When to go up in difficulty level

Feels at times that I am doing the same workout over and over. When should I dump the Achievable or Productive workout that is scheduled and select a Stretch/Breakthrough workout. Currently I’m in base and I will not get to 10 in either Tempo or Endurance in the time remaining, and I will be just shy of 10 in Sweet Spot. All workouts have been easy or moderate in difficulty, seems to me it should be ramping me into hard for every workout in order to progress, am I missing something?

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Remember this is “Base” not “Build”. The goal isn’t always to put you in the hurt locker, it’s to build your base and volume to set you up for a build phase…

Also, especially with Endurance for me, almost none of them are “Productive” workouts per TrainerRoad and are almost always “Easy”. Those workouts for me are all about time and volume. Conversational, easy pace for as much time as I can dedicate.

If it were Threshold or VO2 Max that was “Easy” or “Moderate” too often, I’d probably consider a stretch alternate that brought them up to “Hard” but being careful not to overdo it. At the end of the day, TR could have them at that level on purpose as part of base.

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The goal isn’t to “get to 10”, but having said that, if you think your current workouts are too easy and you can do a 10 at the prescribed intensity, and it won’t screw up the rest of your training, I would do it to give the AI that input.

I wouldn’t overtrain in order to gamify the number and “win”, but at the same time, I wouldn’t sit way below my capabilities if I felt like I was under training week after week.

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My personal choice:

If a session looks too easy, I increase intensity by X% at each half of the remaining time:

ex for 3% :

  • 3% at 50
  • 3% at 75
  • 3% at 87.5

If I can handle at least +10% for the half of a session, I’d do a FTP test after my next rest day. It’s based on nothing but my own insight.