Low to mid volume - full triathlon switch

So i just finished the 12 week base plan for low volume full triathlon without missing a single workout and incorporating a weekly dose of weight training (low weight high rep).

I feel so much stronger in all three disciplines though I was a bit disappointed my FTP only went up 2 watts on my Ramp test for the build phase.

I have the time and feel I am able physically to switch to the mid volume level this week for the build phase.

My concern is injury risk…

Is that jump a dangerous one to make in terms of injuries or set back?

Anyone have success doing that base to build uptick?

Or do I just stick with low the whole way through knowing that I am able to handle all the workouts?

Any advice would help as this is the best week to do it.

Congrats on completion (and high compliance) on the base plan :tada:

It’s not a crazy move, to change volume, but I’d be more inclined to graduate the change in some way.

You’ve been set up for an avg 316 weeks TSS and mid vol is c.20% higher and up to 3hrs more biking. Then there’s the jump in run and swim volume to take into account.

Have you had something change which gives you more time to train, or is it the lack of ftp increase which is driving this option?

I’ve done this, on full triathlon plans, but very early in the plan. Didn’t have any problems.

It’s mostly about time - for mid volumes, the sessions are a bit harder, but most importantly - you have 1 additionnal bike session per week - make sure you can put this on your agenda. Towards the end, with the biggest weeks, it’s really a lot of training - it takes a huge amount of your free time.

And make sure you get enough rest - during the hard weeks, it’s really critical to eat and rest well. Otherwise it’s a recipe for injury / sickness.

Good luck !

Thanks for the input. It was the small bump in FTP that got me thinking and the fact I have not truly struggled throughout a workout. I feel low is truly at my level but was wondering if I could challenge myself a bit more.

Its basically the fear the low doesn’t have me training hard enough. If anyone can speak to that.

And one last note on FTP. I only started with a power meter in January of this year and have jumped over 20 watts since my first test

I think if you haven’t found any of the workouts hard then maybe your FTP is set too low - possibly you haven’t or don’t test well? There are still some decent threshold and vo2 workouts in full base which should push you. Maybe jump up your FTP by 5% and stick with the low plan.

Thanks and the reason I asked is because higher volume doesn’t equal higher gains.

The other issue is that a lot of people don’t do the swims or have a different run plan, the plan is designed to take into account those efforts, so when you say you’ve finished every workout - without being cheeky - did you do all the run and swim sessions too?

The bike workouts should not wipe you out, the majority are 0.8 IF if I recall my own experience Mills and Midway were the real toughies, but that would depend on your strengths and weaknesses. Other people find Makalu hard because it’s so long, or Polar Bear as it’s a brick.

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That’s a really big guesstimate jump. 2-3%, max to start with, and then retest after 4 weeks anyway. I think that because he already had a 20W jump, he’s leveling off as he consolidates the initial gain. For athletes with some structured training history, FTP isn’t going to just keep going up and up. It’ll go up, then level off, then go up again and repeat until they hit their ceiling. He’s already had that 20+W gain which was probably a 7-10% increase since January. Adding another 5% going into Build isn’t something I’d recommend unless he tested that way.

You all have been very helpful.

Yes did all swim and run as prescribed. I should also clarify I wasn’t yawning by any means at the workouts. The vo2 work did kick my rear for sure and I am certainly seeing real gains in all three disciplines. I sense as nash said that I am leveling off. I am a 10 year marathon runner with only 3 years of tri work so I already had a strong base so it would make sense the gains aren’t ridiculous.

I think I will stick to low and bump up the intensity of the hike workouts from time to time. Also I add in some extra minutes on my outdoor rides. I fought a bad bout of PTT with a minor tear over the winter and shouldn’t risk it coming back because of my FTP ego.

This forum was very helpful!

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There’s no harm in doing another ramp test at the weekend or whenever you’re feeling ‘on’, and/or measure your real world performance with a 10TT or even just a local training loop.

Another way to skin this cat would be to look at the +1, +2 workout versions. Quite often there is a option of the workout that has an extra 30mins of endurance on the end of the intervals, this is a really good way to push your aerobic fitness out, rather than always trying to go upwards, they don’t require an extra session so are easier to fit in your schedule, a couple of these a week is equivalent to doing something along the lines of the aerobic workouts in mid-volume but without the need for the extra bike session.