Tough old week - gubbed

Hi guys,

New to the forum and looking for some reassurance/advice.

I started training a few months ago (after a year of fair-weather riding) and up until now I’ve had it all very much my own way. Having completed mid-volume SSB1 and 2 without much issue I’m in the midst of the general build just now and having a tough old time of it - a situation I think I’ve managed to inflict on myself.

My midpoint ramp test was 297 and not being without ego I couldn’t help but nudge that up to 300. I took the test last week and since then I’ve had not the most ideal prep over the weekend due to some friends leaving town and all the activities associated with this.

I got through Bays +1 fine but then Dade +4 (VO2 max) arrived and messed me up big time. I managed 4 of the intervals at 100% and the rest at 95% but I was not a well man by the finish. I subsequently had a rest day and then attempted Mount Goode (threshold) yesterday: making it two-thirds of the way through the first interval before dropping down to 90% in order to get through it. For the second interval I tried to keep going at 95%, making it quarter of the way through, but felt really poor so decided to just bail from the workout entirely. After this I adjusted my FTP, knocking it down to 295, and today completed NorthPack but stopped multiple times throughout and again dropped the intensity to 95% halfway through the workout.

I’m feeling pretty discouraged at the moment. I assume it’s just fatigue, which feels a little bit more psychological than anything but would appreciate some advice on how to proceed. Should I stick at 295 and see how I go next week? Knock my FTP down a little bit more? Retire immediately?

Any and all advice/anecdotes gratefully received.



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I’m in the same boat as you. I think the Build phases are in general more difficult than the Base phases, so bear that in mind. For the first time yesterday I had to bail out of my workout just 50% of the way through.

I’m planning on resting for today then doing a recovery workout tomorrow and restarting my short-power build plan with a ramp test on Monday/Sunday. You should also consider if you’ve had any other changes in your routine, e.g. less sleep, more stress, hotter weather, etc.


This sounds very similar to my experience with SSB1 and 2 last winter. I think the plans are too much if you don’t have a sufficient aerobic base. I’ve been riding for 14 months after a 9 year layoff. I think the answer is as high a volume of low intensity that you can manage. I’ve transitioned to a Periodized plan for the summer. I’m testing next week and ill give a full report on the Periodized thread.

Do you mean Polarized?
(As in 80% low intensity and 20% high intensity)

My week looks like this M,W,Thurs are 2hr 20 min Seiler Zone 1 rides. Tues is a march through Coach Chad’s VO2 max progression. I just did Spencer this week. Saturday is a 3-4 hr group ride with a fair amt of time above threshold. Next week I’m repeating a ramp test and doing a 1 hr power test.

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After doing SSB1+2 earlier this year, Build phase had just about killed me.

It almost felt like SSB2 needs a bit more dipping into VO2Max and Threshold work, just to prepare of what’s ahead. Otherwise, unless you’re already in a very good shape, the shock to the system is a bit too much.

I don’t think you mentioned which volume of General Build you’re taking on. I’m guessing it’s Mid Volume as you did Mid Volume SS.

Not going to lie, I think the Mid and High Volume plans are totally different beasts and you need to be on your game. Fitness is key but nutrition, recovery and experience are just as important.

I’m coming to the end of General Build Low Volume and that has been eye opening. It’s a VO2 max buffet towards the end and even though I love VO2, it’s beating me up. In an effort to increase my volume, I’m adding additional endurance rides and they are endurance.

I’d really consider starting the Build plans as Low Volume and add additional workouts as and when you feel mentally and physically prepared. If you’re having to cut sessions short and skipping multiple intervals, you’re not benefiting from the workouts and simply moving through the plan isn’t conducive to future success.