VO2 Max should feel harder than this

I just did my first TR VO2 max workout as part of SSB2-MV: https://www.trainerroad.com/app/career/mrpedro/rides/99655103-taylor-2

Taylor has 30 seconds @ 120% with 30 seconds rest. By the end of the workout I felt a nice fatigue in the legs but it was by no means a hard session. Also my heart rate recovered back to 129 every time at the start and increasing to 139 at the end of the 30 second intervals. While my HR for 20+ min intervals is normally at 160/165.

My FTP setting seems appropriate from previous workouts at sweet spot, threshold and over/unders. Although 30 seconds is just the start of the VO2 max workouts, I was expecting it to feel harder than this, is that correct? I see that the VO2 max progression consists of increasing interval time, but intensity remains at 120%. Perhaps I should do these at 125% or 130%?

We all have different strengths and weaknesses, it may be that you are suited to VO2max.

Personally I’d leave things as they are, at the moment you’ve just one data point to work with. My notes about Taylor-2 are that it’s not as bad as it looks, by the time to get to Spencer -2 you might just be wanting to drop the intensity a bit!

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no…trust me it gets worse. I have done several rounds of TR plans and don’t bother with Taylor and start with Bluebell…Taylor is ok if your new to it - once you get past Mills/Bluebell - which are both reasonable then the 2/3 min intervals at 120% FTP are killers - if you still think this after Spencer then your FTP is wrong…in fact I put Dade -1 in after Mills as the jump in intensity is massive! :laughing:

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lol, this is merely an introduction. A dipping a toe in if you will. Don’t you worry, suffering is in your future.

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Because 30/30s aren’t VO2.

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Ok, good points. I’ll wait for the 1, 2 and 3 minute intervals before adjusting the intensities :grinning:

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Taylor is just an intro workout to vo2. report back after Spencer +2

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You’re right it should feel harder and it will feel harder once the more prolonged sessions come in to play such as 3min at 120%. Because the intervals are so short, it’s difficult to gauge what’s going on with your heart rate. Personally I wouldn’t be too bothered about cranking it up as the harder workouts are coming and you’d want to be prepared/not overly fatigued before going in to them.

They shoud include annotation to this workout that it is not vo2 max workout, only a “leg primer”. Everybody (me included) reacts the same way - “this vo2 max is easy, I have to be good at this. Do not know what is all this fuss with vo2 max about”. And then you have 5x4 minutes done properly and your life changes permanently.

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:joy:

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I had the same on Monday with Taylor - so much so I did a recalibration straight after. Having been through SSB2 before though I know it’s nowt compared to what awaits.

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For me the intervals aren’t long enough to really get me proper tired. Last time I did it my HR never got past the middle of Z3. Just wait, the fun is coming

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When you get to the 2.5-3min intervals, if they don’t feel like ‘death’, then you should up the intensity. If they feel like ‘death’, then the intensity is right. :rofl:

Personally, I’m switching to longer (5-9min) intervals at 105-108%. The shorter ones blow out my legs but my HR doesn’t really get that high. The longer intervals get my HR up and keep it up. I’m a steady state / TT type rider though, so YMMV.

Sorry to inform you that this is exactly wrong. 30s/30s intervals are the VO2 Max protocol recommended by exercise physiologist Veronique Billat who has numerous scientific articles on VO2 Max. For this reason they are often called Billat intervals. As I understand it, this protocol allows you to stay longer at VO2 Max, so is more beneficial in raising VO2 Max than other methods. You can find her scientific articles by doing a search.

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Your VO2 Max is related to FTP, but not necessarily by the exact 120% relationship. As you state at the end of your message, you can increase intensity. In fact, almost by definition, your VO2 Max is essentially at the highest power at which you can successfully complete a VO2 Max workout (minimal variation in interval power), so to train it you should be close to this value.

30/30s can work as long as the intensity is high enough (which isn’t true of Taylor -2, especially the rest periods). The bolded part above is still just speculation, however.

ETA. To better mimic Billat’s protocol, the intensity of the rest periods should be 60% of FTP, not 40%.

Read the articles.

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I have. Your statement is incorrect.

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Lol I did the same workout this morning and had the same reaction. Is my power meter broken? Am I suddenly world-class? Or is 30 seconds just not that long :laughing:? It’s nice to have an occasional non-aerobic workout you can just crush while significantly holding back.

If you have good anaerobic abilities, then 30 seconds at 120% isn’t going to feel that hard. These would also feel pretty easy to me. On my PDC, I can do 120% for around 6 minutes.

Often, interval work should be about accumulating some time at intensity and increasing time at that intensity, not crushing yourself on every interval.

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