Spanish Needle Progression

My Build phase continues in prep for Unbound (No, I’m not stressing…why do you ask? :crazy_face:). Tomorrow, I have Spanish Needle +2 and next Tuesday, I have Spanish Needle +1.

It seems like these two are out of order…+1 is 15’ shorter (1:45 vs. 2:00), has fewer (but longer) interval sets and is lower in both TSS (114 vs. 133) and IF (.81 vs. .82). Interestingly, +1 is a 5.4 Anaerobic workout vs. 4.9 for +2). (Admittedly, the lower IF and TSS is likely due to the shorter workout)

Kinda seems like +1 should come before +2 in the progression, however…looking at the workouts, it seems that if I can get through +2, then +1 would be a bit easier.

Anyone with any thoughts / insights re: this progression?

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ETA - both workouts are listed as “Breakthrough” for me and I am ignoring the suggested plan adaptations that came up after my weekend rides as I feel that the current plan is one I can handle.

Progression of a single type of workout is overrated? AT will change next week depending on this week? Think big picture, workouts before and after.

Hey @Power13, I’m looking into the classifications of the workouts in the Spanish Needle series.

I’ll report back with what I find! :male_detective:


Alright, so after some poking around I’ve found that the Workout Levels for this series are correct, but there are some things that might make them confusing when viewed as a group. :sweat_smile:

This snippet from the WL support article is a useful bit of info to check out first.

When applying this logic to the Spanish Needle series you can see that Spanish Needle +1 has multiple sets of 20 intervals in a row back-to-back, whereas Spanish Needle +2 has only 15 in it’s longest set (most are shorter). This means although +2 is longer in duration (and therefore higher TSS), it’s arguably easier to complete because the athlete has a lot more opportunity for rest between sets of intervals.

The confusing part comes in with the workout titles (+1, +2, +3, etc.). This was how we ranked workouts before we created Workout Levels, and in some cases, the workouts might not go in order perfectly (1, 2, 3). This is something we’re aware of and discussing to find a better solution for the future, but for now, trust the Workout Levels before the workout titles in these rare cases.

Thanks for pointing this out! Let me know if this helps to explain things and if you have other questions about any of this. :slightly_smiling_face: