Poor Workout Poor Energy

I am new to cycling.

I set up a low volume SS base plan. I just completed week 2 (work out no. 6 - Eclipse). See below.

I really struggled with Eclipse. I barely managed to stick to power in 1st and 2nd intervals but by the 3rd interval my legs were absolutely cooked. I couldn’t complete it.

(1 ) Have I been overtriaining after just the 2nd week in the workout with only 3 workouts per week (total 3hrs. 30min per week)?

(2) I am planning to back off for three days and rest the legs properly and repeat the exercise. Is this a good idea? Or should I just put that to a bad day, rest well, and progress with the next exercise after a couple of days?

(3) Could it have been my nutririon? I had some Coucous (low to mid GI carb so fairly slow energy releaing) at 6:30pm. I started by workout at 9:45pm. So I waited 3 hrs 15 mins for digestion.

(4) Could it have been my homemade energy drink? I made it with 90 grams of refined sugar, 10 grams of salt, and a couple of drops of concentrated lemon, and filled with water to 750ml.

(5) Is 9:45pm too late for an indoor workout? Is there a recommended time of day to train for optimum power/energy output?

Your comments are most welcome!

No. You’re new. TTE (time to exhaustion) takes time to grow.

I would continue onward. Depending how new you are, you may fail the longer ones, but just keep going.

When it gets too hard (use this sparingly) and you just don’t think you can, turn off ERG, drop the intensity and ride by feel. Do what you can. Coaches will call this riding by RPE. As a new cyclist, the most important thing to do is to get time in, and build up your tolerance. Part of it is psychological, learning to endure the pain. Part of it is physical, you need the aerobic ability to do it.

Maybe. If you think you could’ve done it, but just something was off, then possibly.

Did you have water in addition to that? It’s hard to say, nutrition and hydration are 2 different things.

:man_shrugging: very individual. Some people workout late, some early. You’ll get used to whatever you choose.


Thanks for your detailed reply.

In response to your question on having water in addition to my homemade energy drink - no I just had the energy drink, no water. In your opinion would you recommend that I had water in addition?

That’s a personal thing. I do. I don’t like that much concentration. I will use the drink as a supplement for shot blocks/gels, but will still take some water, or water with electrolytes. But, for 90 minutes, I probably just use water and electrolytes. You will have to see what works for you, and how much you need. I, personally, don’t like the idea of that much sugar, but I do use it when I’m pushing out 3hr workouts as I tend to make a huge mess with gels.


First welcome to cycling and the TrainerRoad community. As you said you are new to cycling so don’t worry about not being able to finish hard workouts (it happens to all of us). The biggest thing is that you’re on the bike, having fun and being healthy. Muscle endurance will come with time and after a cycle or 2 you’ll be able to look back at this and feel awesome when you complete the same workout and feel like you could do more.

As for fueling, it is completely individual and I would suggest experimenting as much as possible. If you haven’t already I would check out the TrainerRoad YouTube channel as they have a lot of videos on nutrition and fueling that could give you a baseline for comparison.

Most importantly good luck on your training and have fun

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Do you have sufficient cooling? It’s getting warmer at least where I am.


If you are new to cycling entirely, I would maybe consider switching to the Traditional Base plan.

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Thank you N8Lewis for your comments.

Thank you bclarkson for your comments.

Thank you Cory.Rood for your comment

To add to the other comments, 20 minute sweet spot efforts can be tough. 3 in one session, when you’re not really accustomed to them, can be very tough. I’d be tempted to take up the suggestion of traditional base for the first part of your plan.

Sweet spot is rewarding, but it does take time to settle into the mindset for doing long intervals. the 10min Antelope efforts are relatively easy to power through. Any 20 minute interval is mentally challenging, as well as physically harder, getting all of that energy to the right places.

Sounds a bit facile, but it is just practice : after all, that is what training is all about !! You have good days, you have bad, but don’t over-analyse just yet. Just try a few different things, and settle to what feels best for you.

It is worth continuing with the plans when you are feeling a bit off. Any effort is valuable, so even if you need to knock off 5% to complete, don’t worry. Taking too many days off is not generally that beneficial.

Oh, and listen to the Podcasts - you’ll find some excellent discussions and advice contained within.

Enjoy :slight_smile:

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I started in Jan this year, here’s what early workouts look like:

So don’t worry, you’re not on your own here mate.
It will get there, eventually (this 3 week stint was followed by 2 weeks off the bike (skiing & work trip) and since then, I have nailed 100% of the workouts (not easily, far from it, but I still did :stuck_out_tongue:)

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Thank you lot Malcolm_Yates for your comments.

Thank you holybinch for your comments.

To everyone, I really appreciate the comments, they have been very helpful and motivating. Its really good to know that there is a forum where somone can ask questions and potentially get help.

I know I am still a newbie but hopefully I will be able to give back in the future by offering advice to someone too.

Stay safe all!


So i was reading this and checked Eclipse to see which one it was and my instinct was “oof, yep, that could be hard”.
It takes a bit of getting used to. This is as much a mental game as a physical one. It takes a while to calibrate your leg-brain links to be able to go “Arrggh, my legs are going to fall off, my lungs are going to blow out of my ass and i’ll probably die. I’m good for another 10 minutes at this level” and then after a 2 minute rest you’ll be able to go again.

Some tips:

  • Eat lots of carbs. You might burn 1300Cal during Eclipse. If you’re low on energy then it’ll always be much harder.
  • Have some hydration for the workout, but don’t overthink it: you aren’t going to die if you only have 1 bottle and don’t have a drink for half an hour.
  • Lots of cooling. A really big fricking fan, not a little one, a big one.
  • A banging hard spotify playlist.
  • HTFU
  • Listen to the podcasts.

Stick with it. It gets easier.


@holybinch … and it feels so good to do a session like Eclipse, and look back and think what I thought looked impossible, I did !!


or even better, to do something like Fletcher, and realise “sheeet, 3 months ago, this was the over part of the over/under workout” :roller_coaster:

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I’d be cautious going down this road. 90g of sugar is race fuel. For day in and day out workouts (especially short workouts) normal meals should top up glycogen levels plenty.

Eating healthy lower glycemic index foods will also help with developing a fat burning engine. If you fuel every workout with lots of sugar you won’t develop the fat burning abilities.

As coach Chad says on the podcasts over and over, you can back pedal during hard intervals or you can dial down the intensity. There’s not shame in that. There’s no requirement to exactly complete every workout.

Three days of rest sounds like a lot. One day is probably fine.

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What test did you use to set your FTP - ramp? It’s possible that your FTP is set too high for now. If you continue to have trouble with workouts, reduce your FTP by, say, 5% and see how that goes.