Skeletomuscularly Limited

Is anyone else “skeletomuscularly-limited”, as opposed to aerobically limited? If so, how much soreness do you carry from week-to-week when not in a heavy build phase***?

I am almost never aerobically tired, and even when I am it doesn’t occur until well after noticeable and longer-lasting muscle soreness has set in.

My “training age” is about 4yrs. I’m 45 yrs old. These are the two things I’ve thought contributed to how I respond the most.

(***yes, a certain level of soreness is expected and productive, especially during build phases, but carrying it during base or from week-to-week is not productive)

Not sure what you mean by aerobically tired. And do your muscles give out during long intervals? Or muscles are sore all the time?

“Aerobically tired” - informally, any or all of the following:

  • a general malaise throughout the day/next day (a “sleepiness”, even with adequate sleep)
  • bad attitude toward workout, dreading an upcoming effort
  • either of those things chronically
  • not holding power but not because of soreness, just cannot hold it

Not sure how else to explain that part. And I know that explanation sucks. hahaha…And again, I almost never feel those things. And I definitely never feel them without having already experienced days of soreness prior to, which has become my cue to back off.

It’s an “all of the time” thing. I can’t remember the last time I gave out during a long interval. Sore? Yes. Not able to hold power? No. Doesn’t get that far.

When I think about aerobically tired the term ‘drained’ comes to mind.
For me, it usually happens after track races or an all-day ride.

As for muscular limitation, I have felt this in workouts after coming back from a training camp with lots of climbing. I didn’t feel tired perse but when it came down to putting out power… I couldn’t. Some extra rest solved my problem but what should be kept in mind when talking about the muscular system is that the only way to improve it is to damage it and allow it to recover.

My n=1 experience is that increased carbs has dramatically improved my recovery and decreased my muscle soreness to almost zero. I’m not even near @Nate_Pearson level carbs but moving to a goal of 50% daily calories from carbs and more focus on timing and fueling during the workouts has been a game changer. This is up from a more typical 35% carb ratio.


Thanks that helps although I can definitely say that happens to me doing just strength training and no cycling. Or just doing a lot of endurance sport volume (cycling or swimming) with no strength training. So I’m a little confused by the term “aerobically limited” as you defined it, because for me it just seems related to increasing training load no matter if its aerobic (cycling/swimming) or anaerobic (strength training). Thought it was the body getting tired because of the progressive overload leading up to a recovery week :man_shrugging:

Said another way, I think chronically sore/tired is a relative term when training. I’ve been able to withstand 5/1 TR base mesocycle, although a few times (e.g. high work stress) it feels I need more frequent rest weeks at say a 2/1 or 3/1 mesocycle. Last week I started seriously deadlifting and due to work stress took off the week from cycling (more from time constraints due to work and family). And over next three weeks I’m planning another 2/1 mesocycle to see if that helps with co-training leg strength in the gym (3x mornings) with TR build plan (evening).

Maybe try taking the build plan and doing 2/1 instead of 3/1? The road build plans have 6 work weeks, so you could do week1, week2, week4 (recovery), week3, week5, week4 (recovery), week6, week7, week8 (recovery) and make it a 9 week plan.

Without consciously doing it, most of my adult life we’ve eaten a lot of carbs (fruit, veggies, etc) ala #NateCarbStyle and I’ve rarely had muscle soreness from cycling.

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A few weeks ago my scheduled Saturday workout was Frissel +1. I did not have that much for breakfast and I was tired from the rides earlier in the week. Pushing the pedals was tough and I just wasn’t into the workout. I ended up bailing before I even got to the first interval and skipped riding for the day. On Sunday, I fueled up and did the same workout. This time it was no problem finishing the entire ride. I’m 60 and find that even with the low volume HIM build plan, I sometimes need an extra day of recovery.

Last week I quit Red Lake +3 half way into the 3rd interval and finished up with an endurance ride. I did an endurance ride for Thursday as well. Last Saturday I was pumped up for the Mount Baldy sweet spot/threshold ride and did fine. I’m pumped for my VO2 max ride today.

I guess the take away is that if workouts and tearing you down and not building you up, you need to make some changes and listen to your body. I know for myself that if i don’t eat enough before a VO2 max ride I will really struggle.

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Thanks for all the input. I’m going to have to dig deeper and see what’s going on. Maybe seek out some medical/sports med advice. What you guys have presented (to me) is all totally normal and expected adjustments endurance athletes make all the time. Pretty normal stuff.

Something else is going on.


good luck and let us know what you find out.


Lyme disease. (or, that’s at least part of it)

(Just to put some closure on this thread in case anyone searches, etc)

Get better soon!

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Sorry to hear. We live in the Lyme disease capital of the US and on a farm in the woods no less… tick checks are daily practice.

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