Ageing athletes

I have just listened to a couple of Neal Henderson’s podcasts re ageing cyclists and how training should be adapted.
Is there any plans to put such a plan on the SYSTM platform?

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At the moment one of the key suggestions is a 2:1 plan rather than a 3:1 plan, but I agree that som more age related plans with more recovery and sub-LT1 sessions would be useful. It all depends in the individual though and it’s near impossible to get a plan that suits a majority within one age bracket or fitness level. We’ll keep trying though!

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I agree it’s impossible to get a plan to suit everyone but that would be the same for all plans on SYSTM.
However a plan for cyclists over 55 would be a good base to start

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It’s something I posted about and made a case for many times already. Wahoo needs to see this as a feature that will increase its subscription. I think it could if marketed properly.

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I just turned 50 and for me indeed switching to a 2:1 plan has helped me train better as I’ve noticed I don’t recover as well as I used to!

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There was some discussion about this on an earlier thread… and the fact that everyone ages differently is definitely an issue.

I think it would make sense that rather than relying on a rider’s age, this would be one of the options you choose while creating a training plan… maybe have three options for “peak age”, “past my prime” and “can’t believe I’m still alive” (maybe name them differently though :sunglasses:) and the mix of the workouts is then adjusted accordingly.

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Yes, but everybody does age, and there’s no accounting for that at all in SYSTM. IMO, that’s less good than some average accommodation. AND, I have proposed in the past having it individually adjustable about that average curve…maybe simply putting in an estimated fitness/health age.

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There is accounting for it to a degree, with the ability to choose 2:1 and adjust the volume levels. This allows individual personalisation or recommendations after a chat with a coach or individualised plan.

I’ve worked with several over 55s making customised SYSTM plans, and for some the 3:1 with a higher volume works, for others 2:1 and/or a lower volume. It’s al variable and that’s where the chat with a coach comes in so we can offer the best guidance for each individual

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I would find it more helpful if there were better options when selecting training plans. I do not recover as fast as I used to , but this is as much dependant on the frequency of riding rather than intensity.7 days of recovery rides would tire me because there is no day off. For example before the tour I selected the lowest volume plan in the general fitness section.Although the volume was low, I was still working out every day and so getting fatigued.If the volume was up by 50% but only 5 workouts a week, I am sure I would have actually handled it better.

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I would not call that SYSTM accounting for age in any sense of the meaning. SYSTM doesn’t take age (or anything else other than 4DP results) as an input to determine plans and workouts. Choosing 3:1, 2:1, modifying workouts and plans (or hiring a coach) are all things not being done by SYSTM but things being decided on and done by the user. It’s entirely left up to the user without any adjustments or guidance provided in the SYSTM app.

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Yes these minor alterations can be done. But there is currently no SYSTM plan that has say 80% zone 2 and 20% VO2 This would be a good solid base for the ageing cyclist to make minor alterations if needed

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The 4DP metrics themselves tailor the individual power outputs for those capacities and the test itself helps with setting the sessions in the plan to a suitable array. Choosing the plan is always up to the individual or the coach they’ve hired, but there are multiple resources offering advice for people in choosing their plan including for older athletes. Again though, it depends on the individual as to what they can tolerate.

Here are some useful articles:

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Interestingly it’s often not necessary that overall intensity distribution needs to drop, but overall training frequency. Important to maintain strength and power work to help reduce the rate of muscle atrophy as we age

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I can vouch for 2:1 with reduced volume but still with intensity from my recent training! And being so time crunched, on 4hrs a week of 50:50, 2hrs intervals and 2hrs steadyish. I’m 54 and going faster than I have in years!

Although I would like some more customisation based on age and the ability to customise plans further taking into account a number of variables, which I know will make it difficult for the Systm plans.

I agree wit the last post by @Coach.Andy.T about intensity and frequency having just been forced into this position due to “Life”! I’ve had a few weeks where overall frequency has dropped as well as total volume, but I’ve kept intensity with 3/4 half hour intervals per week and one steady ride so a total of only 4hrs. I’ve posted it here FWIW.

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Exactly. For a given 4DP result, the paid app generates the same plans for somebody that’s 20 years old as it does for somebody that’s 70 despite the science saying the plans shouldn’t be. Free info, like the Knowledge and similar available elsewhere, gives some guidance, as of course would a coach. But besides choosing between 3:1 and 2:1, the subscriber must decide and manually make detailed changes to the plan. I’m asking for a capability for appropriately adjusting the plans to be built into the paid app. I’m confident Yahoo could do a very good job of that given the motivation.

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