Sweet Spot Progression

Coming off my biggest week all season (568TSS) I took a couple days off before my standing Monday threshold session. Last week was 3x12, 3x15 on tap today—it wasn’t easy.

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This concludes a 3 week FTP progressive mini-block. 4x10 > 3x12 > 2x25 > 3x15. 3 week VO2max intensive block up next.

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Curious to see how you lay our your V02 block. My plan is the T ans Sat rides to be these FTP blocks, with Thursday being over unders.

Share what you have planned in the other thread?

I only have 4 loading weeks to work with, and then two taper weeks before my first race of the season. SO…week 1 is going to be an experiment is masochism.

M: 4x4
T: 30/15’s
W: 4x4
Th: Rest
F: 30/15’s
S: Long Z2
S: Rest

Then it’s only 1x VO2 workout per week for the next 3 weeks. Which I’ll progress to 5x4 > 4x5 > 6x4 or something like that. We will see.

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In my “schedule” - I’m literally playing it week-by-week right now - I’m backing off my overall TSS as I’ve progressively built up training load every month since November. I’ve hit diminishing returns and a bit of a performance plateau likely due to fatigue. So I shortened up my interval structure a little bit last week and cut my long ride to just 1:45, a little over 400 TSS for a working week. Planning to aim for 490 as my work week volume and a 65 CTL now, building it based on key interval workouts first, then z2/LT1 filler after.

Seemed to work decently well last week… last night I put down 98% of my FTP for 45min straight. We’ll see how I feel tomorrow - either some tempo after a 2-min all out test or some over/unders delaying the test to next week. Friday - 2x24 @97-98%, higher or lower depending on how I feel.

Overall, I’m still at a peak mFTP (280W, prior to this year 276 was the highest WKO FTP), and I’ve pushed that TTE out to 46min. Prior to my VO2max block I was 276 @1:00 TTE, then I pushed up to 280 with a 39min TTE, so the work to push the curve up now seems to be working. We’ll see in a couple of weeks.

One thing I’ve noticed is that respiration and HR are generally lower for the same higher power… RPE and muscular fatigue are what’s limiting me right now, so definitely targeting the right things in this intensive FTP block.

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Finished my progression today.

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Wow. great work

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Definitely ready for race season now! Just need to manage fatigue and keeping myself sharp
in the weeks following
40 mile Road Race
Oly tri
Ironman Pace century with run off
70.3
taper
Ironman

Kinda in a similar place - I just finished up my 2nd sweetspot block of the season. Got some good TTE results, but have built up a lot of fatigue from the block (3 weeks at or above 700 TSS) and the season in general.

Now having an easy week, and will take a slightly more relaxed Polarized-ish build approach, which incorporates a couple of outdoor rides. Got to make sure I can ride a real bike that moves, and try to make it fast! Planned TSS will stay pretty flat and consist of a fair bit of Z2, and hopefully I’ll be fresh and ready to kick some Cat 4 butt when racing returns!

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I believe that Sweetspot have a great place in the late base period, but i think you have to move on to FTP work. Long Sweetspot blocks will give a lot of fatique and do not have enough intensity.

So my opinion is dont do to long period SST and move faster to FTP.

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I think @4ibanez is in a similar situation as me - so he has done FTP work :slight_smile:

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Ok thank you. My reply was based on the post above and i dont have the history of the user.

Hi all,

Started sweet spot progressions w/c 8/3/21 and did a KM baseline test with FTP of 245 and TTE of 35 minutes (although I ramped hard in the test too early and undercooked my estimate of TTE).
Then worked out SS90 intervals until I did 1x90 over 4 weeks.

Have now had a rest week and about to start Aerobic Intensive phase ie threshold/FTP block.
Started today with a KM style test progression 1 - however I didn’t ramp at the end.
Did 253w for 60mins TTE, which blows a lot of all time PRs out of the water. I’m 64kg.

I had been anticipating something in the region of 40 minutes for TTE and would use this block to lengthen and aim for a 1x60 to finish at threshold.

