday (FTP 325): -8% decoupling / PWR/HR 1.55 / 208w NP / AVG HR 131

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I’ve been bike racing for 3-4 years now, and this is my 3rd season with TrainerRoad. During the summer I use informal training methods, such as ride a lot and every ride I go out with some sort of objective (z2 for a long time or take 3 laps around the block and run high intensity intervals – mind you my block is a six mile ride) and race. I have been starting my TR structure anywhere form September - November. All three years I started with traditional base mid-volume, and this is the first year my training did not end with illness.

However, I’m with you on the second point, I’m not sweating it or anything.

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