Overheating on SS workouts - high SS level vs threshold

Hi all. I wanted to bring up a modification I’m considering for my own training plan, and why, and see if you agree with me or whether you see a better way for me to move forward……

So at the moment my sweet spot progression level is considerably higher than my threshold. Currently I’m at SS level 7.6 vs threshold level 5.

The reason I’m bothered by this, is that my recent sweet spot workouts are very close to just being a solid hour of sweet spot with no rest, or just 15s of rest. (for example my next scheduled one is Redondo+2 at level 8.6). In principle this is fine, I think I have the legs for that, but when I’m on the turbo I don’t have the cooling or thermal control for that :sweat_smile:. I’m finding that I massively overheat in these workouts and they just make me feel pretty sick by the end. I use three 20” gym fans on full power so in theory I have quite a lot of cooling and would struggle to increase that much more (average room temperature is typically around 15 degrees according to my wahoo head unit).

I would kind of prefer to ride at a slightly higher power but for less time, so that I have some slots in which to cool down again. I tried manually bumping my FTP up a bit in order to drop my SS level (only by 5W or so) but on my next AIFTP detection my FTP was reduced again. Presumably influenced by my lower threshold level.

I’ve always struggled with threshold. It’s definitely my weakest zone and I progress slowly at it. Hence why my threshold level is lower in the first place! So…. My thinking is that maybe for a few weeks I should swap some SS workouts to threshold ones to try and better ‘balance’ my levels and perhaps give myself opportunities to cool down during workouts again.

Any thoughts for or against?

Many thanks,

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cooling for me is priority. i’m out in a shed, with the door open and large fan on for anything above endurance. no top on and still generating heat. outside temps are typically <6° degrees C at this time of year and i’m glad. 15° sounds horrific. i get almost flustered with temperature rise on the trainer. out on the road is different.

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Don’t get too hung up on the category of the workout… You could very easily call that a “threshold” workout, and the fact that it’d doesn’t give you credit for a higher progression level in the “threshold” category shows a flaw in the TR algorithm and rating scale… The TR system cuts off “threshold” at 95%, so because that workout is largely ~3w less than that, they call it “sweet spot”. This is all ignoring the fact that due to those 20 sec bursts, your average power for that 10 min block would be up near 100%.
It sounds like you’re trying to “game” the system a little with your manually adjusting your FTP and such. Simply quit doing “breakthrough” or “productive” sweet spot workouts, and focus on “achievable” and “productive” threshold workouts… Those levels will then start to even out…


The best thing my pain cave ever got was a portable air conditioner. I would do 4x20 SS with barely a drip of sweat rolling off my head by the end.

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You might want to look into blower fans like wahoo headwind or check out vacmaster fan from amazon it’s pretty cheap. Big fans aren’t enough you need air velocity.
I use a 20" fan for my upper body, vacmaster aimed to the chest and smaller fan for the legs. I couldn’t do long threshold intervals before I got the vacmaster.

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You could also try some of the nopinz ice pack wrist and base layer things. Pull some heat out of you that way?


Thanks, I have a Vacmaster on order! Hoping it lives up to the hype

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15c 3 fans and you are overheating?

What’s your sweat level like? Are you dehydrated? Electrolytes and fluid balance could be an issue?

I step away from my fan inside and I’m literally dripping with sweat. And that’s on like .7 IF rides. I only use 1 fan normally, two if I’m doing a long threshold ride. It’s straight at my face and chest (down angled from above) and moves an impressive amount of air.

The above meaning to say, that normally I don’t drip…when the fan is on me. But when I walk out of the cone I immediately start dripping. Implying that I am sweating a lot, and it’s being evaporated by the fan.

Oh, and I will admit that I don’t wear a jersey indoors…that’s a whole other level of damp. :smiley:


Never measured my sweat rate, but heat has never been my friend! I always use electrolytes and drink as much as I can stomach on the bike (usually this is downing water beforehand and then drinking a litre bottle during the workout).

+1 for topless turbo :sweat_smile:

Buy a proper floor fan - 18" or 20".

Something like this.

The Vacmaster that everyone raves about moves 15m3 per minute.

A decent 20" floor fan will move 10 times as much. The one above does 125m3/min. Yes, it will go a bit ‘slower’, but the aim is to maximise evaporative cooling from all exposed skin surface, not to just cool one small part of your body really well and cook the rest.

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I am currently using three 20” fans that look like this. Not enough I’m afraid


Chris where do you live, the gobi desert?

  1. Can you install air conditioning?

  2. If not, Sony sell a small wearable neck aircon device using a peltier chip that’s meant to be good.

  1. Lastly, do what the pros do: buy an ice vest and keep it in the freezer. Wear it for the first 20-30 mins. At some point it will melt and stop working but by that time your thermal load will be so much lower you should be able to keep going.

  1. Are you hot all the time? Some people generate more heat than others, but pyrexia can be a sign to have a no-stress convo with your doc?

Hope some of those helpful.


A kindred spirit, at long last! I find that this is an oft-overlooked problem, with people staring blank-eyed at you when you say indoor fans simply don’t cool you down enough.

Any chance that you are a bigger rider? I have a theory that us bigger riders struggle more with cooling as we tend to push higher absolute watts and need to dissipate proportionaly more heat. I am about 85kg and 320-350W FTP myself, and can never ever keep up with cooling for anything above low Z2.

I have two (2!) industrial cooler fans of the type below, one pushing 525m3 per hour and the other 900 m3/h. They do the job of keeping me from sweating a river at Z3-Z4, and dying at thousand deaths in Zwift races. Still, I don’t feel like it’s too much (or, sometimes, even enough).

I started experimenting this winter with shoving icepacks down my back and following up up with 2-4 ice cubes per 10 mins for that slow release of cold. It’s been pretty amazing so far: my heart rate is lower and RPE significantly lower at sweet spot and threshold. So much so that I feel about the same after 30 minutes at sweet spot with ice as I did after 5 minutes without ice. It’s like a cheat code :smile:

The podcast discussed ice vests a few months ago. If I remeber it right they concluded: “Lower RPE, no effect on performace”. That never really made sense to me, because I’m pretty sure my only limiter for intervals is RPE! I never fail physically, I feel I could always find just one more pedal stroke if my life depended on it. I usually fail when the brain screams: “NO MORE!” or whispers “it’s okay to stop… Nobody will know :face_holding_back_tears:

The fans I mentionned:


Ice cubes are a great suggestion. Pros use slush puppie or similar to cool down during training camps or did so before i heard on a podcast. And indoor its easy to have ice cubes or put them in a mixer or something for indoor rides.

Thank you for reminding me!

This here. I run very hot, I eventually ended up on one 20" fan, one of these industrial fans at chest level, and ziplocks full of ice in my neck and back.

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My old place was very governed by the weather, the last work out temperature I recorded Mid Oct 23 was an average of 20.5deg C. Id run a pedestal fan, an industrial fan and two wall/desk fans.

I’m pretty tall and skinny to be honest! But definitely sounds like we are kindred spirits nonetheless! Thanks for ice tips, I shall look into that…

Two water bottles with crushed ice packed in - having a really cold liquid can do wonders in addition to the other suggestions. Good luck.


Not sure where your fans are placed but a lot of people swear by having one blowing on their back because of the larger surface area.


60* and you’re overheating? What do you do outside in summer? It doubting, just seems like you’d run into problems outside in 75*+F as well?