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PostPosted: Fri Sep 08, 2017 6:32 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 12, 2013 2:36 pm
Posts: 100
Looking for a little bit of feedback / guidance please. I started the plan about 4 weeks ago and am struggling with it. The FTP test put me at 292 watts, but I'm struggling to get through the high intensity intervals; no problem with the threshold workouts but I'm having to reduce the intensity on the Vo2 intervals by 5-8% to make them repeatable.
Appreciate it varies by person, but does anybody else find them unrealistic?
I've used a coach in the past and his workouts were nowhere near this brutal!

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Posted: Fri Sep 08, 2017 6:32 pm 


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 10, 2017 4:48 pm 
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Joined: Tue Nov 03, 2009 7:56 pm
Posts: 227
Location: London
If you mean the 40/20s, it best to use slope mode for those.

But agree, in general doing 3.5 min @ 120% ftp repeats is pretty brutal...


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 10, 2017 5:25 pm 
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Posts: 1529
How confident are you in the FTP figure? Everything I've read indicates that a 20 minute test usually over estimates FTP. Rolling the intensity back 5% sounds like a good solution.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 11, 2017 3:17 am 
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Posts: 95
True vo2 max intervals at 100% vo2 max are nigh impossible. Just really, really, really hard.

I did about 8 sessions this year and only managed to just eek out two complete sessions. But that was after doing a whole bunch of "kinda vo2" sessions at 115-120% ftp which turned out to not be anywhere near vo2 max, which was closer to 130%.

So if it's basing them off some calculated vo2 max from a 5 mmp or something, good luck! If it's just an arbitrary percentage of ftp, then you can very likely work up to them a bit by reducing it as suggested above and then trying to increase it over the following weeks. I started out at about 110% ftp and worked up to doing about 25-30 mins at 118-120% in 4-5 minute intervals. Took about 4-5 weeks before I could hit those higher percentages, though.

And that was all outside on a steep climb, which I'd consider to be quite a bit "easier".

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 12, 2017 11:50 pm 
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Posts: 8
I had the opposite problem to you. VO2max repeats were ok, but threshold work was really tough. Initially, I dialled the workouts back by 5% at the start and put them back to 100% for the last few intervals if I had anything left. I gradually built this up throughout the programme until I was putting it up by 2-5% by the end.

One thing I do find about a number of the TR workouts and programmes is that they do push you REALLY hard. This means that it's not only difficult for your legs/lungs/heart but also on your mind. I recall a few workouts from short power build I was actually scared to get on the trainer and start because they looked so brutal. I found that getting over this and getting your mind in the game as well is part of the process to getting through the workouts...

In the end, turning it down 5% is only saving you 15W for a VO2max interval (maybe 2-3mins). Your legs can probably do it, but the mind is usually what holds us back.

I found a few things that helped me get into and through these types of workouts were:
- Only look at the current interval, not all of the intervals ahead.
- Watch something other than the interval time remaining. I like to watch my cadence and try to keep it steady.
- Distract yourself from the interval. Try to concentrate on your pedal stroke, muscle activations, smoothness... really anything other than the wattage and the sufferring.
- Mentally break the interval up into smaller blocks. If you can get through half, you can certainly hold on for <1min more!
- Do a slow countdown. Don't watch the interval timer and instead count down in your head, but do it slowly. For a 2min hard interval, I slowly count to 75 - when I get there, I look at the timer and usually find i've only got <30sec to go. This is a big mental win and gets me through 9/10 times.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 1:49 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 28, 2013 4:42 pm
Posts: 863
Location: Pa USA
I don't do trainer road, but do 40/20's at 125% using ergvideo. The basic setup is 6x of those in two sets then 4x at 150 in two sets. Really hard. I don't watch the timer, I do try to forget whether its interval 2 or 4 (this really helps, just eat whats in front of you) and for the first couple weeks I don't expect to do 100% of the time on each interval. Its get better, but never easy.

Doing these indoors, make sure you're ftp test was indoors. The load of a trainer is different than the dynamic load outdoors, by maybe as much as 10-15%.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 02, 2017 9:02 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 12, 2013 2:36 pm
Posts: 100
Thanks all.
I started Short Power Build following a period of pretty broken training due to illness and a house move, but the FTP test was done on the trainer so should be representative.
Decided to go back to base (mid volume Sweet Spot) and build it back up...
You make a good point about the psychological aspect of TrainerRoad; some of the workouts are plain intimidating and I've been surprised to get through them.
Should be back on build in ~8wks and, hopefully, with slightly more solid foundations, will see more success!

