On the struggle bus, zero motivation

Classic symptoms of OVERTRAINING.

Stop doing anything bicycle related for at least 2 weeks, at least.

Do a variety of different things: dance lessons, walk your neighbours dog, swim 3 times/week. When you are walking, make sure you are looking up and ahead not down at your feet.

Don’t ponder this decision. STOP right now.


I’m going through the same thing right now. had a crash 5 weeks ago when I was in great form. Have struggled to get back on the bike since. I’ve ridden a few times and enjoyed it when the weather was nice. but now winter is approaching and i can’t face the indoor trainer. @dmalanda suggests Z2 rides for a while, but strangely they’re my least favourite ride, especially indoor Z2. but I like @makahle1s view of only 30 minute workouts. establishing an easy routine will probably work for me


I can sort of relate. I was feeling constantly tired and demotivated to ride. I recently had a health checkup (55 yrs old) as was found to have anaemia. I asked my doctors if this could be the cause of my low energy and motivation and they said it most definitely played a part. I’m now getting treatment and hope to be back to full training soon. Bottom line is perhaps have a chat to your GP.


This sounds like classic fatigue. Proper fatigue, not just a day off type fatigue. It happens to me sometimes but it’s happened so often I know what to do. You need to get off the bike and wait to actually want to get back on it to train, you will want to get back on at some point but your body will tell you, you can’t tell your body. When you’re actually excited to get back on, that’s when you’re ready. Don’t beat yourself up about it. It’s a normal part of the training process. Sounds like too much intensity plus Covid plus work. It’s a classic slam dunk for fatigue tbh.

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Add me to the list. Just failed my second VO2 Max workout in a row. Got half way through my 3rd 3 minute interval of 6 and again the legs just didn’t want to know.

Bailed and jumped into a 90 minute Z2 ride and felt absolutely great. :smile:

Not sure if I’m just trying to go harder than I’m capable of, but I was fully carbed up and had a day off yesterday, and should be fresh. Legs just felt flat when going over threshold for a sustained period of time.

Anyway, time to pivot. Ride for fun for a bit. Try not to lose too much cycling fitness. Get some lifting done. Hit it again in a couple or three months.


I totally get this. However, can I logic at you for a second?

  1. You won’t lose all your fitness.
  2. What’s worse. Losing a little fitness or losing the enjoyment of cycling?

My (unqualified) advice: take at LEAST two weeks where your training calendar is clear. Completely empty. Ride if you want to, don’t ride if you don’t want to. You’re not going to lose a whole bunch of fitness, and more likely, you’ll be itching to get back on the bike towards the middle/end, and you’ll hit your upcoming workouts perfectly. TR will adjust your workouts, don’t worry about that bit, but you’ll DO BETTER if you want to be there.

I took 4 months off the bike and trained and did a marathon at the beginning of last season. I just didn’t feel like being a cyclist any more. After a month or two of running training, I began to get that itch to be back on the bike, and by the time my marathon came around, I was absolutely ready to grab my cycling shoes again.


Actually the Z2 thing is maybe a red herring and down to an individual preference. The points I wanted to make are actually:

  1. Consider setting goals that are easier to achieve, so you can hit them with consistency (also when you inevitably suffer setbacks). If you need to summon all your willpower to get on the bike to do a workout every workout, that is not sustainable. If you are dreading getting on the bike rather than eager to get on the bike more than once a week, you know deep down that is not sustainable and something needs to change

  2. Find a way to establish a routine that is sustainable for you. Ideally that routine takes away any decision regarding stepping on the bike, so you don’t need to fight to summon motivation to do your workout

  3. Consciously plan on how to deal with interruptions to the routine, as life will inevitably throw you curve balls

  4. Also be very, careful when the sun comes out again and motivation returns with a vengeance and pushes you to do more than you can handle

  5. Finally, set mid-term goals that makes it worth it to ride. If your goal is to beat Pogacar up Alpe D’Huez, you are guaranteed to lose all your motivation before reaching it. If your goal is to crush your previous PR in the local summer race, you might have a better shot :wink:

It took me a long time to realize and internalize the cliche that “Motivation is not your friend”. It really isn’t in our sport: motivation will inevitably peter out and leave you spent and worse off than it found you. I think it was Amber that once said “Use motivation to build new habits”, and that is truly the best way in my opinion. Never let motivation directly dictate your daily actions, use it deliberately to raise your long-term level.