Polarized Plans for Base training

So, my question is. Is anyone using the Polarized Plans for their base training instead of SS or traditional base? I thought I would change it up and try this. But I’m not sure if this is a good approach for my base training. I’ve always done SS base and then a build. I have about 10 hrs. a week to train and Sundays are usually outside rides 4 hrs. endurance rides.

I am, but only sort of. I first did a 4 wk block of HV TB. Am now mostly done with 6 wk block of HV polarized base. and am really liking it. AT is a bit off in some respects, so am increasingly using alternates. In particular, it seems to shorten the Sunday Z2 so I’ve been forcing longer rides there. Have also bumped the Friday threshold WL a couple of times, as it seems to be too conservative there.

I’m giving it a shot this winter. I’m not sure if the plan design will yield better results than the SSB plans, but polarized should be a lot easier for me to stick to which is half the battle anyway, right?

It was hard for me to always bring the needed readiness and intensity to the sweet spot workouts for various reasons. With the polarized plan (LV) I can move the hard workout of the week around to a day/time I know I’ll be ready and prepared to bring the intensity and focus and then fill the rest of my time with the endurance workouts.

The endurance workouts work better for me as well because they open up my workout schedule. I can hop out of bed in the morning and do a Z2 workout no problem, but I’d never be able to get through a morning sweet spot workout. So I’m not as time crunched as to when my TR workouts need to happen with the polarized plan.

We’ll see how the results turn out, but those are the reasons I think it might be a better plan for me


I’m currently in the middle of the medium volume Polarized Base II block after completing the 6 week Polarized Base I. It’s been great for me as I push one TR endurance ride outside and still have the flexibility to get in long weekend rides on the MTB. My FTP went up 15 watts after the first block and the polarized model keeps me fresh for the hard days. This is my first foray into structured training so can’t speak of how it compares to SS Base but so far so good for me.

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  • For clarity, TR classifies the two separate POL Plan Blocks as BASE or BUILD, not Base I & II as referenced above.

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oh crap I didn’t even notice that! Thanks

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You are not the first and won’t be the last to miss that detail.

I’ve asked TR to change the actual name of the plans to include ‘Base’ and ‘Build’ because TONS of people miss that detail in the body text. I will tag @IvyAudrain again because this misunderstanding continues to happen. Yet another example that something should be done to clarify the descriptions and purpose of each plan.


I’m planning to use it as a “bridge” between my base and build phases. My base season is planned for at least 12 weeks and I’m looking to have my polarized phase those last 4 weeks to get my upper end systems working. Doing about 7-10 hours right now and trying to work my way up to 15 by that point.

I did polarized a couple seasons ago during the summer to try it out with great success. Went back to SS last season and just didn’t have the fitness I was looking for. I don’t think going pure polarized is the answer, necessarily, but it does seem to work very well if you have the time.

Of course plan builder has shortened my next build block to 6 week. And with AT I cannot distinguish it from base. :thinking:

Well, that depends on the events and/or time off aspects that were part of your plan builder process. PB can and does shorten any of the phases as needed to fit within the boundaries you set in the process.

As far as identifying it on the Calendar, the phase start annotation is the key there and can be reviewed to see that info just like any other phase in the TR PB setup.

I just snapped a pic from my calendar. This is a manually added plan, but you get similar ones via Plan Builder (at the start of each phase they gave you) that can be opened and viewed to see the full details:

Yes - did not mean to add any confusion. Was just pointing out that the difference between polarized build and base is a bit more subtle than for other plans.


I did both POL Base and Build last year and really enjoyed them. I had gotten quite burned out heading into last off season so POL Base was a foot way to ease back into intensity after a 10-week off season of lifting and Z2. My vote is to give them a try.


No confusion. I appreciate the feed back.

I definitely will be trying it out. I think the hardest part will be the long rides Thursdays. I dont like 2 hour trainer rides.

I’m brand new to TR so I don’t know anything about anything. I’ve chosen Polarized Base and Build and Calendar has them labeled as Base 1 and 2 which are both 6 week blocks then on to Build which is an 8 week block.


Might depend on exactly how you selected those plans and applied them to the calendar. That looks like you used Plan Builder, and then possibly swapped out Sweet Spot Base with Polarized while in the Plan Builder process?

As posted above, there are just two distinct Base or Build phases in the current POL setup for TR when viewed in their normal pages. Importantly, there is no “automatic” way to select/apply POL plans in Plan Builder.

It’s necessary to swap them to POL in the Plan Builder process. As such, I am guessing that process leaves some artifacts from what is the normal Sweet Spot Base I & Sweet Spot Base II plan phases (6 weeks each in most cases).

You can see that “Base Phase 1” is present in the example linked above, and I expect that is what you are seeing. It’s may well be that you are getting two “POL Base” phases, but that is not their typical approach external to the Plan Builder alteration covered.

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Spot on. Plan Builder planned out my year and I just subbed Polarized for the other Base and Build plans.

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I’ll ask here since this is the most recent Polarized thread. But does adaptive training still not work properly with the polarized plans or has that all been worked out now?

IIRC I switched my workouts around to put the long rides on the weekend and the threshold and vo2 workouts on Tue and Thu.


Ditto, I swapped the Thur & Sat workouts before applying to my calendar.

  • VO2 - Tuesday
  • Threshold - Thursday
  • Endurance - Sat & Sun