Sweet Spot 7.0 vs Threshold 3.8 & stagnating FTP after build

Hey there,

The background
I’ve been doing a Gran Fondo Low volume plan this year. Additionally to the Low Volume plan, I add unstructured and mostly easy, sometimes moderate rides on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays, shooting for about 600TSS per week.
I completed my first Build phase on Sunday. AI detected an FTP increase after the earlier Base phase from 332W to 348W. During Build, I could finish all my workouts according to plan and I can’t remember a single instance where Adaptive Training modified my plan.
Now, after Build, AI reduced my FTP back to 345W. This seams okay since most workouts were hard, but doable. I would thus not have expected a change in FTP. The same thing happened last year without AI FTP detection while I was on a Mid-Volume Climbing Road Race plan: My FTP increased during Base and then stagnated during Build. Now, FTP isn’t everything and I do thing that I got fitter during Build - so there are no complaints here. Now, I’m starting a 6-week Base 2 block. My Progression Levels currently are:

Endurance: 3.6
Tempo: 4.8
Sweet Spot: 7.0
Threshold: 3.8
VO2 Max: 5.4
Anaerobic: 1.0
Sprint: 1.0

The Endurance PL is misleading as I generally do not pick a TR workout for my longer Z2 rides on Sundays.

The problem
Because of the great difference between Sweet Spot and Threshold PL, Sweet Spot and Threshold workouts feel almost identical. Whether I do a Sweet Spot workout with intensities around 94% FTP or a Threshold workout with intensities between 95-103% really does not make much of a difference.

So, my thinking is that I could do a couple of achievable Sweet Spot workouts while ramping the Threshold workouts up to the higher end of productive until the workouts actually become more distinguishable.
Does that make sense to you?

Because otherwise, I could also just go and do a High Volume Base block with almost exclusively Sweet Spot workouts…

Thanks :slight_smile:

The change of 3w in your AI FTP Estimation at your current FTP is well within the +/- 1% of power meters and trainers so I wouldn’t worry about it.

As for threshold workouts, if they feel easy, I’d increase the difficulty of the workout by a few percentage points to 1) get the adaptations that threshold should be targeting and 2) let AT know that you can progress more in threshold.

Great FTP, and good luck with your next base phase.

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Great results and good on you for recognizing progress despite a similar ftp.

Could you post a screenshot of your calendar, that may make the problem more obvious.

If it really feels like SS you can probably do A LOT more threshold work. With a PL of 7 you probably did workouts like Eclipse (3x20 88-94%).

So go ahead and pick harder threshold workouts from the alternates until you find the right difficulty. don’t make too big jumps :wink:

As suggested above, playing with the intensity is an alternative.

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This will not be effective. Adaptive Training progresses you on the basis of the workout prescribed, not the workout executed. Doing a workout by increasing the Intensity percentage level will not alter progression.

To get faster progression, either grade the post-workout survey as Easy, or use the Alternates feature to select a comparable workout towards the top end of Productive, or one categorized as Stretch.

Correct. Increasing intensity during a workout only makes that workout more appropriate while doing it. The takeaway is to choose a harder Alternate next workout.

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Thank you all for your input - it’s appreciated! :slight_smile:

@rkoswald and @schmidt, threshold work does not feel easy. The workout levels are working for me. It’s just that Sweet Spot and Threshold have become almost the same. Take for example Goethe -1 and Ecuador or Royce and Desperation. I simply suspect that having the two too close together must be an indicator for something not ideal (overthinking in progress). So my idea was to maintain Sweet Spot and focus on lifting Threshold. As both feel quite hard at the moment, this would mean to pause Sweet Spot progression and be a bit better rested to do harder Threshold workouts.

@mcalista and @MI-XC, no worries I’m so clumsy that interfering with workout intensity during the workout is not an option. Also, I try to do at least some of the work in resistance mode and can go slightly harder than prescribed anyway. As the Workout Levels are actually quite spot-on, this is rarely working though…