Destroyed by 9 Hammers. What canI do?

Agreed. It’s not directly age-related which is why I couched my response. In general, recovery takes longer as you get older. But, individuality and individual fitness does apply with some people who naturally recover quicker or slower regardless of their age category. It’s a scatter-graph, not a linear progression. :slight_smile:

@willie53 Note that you can select either 3 or 4 weeks for the blocks. I go with 3 weeks.

Done those

A very dark place,is also bad, I usually wind down a few percent then doable.

Others are ok, except for Omnium.
It is just the 1k which is a killer.
It’s not the same sort of problem, it is just that I don’t like 1 minute efforts

1 Like

I’ll just throw my tuppence worth in too…

I only just completed There Is No Try on fresh numbers today.

Previously, I would have been fine (ish) with that workout… but today, Jeezo, It felt a LOT like 9H.


My personal feeling is that I would rather do the workout as prescribed and fail, then to lower the power settings and finish. I believe by going to the limit of what I can do I am improving.

Up to now, I have always finished the workouts I mentioned with the exception of 9 Hammers. I sometimes fail at the end of the last hammer.

You are a little older than I am, so I attribute the differences to our characteristics rather than purely age.


I would throw in my two cents, but I believe at today’s exchange rate, your tuppence is worth more than mine. :smile:

1 Like

I had completed a 4 week FTP block previously and felt good at the end. The AC and MAP blocks tap into ATP stores in the muscle and create microtears in the fast twitch fibers. After each of the hard MAP sessions I had delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) the next day. In future I will tackle the 3 week blocks for AC/NM or MAP programs. I compete in a weekly time trial series and most of them are around 15 - 20 Kms, so I want to be capable of a steady effort for 20 - 30 minutes.

1 Like

I feel your pain. Nine Hammers is my nemesis, too. It’s the only SUF workout that I blow up on more often than I make it through clean. My VO2 relative weakness makes it very hard to get through that totally sick one-two punch at the end. But when I have been training a LOT, and training in all the right ways, I actually can do it. And it’s at those times that I do best in my races.

The fact that I have trouble on Nine Hammers is actually very useful information. I experience the same thing in races, too. I have only ever been dropped from a race because I could only keep 125% of FTP going for three minutes into a four minute hammer that the rest of the pack put down. I’m strong on every other part of my power curve. So that just means that my objective for race training is a simple, one-dimensional quest to boost my MAP. And that means prioritizing everything about my training around VO2 intervals. The fact that Nine Hammers is so hard to me just means I need to do it as often as possible–even substituting it in on a day when my training plan calls for something like Violator where I’m already very strong.

Race your strengths; train your weaknesses.


I would say the only other moment of suffering on the entire system that compares to the last hammer in 9H is “the flying kilo” in The Omnium. My one-minute power is very strong, and I’m usually just starting to fight the black hole of death for the last 3-5 seconds of the flying kilo interval. I would pity anyone who attempts that one who doesn’t have very high AC. As the video forewarns, it’s not a pretty sight to see.


@Erik_Midtskogen well written sir — same approach here and same general thinking. NH features in the ‘3 on’ weeks for the first two months of this year for this reason. Before March got complicated by some other ‘stuff’ I needed to do.
If I want to improve my physical and mental capability with VO2 it’s the way to go. And despite me having some really bad sessions on it (if I was being purist with myself about ‘hitting numbers’) every one of them has had a benefit. I struggle a lot so it doesn’t always workout that I get past Hammer 2 ‘properly’ and yes it’s annoying, but it’s all ‘work’ based on tested numbers.

The thing is I have strong AC so my Ac efforts in this are higher, so no wonder it hits me harder as I get better

Both times I attempted 9H at 100% intensity I had to stop in the 5th Hammer and then had to recover before attempting the remaining hammers. Even then I had to keep stopping and/or dial down the intensity a little. What have I learnt from this?

  1. I struggle to recover quickly from repeated MAP intervals even though MAP itself is my strongest 4DP metric.
  2. 9H is probably harder than it really needs to be for my personal training goals - endurance events.
  3. It’s okay to reduce intensity a little if necessary to complete the workout.
  4. I don’t think I will ever be able to complete 9H at 100% intensity with fresh 4DP metrics.
1 Like

@Peteski i am with you at every point. I once got as far as 9th hammer, but generally 5, 8 and 9 are the problems