What Criteria Do You Use to Select Workouts?

For those of you who use/design your own plans, how do you decide your “critical/breakthrough/focus” workouts? Target limiters in off-season, then work toward race-specificity closer to the season?

For example, let’s say your TSB/Form is positive and you would like to do a 75-85 TSS workout that isn’t endurance work. What criteria do you use to determine if it’s a SS, Threshold, or Vo2max session?

Thanks for any input


  • How far I am from target event
  • How much work I’ve done in a recent energy system
  • What type of adaptation I’m targeting (more TiZ, longer interval duration, higher interval power)
  • Where I’m weakest
  • What I respond well to
  • What I can recover from quick enough
1 Like

-What phase of training am I in
-What’s the purpose of this workout
-How much time do I have on that day
-What is planned the day before and the day after
-Is this workout hard enough to cause stress and still recover in time for my next hard workout

I think about all this and fill the rest of my days with the volume I can handle that week

I do believe in picking a main event or date and counting the weeks backwards (say 28 weeks) to figure out how to structure your training to build and peak on that date.

1 Like

@stevemz @Tezz

This is helpful. Thanks guys. The only significant way I differ I think is that I don’t peak for an A race/event. I “peak” for a short season. So I target about a three month period. Of course you can’t peak for that long but you can come in to that time half cooked and try to time a peak toward the end.

What season are you peaking for?

June, July, Aug. Heart of road race season. Lots of officially and unofficially competitive events. During that time frame I let the events/races determine my “hard/intensity”