As the title says, I’m curious as to what types of workouts are recommended when you just want to maintain your current fitness? Do you need to do SST/Threshold/Vo2 max stuff to stay as is or would doing aerobic/tempo rides be sufficient?
I’m not a coach/expert but to maintain I reckon you’d need to do sweetspot and threshold and to build add VO2max.
TrainerRoad has some Maintenance plans in the Specialty phase, if you want to check those out.
I use trainnow and do 1 trainnow workout per week. I have been using it throughout the summer as I don’t want to do structured training and I didn’t really lose a lot of fitness. I mostly do sustained work as it aligns with my goals - keep up with my local group rides and take turns at the front when I need to. When it comes to taking turns, sweetspot training helps. So, you need to know what kind of fitness you want to maintain. The following is from Re-build, Off-season, or Maintenance for Your Fastest Season – TrainerRoad
- Aerobic Endurance: Once every 2 weeks, do a long, low-intensity ride. Ride long enough that the fatigue comes as a product of the ride’s duration, not its intensity.
- Anaerobic Power: Once a week. Something along the lines of 30- to 60-second repeats upwards of 130% FTP should suffice.
- Muscular Endurance/Threshold: Once a week. Try a 2×20-minute Threshold or even Sweet Spot workout.
- Sprint Power: Once a week. Perform 4-6 all-out efforts somewhere between 20-30 seconds long.
It makes sense to continue to do whatever you did to achieve your current fitness in order to maintain it. Training plans follow the principle of progressive overload. If you don’t increase the volume and/or intensity, you should maintain.
If you skip doing workouts that specifically aim to develop a particular energy system, then I would expect to lose fitness for that particular thing (think duration). Maybe that doesn’t matter to you tho.
If you only maintain in one energy system, you will eventually lose fitness in every other energy system.
What does maintain mean in the context?
Keep the peak that you have now?
Ride the least amount possible and keep as much fitness as you can?
As others noted, I also think that it’s not a matter of specific workouts but also a matter of ctl.
Last year (from May to November) I did only (only as in ONLY) 2 easy endurance rides and 2 tempo rides with HR ceiling of 80% max HR and extending intervals over time (endurance1 90min, endurance2 150min+, tempo sessions: 90-120min time at tempo)
As this low stress method allowed me to accumulate more TSS, my ftp went from 3.6w/kg (march) to 4.1w/kg (November). 5min power went up 10w as well.
So I guess, you can also gain in all aspects of your fitness with only aerobic work IF you are not close to your potential already.