Lower Intensity VS Extending Rest

Curious what peoples thoughts are when doing various workouts with shorter intervals. For example today I had Ansel Adams +4 (3x11’ of 50" on at 135% FTP 40" off at recovery) and made it through the first set fine. By the second set I was faced with the dilemma of needing to either reduce intensity or take slightly longer than 40" between intervals. I opted for slightly longer rests but recognize that may not necessarily be the right approach. Going into the workout I didn’t know it was going to be a bit too much for me and thought I’d be able to make it through otherwise I’d have probably gone for a lesser workout.

Did that workout a couple weeks ago, and dropped intensity for sets 2 and 3. I just didn’t have the muscular endurance to keep pushing 135% over and over. Not sure how you extended the rests – sounds awkward. I think the main point is to drive up oxygen debt, quickly elevate your HR, and sustain it high for the duration. So I’d say if you extended the rests to get your HR down, that’s probably less ideal. But if your HR stayed high and the slightly longer recovery let you push the scripted 135%, that’s probably fine.

you should note that VO2 Max intervals are aimed at repeatable power. it should be hard enough for you to repeat it without killing yourself every set. this may require you to dial down the intensity.

there is no fixed number on your VO2 max interval and it should be something that you yourself know. it should feel very very hard but doable.

Heres the article on trainerroad on bailouts:

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In this case I think you did the right thing. As long as you don’t add TOO much extra time, then I think it’s better to put yourself in a position where you can finish the intervals on full power.

135% FTP is so far above FTP that your FTP is a much less accurate predictor of your ability to cope with the intervals as prescribed. So in your case, maybe you need 50 on 45 off, 50 on 50 off. You could modify it Workout Creator as well, rather than taking breaks.