Overheating on SS workouts - high SS level vs threshold

Summer outside is fine.

For me: outside is just fine as long as I am cruising at a decent pace.

On a slow grindy 1000m+ elevation climb in the hot sun though… I lose 100W by the time I’m at the top :sob:

Thanks for all the replies so far. There are some good suggestions here for improving my cooling. In particular, I’m going to try adding ice to my workouts to see how much that helps me.

The bit I was mainly hoping to ask the TR hive mind about though was whether I should be taking active steps to rebalance my workout levels to avoid doing a solid hour of sweet spot each workout. Any further thoughts on that? At the moment I’m still swaying towards giving it a try.

It’s not just temperature, but humidity. Do you gave a humidity monitor you could set up in the room to see what’s happening? If there is no air exchange in the room you are working out in the humidity will rise to the point that your sweat just won’t evaporate no matter how much air you blow over yourself. If you live somewhere with high humidity opening a window may bit bean option, you’ll need a dehumidifier of AC unit.

A couple of thoughts on this part. Your initial assumptions regarding WL are wrong. It shouldn’t be a goal to have the different levels be at the same value. In addition, for some reason, TR has set up the WLs for threshold in a way that you should expect your threshold PL to be lower than your sweetspot PL.

Also, dragging your other PLs up won’t prevent you from having to do the sweetspot workouts you are reccomended now when you go back to sweetspot workouts.

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I don’t think I’m making the assumption that you mention, so I probably didn’t make my original post clear enough.

I don’t have any particular desire to have balanced levels between SS and threshold. However, currently there’s not much more that I can do to progress in my SS level. I’m limited mostly to 1hr workouts and they are already very close to being ‘ride at 94% for 1 hour’. As it happens I struggle with this because I overheat but even if I didn’t overheat then I don’t see a lot of room for progression here without increasing the intensity.

So my proposal is to try and make better use of my weekly SS workout by doing higher intensities for a shorter time (I.e threshold workouts). By doing this, I am working an area that I have more room to grow in, and because it will involve higher watts but less duration I am expecting to have more time to cool down between sets. This is certainly true for my recent ~lv5 threshold workouts.

What I’m fundamentally saying is that riding at ~295W ( my upper SS) for a full hour without breaks is really hard and makes me overheat, and I think it might be more useful to do some rides that are more like 4x10mins @ 310W, for example. These would be more much pleasant thermally.

Wouldn’t that be rides under your current threshold level? 4x10 at FTP is a threshold 4.9. I don’t think you can progress much within threshold PL before you are back at the same issue, more or less no rest for a hour workout.

Have you considered doing a VO2max block?

I think your approach sounds sensible, but the devil may be in the detail.

If you’re at 94% for nearly an hour, then that is effectively a threshold workout (<=94 vs 95 etc).
60@94% (295w) = 1,062 kJ.
40@100% (313w) = 754kJ.

So you’re doing less work overall in fundamentally the same energy system with the example you gave. Also, if you get your threshold wrong, you may be working above with implications for recovery.

So you will probably bump up against the same limitations - pushing out marginally sub-threshold workouts for a very long time, be it at 94, 96 or 100%.

Or you choose Supra-threshold 105-110% Threshold workouts that TR likes to prescribe.

Very good point. I used 4x10 as an example of something I’ve been prescribed recently with my ~lv5 threshold but you’re right that they’re not equivalent. I don’t want to stray too far from the adaptive training path so I would probably just do whatever threshold workouts the system prescribes me.

One thing to consider is how fast the air is moving over your skin. Sometimes those big ‘gym fans’ move a lot of air but it kinda just blows it around in not in any particularly precise direction. A couple years ago I picked up a Lasko blower fan and the difference is pretty incredible. It shoots the air at you in a concentrated beam and the difference between that on full and the 24" box fan on full from the same distance can’t be exaggerated. It’s the best thing I ever bought for my indoor cycling.