SSBHV, ok to do if it’s your first structured Training

Have been riding for 4 years, last 12 months I have started to get serious with average time of 9-12hrs (I ride everyday), with around 600 TSS per week. FTP is 270 at 66kg, I have done very little structured training, (loving TrainerRoad)
What I’m asking is it ok to start with SSBHV, I’m into the 4th week of the plan finding it’s getting easier so I have added extra rides in each week. Don’t want to burn out.

You are the only one who can make that call. I can say for me mid volume is a little much at times. But I Also swim and run.

TL:DR For riders new to structured training, especially indoors, pick one step lower volume than you think you can handle.

The full deal: TR’s common recommendation for riders new to this type of training is to “shoot low”. But that I mean to pick a plan at least one step lower than you think you can do :stuck_out_tongue:

Too many people make the mistake of equating outside ride time and TSS to inside riding. That can lead to a shock to the system since inside work is more condensed and potentially draining. They end up crashing from doing too much and lose more in recovery and time than if they started “easier” and added along the way.

The High Volume plans are OK for some, but typically only the very top of the heap. TR recommends it for those that have topped out at the Mid Vol plans. It is surprisingly fatiguing.

So, you are safer to start lower and add rides as you feel you are handling the work (and more importantly the rest/recovery) with the time you have. You can add workouts or lengthen current ones as you get accustomed to the work load.

There are some great discussions on this overall volume discussion. Here is one search result worth reviewing:


I was in a similar spot as you in regards to years of experience and weekly hours/TSS before I got into structured training with TrainerRoad. I jumped straight into SSBHV and have been doing HV plans ever since (almost 3 years now). I have no reason to think others couldn’t do the same thing, but I do think what @mcneese.chad wrote is sound advice.

I will say that I’ve never thought any of the HV plans were easy enough that I wanted to add more work on top of them. Whenever I hit a stretch where I feel great through a handful of workouts I just bump my FTP up a few watts. If after 4 weeks you think its easy enough to pile on more work that makes me think your FTP is too low.

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Posting again to share another “I picked too much” thread that also linked to the TR article about volume selection.


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Little bit more history, I have lost 30kg (66 pounds) in the last 9 months at the same time increasing my FTP from 240-270 by changing my diet and a lot of hard work cycling. I have added between 30-100 TSS each week since I have started my plan. I stopped racing Zwift & IRL to concentrate on doing structured training for the 1st time, for the next 26 weeks to see have far I can go. I Work 12hr shifts rotating between day & night that involves plenty of walking. Still find time to complete all workouts, only changing workouts - + depending on how Mentally tired I am.
Will I lose to much fitness if I go back to SSBMV2 for the 2nd block and change up my FTP another 15w?

Likely, you won’t lose any fitness at all, and it may leave you enough time to do a little strength training to round out your overall fitness.

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I would say that if HV plan is easy and you’re adding workouts, then your FTP could be set too low. Or you’re just a machine

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Nope. SSBHV is 100% Sweet Spot work. Lower vol plans are <100% and incorporate some higher intensity workouts in order to make up for that reduced volume. In other words, you utilise different methods and will be getting just as fit as HV.

FWIW, HV plans are great but only if you also have enough time for real rest & recovery. I’d say most people could handle HV but most people can’t R&R properly; their stress:time ratio isn’t conducive.