Sweet Spot Progression

Mix two things up. Both train the same thing. Do threshold and do longer sst. Like @Captain_Doughnutman said - threshold with bursts is awesome. I have seen great results with those as it maintains top end quite nicely.

I liked the weeks with sst with bursts, threshold and longer sst. Why? Because longer sst is like recovery then :slight_smile:


To back up what has been said, I definitely got a big benefit from doing O/U threshold work during my version of SS Progression.

I was definitely feeling stronger and stronger both at Sweet Spot and in long over under intervals during a block where I built up to a bit over 2*60min @90%

I’ve still not managed to get back to the same sensations since.

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Thanks guys - this is really helpful.

I’m just finishing up a 6 week block of 4x8’s ahead of my last event of this year, then going to do a month of z2 work and start the SST work properly on 1 Nov. Hopefully a late season boost from this work will also be a good start going into the winter as well and I can build on it with another good progression.

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I’ve got Buffalo+3 on my plan for today, with the idea of going to 3x40min next Friday, and 3x50 the following.

Buffalo is 3*30min at 88% (I’ll most likely just aim for 90% as per all the other Sweet Spot Progression workouts I do) but with hard starts. I suck at explosive efforts and have to ramp up, is the hard start into Sweet Spot beneficial?

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At those lengths, I don’t bother. I reserve hard start for more like a build workout where I might be doing 3x20 at 94% with a hard start. Doesnt make as much sense of your goal is pushing TTE out.

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Do your SS intervals w/ nearly all-out 10s bursts every 5min.


I haven’t checked in to this thread for six months, so I’ve got a lot of catching up to do.

My SS progression experience last year set me up for a very successful season which has just come to an end.

I’m curious as to what the regular contributors here are going to do this autumn/fall as prep for next season.

In the meantime, I’ve got some reading to do… :slight_smile:

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One more race this coming weekend, then a few weeks off the bike.

Reset WKO5 to a new season, ride easy for a week to get back in the habit, then do a baseline week. Start progression up to 2hrs and do a lot of what I did this past offseason. Probably two SST and one tempoish ride each week for a few months until muscular endurance is where I want it, then smash a VO2max block.


Racing CX. My season ends in December, at which point I’ll take 7 days off the bike entirely and begin my strength training and base program. Last year I did that from October till February and I really enjoyed it. In terms of performance, I did a KM TTE test at the beginning of February (coming off nothing but indoor
tempo and Z2 rides) and managed 327w for 40min…which is still a season PR. lol.

I’ll probably do more tempo this season than last and not worry about extending TTE through sweet spot out to more than 60 min. I’d rather take the time I spent last year and put it toward a true FTP build than a TTE build.

For me, I’ve learned that sweet spot work doesn’t lift my FTP, unless I start a season with a lot less fitness and reduced FTP from the season prior. I’m more interested in doing things that raise FTP, and for that I think lots of volume around LT1, over/unders, 7-10 min efforts above threshold, and work around MAP do that best.


Also did my final race of the year last Sunday (didn’t do many in the circumstances). I’m going to have a bit of somewhat ‘disciplined fun’ for the rest of the month and start the new season in October.

No solid plan, but I’m going to incorporate much more tempo in the off-season than last year.

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Responding to myself, I reviewed my early season and Tim’s presentations….

Two weeks off.
Baseline testing week + 2hr ride on the weekend.
Three weeks of HVLIT building to 3hr ride.
2-4wks Tempo + SST focus building time at tempo and starting the SST progression (1x week)
2-4 wks SST progression (2xwk) up to 2hrs TiZ.

Plan to add fatigue resistance rides of 3hrs with tempo and SST worked in late in the ride as part of these progressions, probably not until I’ve built the long Z2 rides out to 4hrs. Those rides will sub in for a weekday SST session, so I’ll do a progression workout and then the fatigue resistance workout one week, two SST most weeks and an additional tempo workout during those periods most likely (3 working days each week).


This is true for me as well, but instead of not pushing SST, I plan to start my progression at a higher TiZ and progress out to 2hrs. Because those workouts will be more taxing than last season’s progression, I’ll spend more time riding steady tempo during my base/transition period as I move to pyramidal TID.

Overall, this will likely lead to higher volume but a bit less intensity during my base phase.

As another person trying this approach I see a little trend emerging.

Maybe it’s cuz Keegan Swenson said we should all aim for 37 on our Tempo progression level? :laughing:

Do we need to make a Tempo progression thread? :wink:

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From the perspective I am trying currently more ISM training model or good old RPE - 5/10 Z2 that coincidentally falls into tempo naturally. Apparently easier aerobic work, longer tides and some rest due that causes massive LT1 improvement in no time…

Yeah, problem with that is if you’re time limited… straight Z2/Tempo base periods require double-digit hours per week to truly effective. I’m going to tough that out for three weeks, riding four days a week at 10-12+ hours of straight Z2, but lots of mornings up at 5am to make that work. Still, the benefits can be big…

For me, it’ll be more a progression of:

Long Z2 → Tempo progression + 1 long ride → SST progression + 1 long ride/fatigue resistance ride

And I think that’ll be my base. Tempo progression will likely include 1x SST workout each week; SST progression will be 2x SST with another tempo ride if I’m fresh enough. When I tried to do three SST workouts in a week I was very hit and miss this last offseason. 2x SST + 1x tempo was sustainable.

In the end, it won’t be a true SST progression anyway since I doubt I will be doing 2x 2hrs of SST this season. I think that much time will end up taking a lot out of me. We’ll see.

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Sounds very interesting, am planning a similar block in Nov/Dec to mostly do long Endurance/Tempo rides and 1xSST/week.

What % of FTP are you aiming for and what progressions are you planning on for now?

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Endurance rides probably 65%; I’ll ride by feel and RPE most likely. Tempo rides between 75-85% extending the duration. SST I start at 90% and usually stay there until I get to the TiZ I want, then add things like hard starts, bursts, over-unders, and/or raise up to 92-94% during an FTP build. Progressions I’ll have to build out. I don’t do any micro-planning much more than two weeks out. I’d guess I’ll start both tempo and SST progressions at 60 min TiZ (tempo sustained, SST 3x20 or so).

Just sitting down to plan out my off-season right now. I’m overall really happy with the results of the SST work I did this year, and the progression I was able to accomplish both getting out to 100min of SST in a 2hr ride and being able to consistently nail 2x25min @ Threshold with the protocol we discussed in here was a real game changer for me.
My endurance has been levels above what it was in prior years, and when coupled with the targetted VO2 weeks I had a very good season and results (albeit limited racing).

Heading into the fall I think I’m taking a similiar approach to @anthonylane and going to smash on that supra-threshold work a little more at like 105-108% to really push up my FTP a bit more, now that I have the aerobic capacity. I’m also going to keep a 3hr z2 only ride in my schedule over the winter as those adaptions are great for longer RR’s when other people start falling off.


Inspired by this thread and how my race season went (some good / some bad, and trying a different program to what mostn this thread do ), I’m going to start working with Coach Alex from Empirical when my offseason officially starts in November for next season. Excited to get all that going. I think training like this will really help address some of my performance short comings.