Rest Week Suggestions

Hey gang!

I just finished the relatively long Fitness Kickstarter plan with acceptable results shown on the Full Frontal I suffered through on Saturday. I’m planning to do the Speed Demon plan to address my weaknesses starting next Monday, but am itching to keep myself moving during the rest week.

I did an hour’s recovery spin on Sunday (keeping the effort embarrassingly easy), rested completely for Labor Day, and have scheduled myself daily yoga and some light strength work throughout the recovery week and during the training plan. Any suggestions for on-bike work this week? Elements of Style and more basic recovery spins? Something else? Off the bike entirely?

Thanks in advance!


I kinda focus on cadence work. The plans have power station at reduced levels. That seems to work well, but I like to add some high cadence stuff too. I think maybe I’ve seen cadence builds or cadence builds & holds at a reduced power level. I don’t remember exactly. The other thing I practice us diaphragmatic breathing eg. a simple 3 x 10 at tempo concentrating on slow deep breaths & relaxing as much as possible. Don’t know if that works but diaphragmatic breathing on a mat and in an aero position feel different.

1 Like

One single comment on this - the biggest problem people have on rest weeks is not actually resting.
I believe if you pretty much do as you’re talking about for a week you’ll probably achieve more than most people by getting the right rest !!

Seriously applaud that discipline …

Next week: Smash.


This has, absolutely and without any doubt, been the biggest single adaptation for me to have to take on board with Sufferfest.

I would always argue that I have a high tolerance for active work before exhaustion, but I naturally have no off switch or capacity to step back and let my body recover.
If I plan for myself then there is barely such a thing as a rest half-day, let alone day and you can completely forget about a week.
Allowing SUF to determine my schedule and forcing myself to stick to it has definitely improved my capacity to take a rest once in a while.


Yes @Jon well said indeed.

What maybe sometimes we miss is the science behind it, so what actually happens during 2 weeks of hard work … what happens during rest, why it’s ok to do back to back one week when the muscles want to recover and so on and so forth.

That’s where there’s been some great Training threads in recent weeks by the coaches. And maybe we can start brining some of that together in to a wiki or such mike one day.

Wiki … hmmmmm


I had also struggled with rest days let alone rest weeks. What? Take a day or week “off”? Not happening.

Once I learned that rest really provided the benefits of recovery/recharge and allowed me to actually see improvement did I embrace it. While a recovery day or rest week doesn’t mean an extended stay at coachlandria I continue to get on the bike a pay head to the mantra “it’s hard to ride easy”.

For rest/taper weeks I use what would be similar to what Sufferfest does for Getting the most out of Full Frontal - How to Get The Most out of Full Frontal – The Sufferfest

Recovery spin
Cadence Builds
Taper Efforts
Recovery Spin
Day Off
Full Frontal / Race day /Next training block

Your mileage may vary.



Does anyone know if there is a specific place within the SUF app’s FAQs or similar that addresses the importance of rest? Or could you point me to the threads if they are here on the forum?

Would also love to hear from those of you that have followed the SUF training programs for a while now and whether you’ve felt that sticking to the rest has reaped its rewards.

My background is that I have had about 4 yrs away from regular cycling, but before the break I was clocking up (what might now be considered garbage) miles through daily commuting and longer rides - but it did seem to yield results.

I got a smart trainer in Dec 2020 and 3 weeks ago started the intermediate all rounder. Just finished the ‘rest week’ but feel as if I could have been doing some extra time in the saddle to get some mileage in along side doing the SUF less intense technique videos (this time round I actually did FF mid week as thought I’d refresh my Dec numbers!). But maybe I am missing the point and it’s all about smashing yourself on the hard 2 weeks such that the 1 week is needed for rest.

The Inspiration category is now a great way to get some recovery riding in:

1 Like
1 Like

Great. Thank you Rupert for the video suggestions and the notes on Rest vs. Active recovery.

In short, it sounds like it is best to make any workout on a scheduled rest day a very light one. I might add some of those documentaries into my easy days when I really want to do ‘something’ (and lower intensity if required).

1 Like

Great article on active recovery. Makes me think I am doing the right thing by riding Recharger on blank days in the plan.

However, I am a bit annoyed with what seems to me like a recovery week in my ToS prep plan, with two blank days and mostly inspirational and cadence drills?

Must admit it makes me think about doing a spontaneous Knighthood attempt just so I can order that sweet new piece of kit.


I know the feeling. After the glory that was ISLAGIATT on sunday, it was a different kind of suffering to take yesterday completely off. Looking forward at the rest of the week, I’m anticipating substituting most/all the sessions with outdoor rides.


Rest week. Is. So. HARD! :pleading_face:


Sorry for constantly nagging in this thread, and I know I am supposed to stick with the plan, but… It’s just the intensity of this rest week is just too Couchlandrian. Last week I had a total TSS of 519 (planned was slightly less), whereas planned TSS for this week is 124. Just 124?!? It just seems so little? And with only short, low intensity inspirationals all week (almost)?

I am craving intensity! Speed! Power!

Although today is a rest day, I intend to do Igniter combined with a dialed down Extra Shot, or maybe one of the short inspirationals cranked up a notch. Am I wrong to do so?

We’re all different at the end of the day. But the theory is that irrespective of physical condition the rest weeks are important. But it depends on goals.
And I used to climb I just liked climbing so I climbed a lot. If I’d wanted to get (even) stronger at than just from doing lots of it I guess I’d have started doing plan type stuff which would mean ultimately I ended up a stronger climber, but then I’d not have done what I wanted. Could be the same with riding. It’s fun right - so having fun might trump (can I use that word?) structured goals

With my recovery capability and many decades of wearing the body out, I stick to the plan in the hope that that week allows various bikes to regrow and tendons and stuff to stay happy, along with letting the good stuff happen in the back of training.

What exactly is in your recovery week?

I’m going in to one next week and it has Cadende Builds and taper efforts and primers.
Not high tss but each of those things reminds the legs to keep moving well

1 Like

My rest week contains Ruta Chingaza (Tue), Colombia Connection (Wed), Cadence builds (Fri), Alla Vita (Sat), and Tempo High Cadence 4x3 (Sun). I added a round of Recharger on Monday, and considering Igniter+something extra today.

My goals are increased FTP and MAP, and losing weight (which of course is not directly linked to the plan).

Even though it feels hard, maybe I should just embrace the rest day today and trust the plan :grimacing:

1 Like

Go for a walk, rest, enjoy life out of the saddle. :slight_smile: Trust the plan. The hard days will come.

Maybe learn how to make your own yogurt or cheese at home.

Rest is important. It will help you stay with your plans in the long run.


Thanks for the reassurance @Pierre and @Martin. I will try to embrace it.

(Although from the looks of the plan however, there won’t be any hard days until the 14th)

1 Like

I dunno how many tens of thousands of subscribers there are, but if we built a survey I wonder how many o us (I’m the same) would say similar.

One thing - those recovery/endurance type workouts still burn plenty energy !!

1 Like

I’m planning to channel some of this energy into cross-training, primarily doing at least a couple of runs this week.