OTS middle of offseason

Started training for the upcoming crit season beginning of November and thought I had it all figured out with my routine of low volume plan 3 days a week, 2 days at the gym (1x all upper body, 1x all lower body), 1 day outside or an extra TR workout and then a full day rest as that felt good to me and definitely saw the progression levels increase steadily.

Come around the holidays, I was able to go out and do a Festive500 inclusive of the three workouts as part of my Build week of VO2 and then 2x 4hr days outdoors to complete the challenge (no time at the gym). From there, I had felt fine off the bike taking 2 days off and one easy ride in the middle of that before going into a Recovery week in my plan.

Noticed during the rest week of endurance that while resting heartrate sleeping was normal (if not slightly lower), my exertion seemed a higher and my heartrate was ~10-20 bpm higher than before the break. Going into an FTP change, the AI Detection had then put me +10W going into another Build week, and the workout levels seem impossible for the duration needed and the recovery valleys are still elevated compared to before. I then experimented dialing the workout intensities to 80-90% and still seem very hard/can’t finish. The progression levels now did seem a lot higher than where they need to be so they have been coming down to much lower levels, but those levels of workouts are still a challenge.

This all seems to lean totally towards a form of overtraining (OTS) so trying to figure out what to do being in the middle of the training plan so I ask the options that I forsee and open to any other thoughts.

  • Everything online will say to get off entirely for 2-3weeks but trying to see if that makes the most sense?
  • Should I just stop the training plan and do 1-3weeks of active recovery rides and monitor my heartrate until its comfortably back to normal and restart?
  • Should I just go ahead and restart the plan and reset the FTP levels of what they realisitically are right now and build up from there again?

I would get its a long road season and time to get back to where I was, but with racing coming up in March (barring dry, warmer weather in New England) and A races in June, I don’t want to lose out on time to build back up and accomplish/exceed goals set out throughout the season

So you ride 3 days per week, did a 300 mile week during holidays, and now have OTS? Sort of sounds right if you think about it.
I’d just pause your training plan for 2 weeks and only ride low zone 2. You should bounce back on that. Crits in NE during March are just training series. Plan to use them as workouts.

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Yes the OTS piece is understood at this point looking back. Just gathering any public opinion to understand the best next steps from others who may have gone through it and ensuring not all is lost at this point

I mean I don’t think it’s gone on long enough to really call it Over Training Syndrome. But you’re certainly fatigued from what you’ve shared here. Unless you’ve got a deep endurance background, a likely 400% increase in training volume will be a lot to recover from. Especially since you kept doing the scheduled VO2s.

If you were able to go back in time I would have pushed your build workouts, done the festive 500 of all low intensity riding, taken an easy week, then gotten back into it. Also, I’d bet you didn’t eat enough to support all the extra riding you were doing. Now that’s obviously in the past, but good to only learn that lesson once.

Right now I would take another week easy. Drop the lifting intensity, and ride Z1/ lowZ2 for a week. Make sure you’re eating and sleeping enough. Then try a SS workout or something easy-hard to see how you feel. It’s super early in the season so it’s much better to take an extra week off now then to run yourself into the ground for months during the part of the season that really matters.

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