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:40 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2012 6:47 pm
Posts: 8
I've found trainer road works you incredibly hard, which I suppose is a good thing... the point is to get faster. It's just getting the mental to match the physical


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:55 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2016 4:32 pm
Posts: 189
Location: North Carolina, USA
Connor wrote:
I've found trainer road works you incredibly hard, which I suppose is a good thing... the point is to get faster. It's just getting the mental to match the physical


+1

I am in week 6 of the Sweet Spot Base I (mid volume) and indeed it can be challenging. I think the weekly TSS was around 450 throughout the program, and next week (currently in the recovery week now) I'll transition to Sweet Spot Base II which ups the TSS. I absolutely love TrainerRoad. The simple, straightforward interface works well for my style of indoor riding: no b.s., just get the job done. I find the text to be generally useful, but certainly there are times when I say "just STFU and let me suffer through this interval".

No question about it though -- TrainerRoad is making me faster/stronger. Maybe any structured training could do the same and a disciplined approach is all it takes. Having said that, I'm up to 3.5 w/kg on 20-minute efforts. I don't Zwift much, and Sufferfest is a 'sometimes treat'. TrainerRoad is my bread-and-butter partner in the pain cave.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2017 5:41 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 13, 2015 4:12 pm
Posts: 115
They are incredibly tough workouts. I sometimes find it can just be an 'on the day' thing where all the stars align and I manage it, and on another day I fall short. I moved my VO2 workouts back a day (from a Tuesday to a Wednesday) to allow a bit more rest from a weekends riding and that little bit extra helped me reach the figures, I also set the 'lap' on my Garmin to see what I manage on the first interval and that gives me a figure to try and keep above as I do the rest of the intervals.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2017 10:10 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2016 12:10 am
Posts: 44
alastairb wrote:
Thanks all.
I started Short Power Build following a period of pretty broken training due to illness and a house move, but the FTP test was done on the trainer so should be representative.
Decided to go back to base (mid volume Sweet Spot) and build it back up...
You make a good point about the psychological aspect of TrainerRoad; some of the workouts are plain intimidating and I've been surprised to get through them.
Should be back on build in ~8wks and, hopefully, with slightly more solid foundations, will see more success!

Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk


When I read your first post I was wondering why you are in the build phase (do you have races coming up soon?) and if you had done a solid base first - this answers my questions.

High intensity intervals are hard, but in my opinion even more painful and difficult (and perhaps less useful??) if you don't have a rock solid base first.

I am not sure what trainer system you use, but I find that ERG mode for shorter high intensity intervals just doesn't work - somedays I feel great and smash them out, other days you are just barely getting through them - aiming for a target but not having a target dictated to you by the trainer seems to be less psychologically damaging for me!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 28, 2017 9:39 pm 
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Joined: Thu Oct 16, 2014 8:52 am
Posts: 85
im currently in week 5 of the sustained power build and did a FTP test 2 days ago which raised my FTP. Took a days rest and this morning i failed to finish a long interval (105%) session (Stevens +3). I had to lower my intensity after each interval and stopped after 45 mins.

like you i tend to think it has overestimated my FTP or possibly fatigue still?


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 5:01 am 
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Posts: 1915
You're not going to finish every session every time, it happens.

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Posted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 5:01 am 


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 8:12 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2014 8:26 am
Posts: 3
tomee wrote:
im currently in week 5 of the sustained power build and did a FTP test 2 days ago which raised my FTP. Took a days rest and this morning i failed to finish a long interval (105%) session (Stevens +3). I had to lower my intensity after each interval and stopped after 45 mins.

like you i tend to think it has overestimated my FTP or possibly fatigue still?


I used to struggle with these suprathreshold repeats, changed my views by looking at the intervals as repeats of shorter 20min test effort, still tough but became easier. I can empathise, prior to this, I've personally performed these workouts at sub 105%(about 100-103%) in the first couple of intervals but I'm not using Smart trainers thus I can dial back whenever I feel like it.


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