Why Riding Slower Makes You Faster [GCN's latest video] Thoughts?

I am sure it also depends a lot on how “realistic” the FTP is the percentage is base on. Another reason, why the percentage is pointless.


One thing I’ve never understood, and would like to. When you say 1hr of Z5 is that a 1hr workout that has Z5 intervals in it (so maybe like 15-25 minutes spent in Z5) or does this mean 60 minutes spent in Z5 specifically?

The Time in Zone (TIZ) vs Session Goal (SG) vs Hybrid question

I was thinking something along the lines of 1 session with 8x4 intervals == 32 minutes
and another session of 4x8m intervals = 64 minutes in total.

If you then do 9 hours of Z1 / Z2 / low Z3 riding you are doing 10/90. Nicely polarized.

Totally agree with your thoughts. Im older at 57 with NO natural aerobic gifts. With a weak Vo2 over the years I have trained up the intensity SS in particular to compensate. To keep up on our group rides in the past I have to put out much more of effort closer to and above my meager FTP to keep up. 3.5 hour group ride results in 240 to 275 TSS Over the years my FTP plateaus pretty quickly in season but I can hold large percentage of it for longer. Now with age decline the group rides just take too much out of me and it takes too long to recover. I am backing off the intensity ledge and going with a nice long Base season working on those damn mitochondria and leaving the glycolisis stuff for small doses. I am doing Vo2 every 7 to 10 days with very disciplined keep it in the talking range for the rest of my time in saddle.


And that approach applies well to running. I’ve been using 8020 Endurance training plans for running for some time now.

The older you get the more important it gets to maintain intensity

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I told my son not to get one of these
Screenshot 2022-10-22 at 09.26.07


From the little I know about this seems to be very important.

Long endurance workouts and then small amounts of very intense sessions to keep the vo2max up.

In light of all of this I’ll be reworking my cycling - the big group ride I did was too fast for me so I’ll be doing a slower one now, possibly on my own, trying to keep to 3+ hours of as constant 60% ftp or so which I think is within the ISM zone 2.

Then a couple of very intense sessions in the week and hopefully a 1-1.5 hour ISM zone 2 as well.

Will be tricky to maintain this but will see what I can manage over a 10 week period.

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Any chance TR is working on polarized triathlon plans? I would be a willing guinea pig to test them. I have several triathlons scheduled for next summer.

I’m nearly finished Joe Friels “Faster after 50” book, and a few things have popped up that might interest you on aerobic threshold.

If the duration of your event is greater than 4hrs, you should be doing 2-4hr sessions.
2-4hr event - 1-2hr sessions
less than 2hr event, do 30mins to 1hr sessions.

I assume these are minimums.

Should be done around 60% aerobic capacity (roughly 70% max HR.)

Quite an informative book on loads of stuff and what the over 50’s should be doing more and less of.


I haven’t listened yet, but this should be interesting:


We always appreciate our willing guinea pigs!

At the moment, the focus is still on cycling. We’re analyzing the data we have from athletes that follow our polarized plans cycling plans in an effort to better understand the differences in performance outcomes between pyramidal and polarized training intensity distributions.

At the moment, the best way to prepare for your triathlon races next summer would be to go through Plan Builder. If you have any questions about preparing for those triathlons or about Plan Builder, please just let me know and I’d be happy to help!


This podcast is really good.


In the context that the older athlete has gravitated to the LSD ride. Thus there doesn’t need to be a focus on the low intensity side of the equation as that’s already there but the high intensity is missing.

Would anyone hazard a guess as to why my Z2 decoupling, efficiency etc stats seem to vary so much?

All work outs are indoor, strict Z2 by heart, done around same time of day (~30mins after food), same temperature/fan speed, etc etc I use Garmin Vector pedals and Polar H10. During this period there was a week of outdoor cycling where I was going fairly hard at times (not included).

The only thing I can think of is Cadence has a big impact on me.

I’m not just off the couch, 330hrs so far this year according to Strava, and could probably knock out 70-100miles just now at a half decent pace if I had to.

Is the list from intervals.icu? How do you create those lists showing efficiency, power/hr etc?

yeah, intervals. Go to activities, change the view type, then use filters, change dates etc. I went through and re-labelled my ride names with Z2 prefix so i could add a name filter. you can pick what columns you want to see and move them about

I’ve noticed that my efficiency is always lower on rides with low HR and low power. I think that’s just because there’s not a linear relationship btwn power and HR (at least not btwn 50% FTP and 75% FTP) Efficiency is always absolutely horrible on recovery rides - to the point that it’s pretty much meaningless.

IMO, the best bet is to only compare rides (ie workouts) that are practically (or actually) identical.

And, as always, take anything HR-related with a bucket of salt

I done a few talk tests and noted my HR (128-132), then have been using the noted HR for my Z2 rides.

They all seem to be ~30breaths per minute according to Mr Garmin, so I think/thought i was on track with talk test

Yeah, my efficiency ramps up as I go up the zones.

I thought, HR would be tied to breath rate, which would be tied to talk test.

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