New to TR. Week 4

So I’m new, on W4 of my training plan.

Quick background, using the plan builder set to beginner for structured training and low volume with a target of a Fondo for November. If it helps contextualise any of the questions I’m 170m and weighing in at 76kg.

Still in the base phase. Initially it estimated my FTP at 77, did a ramp test, revised to 127.
To be fair I don’t feel like I died doing the test, once I felt tired I stopped I don’t feel I pushed myself through that barrier.

I have a couple of questions/would like some inputs:

Plan sets out 3 sessions for the week. 2 1hr and 1 1.5hrs. I’m generally skipping the 1.5hr one scheduled for Friday. I am generally doing my sessions after work and on Sat-Sun I wake up early (5AM) for morning rides of 40km and 60km respectively. Just a ride. In a pair. Probably falls under endurance ride more than anything and I can say with TR my duration on those routes have reduced - quite a bit.

What I want to ask here is should I reshuffle the days so I fit those in/wake up and do them in the morning or are my other rides compensating for now at this stage of the plan?

How tired am I meant to feel? I do feel towards the end I’m slowing down and am sweating it out, but could probably jump onto Zwift and do 20km route (per Zwift avg 30kmh).

Is this right for base stage or should I redo the ramp test?

When do I know I can increase volume to the plan? Any tips when I should consider revisiting the plan structure?

Other than that this has been quite a journey and will definitely carry it on past the 30 day referral. I do feel it helps and look forward to see where it goes.

Apologies if any of these questions could have been answered by digging through past threads or topics.

With what you describe, I’d recommend taking the Ramp Assessment again and REALLY going to exhaustion. What you describe is that you stopped when you ‘felt tired’, which could mean any number of things but the assessment is designed to go to failure - as in, your body stops involuntarily.

I think by doing this, everything else will certainly fall into place. The ‘replacement’ rides are likely not at an intensity that would equal the prescribed workout for the day. Still do the outdoor rides but just know that if you go hard, you’re going to pay for it :slight_smile:

If you are new to indoor interval training, I would not recommend going up to MV just yet - many have and many have wished they did not; search ‘training volume fail(ure)’ and you’ll find plenty of threads. The work will build upon itself and, with a proper assessment, will get you plenty tired.

Personally, I would go thru an entire cycle of base/build before making any sort of adjustment to training volume. Anybody here will tell you that build, even at LV, can kick some backside to those new to indoor training.

Most importantly…Be patient and HAVE FUN!

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You’ll know when you’re at the end of the ramp test.

Sometimes I “feel tired” during a ramp test 10 minutes before I hit the wall.

I guarantee you can hit it harder. Much harder. Go until you feel like you’re dying. Don’t worry… Its only for a short time.

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So I just kind of went through this with my girlfriend a couple of weeks ago. The TR estimated FTP was ~80 and the first ramp test was ~110. I thought this was too low for 2 reasons. 1) to start the ramp at 80 watts means that she went through a pretty long test until she stopped so the extra fatigue probably dragged her result down and 2) she didn’t go to failure but rather when she was just really tired. She then retested 3 weeks later and got a 145.

I say this because I think a lot of beginners in their first ramp test don’t have a good reference for what failure is and therefore under perform on the ramp test. For contrast, I just did a ramp test today and I didn’t even unclip after and just laid my face on my handlebars basically gasping for air with my HR in the mid 190s.

Based on your description, those weekday rides might be a little too easy but not so easy that I would say you need to retest right this second. Maybe bump the workout intensity up 3-5% and see how that goes and then just retest when you finish the training block and really go to exhaustion on the ramp test and you should see an pretty big improvement.

Especially for someone new to indoor training I think the outdoor weekend rides are a great way to ease into it. Though they might not hit the same power zones as the intended ride in the plan they remind you why you are training and that it is fun to go faster outside.

I agree with @pwandoff, I probably wouldn’t entertain moving to MV until you at least complete the 12 weeks of base unless the LV is laughably easy for you. It is better to stay at the lower volume and maybe improve at a slower rate than it is to move up to a higher volume and burn out. As a middle ground if you are finding it too easy then maybe consider swapping one of your weekend outdoor rides to the scheduled ride (it is usually over unders) but keep the other one.

Sorry if that got a little long but congrats on starting your training! Be patient and get after it!

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Thanks for the feedback.

I’ll do another ramp test later this week.

i hope I won’t be in for a rude awakening of what the workouts are meant to feel like and then run away haha

After completing the ramp test and adjusting the ftp all the workouts are revised automatically or I’ll need to recalculate the plan or ?

In relation to the LV/MV I’ll stick to what has been suggested. I’ll keep at it and run this plan’s course and see afterwards.

Plus…there’s still life outside the bike I need to balance it all.

Thanks again for taking the time to responding.

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No need to re-calculate the plan - after you complete your ramp test, you’ll be told your new FTP result, and offered the chance to update to the new value, or keep the old one. Whatever you choose to do, your future workouts will be scaled correctly to use your latest FTP.

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Try not to skip that Friday 1.5hr ride and you’ll get a whole lot more bang for your buck.
Is it possible for you to compress the beginning of the week and do the 1.5 hr ride on Thr instead? Monday, Tuesday and Thursday indoors?

IME the first 4 weeks of SSB1 are pretty cruisey. It’s all too easy to think you’re killing it.
See if you can really push yourself during your ramp test at the beginning of SSB2. I’d hazard a guess that you won’t think it’s still easy by the time that block finishes up.
And then the build phase will crush your soul. :rofl:

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Where? I never got the memo?

Hint on the RAMP test go till you are within 6 or so beats of your max HR before you even consider stopping and breath.

Lockdowns aside I meant time for family, reading, hobbies (outside of cycling) and development (i.e. certifications etc).

But have noticed that the TR routine has really been food.

I’ll redo the ramp test on Thursday. I’ll come back here with the revised FTP just for sharing sake.

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Don’t sweat the numbers too much. They are what they are and it’s best not to get too hung up on them.
If you can hit all three structured workouts and maintain your outdoor rides you’ll be doing just fine.

[…] before you even consider stopping […]

Don’t think, as others have said, keep going until you can’t go. For me there is no slow loss of power, it hits like a truck and the lights go out. Trying to breath/ not throw up is about all I can manage after.

Not sure how to embed a video, but you can take a look at the TrainerRoad ramp test from last week, the wheels come off around the 20 minutes in.

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