For what athlete (age) are SUF standard training plans? 30, 40.. 70?

I dont see any option in standard training plans for any modification in terms of age. Is this correct?

Recovery time increases along with getting older and I wonder if I could follow the same traing plan with the same number of recovery days as 2 years ago…

(pls forgive me if this topic was already answered)


The effort levels are based upon your personalised power profile, which is age-independent, so regardless of your age, so long as your 4DP is fairly current then you’ll be in the ballpark.

With things like the “All-purpose road” plan, the workload to rest balance adjusts depending on whether you choose Novice, Intermediate or Advanced.

It would be hard for them to adjust for age because a 50-year-old who has really taken care of themselves may still work and recover better than a 30-year-old who has done nothing but live in Couchlandria since their teens.

While there may be some latitude for adjusting relative to age, it would be difficult to get right without potentially disadvantaging some of your highest performing older customers.
I would suggest ensuring your 4DP is current and then picking Novice, Intermediate or Advanced based upon how much recovery you feel you need is the way forwards.


:thinking: I dont think that the full frontal test measures ‘after workout recovery rate’.

Furthermore, the training schedule seems to be the same regardless of 4d profile…the difference is only in intensity of workouts.

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Decade on decade I think it’s a great question.
And while people do vary obvs (to the point above) there will be an ‘average’ so some ‘sense’ of what it means for people is likely to be be useful. If data exists of course for people in later decades.


I’m 65 and had use SF for approx 20 years. My experience is, as I’m getting older, that I need a longer warmup before I’m hitting the intervals. I can do a extended warmup, but it could be good, if it in someway could be incoperated in the videos.


This (if I understand you well ) is about a single workout. However my concern is about a training plan containing set of scheduled workouts for 4-12 weeks.

This is general question as in most of books and portals you can find training plans…but I guess they are for 20-30 years athlete. If you are older, that plan shall be modified adding at least more time for recovery.

Is anybody in that age using the SUF? I think that the most of us are at least 35+ or even 40+


Sorry, misread the tread, but maybe its a little in the same ballpark.

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Sir Neal probably should be the one we are asking, but here is my amateur take. When I read Joel Friel’s books about cycling, he divides annual plans into 4 week blocks - 3 weeks increasingly hard & 1 week rest - for under 50 years old, and 3 week blocks - 2 weeks hard, 1 week rest - for over 50. All the SUF blocks are 3 week blocks, so they seem to lean toward more rest rather than more load. I am 61 and have only done intermediate plans, and don’t often ride longer than 2 ish hours on the weekend rides b/c work and family are more important than raising my FTP. But all my 4dp numbers are up 20+% since I began in February of 2019, and I even had a Strava KOM for a month (Wind aided) on a remote stretch of road.


Good question. You are correct that as we age our ability to recover is impacted, and the duration of hard training blocks needs to be reduced.
All of our current Advanced plans follow a 3 week on 1 week off progression, while our Novice and Intermediate plans will follow a 2:1 progression. In general, we would recommend that athletes over the age of 50 stick with the 2:1 progression (so our current Novice or Intermediate Plans) unless they are highly experienced and know that a 3:1 progression is a training load they can still handle.

We can say that even though FF does not measure post-ride recovery, the fact that all workouts are tailored to your own 4DP profile makes out workouts more suited to different age groups (you can how age impacts your metris in the interactive graph on this article). For example, a standard MAP/VO2 workout in other apps usually has targets at 120% of FTP. We know as you age, your shorter duration metrics (MAP/AC/NM) will drop relative to your FTP. Meaning, a 20-year-old can have an FTP of 200, and have no problem hitting 240W for MAP intervals, whereas a 60-year-old with a 200W FTP, might struggle at 240W for the same workout. Individually tailoring the workouts does ensure that you get the correct relative training stimulus.
While not directly answering your question regarding our plans, we do have some info on training for Masters athletes that might be helpful.
And I can’t go into too much detail, but I will say that we are working on increasing the number of plans that are specifically tailored to Masters athletes in the same way plans are currently tailored to your Rider Profile.


Hi Mac.C thank you for reply.
one more question if I may…

How can I determine which one : Novice, Intermediate or Advaced training plan would be the best for me to follow in this moment?
Should I look on my training history (weekly hours and TSS ) and time available for training in next months or start the hardest (advanced) and replan it (change to lower level) after a week or two?


The main thing would be the consistency/amount of training you have been doing over the past several months, with an emphasis on what that training has consisted of (most low intensity vs. mostly volume). You can get to 50 CTL with no intensity, or you can get to 50 CTL doing nothing but intensity.
In general, the Intermediate plans will have more back to back sessions that are higher intensity. If you have not been doing much intensity, then go with the Novice plan to start with, even if the total weekly hours might be lower than what you have been doing recently. If you have been doing regular high-intensity workouts, and your weekly volume is roughly the same as the Intermediate plans, opt for that. What you do not want to do is maintain the same volume while also drastically increasing the frequency of high-intensity sessions.
I hope that gives you a bit more to base your decision on!


thanks a lot


Some of us are 60+. I had the same question since joining Sufferfest a few weeks ago. Just finished week 3 of the Fitness Kickstarter. Week four gets into some harder efforts so we’ll see if there’s adequate recovery for us 60+ y.o. riders.