What to do after Polarized Build

Ok, I’ve searched high and low and can’t find this, but apologies if my skills are lacking: what are folks doing after finishing polarized base and build?

Longer story: back on the bike after 9 months off due to injury. I don’t have any plans to race or do anything other than keep rehabbing. I’m enjoying polarized and am making progress (10% increase in FTP over base and build). So, no real need for specialty phase as far as I understand it. My thinking is just to do build again (and again?) when I’m done.

I’d do something different. Even if it’s just for 3 + 1 weeks.

It almost doesn’t matter what. Just change things up for a novel stimulus.

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Nice work on getting back at it after the injury – a 10% increase in FTP is a solid bump in fitness! :muscle:

Specialty Phase is indeed when we usually focus on race-specific efforts. Some athletes like to go through a full cycle of Base > Build > Specialty just so they can really enjoy the fitness they’ve built up over the Base and Build periods, but it’s not necessary, as you mentioned.

One option, as @Helvellyn said, is to pick a completely different plan for the next block. Changing things up can keep you fresh mentally, and it can also be productive to work on different areas of your fitness you may not have been hitting as hard through the Polarized Base and Build plans.

Another thought might be to return to the Base Phase and go through another Base > Build cycle. If it was working well for you through the last couple of blocks of training, it could be worth running through it again at your higher FTP now.

A full Base > Build > Specialty cycle should take about 28 weeks, or roughly 6-7 months depending on how your plan rolls out. Keep that in mind as you’re continuing your training. After that length of time, we generally recommend taking a week or two completely off to rest up and recover from the stress that a full training cycle demands.

Hope that helps you out – feel free to let us know if you have any additional questions!


This is super helpful! Thank you!

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