Low Volume Plan; Supplement w/Baxter-esque rides?

I’m too challenged mentally to do a mid-volume plan, I’ve finally admitted it to myself… However, I can absolutely do a low volume!

Am I hurting myself/future FTP gains by doing Baxter -2 a couple times a week, on the mornings I don’t have workouts?
I love waking up with a cup of coffee and ride easy-ish for an hour fasted, and it seems to my untrained mind that this practice would likely bring a lot of benefits

Thanks in advance for any advice, links to podcasts, or threads where this may have already been discussed. I did search around for 30-ish minutes on hopes I wouldn’t make a redundant post

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That was what I did my first year. The next year I did mid volume. I like the LV with an extra endurance ride every week. I also did an outside ride every week as well to get 5 rides a week. However, only the 3 in the LV plan were intensity rides. I’ll never go back to the MV plan. I like the freedom to supplement with what I need and I like that if I have a busy week I know I can get my intensity in at a minimum.



Yep I agree, I typically do group rides every week in the summer so LV is good to keep some semblance of structure… I’d like to be fast, but I’m not interested in consistently sacrificing group rides just for the sake of training.

Did you stick with MV for the whole year after you did the LV previously? If so, do you feel you had any appreciable gains by doing MV over LV?

I’ve also heard of the reverse. Low intensity rides rain/hail, and more than 1 intensity session when the week lines up perfectly… I might do this when I start commuting.

Ive been doing this and it feels good so far.


This is mostly what I’ve done and generally continue to see gains. If I have no ride outdoors on Sunday LV, I’ll pick something that feels good for that day - sometimes it’s SS intervals if I feel good, other times it’s Black or West Vidette. As long as you’re nailing the three intensity days, pick what works for you. I also like the option of making up a missed mid-week workout if life gets in the way.

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I stuck with MV through the build phase. I think where I saw the most gains was just from having a bigger base than the previous year. I had the ability to continue to hang instead of fade. However, I suffered an overuse injury so I don’t know in the end it was worth it.

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I don’t know the episode(s) off the top of my head, but I believe Chad often recommends adding in easy aerobic rides as a great way to start progressing in a LV plan rather than trying to necessarily jump into a MV or HV. It seems like if you’re adding them in and continuing to do fine on your structured workouts, then it is a good way to slowly add more volume. Personally, I enjoy having some “shakeout” rides between harder days as I tend to feel better when I move my legs.

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I do low volume plans and add one ride per week (indoor in the winter). This can be noodling around or a group ride on Zwift, or an endurance workout from TR. It seems to work.

Hi Guys.

I’ve been using TR for a couple of years now as a winter escape (don’t like freezing my ass off outside) :wink:

I like to keep my options open so I run a LV plan, however I tend to do 4-5 rides a week and instead of running a MV plan I “condense” the weeks.

This way I can choose based on current form how many rides I do each week.

It might not be the correct way but it works for me :smiley:

Last week looked like this (Sunday was a quite warm winter day here in Sweden)

That’s a tough week, IMO. I’d say you’ve got four high intensity session in there. Does every week look like this?

I’ve just done exactly this. I was on MV, but almost all weekend rides were missed in favour of outdoors. Since enjoying riding is my overall goal then I’m not willing to sacrifice the fun rides for trainer work. Then it makes sense to move to LV and leave the weekends free to ride.

I’ve gone Mon/Tues/Thurs for LV, then depending what the weekend holds can fit in an endurance ride Wed/Fri. The biggest trouble was the mental block of deciding MV wasn’t right for me, it feels like giving up, but then by far LV with options is the better suited plan for me right now.

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I do Mon-Tue-Fri, add something Thursdays, and leave the weekend open to play outside (showshoes and XC skiing are more appropriate these days).

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I make sure to get regular recovery weeks as well…

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I think this sums it up for a lot of riders. They are doing MV because LV “sounds” like a beginner program.

Personally I want the least training that produces an effective response. I’ve only done LV since starting in late Oct. I fill the “off” days with hiking, skiing, snowshoeing (Idaho). My ftp progression has exceeded my expectations 223 to 285 in 90 days. I have pushed the intensity up as I can and am usually wiped out after training

If (when) I plateau I will try different approaches but still remember that I only improve if I recover from the training


I agree, I didn’t want to ‘wuss out’ and go low volume but now that I’m doing LV I’ve stuck to my plan and have consistently hit more indoor TSS per week than I have in the past, so it’s a win no matter how I look at it🙌

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Awesome. I agree with you as well, I want to be fast for sure… But not at the sacrifice of my main objective with bikes… And that is to have fun!

I’ve used TR on and off for several years, now. I’ve always done MV plans in the past but late last year I decided to try an LV plan as I recently moved into a new home that needs remodeling. Doing the remodeling takes time, racing bikes takes time, so I had to find a middle ground. Thankfully TR launched Plan Builder right before I planned on starting my LV plan, so I was able to put in my A, B, and C races for the year, the days & volume I can ride, and TR did the rest. I’ve been riding Base1 TR workouts Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays (longer TR ride) and often meet friends for a Sunday group ride that goes anywhere from 2-3 hours. Been doing this since late December and so far it’s been working just fine. I’d say supplementing rides is fine as long as you can do the prescribed TR rides without fail.

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