SSFQ: Building a build

Special Snowflake Question: Building a build.

I have lost fitness, notably, base fitness is fairly poor. To overcome this, my intention is to complete at least 1x 4 hour LSD ride and 1x sweet spot session per week throughout the season (except specialty). More sweet spot in base of course.

As an individual I can only tolerate 2x hard sessions a week. Throughout the 8 week build period my intention is to race our local weeknight criterium series as hard session 1. Therefore my schedule will look like:
m: rest
t: 2 hours crit
w: 1.5 hours Sweet Spot
t: gym - leg pt/strength
f: gym - core and taku -1
s: 1.5 - 2 hours ? hard
s: 4 hours LSD

I don’t care so much about results this season, I want to set myself up to be as strong as possible for next year. If you were in my position would you focus on for that Saturday session?

Other Details:

I live in a flat area of the UK and raw power beats power to weight most of the time.

Race profiles tend to be flat with short 30s to 2 minute power climbs every 5 to 15 minutes of riding. Races are typically 60-80 miles (2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours). The power climbs are ussualy 350-500 watts to stay with the pack. Vying for position on the narrow country lanes also requires significant effort.

Racing can be attritional and in the past I have been successful by surviving until the sprint. (And not making use of my 5 minute power!)

You’re not special, sorry :confused:. I would do none of that and instead do SSB 1 & 2, probably low volume if you want to maintain your gym training. Substitute a race for one of your workout days.

You don’t need to reinvent the wheel here, trust the TR plans and process. You’re likely to be disappointed with your progress trying to master your own plan.


I was going to type something similar :slightly_smiling_face:

TR is designed to take you from wherever you are now. Not then now, or pre now, but now now. :smile:


I am completing SSB 1 and 2 at present.

Gym is a must for PT following being hit by a car. I don’t think repeating SSB with promote consistency which is the most important part of training. I will get bored of sweet spot day in/day out.

Perhaps I should rephrase the question: in general build, you have micro bursts, over-unders and a combination for Saturday. I will not be able to complete all three. Microbursts will be mimicked by the crits and the crit is fun so why not.

Would you drop the over-unders or the combination workout?

The special snow flake comment was /s, sorry if it was misunderstood. :slight_smile:

With your new provided information, I would follow GB as perscribed and simply substitute your Tuesday Crit race for the TR Tuesday workout. Everything else in the training should remain the same. What volume of plan are you on and what will you be on for Build?

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Mid Volume during the week, High volume for the weekend. Thursdays and Fridays are being dropped for PT.

General or Sustained - undecided on this point

I think you’re playing around with the plans too much. I’ve never seen it ever recommended to do mid during the week and high during the weekend. That’s not how the plans, TSS and ramp rate are intended. There is structure and reason to the plans with progression and stress. High and mid volumes have different structure and workouts assuming you are following the plan as intended. The plans are not just a random collection of workouts. Yes, you can alter the plans if you know what you’re doing and understand the training. More often than not though people get it wrong and would have been better off just following the plan.

It seems like you are just set on doing your own thing and I don’t think I can be of much help to you.

I’ve been thinking of a 2 year approach too. If you are going to be racing you might want to follow a speciality phase and sub out some rides for easier ssb

With your proposal I think there could be issues trying to do base/buildy stuff while racing.

Unless you are a baller and your races will be solo off the front thresholdish efforts

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Certainly not a baller.

That’s a fair observation - I suspect I will follow speciality to the letter. :slight_smile:

The plans may be good for most people, but some of us need to make adjustments. As an OMIL (like MAMIL but older), I find that the progression of the plans is sometimes too fast with too little recovery. For example, in SS Base 2 mid, the jump from 2-minute VO2Max intervals in Mills (week 4) to 3-minute VO2Max intervals in Spencer +2 week later is too much for me - Mills is possible while Spencer +2 isn’t. Once I discover that I can’t complete a workout, I am already drained. The most I can do at that point is see if I can finish the time period at an endurance intensity. That leaves me struggling to figure out how to complete the rest of my plan.

It would be good if we could be offered some plans that progress slower. SS Base low doesn’t fill this need because it still has all the high intensity workouts. It looks like the mid volume plan with the easier, endurance workouts removed. Mills is still followed a week later by Spencer +2.

I’ve heard Nate mention his next big announcement and I’m hoping it has some way of customizing our plans in this way.

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Perhaps you need to schedule more taper/recoverweeks in before proceeding to the next week of a plan.

That might help your body get adjusted to the new workload.

@mcneese.chad I tried looking for your topic on adding taper/recover weeks, but I wasn’t able to find it in the search.
Do you have the link?

Is this the one you want?


Yes that’s the one, perhaps that topic can help @nju001 balance the workload from the build plan.

Thanks for the link!

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The TR plans are awesome. They have done wonders for my cycling and I recommend TR to everyone I know that is looking into training. But they aren’t a fit for everyone. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the OP wanting to modify his plan for him. I guarantee if everyone had their own coach we each would have somewhat of a different plan in front of us to follow. The core would be the same but there would be some tweaks. Remember. We’re just riding bikes.

He mentioned two important things that I picked up on.

For me, probably the most important is 2. Next year is a long way away. To follow a dedicated plan for the whole year might be mentally draining and for the immediate future he may not need to be on a regimented program.

Just my .02. KOS. I am not a coach. I only play one every now and then. :slight_smile:


I’m a relative newbie to workouts/progressions in the Build Phase, and recently have been spending time educating myself in order to answer a similar question for my own training.

Based on what I know so far, and your Tue/Wed workouts, for Saturday I would pick a vo2max session which is the Thur sessions in short power build low volume. So either Billat style (e.g. Pierce, Whiteface), or more traditional 3-5 min intervals (e.g. Kaiser). Then cherry pick a progression using workouts from the low or mid volume plans. Or just go with the Thursday progression in short power build low volume.

Thank you for your reply, in light of no. 2 what would you focus on? Threshold/VO2/something else?

Thanks for your reply and 2 cents :slight_smile:

Thanks @GPx and @mcneese.chad, I’ll take a look at the mentioned thread and comment there, if I need. Sorry if I hijacked this thread a little. It’s good to see that the OP seems to be getting answers.

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Ahh it’s no problem :slight_smile:

Based on the schedule you provided in your initial post it looks like the day that is in question is Saturday. If it were me I would take a look at the Tuesday and Saturday workouts in General Build and put those in there as you see fit. Also search around in Workouts and find some you haven’t tried before. If you haven’t done Diamond Valley Road Race+2 check it out it’s a good one.