Seasoned/competitive athletes thread

I hope this does not come across arrogant and strange but I would like to open a thread where seasoned/competitive athletes can have an exchange.

From what I read in this forum most people are time crunched (and assume every one else is time crunched). However, this may not be true for everyone here). I started racing as a kid, had my usual life breaks but was consistent with my sport. Now, between 40 and 50, I train 15-20 hours a week. I make the podium in endurance events in my age group and get into the top ranks in the overall classification.

But I’m struggling with how to structure my training. Those plateaus. I had a longish break from racing after our kids were born and I’m back into for 3-4 years now. I often hear that you have to target different systems at different times in order to overcome those plateaus. What is the experience here? Does anyone have experience with this. I’m really looking for experience and not theoretical ponderings.

Apart from this, how do manage to get in your hours. Just tell your story. I will once this thread has caught on.

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It appears you are looking for specific and personalized coaching advice. Perhaps this is a more appropriate path you might explore(?).

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Are you interested in the plateau problem or the fitting in the time problem? They are totally separate questions that head off in different directions

For fitting in the time I can tell you how I do it but it likely won’t apply much to you since you’re training more time than me and everyone’s personal situation will be different.

From a plateau perspective I think it is more about the differences between practical ceilings and actual plateaus - do you think you’ve reached your theoretical peak based on your age and training volume or do you think you have room to grow?

For reference I’ve been racing road for about five years and am currently a cat 2 who hopes to get the 11 points necessary to upgrade to cat 1 early in the 2019 season

I’m interested in an exchange of experiences, I do not look for solutions. I want to learn fromothers and/or get inspiration. Especially the latter. There is so much discussion on time-crunched training out there. The plateau and the time issue should only serve as examples. I did not want to start off with my life story and how I try to deal with it. If there is no interest in sharing we can simply have this thread buried under the flood of other threads.

I’ve learned so much from discussions/information online, whish there was more on more advanced (or however you want to call this) training/racing. And I wish I had known this all in my younger years.

I am not someone who trains full time but I know and speak with quite a few who do…

The only single piece of advice/information that seems to come from all of them is this: As soon as they started training for more than circa 12 hours per week, they would not have coped without a coach to manage their workload objectively on their behalf and ensure they remain compliant to their prescribed rest and recovery. They basically need someone to STOP them from training, to ensure that their fitness doesn’t plateau.

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I think a more open way to approach this would be to share your approach and experiences and then ask others to do the same. Essentially you’re asking others to share a ton of personal detail and then if the thread takes off you’ll do the same. I totally understand your reticence here - but you should understand that others may feel the same way and perhaps provide your experiences and strategies as a way to coax them out of the woodwork.


My first question… are you a TR member and following a plan?

Before kid/early in my marriage I could train 12+ hours a week and was pretty competitive. Now I barely go over 9 hours during build phase and am sitting at 7-8 hours a week during base and still getting fitter. After being off the podium for a few years after having my daughter I joined TR and the consistency of following the structured plan has got me fitter than I was 5 years ago.

I get in my hours early morning, waking up at 4:15 on weekdays. Sometimes not much later on a weekend if I have dad duties on that day or we want to make sure we get to church at 9. How much do you want it? My wife thinks I’m crazy but I want to be competitive and this is what it takes for me.

Time crunched athletes can also be seasoned and competitive.