My own experience with TR and why I quit

Oh…the other big change I’m making this year, is I am likely going to either skip or reduce the tuesday rides on weekends I have 2 big days outside.

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That’s a good idea.

I think another problem with TR and pretty much all training plans is the 7 day week and the age factor.

I’m 56 now. I cannot do Tues/Thurs/Sat/Sun workouts and hard rides like I did in my 20s without burning out in 12 weeks.

I need 2-3 days between the hard rides but that doesn’t fit into a 7 day week. 2-3 days between hard efforts mean I have the capacity to do 1-2 workouts per week. Or, 1 workout and 1 group ride maximum.

This would be bang on polarized like Seiler’s idea of 2 hard workouts out of 10. He’s saying that even pros are training this way so why are amateurs trying to do 2 hard workouts plus 2 group rides, plus weight lifting, plus running, plus whatever, plus daddy daycare per week?


I hate to be on this thread. I’ve been with TR since the very very beginning. I used to work through the prescribed training programmes (especially Sweet Spot) and would have sleepless nights thinking about upcoming Saturday over/unders. However, I used to persevere and always hit spring motivated.

However, I must agree that since the introduction of AI train now I’ve been a LOT more demoralised with sessions that are simply too hard. I may go old skool and stick to the original training plan and only update my FTP after doing a 20FTP test. Time to Keep It Simple and follow what has worked in the past.


Along those lines, I’ve found out that consistent “hard” responses in the quiz give pretty rapid, consistent acceleration of workout difficulty. 1-2 “very hard” responses will bump the workouts down to a lower level.

I think if you only mark workouts as hard or less, the system will just continue to raise the level until it is completely unattainable.


That is not Seiler’s recipe. His recipe is simply 2 out 10 workouts being hard. The 8 will be endurance. One can slice and dice that however it works for them. It’s really easy.

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I wrote this a while ago, and I think it mostly covers the ratings and outcome (changes to workouts on the plan in your calendar).

VERY broadly speaking, for a workout that falls into the “Productive” difficulty level, I tend to see the following:

  • 2 - Moderate = That was no big deal, I am ready for more than a “normal” step up in progression. Give me a larger adaptation than the typical +/-0.5 step (at least within my training history).
  • 3 - Hard = That was a good workout and felt “just right” in the fact that it was “hard enough”. Give me the “normal” progression bump of +/-0.5 step.
  • 4 - Very Hard = That was possible, but took more from me than I’d want for a “good/hard” workout. Limit any increase or even stall with no Progression Level increase on pending workout(s), because I need another shot at this challenging level.
  • What ratings have you been assigning to those types of workouts?

  • What if any changes did Adaptive Training suggest?

  • Did you accept or reject any suggested changes?


I was right there with your chart, but I had a weird one today. I had a Threshold workout that I had to take 2 backpedals on the final interval, and I NEVER take backpedals. As a result, I marked it “too intense”…and I still saw a +0.3 increase in my PL…it kind of freaked me out because I was worried about the torture to come, but…and here’s where it’s interesting…it then adjusted several future threshold workouts down (thank you!!)

  • Yup, that is a known issue. Within AT1.0 we will get the Workout Level assigned as our new Progression Level (if it’s higher than our current PL) anytime we “complete” a workout. I put “complete” in quotes simple because I don’t know the absolute pass/fail aspect to when TR will grab that PL or skip it.

  • It’s possible that something like a bail 5 minutes into a workout will not give that WL to PL increase, but I am guessing. There is likely some limit here related to the Struggle side survey. But from most that I have seen, if you do a workout, you get that as your PL even if you did an All-Out and/or got a Struggle survey.

  • As your latter half covers, the “change” that TR & AT give is in the future for downgrading planned workouts from the prior Workout Level increase assigned. This seems to hit the main goal of controlling and trying to adjust to the user, even if it is odd on the surface to accept what might be an elevated PL that is NOT what the user can do at the moment.


Most people who follow the plans without applying some personal judgement are going to end up having a bad time. AT doesn’t change this fact much, despite the marketing.


If you listened to the podcast as much as you claim, then surely you heard ad nauseum that adequate recovery is as important as adequate training. Admittedly, they don’t talk much about signs of overtraining, but they have a few times along the way. Also, unless you are on flat gravel roads, it would be very difficult to accurately follow a workout plan on an MTB. I have heard them say many times on the podcast that outdoor workouts are possible but difficult to do accurately. I presumed they meant on the road, but would never assume that an interval workout could be accurately followed on an MTB trail. At least none that I’ve ever ridden. If you must train outdoors on a MTB, find some simple intervals to follow that may work on flat MTB trails gravel roads. I think Fast CAT has some simple workout plans that may work better for you.


Personally I think there has been too much emphasis on sleep, fueling, life stress, etc. Those things IMO are the last 10% of optimization.

If you dig the hole too deep with the training, lifting, running and five other active things you like to do then no amount of extra sleep or fueling is going to prevent the burnout.

A lot of things like this are presented as if they are the secret sauce one forgot to do. If you had only fueled 100g per hour for every ride, you wouldn’t be where you are today… If you only bought that Whoop, it would have told you what to do… If you had only slept 9 hours per night…

Those things are great but they are the last few percent. The low hanging fruit is to not do too much and then keep doing it when you are tired. If you can’t tell you are tired then I’m not sure who can help you.

I disagree… Sleep and nutrition (lack of) are probably the #1 and #2 causes of failure. Some people dont sleep well enough, rest enough after a hard day and/or properly fuel the wo… and then they ask why they keep failing at wo.

But I do agree that its only part of the equation (a big number I would say)


I’m going to agree and disagree with your disagree.

Sure, if you are burning the candle at both ends - work nights, sleep 4 hours per night and eat pizza and crappy food all the time then sure, those things need to be corrected.

But if you already sleep a normal amount, and eat a generally healthy diet none of that stuff is going to prevent burnout.

The OP was doing a plan, doing extra mtb rides, running, and racking up as much TSS during rest weeks as during regular weeks. You can’t sleep and carb all that off.


Got it… We are on agreement.

I was like you for years - I overthought this and struggled with it, pushing myself too far too fast.

For me, the simplest answer is, if you aren’t excited and looking forward to training on a given day you should dial it back.

I don’t necessarily look forward to a hard threshold workout, but if I’m not engaged with the challenge of it when I wake up then I’m overdoing it and I’ll either pick an easy workout from alternates or change to endurance or (rarely) take the day off entirely


Yea, I think the last 4-6 weeks I’ve sort of had this figured out. We’ll see if it pays dividends in a few months.

I’m just generally making sure I’m going hard during workouts, but not so hard Indont feel shattered afterwards. And if I do clearly an extra day or 2 worth of work, I’ll skip the next subsequent workoutout, and yea if I just dont feel like riding now, I dont.

I’m still not listening to my body…my body doesnt say shit. I’m just taking the approach less is more now.

It might be semantics, but I find it easier to listen to my mood than my body. My body sometimes feels like shit, but I’m excited to train - and on those days I can handle the intensity better than days where my body feels fine but I’m mentally exhausted/checked out

Listen to your body, listen to yourself


They don’t.


I’ve liked your post not because I agree with it but because I’ve seen a lot of rants against TR over the year but yours has structure and validity to it.

Of course outdoor training “can” create the same adaptations, but TR has no control over whether it will. They are out on a limb with outdoor training, but to their credit they’ve owned what they can.

If people insist on claiming their regular group ride is the same as 3h at 160W…that’s not TR who is at fault (raw example to make a point)

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