String of failed workouts. Time to retest?

I’ve been off the bike for two weeks during the holidays due to travel. My objective for January was to get the All Sufferfest badge for which I had six wokouts missing. So far I’ve done 4 workouts and I’ve collected a string of failures. In time order:
Power station: barely finished it
Tool shed: had to stop at hammer no. 8, restarted at 100% after 30 seconds or so and was able to finish hammer 9 without stopping
Revolver is easy: the revolver part was fine, after 5 of the 15s intervals I felt I could not recover and was feeling dizzy. Ended up doing 4 sets of 5, 5, 5 and 7 intervals stopping in between
Long scream: had to dial down to 95% with 9 minutes to go (start of the above FTP part)

In order to complete the badge I have downward spiral and kitchen sink for next week. The workouts I failed were all above IF 0.9 so some would say is expected to fail them but I’m not used to failing workouts (have only failed 9 hammers one and never a very dark place). What do you say? Should I keep my numbers for the two next workouts, drop the numbers by 5% or just retest? I’m starting a marathon training cycle after next week so really want to get these two workouts in, which would be difficult if I throw a fitness test during the week

If still aiming for the badge then dial then down and then retest when all done. All tough workouts to hit after a break so don’t stress it.

Agree with Peter – dialling it down a few % points is completely respectable to complete the badge especially on schedule. Or do what you have been doing – dial down mid-ride, skip an interval, or taking mini-breaks if you need to.

For me, while ideally I complete a scheduled ride at 100% every time, I only consider it a ‘failed’ ride if I quit early. Even then I try not to to be hard on myself, and just make sure I complete the ride the next time – but obviously this doesn’t work for your badge goal!

One other thought - the fitness lost from 2 weeks off the bike may feel like a lot right now, but you will regain it quickly, and re-testing might sell yourself short as you’ll have lower targets than you need in a couple weeks.

What you have to watch out for in dialing down rides is that you increase fatigue without getting the benefit. For interval based training, Sufferfest had this guidance which I do not think is on the web any longer.


Also, I don’t think this is online anymore:


I find following my HR can be helpful if I’m struggling with a workout. It would be great if I could see the HR graph along with the power graph during the workout, like in Zwift, Trainerroad, etc…

If I’m having a tough time, I’ll dial it back in the middle of the workout, or increase recovery time (move the cursor back) and then try to finish the last set(s) at the prescribed levels. I figure it’s the damage done at the end that provides the most benefit. I’m looking forward to doing Nine Hammers tomorrow. :slight_smile:

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For some reason, I think, once upon a time, you could see your HR graph in the workout player. But then again, I just finished a 2.5 hr ride on the trainer and I may be delusional.

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I started Systm a little over two years ago and graphing HR with power was the first things I requested back then. I was coming from Trainerroad and Zwift so accustomed to seeing and using both during a workout. FWIW, there were a number of other “improvements” suggested in the workout player and calendar, but no change in any of them in two plus years, during which RGT came and went.


I started a few years before that, and some how I remember it being present. Human memory, however, is a fragile thing.

Where you here before they redid the app?

I think you can see only one graph at a time live. I don’t remember if this was available with The Sufferfest.

My Systm history shows my first workout being on Jan 2, 2022. In any case, not showing both power and HR in the workout graph is weird. Having had it and removing would be weirder still. Yeah, you can show one or the other, and go to settings during the workout and switch between them, but there should be an option to show both simultaneously…like all the other apps.

When they moved to the new app, there were several features that disappeared.
For some reason, I have a memory, which in this case I do not trust, of both being there at the same time.

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Others here are far more experienced than I am but I echo the advice - if it’s a tough day, dial it down to 90% and see how you go. Don’t beat yourself up, you are still doing more than 90% of riders. The intensity of Sufferfest can build up on you when you have set yourself a goal and you want to ride 3+ rides a week.

Just completing all Sufferfest is awesome and the last few are the worst because these are rides that haven’t appealed to you up to now. I wanted to complete it in December and had to take 3 weeks off so I’m only just getting back into it, I have Local Hero, Kitchen Sink and It seemed like thin air left.


Update: I decided to try downward spiral at 100%. I managed to finish it. It was hard but I found that the recovery time between intervals was plenty.

I did kitchen sink at 100% today and managed to finish it. I did the violator part in level mode and was able to more or less hit the tagets. Overall it wasn’t as hard as I feared. I think that all the parts are scaled down by 5-10% with respect to the original workouts and that helps. I thin I also nailed my nutrition. The app says I burned 2700 Cals and I reckon my intake was around 1200-1300 Cals (3 bottles with 200 Cals of Fluid each, 1 Maurten drink mix 320, 2 fig bars at 100 calories each, 1 luna bar at 190 Cals and 1 bottle of lmnt drink). My calves were about to cramp up at some point after the nine hammers part but they held nicely until the end.

With this I got the sufferfest badge! Now I think I’ll try to complete all the pro rides


Congrats on Kitchen Sink, that’s a beast!

Good luck with all the ProRides. I keep meaning to get around to finishing them all, but I find them super difficult to get engaged with, especially the longer ones. Personally – it’s very personal, some people love them! I did Tour de Suisse 1 yesterday and it was about 15 minutes of action packed into 1hr40 … I hated the whole thing.

So more power to you if you get through them all!