My question is:
Where do I start my FTP intervals with a TTE of 60 minutes. 4x15? 4x10 seems inadequate stimulus now. Aim for 1.5x TTE - 90 minutes total TIZ?

Perhaps I will have to drop to only training threshold 1x a week, and try to work in TAN tempo and SS OU so as not to cook myself or spend too much of my weekly volume in threshold (I can only do 7-8hrs a week routinely).

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No worries - yep I’ve cycled through all 3 stages once, and came back to sweetspot again for a 2nd time. During this next build stage I’ll include a mix of VO2 and some hard threshold sessions and see how it goes.

Aim is to stay sharp and reasonably fresh for whatever comes next

Good work! With a big bump in FTP and TTE, I would start conservatively. I don’t like threshold intervals under 15 mins, but in your case I might even recommend to start at 6x10 just to ease you into doing such large amounts of work. Aim to be doing 3x20 or 2x30 by the end of the block. After such a big bump I wouldn’t try and push to 90 mins - that’s massive. Working at this new level for sustained periods of your new FTP and TTE will be plenty of stimulus IMO.

If you can manage 2x threshold a week I think it would be much better if the focus of the block is threshold.

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I would start, like @4ibanez said with 6x10, 4x15, 3x20. Then is the matter how you feel. I like to introduce workouts with shorter intervals but TiZ longer than your TTE - 5x15 is my go to. 4x20 is way harder and when I am able to do it without any issue, this usually means that something good is happening. You can also introduce other type of workouts like SST with bursts (hard) or threshold with bursts (very hard) but for these type of workouts I would keep separate progression as (for me) they are way harder. For example 3x20 SST(90%) with 30s surges@120% is a harder version of 3x20@97% FTP in my experience. Threshold with 5-10s sprints on top is usually killing me and doing it for 60 min TiZ is very hard.

You can experiment a little bit and see what suits you. I would recommend to not forget going over FTP (hard starts, surges, O/U) as you sink a little bit into comfort zone and then anything over ftp becomes harder than it should be (my experience after last season)

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My TTE is right at 40 minutes, I started with a 4x 10 @ 5 minute rest, just did a 5 x 10 at 3 minute rest. Plan is to go to a 6 x 10 at 3 minute rest this weekend, then start going to longer interval times (5 x 12, 4 x 15, etc).

Before I did any of this, I held my FTP for 35 minutes as that was what my TTE was originally, but was able to ramp it up a bit in the last 5 minutes. I have since moved it out a few minutes already.

Cant really build the progression for FTP as aggressively as you do SST. The RPE difference is significant. I’ve done 1x90 at 91%, but found 2x20 at 98% still challenging.

If your TTE is 40 min, 2x20 is a good starting place. You might try 2x20 95% - 3x15 97% - 3x16 99% - 3x20 (not a prescription… an example)… The increments were a lot smaller than what I did for SST.

Now, the other thing is push power up. I’m not aiming for 150% of TTE at 98%. Push higher power for longer. An intensive phase focuses on growing power, not just TiZ. If I can get to pushing 102% of FTP for 2x20, that’s intensive progress.

I agree.

What I get from Sweet Spot work is durability and the ability to ride at or very close to FTP for long durations. I don’t really see any improvement in my FTP at this point in my “career”, if so it’s only 10w at most, but those other improvements are a really nice result of lots of Sweet Spot work.

Here’s an outdoor ride from last weekend. 2:15 @ 285 NP, and the entire ride of 3 hours @ 271 NP (.83 IF). I’d like to thank Sweet Spot for all that you do. But now it’s time to build some power.

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This is where I can’t make my mind up - should you do these supra-threshold intervals to increase FTP, or not? Or just “just below” FTP, plus over-unders? TR is obviously full of suprathreshold, but if I understood KM correctly, he thinks they only increase fatigue and its better to stay below FTP. But then, how do you increase FTP…

Yes! SST is really great to get your body ready for longer blocks right on FTP. You need a bigger chassis before you get the bigger engine. SST will make your chassis bigger.