Overloading MAP/FTP blocks

Hi Everyone,

I had a great chat with Coach Joe (sorry, can’t find his handle!) and have set out a calendar of two back-to-back MAP building blocks, followed by two back-to-back threshold blocks (each 2:1, intermediate volume, with yoga and also adding strength). To keep progressing in the second of each block, I’m swapping some workouts to add TSS. @Coach.Rupert.H gave me some great tips on how to do this (as rich Coach Joe), but I wanted to check in with everyone here again now that I’ve settled on the actual swaps, in the event I’m thinking about these wrong. Or, if I’m not, in the event they might be useful to others.

In my second MAP block, I’m making the following swaps:

Revolver becomes The Model (+ 14 TSS)
Attacker becomes Threshold over/unders (+16 TSS)
Joyride becomes GCN VO2 intervals (+18 TSS)
There is no try becomes MAP 6 x2 (+ 15 TSS)

This adds approx 30 TSS each week. One concern I have is whether I am adding too much time at MAP and should instead focus on adding more volume at lower intensity (or at least near/below threshold).

In my second FTP block, I am making these swaps:

5x6 FTP becomes 5 x8 (+10 TSS)
Rookie becomes Hammer Chase (+18 TSS)
5x7 FTP becomes 5x9 FTP (+20 TSS)
Attacker becomes Defender (+18 TSS)

This adds 28 TSS in week 1 and 38 TSS in week 2. The threshold blocks are higher TSS than the MAP blocks, so these are actually similar in % increase as those I described for the MAP block (and similar to the week 1 to week 2 increase in the original plans).

I’ll likely do a half monty after the MAP blocks and then maybe FF after the threshold blocks, and then start doing more specific work as the weather warms up. Thoughts?

2 Likes

Interesting.

I’m just coming back from illness/laziness and, as such, I’ve been focusing on Threshold, as sustained was always my weakness anyway.
I’ve been back-to-backing Threshold blocks (2:1). The suggested changes are interesting (other than that in Threshold it will give you Defender twice in the plan, unless yours is different to mine).
What I’ve been doing is substituting in Half Monty for the Saturday ride on the recovery week, then using the Sunday ride (long but low intensity) as a recovery ride and way of easing in to the new numbers.

Rather than increase TSS, just increase the numbers altogether… Working for me so far, but then I’d fallen off a cliff.

2 Likes

I wouldn’t worry about the TSS. It’s mathematics based on a model and it’s a pretty blunt I stringent. What matters a lot more is HOW you accumulate it.

So like, if you wanted to overload MAP, you could do workouts with more MAP intervals, workouts with longer MAP intervals, or additional workouts wITH MAP intervals. If you do that, the TSS can fall wherever it may and you’re still overloading. This works but be careful, if you really overload you can be pretty toasted and need to recover well after.

Same schema for FTP.

Just jacking the numbers up doesn’t work exactly the same way. You can do it, but you want it to be an intentional choice based on your limiters. Like if your time to exhaustion at FTP is high, probably makes sense to work at a higher percentage of it. Whereas if your TTE is short, you probably get more benefit from extending it (ie doing more time at a lower number within FTP range)

2 Likes

I agree with @devolikewhoa, but it looks like you mostly have added threshhold workouts to your threshhold block and MAP to your MAP. That seems reasonable.

My only question is: is this something you discussed with Coach Joe during your chat or something you came up with afterwards?

2 Likes

Thanks all for your input! @AkaPete and @devolikewhoa , yes I’ve added mostly longer or more difficult MAP workouts to the MAP block (and threshold to the threshold block). So in both cases, the TSS increase is mostly attributable to that. @Jon , I think the idea of testing and adjusting the numbers is a good one … thanks! Though I’m not sure if I’m ready to test every three weeks. @AkaPete , this is based on my discussion with coach Joe: he suggested doing two 2:1 blocks of each back to back and adding TSS to the second block. So in a way, my question here is more about whether the way I’m adding TSS makes sense. In particular, I’m wondering if it’s a good idea to keep stacking harder MAP workouts (in particular) in the second block, as I think I’ve read or heard somewhere that doing too much work/time above threshold can be counterproductive. As it stands, the second week of my overloaded MAP block has me doing nine hammers on Tuesday, GCN VO2 intervals on Thursday, and MAP 6X2 intervals on Sunday. Too much?

4 Likes

You need to try what you think is correct and see/feel how it works for you.

The gist of incrasing your MAP and FTP efforts seems logical, and in line with Coach Joe.

I have been doing a similar thing, bit not looking at TSS. MAP has been my sole focus to improve upon. I do two MAP sessions a week (Tue and Thurs), with a Threshhold/Sub-Thresh on the weekend (usually Sunday), an active recovery ride (Monday), ani inspiration ride mid-week (Wednesday) and an IRL ride usually on the weekend (Saturday), this IRL ride inceases in duration as the peridoization increase. The low week of my 3:1 is a rest day Monday, and every Friday is a rest day of every week, excpet race week, Primers.

I have tried adding in an extra MAP (HIIT) session per week, and or an extra Endurance session to push up the numbers (hours/kms) but have found OTS symptoms arise and now just trust the process of max 2 HIIT sessions a week.

A training plan is never ideal and is usually changed on the fly. It sounds like you have something feasible to get your self going.

2 Likes

Thanks for the detailed follow up. Good luck with your training!

@cocoroco I haven’t done many of those no-vids so can’t really comment on my experience with them but I can tell you that Hammer Chase is one of the toughest workouts I have done on the platform and definitely a lot more difficult than the Rookie despite what the TSS states. I would recommend coming into that one well rested and hydrated.

1 Like

Just for clarity, if this was in response to my

I’m “increasing the numbers” by way of a Half Monty (so to “correct” numbers), not just jacking them :smiley:

2 Likes

@Jon I read it as relating to the increase in TSS.

Thanks all for your input! You’ve given me plenty of ideas to think about. Good luck with your own training! @Coach.Rupert.H, I wondered if you had any thoughts/concerns about this approach or the other ideas arising out of this discussion.

1 Like

@cocoroco, I think those swaps look acceptable in order to increase your volume and doing HM between blocks will allow you to see progress too (bear in mind the heavy focus of the MAP block though so have either a recovery week or do HM 1 week into the FTP block).

Remember to listen to your body though and if you are feeling like it is too much or you are fatiguing, just do the prescribed session in the plan instead of the swap.

Happy Training :man_biking::dash:

2 Likes

What is the purpose of the swaps? I get the impression you are keeping the same “style” of workout, and adding volume? Interesting! I’m about 6ish weeks into a 12 week plan and have been adding %age to the targets (reason: I’m regaining lost fitness, so it comes back faster than the plan might anticipate). However the added volume thing is intriguing.

@Coach.Rupert.H Thanks so much for your input! Will do … was planning to do HM after the third (off week) of the second MAP block. But perhaps I should wait another week? And yes, I will be paying close attention for signs of overtraining. I am now in the third (off week) of my first MAP block and feeling good.

1 Like

@jackriddle2 yes, adding volume and/or intensity, but trying to do so specifically. In other words, swapping hard MAP days with harder/longer (or both) MAP days in the MAP block, and ditto for the FTP block. Essentially trying to create a progression of intensity/volume from one block to the next.

the second week after should be fine but if you are feeling fatigued, wait a little longer