Short power build

Hello I completed the full 12 weeks of low volume sweet spot base and am now five weeks in to short power build low volume and it has suddenly got very very hard. Failed Thor -1 about half way in then managed to get through Ansel Adam -2 half at 100% then had to reduce the second half to 95% to complete. Today Kaiser +2 had a similar experience however rather than reducing the workout i just slowed my cadence slightly and held the power about 5-6 Watts less than prescribed this helped me just about get through it. I am about to start a enduro MTB specialty and am wondering if i should start the first couple of weeks at a reduced intensity to make sure i can complete the workouts and then raise it as i go along or just head straight in and hope for the best. Looking back at the workouts it would appear the VO2 max intervals destroy me i know they are meant to be hard, but should they really be this hard.

I had a similar experience with short power build last year. Twice.

I chose short power as I focus on cross racing. However…I feel I would be better served in racing by simply having a higher threshold, and tuning up my high end power much closer to race season with the specialty plan. My plan is to just do general build after an extended base phase this go around, and then into CX specialty.

Think I’ll keep going with the plan I have for the moment as I have a A race in March. Next time general build then take it from there.

Are you re-testing on the ramp test at the set points in the plan? There should be a ramp test half way through the build phase. You could just be having a low energy week or fighting something. The last week of Sweet Spot Base II was like that for me, and I was just dead tired. But after a rest week I am into Short Power Build and so far hitting everything ok even with a slightly higher FTP.
It does seem to really depend on what you “enjoy” or feel comfortable with. I really struggle with sustained stuff near threshold, but I get on well in vo2 max intervals.

I wouldn’t worry too much. Ansel Adams -2 and Kaiser +2 are horrendously hard workouts.

60 mins at .95IF and 75 mins at .92IF? That’s some serious suffering - especially if you’re not anaerobically inclined, in which case the 130% intervals in Ansel Adams will be extra difficult.

Took the liberty of finding your rides, and you did Ansel Adams at .93IF and Kaiser at .89IF. For the durations, that’s still great going and you will have been absolutely getting the physiological adaptations you need even at that slightly reduced intensity.

Perhaps for Tom+2, as it’s quite similar to Thor, maybe do the sprint intervals at reduced intensity (say 90%) then go back up to 100% for the 4 minute intervals. It sounds like you might be a bit like me and find anything over 130% disproportionately hard. We all have different power curves so no workout is going to work perfectly for everyone.

1 Like

Thanks for the replies, yeah kept up to date with testing and happy that my ftp is about right. Only missed one and that was because i did a test on a Wattbike and it turns out my trainer is a good 30 watts out!!! So didn’t change my ftp in trainerroad can’t imagine how difficult those rides would have been is i’d have upped my ftp by 30 watts.

Just did Tom+2 and was supposed to complete it at a reduced intensity, however that didn’t happen haha. Completed two and a half intervals at 100% and then blew up as expected. re grouped dropped the intensity to 93 % and tried to keep the 4 minute efforts above threshold. Unfortunately for the last two had to drop below threshold, but didn’t bail out and managed to complete. Looking forward to the rest week hahaha

Short power build can be brutal. I remember a few years back @Jonathan saying that plan made him feel like a weak kitten. It all depends on what you’ve done in the past.

Count me as another person who suffered with Short Power Build twice. I think I actually got sick on both those occasions too. It kicked my ass and actually set me back in my training, despite me being better at VO2 workouts than sustained power and being a regular cyclocross racer

I did short power build last year and its hard plan, push hard and dont get too beat up about not finishing a session at a full 100 percent. IT did help my XC game in Texas with short punchy climbs.