Sweet Spot Base - Easier with Adaptive? (SSB AT)

Hi all. I’ve been using TR for about 3 years now. I usually complete SSB I and II but to do so, I’ve had to add extra weeks to complete Palisade and the like… I’ve always found these to be really really tough. I’ve now just started SSBI LV and using Adaptive, the workouts are still hard but way more achievable. There’s nothing in my plan that looks remotely as tough as Palisade. I’m pretty sure my ftp is correct as I pushed the ramp as hard as usual. Don’t get me wrong, I’m more motivated than ever to do these workouts and enjoy them rather than dread them. But I can’t help thinking that they should be harder when I compare them to the old SSB. Anyone else had this experience? Is this the expectation or have I perhaps undercooked my ramp test? (It didn’t feel like it at the time)

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If you’re crushing the workouts the plan will get harder as you progress. Whereas before everyone was faced with those brutal workouts, not you’ll only get them if your training indicates that you can handle them. I think.

Not sure I’d say I’m crushing them (I wish). After a 2x20 session on Tuesday I set the “How’d it feel“ to medium and it then adapted my subsequent sweet spot sessions. I did a 90 min under/over on Sunday which was “Hard” but nowhere near as hard as the standard u/o sessions from the original pre-AT plans. The later u/o sessions were not modified. So it looks to me so far that the adaptions kick in only where you’ve said a workout was Medium difficulty…… ? I’m only starting week 3 so just trying to work out the levers. If it’s too easy I can always up the target ftp mid workout

I’m doing SSB HV 1 for the second year in a row. SSB1 is definitely easier than it was before AT. Not to mention, my FTP is 5% (15 watts) higher than it was at this time last year completing SSB1. It’s not easy, it’s just easier than it was before. I definitely feel better and am not as scared of being able to complete some of the workouts as I was last year. I’m beginning week 4 of SSB1 so we’ll see how my fitness improves. However, I can’t help but feeling that it’s not hard enough and I should be doing more.

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I also was really cooked after completing workouts from SSB prior to AT. With AT, I wouldn’t really refer to the workouts as easy, but they adapt to your unique circumstances. I remember Nate mentioning on a podcast that AT is not designed to ensure that you fail the workouts or make the workouts too hard, it is designed to ensure that the workouts you do are always in the “productive” range, which is hard enough to make significant adaptations but not hard enough to leave you so fatigued that you won’t be able to go for an unstructured ride the next day. The main point of AT is to sustainably make adaptations which does not necessarily mean that you need to go very deep in all workouts.

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@MI-XC @yajvans Very interesting……. I really hope this new approach works. I definitely used to fear the under over 90min sessions in the standard plans but I’d usually jump at least 5% by the end of SSBI…… let’s see. I’ll update here once I complete Base I and retest

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I just took a look at my PRs (season comparison) and I think this shows a good picture of the benefits of AT. My strength is SS with a relatively poor VO2, so I tend to underperform on the Ramp Test. Earlier years I have adjusted intensity up on SS and threshold work to feel like I’m doing work… Just completed SSBI MV and let AT do it’s thing. Since I had few TR WOs prior to starting I had to nudge the PLs a bit the first week or so. Not much, but if I had a “productive” scheduled, I would simply pick an alternate that had a higher PL but still in the “productive” range. Result is much more TiZ at a higher watts that previous years at comparable FTPs. The darkest is this year. The middle is last season (3W lower FTP) and the lightest is two seasons ago (FTP 10-12 W lower).

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Not really, AT is also taking into account your history. So if for SS workouts you’ve responded: “moderate”, “moderate”, “moderate”, “hard” then its analysis will judge that you don’t need to be pushed any further in that area for the moment. AT won’t (shouldn’t?) pull back on the difficulty.

One thing to note is that you shouldn’t “game” the system, be honest in how you felt you did. In one of the many AT threads @mcneese.chad has posted his take on the survey response. My take (on interval style workouts) is similar - and is based on how I would feel if I had to do another set: “All out” = no way, only just finished as it was; “Very Hard” = yes, but it would be a struggle; “Hard” = yes, but it would require focus. Unlikely to be Moderate or Easy for those type of workouts. It has been mentioned that AT recognises the pattern of your responses, i.e. if you always reply “Moderate” then it learns that. Not seen it confirmed though.

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Unofficial support info, but here is what I use.

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