Why aren't "Masters" plans the default?

So I’ve been listening to the past couple of podcasts around the new (ish) masters button. First of all, I think the label is silly. Why call something “Masters” when it’s really for anyone who has more stress in their life, like a working professional? I think you’re going to alienate a lot of people who will always think that’s for “old people”

Also maybe even more importantly, why isn’t this the default setting for all plans? The majority of TR users will have jobs, parental duties…and overall a fair amount of stress in their lives.

Wouldn’t it make more sense to have a “Pro” mode? Then add a warning that this is for people who have less stress in their life, can handle 3 HARD workouts each week, and in general a steeper ramp to higher training stress.


Welcome to the forum, mate.

I think Masters is a great name for it. Anyone who is here training with dedication is surely going to read the full description of all the plans and choose accordingly.

Also Masters 1 as a race category starts at 30-34 yo (in Australia so I assume everywhere). So when I see Masters Plans that’s the starting age I see in my mind.



Interesting… Maybe it varies a little in different countries as well around perception. In Canada, most Master categories start at 35+.

I think there’s an opportunity here though as well be move away from that language. Or to rebrand it as a feature to use regardless of age. Just my $.02

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Because then there will be a knee-jerk reaction about how the plans under-train you and don’t actually help serious riders get faster.

As with most internet forums there is no winning here. As it is… this is probably the best compromise.


It’s fine the way it is. The effort to worry about this stuff will force you into the Master’s category.


The masters plans are basically in line with current training philosophy at large… it’s a big pivot from the very (imo) intense TR plans of old. It’d be really hard to just completely change things like “yeah, we’ve been wrong this whole time”.


Whose philosophy?

For parents & professionals I agree, this is more sustainable. For a 20 something striving for the Olympics and/or Tour… probably not.


A lot of other podcasts and knowledgeable coaches outside of TR are advocating 2 intense sessions a week and filling the rest with endurance. It’s generally thought that any more than 3 hard sessions a week is just not beneficial for the strain it puts on the body which it can’t necessarily recover from.


There is no hope

Made me lol

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I would bet a lot of money that 75%+ of TR users are middled aged dudes with money and families.

It was pretty clear when Nate showed the w/kg graph of users that a very small percentage of TR users are elite level athletes.


To become skilled or proficient, an expert in something is to master it. You become a master of your craft, an artisan, and others in comparison are mere apprentices. I think it’s a good term.


I can see the point of it being default considering the general demographic here, and the history of people biting off more than they can chew but I don’t think TR would win either way.

Make masters the default option and you’ll have people saying they do more and don’t assume I can’t do it, leave it as is and here we are discussing it!

I reckon it might have deserved it’s own question page (like volume and experience) in the plan builder setup to explain the pros and cons of each option, however, a toggle option is good enough for me.


Listen to most coaches, all the training podcasts etc, you’ll hear them say 2 hard sessions and the rest endurance. But they’re also talking about 15, 20+ hour weeks, so does that scale down to the volume on a TR plan? I’m not sure.

I do know that I’ve found 3 hard TR workouts a week to be too much, and started dropping one for a Z2 (55-60% generally) session last winter and found that much better. Having said that, I’m also the target for the masters plans: 37, work full time, have a 15 month old with another due in the spring.


I’m still waiting for the “Grand Masters” plans to come out. Maybe another 10 years will do it. We will still be here to comment.


I think the volume always get missed in this “debate”. A lot of said podcasts talk of two 5-6 hour rides at the weekend. I get one, 4-5 hours if I’m lucky!

fwiw I haven’t had issue with the 3 intense workouts when time allowed. I’ve selected Masters as it works with my home/ work balance better, and to see what results it gives.

Actually, if I sacrificed my weekend social spin, I would easily cope with 3 intense workouts thinking about it. And weeks that other commitments mean I can only do a turbo, I most likely will use train now instead of the long endurance tbh.

I wish I’d found cycling and structured training before I was already of masters age… I didn’t even get to experience being an “athlete” in my 20s, but I only have myself to blame.

Masters plans shouldn’t be default because at the end of the day a lot of pros use this app/software and while they might be the minority, they are the rider that most training is targeted towards.

Tailoring a training plan to the 9-5 mom/dad/working/weekend warrior is a very very new concept.

  • This sounds off to me. TR is most targeted for the “Time Crunched” athlete now as it has always been. “Pro” riders may use TR workout and apps, but it doesn’t sound like many/most of them utilize the training plans. Rather they have coaches and such setup plans with or without TR specific workouts and use the calendar & app at most.
  • Again, not new here since TR has long suggested people use the Low or Mid Volume plans which align with the use case you describe… and is the origin of the whole service from everything I’ve heard via Nate & Chad long ago.

New as in within this century. Companies like TR that offered training options for working professionals didn’t hardly exist prior to what, 2000? 2010?

Good question on that. Quick search shows the “Time Crunched Cyclist” book came out around 2009. Not sure about other resources or broad advice beyond that?