I’ve been with Trainerroad for about 3 months so far, and most of my training has been indoors. So far, I’ve moved from FTP of 278 to 293, hoping to soon get to where I was in 2020 (lockdown fit) at about 315w. I’m about 78kg and 48yo, main sport is mountain bike marathon racing.
My question is about incorporating unstructured outdoor rides into a plan.
Outdoor workouts seem impossible to me. I cannot see how I can do structured interval training while riding on the roads. If the workout calls for a recovery period at say 150w, but the road is 25% uphill , what do I do? I don’t have a gear low enough for that. Equally, if the workout calls for a 400w effort, but I’m going down a steep hill with tight bends, that’s not possible either. I just don’t think i have the roads for outdoor workouts. However, more importantly, i want to be able to do a 3-4 hour road ride with friends; I want to be able to go mountain biking and not worry about intervals.
So the question is this: I know I’ll be doing about 200-250 TSS of unstructured work every week; that this will be outside; and will be at the weekend. How do I build this into a plan, so that Adaptive Training will adjust my workouts to take account of it?
I am concerned that this isn’t actually possible; that TR’s ethos is structure above all, and at all times. That if I want to follow a plan and use adaptive training, then i must give up unstructured riding, give up riding for fun, with friends, and do nothing but train, but that can’t be right can it?
Do I set a three weekday low volume plan, and just do the unstructured weekend riding on top, accepting that Adaptive Training will ignore it? But doesn’t that lose the main benefit of Adaptive Training, that it pays attention to what I’m doing and adjusts my workload accordingly?
Many thanks in advance of your advice.