Its always how many kms, how many hours

Always the same questions by riders, how many hrs, how many kms…When I say 7-9, I KNOW what they are thinking…that’s not enough…when others are 12hr weeks. What they DONT know or understand, TR gives me no useless miles, its all about my TSS and strengths and weakneses. The better question is what was your TSS?

The flip side is when a rider says I did 1400tss…I don’t say a thing, I think his PM is reading incorrectly when he is doing 12hr a week.

So whatever people ask you, hrs, training or kms, sure answer them, but keep in mind, its YOUR tss and building for your race or event. And when you smoke them…….no need to say anything…


yeah I always wondered why cyclists in particular seem to be so obsessed with meaningless pissing contests. Kms ridden, hours spent, FTP, strava segments… so many ways to measure yourself against others in completely pointless ways :laughing:

Is it the same in other sports? Or does cycling just produce more numbers to compare :thinking:

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It’s the same in everything I think, not just sports. People are people wherever you find them


Certainly, whether or not someone is initiating a pissing contest by asking you how many TSS, or hours, or km, or miles, or wombat sightings, or whatever other quantitative measure comes first to their mind depends on their tone of voice, your relationship to them, and the circumstances. It’s usually just the way cyclists start training small talk.

Personally, I look at hours as a motivator – the last three decades have taught me that my performance directly correlates with how many easy endurance minutes I can add to the time spent in zones 5 or 4, depending on the time of year. I repeat my first coach’s words “the more contractions, the more reactions” to nudge myself though a few more minutes on those endurance days.

But, it’s about what makes you happy. Ideally, you just like riding your bike and training as intrinsic goods. Some folks are going to want to establish hierarchies as a means of feeling better about their position in the cycling world, or in the world at large, or about the emotional baggage they carry with them that drives them through an endurance sport (there are a lot of very motivated athletes who are probably not very healthy people – my own propensity for responding to honked horns with a middle finger puts me in that group), and hopefully we all grow out of whatever bit of that we have in us.

But, to put it back into a training perspective, if you can do higher volume, you should – yes, TSS is a valuable metric, but as Nate and Chad have noted on the podcast to get closer to your genetic potential, you have to do the volume (which, of course, doesn’t mean you have to brag about it).


Today i tried to complete 20 kms within half hour.

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…don’t leave us hanging!


Yep. Time, distance, TSS, Kj’s, VAM, FTP etc…are only relevant to the user. Each one individually does not necessarily predict performance.


Ontopic… I have this one acquaintance that always tells me that your TSS is not measurable to mine. He only does sweetspot-work and about 400TSS/week incl. his day to day slow commutes and long distance riding. I do around 600/week and varied as it usually is with Trainerroad but mostly hard efforts. What he actually wants to say is that my work isnt’ as hard as his because of his higher FTP. Which is a bunch of BS since TSS is calculated from FTP and directly reflects that so it’s quite measurable actually.

The difference is that I workout 7-9hrs/week effectively and he does 17hrs/week ineffectively.

Sorry for derailing. It always pisses me off when he comments that my TSS isn’t “worth” as much as his.

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Esp if riders are of different disciplines. An ultra-distance competitor is going to balk at the lack of volume of a CX racer, and that CX racer will laugh at the void of anaerobic repeats from the UD rider. Whateves! :roll_eyes::laughing:

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Sometimes it feels like everyone just wants to have a d$#% measuring contest over something

There was the average speed post on here a few days/weeks back, then there’s the mileage junkies, or the TSS junkies, or whatever else

They just want a way to compare themselves to others and feel superior (or inferior). It is part and parcel to why we are all competitive with ourselves and with others

In my experience it is usually people who don’t race who are the biggest offenders - they don’t have an actual measured competition to know how ‘good’ or ‘not good’ they are so they have picked something else. Not to say racers aren’t guilty of this, just in my little social circle that’s where it tends to mostly live


I don’t like discussing my training with other people because most people think their way is the best, and if you’re doing it differently, you’re doing it wrong. I do it differently, and that’s something that I’ve refined (and am still refining) for years.

IMO, I don’t think there’s much volume that can be counted as useless. During the summer I probably spend roughly an hour of my training descending (junk cus no TSS) but that comes in handy because you’re that much better in a race situation.

Ultimately we’re going for optimal race performance, and its not just about the numbers.


Training knowledge has progressed to the point that I find that this specific question (miles/KMs) is only really asked by recreational cyclists (or non cycling friends) who don’t understand structured training (or HIIT for that matter). The more common question I get, both by racers and non-racers, is what events/races I am training for.

As for metrics, I track TSS annually (~30k) and monitor via PMC (CTL, ATL, TSB). But what I focus on at a workout level is Time-in-Zone (TiZ) and making sure that I am building that in each of the zones (Coggan iLevels) that I am focusing on in the current training block.


When explaining indoor vs outdoor, my response is always that there’s a difference between a workout (indoor) and a bike ride (outdoor).

For me, anyway …

There is no such thing as useless miles/time on the bike. It all contributes to aerobic fitness assuming you still complete your workouts. Two people with similar stats on a low volume plan with one doing double the volume at the right intensities will be faster


All the locals here measure themselves via miles. I switched to hours this year, whatever miles I get from that is just a byproduct. I can do 60 miles on the road in 3 hours, or 20-30 miles on my MTB in the same amount of time. Distance is meaningless on its own.

With the encroaching winter causing less outside riding and more indoor riding, I’ll soon be switching from hours based to kJ based training. Gotta do what ya gotta do.

Isn’t that correct…the only way to really prove yourself is to pin on a number and its a humbling experience. I give Kudos to anyone who does pin on a number. Doesn’t matter what grade you race in, the fact your willing to put yourself into a race and see how good/bad you are, try and win whatever grade, just finish, is a accomplishment. The Strava like types that talk a big game, never race, do massive kms and hours…I’ve learnt not to give a ****. Its less stress to do so as well. I use Strava to track how many kms each bike has done, I’m not a summit member, I believe in my own process, TR and TrainingPeaks.


And I thought I was the only one! (sigh of relief) :joy:


Agree 100%. I don’t race yet so the only person I talk to about training is my foreman and he just trains old school; HRM, long hours and high effort. The speeds he mentions he rides at lets me know I’ve got a LONG way to go