Joy ride meant to be easy or hard?

I did see the recent post about a smart trainer and it not working in erg mode with joy ride but i have another question about this workout.

I did the workout today and was expecting a hard hit out.
But it felt like a recovery ride.
It would state 100rpm but at a really low wattage, a higher heart rate than i was doing and an RPE of 9.5/10 for example.
At the stated power though, it felt like a recovery ride with high cadence.

I stopped and deleted the work out and restarted it in “level mode” as the controller mode for the trainer and completed the work out using RPE.
The resulting power levels were substantially higher than what it would have done in Erg mode.

Is this workout supposed to be hard or easy?
New to SUF and each work out is new to me so far. Some have worked great in Erg but this one, i took it out of Erg.

Thanks in advance,

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Hi there Ken @kennyv11

It’s pretty hard if done at 100% (in my view). i did it at reduced percentages yesterday and that was quite hard enough !!

Can I check though - are you doing this from inside a plan? (the reason I ask is inside a plan, some workouts are modified to be lower effoerts to fit with the goal of the plan - could be just before a 4hr ride the next day (in my case), or part of a recovery week or such like.

If it was part of a plan, which plan, and in your plan calendar, ifyou open the workout up (if you still can after the day has passed), doesit have reduced percentages shown?

Ifit’s not part of a plan and you’re finding it really easy at 100%, then it could be time for a 4DP test to reset your power numbers up a bit !

PS - I checked - you can’t see what the set percentages were the day after if it’s now completedd in your plan (if you were executing it from a plan)

So as an example- here’s my plan for next week. Two pictures
One shows Extra Shot with a little ‘coaches note’ icon - this tells you that the worjout has extra info in it compared to just running it straight from the app
(in some cases that will mean there simply some info to read about what to do, in some cases it will show reduced percenbtages)

The other pic is what one of thosel ooks loike for me mid week - it’s not design to be a normal full on Extra Shot … just some extra time by the looks of it


Hi Sir_Martin,

I think I remember seeing something about reduced power when i clicked on the workout originally but didn’t know the reason or what it meant.

I was thrown though when my RPE and heart rate were nowhere near the target on the screen.

I’m on the novice all rounder or whatever it was called and it’s the 4th day from the start.

So with the planned workouts, can i ride to the RPE if i feel good enough to ignore the lower power set points?
I kind of felt like it would have been too easy if i had let the trainer stay in erg mode.
Or is there a way to do a workout at 100%?
Do i need to search the library to find the un-altered workout?

To think of it, why do i need to do the lower intensity?
Wouldn’t i just do a recovery ride instead?


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Hey Ken,

Welcome to SUF and great to see you are following one of our plans! The plans are built in a way that you have harder weeks and then recovery weeks with reduced intensity workouts for your body to adapt to the training stimulus we set out in the plan so that overall you come back as a fitter and stronger rider. So even if you are finding a few sessions easy, there are tougher weeks ahead!

To get a bit more background though, please tell me more about which plan and level you have picked? Have the other workouts up until now been challenging enough?
Did you complete Half Monty or Full Frontal before starting your plan so you have accurate 4DP power targets to work to?

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Excellent questions.

Re the last one - the workouts are designed to be the equivalent of recovery rides - over time people have asked for videos with recovery rides so this gives us the choice.
We can run this video or do a recovery (sometimes I just minimize the display so I can see it at as an overlay on top of something else if using windows10 - nice having the option these days to minimize video/sound and things like that.

(Yes you could run the video launched from the app instead but that’s not the purpose of the day if you’re following a plan)

Ahhh … I see Coach Rupert is here … over to the coaches who ar whether qualified than I :slight_smile:



Hi Coach.Rupert.H,

I’ve chosen All Purpose Road at novice.
It’s the first time with SUF so I can’t comment on any previous workouts and their degree of difficulty.

I’ve had the last 6months off of cycling.
I did four days of riding prior to undertaking the 4D test following the suggested training rides to prepare for the 4D I read on the FAQs on your website.

I started on Monday with the plan.
So far, it’s not been too hard.
I’m used to a higher work load from previous coaching.
I was doing an hour a day on the trainer when at work and when i was home on break, it was 2hours for a short day to 3hrs per day on the weekends.

Do i train to RPE from now on in rather than power targets if i find the ride too easy?
Or have i jumped into a plan too early?

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If you have had the last 6 months off, I think novice is a very sensible place to start as you want to re-establish your base fitness on the bike before pushing on to greater things.

As @Martin mentioned you will sometimes get the reduced intensity rides. In the first week the plan presumes you have just done Full Frontal so it isn’t the most challenging. Stick with the plan and the recommended intensities based off your 4DP profile and in week 6 you have Half Monty scheduled and your FTP and MAP will get re-assessed from there.

It is worth noting that pacing Full Frontal can be difficult so your results may not be quite right so if you are finding it far too easy, you can adjust your numbers manually in the setting tab. I wouldn’t adjust by more than 10-20watts though while you get the feel for it. Personally I would stick with what you have until the Half Monty in week 6 :+1:


Hi Coach.Rupert.H,

I am still not getting these reduced effort rides.
I had to do “Extra Shot” workout today and it was at the reduced effort.
I followed the set powers of each effort instead of trying to maintain the RPE and heart rate it had dictated on the screen but my heart rate was in zone 1 the whole time and when I had finished, I had a TSS of 7 for the 20min ride.

Are these supposed to be a recovery day style ride or was it supposed to be harder than it was?
What kind of TSS would you expect from these reduced intensity rides?
Can I substitute these style of rides for a recovery ride on the road if that is the idea behind these rides?

Sorry for sounding like a broken record.
I struggle to follow something that doesn’t quite make sense to me.


well done for sticking with the plan so far! When doing reduced intensity, the power targets are reduced but we don’t change the HR zone (sorry about that, we are looking into this).

If you want to do an outdoor recovery ride instead that works too but please make sure you keep it low intensity to benefit as much as possible from the recovery week :slight_smile: