Learning the hard way: hard on hard days, easy on easy days

Did everything perfectly… proper rest week (besides 1 century but that was at the end of recovery + really zone 2 + two days recovery).

Tuesday: Started sustained power build MV as I have done multiple times, but without ramp. So started after 2 days of rest with Avalanche Spire. Aced it. Low HR, fresh legs. Feeling amazed how easy it felt. Like riding zone 2 almost, with only the slightest burn on the down hill.

Wednesday: wanted to go outside since it’s only recovery… plan has I think Pettit = 39 TSS. Did 109 TSS in what I thought was zone 2-3. Legs felt amazing… small sprints, going in head wind. No problem!

But then came Red Lake +8 today… First warming up sub-ftp interval immediately heavy legs, but I hardened up. First three intervals ok but very tough. But I swore myself through it. 4th interval 4m30 into interval only 30s to go… exploded. I could have finished but for some reason I didn’t. Not sure if it was mental. 5th interval bailed 3 times, but finished.

Lesson learned: guess too much TSS on Tuesday (the 109 TSS). Too much sprints / tempo.

It amazes my how difficult it is to estimate with fresh legs how the fatigue will accumulate over time. Still after 2 years of doing TR and structured training plans.


I can relate to that … this was my last attempt at Red Lake +4 (also during SusPB MV) and my ride notes say “… gym session yesterday might not have been a good idea” :grimacing:

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oof, that’s a tough workout regardless. I’m trying to go by heart rate for my easy outside rides now- it seems to keep me in check way more than power.


This happens to me and probably everyone when they hit their limit. Somehow the air leaves the balloon.

I had to learn to ignore how good I feel on long group rides with people faster than me. I would keep riding casually, thinking it’s not so hard, but I was building up too much TSS and would really suffer in the last third of the ride, usually getting dropped.

I finally learned to completely ignore how good I felt for the first half of the ride and instead try to save energy all the time. Suddenly within a few weeks I could hang on until the end, despite no major change in fitness.

With training it’s the same thing, but you are dealing with TSS across days and weeks. Very hard for some people, including me, to get the feel right. This is where the AT features are going to be super helpful.

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