I agree with your general premise and I’m happy to agree to disagree on the tone. I see you meant it in a positive way.
I get big anxiety before every ramp test. It’s bad enough that when i start the workout my HR will already be elevated.
Now i just tell myself that if i blow the test its OK because i can just ignore the result and carry on with my previous FTP. Its just a tool and it doesn’t define my fitness.
Similarly with hard workouts; The worst that can happen is you have to stop or turn the intensity down. Workouts are just tools you are using.
Guess what I did yesterday?
It still intimidates me. And for good reasons - it’s a barely-under/over with 6x10mins, very little recovery…
Oh my god, this! I wish people would add notes to every workout! I regularly look at ‘recent workouts’ and see how other people found them, and I have comments on nearly every single one of my past workouts, so I know when I do a workout again, how it felt last time.
What does AT mean?
Pain. The anticipation of pain causes anxiety in anyone save masochists. Hard workouts involve pain so it’s natural to have some anxiety. It’s part of the challenge of training–facing and experiencing pain. Everyone is different when it comes to this challenge. Anyone who says they embrace or feel good about pain is full of it. (They may mean they have come to terms with pain–that’s OK.) Pain makes you quit. Everyone has quit due to pain and it sucks. Every Ramp Test is a KNOWN quit due to pain, which is part of what makes it a mental challenge. If you look forward to pain infliction, this is not the forum for you. If you are so anxious about it that you can’t do workouts or are otherwise disrupted in bad ways, well there’s your challenge. Face it and overcome it or don’t get faster. Other people can help but you have to face it yourself ultimately. Nothing wrong with not going faster, either. But there are consequences to not facing that challenge in a productive way. Anticipating pain should cause anxiety but learning to get through that and get stronger has benefits.
AT = Adaptive Training, this was TrainerRoad’s big software release in 2021. I was going to say “this year” but it’s now nearly a year ago that the announcement was made, 25th Feb as it happened.
Read almost any book on sports psychology and you’ll see a section that discusses how we label and think about various things affects our body and mind. ‘Pain’ has a lot of negative emotional associations, as it probably should. But some people have reframed how they think of and interpret the sensations produced during exercise or during intense intervals. They don’t call it ‘pain’, they call it ‘discomfort’ or something else and may even associate those sensations with positive things (going fast, bridging to a break, smashing a hill, etc.). It doesn’t mean they are masochists. It means they have found a better way to interpret and tolerate those sensations.
Comments on pain are interesting. Reframing pain??? I understand we all feels things differently. As someone who has lived with a chronic disease my experience with pain at times was unrelenting. I hurt….just to breathe let alone move. You do adapt though and you learn that you need to live with a certain level of hurt. I had a major surgery 10 years ago that resulted in me noticing something that was just strange. After surgery I felt nothing. There was an absence that I noticed….I was not hurting. For many years I had been always feeling an underlying discomfort that was now gone.
I do think our experience with pain results in a different scale for all of us. I am not saying my scale is one of being tougher….it is more how we use our words to describe what we are feeling.
I have never considered cycling to be painful. Cycling may get hard and I cant turn the pedals….but that isnt pain to me. I don’t stop turning the pedals because I hurt…I stop as I am unable to continue to get my muscles to move. They give up despite my desire to do more. There is no feeling of pain to me basing it on my prior experience with pain.
some workouts should scare you; that’s a good thing. they all shouldn’t be layups, and there should be some that make you very anxious. This is totally normal. I still get anxious before some max hill climb efforts or tough vo2max days. It never gets easier, you just go faster!