Weightlifting and Sufferfest Plans

That’s some awesome advice. Thank you, @Coach.Spencer.R.

@DameLisa and you suggest doing the lifting only twice a week. That’s solid and simple, in order to get enough rest. Honestly, I was so fixated on the plan that I didn’t even think about this option. Great.

Chins should target a lot of the same muscle groups than normal pull-ups, right? I will stick with weighted pull-ups then, because I enjoy doing them.

Choosing a normal plan with strength sadly doesn’t work for me. I would need a proper duathlon plan in the plan builder to fill all my needs appropriately.
I guess I will become a „custom boy“ soon, if we could only stay within SUF and get rid of training peaks for this purpose. As soon as this happens, I’m in.

Maybe I need to revisit my initial plan to do a modified mix out of „recommended routine“ and „5x5“, twice a week?!:

  • Squat (3x8)
  • Pull-Up (3x8)
  • Deadlift (3x5)
  • Dip (3x8)
  • Push-Up (3x8)
  • Row (3x8)
  • Core (3x8)

Does that sound resonable and rounds out the 5x5 formula?

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@Pierre 5x5 actually suggests I lift 3 times per week, but I suspect it also assumes I’m not riding the bike up to 6x per week. On the weeks where I’ve ridden 5 or 6 times and lifted twice, I’ve been knackered and emptied the pantry. I found getting more sleep, eating enough (more) and adding in easy yoga sessions seems to help with recovery. Being female, cold water immersion is also amazing. Time is a big constraint for me as well, and that is what prevents me from over doing things


I was always encouraged to add 2 days a week weight training of some sort. Wish I did over the years. It is a big help now, and nothing really heavy or often, just 2 days does the trick.

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Okay, I was thinking long and hard about all the great tips in here, and I think I came to a conclusion:
I want too much. My ambition needs to be simplified.

I can’t believe it myself, yet, but I will abandon running completely. Same already happened with swimming. …Oh Sufferfest, what are you doing to me? :slight_smile:

My new plan is to concentrate on cycling and weightlifting.

I already set-up an intermediate All-Purpose Road-plan with strength and will substitute SUFStrength with a modified 5x5 routine. 2 Days a week.

Workout A:

Squat, Pullup, Deadlift, (Dip), Pushup, BB Row, Ab Wheel, Hyperextensions

Workout B:

Squat, Pullup, Deadlift, (Dip), Bench Press, Overhead Press, Hanging Leg Raises, Hyperextensions

Does that sound like a reasonable approach, @Coach.Spencer.R? I like doing all of these exercises and I figure, as long as I can make progress, I will try doing them.
Or should I concentrate on even less exercises per session?


Lisa, you are impressive. :slight_smile:

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Hey @Pierre
Looks good, I would suggest subbing lunges for squats on your deadlift days ( walking, reverse, or forward). Is the ( dip) a bar dip or a bench ( tricep) dip? Love the ab wheel rollouts!


Thabk you, but I can’t maintain that amount of effort unfortunately, so don’t be too impressed. At the moment I’m barely riding at all as struggling with focus and motivation. But I did enjoy when I was training that hard. Now to get back into it!


Thanks @Coach.Spencer.R as I don’t have access to a gym at all at the moment, I’ll try the lunges. Now to get back info my routine. :muscle:t2:


Thank you. I will try out lunges instead.

Dip = Ring Dip (Triceps)


Keep up the good work @DameLisa!!
@Pierre …just be very careful with the ring dips there extremely hard on the shoulders…


I will be careful. Thank you so much for all the advice. Now I’m really wondering, what kind of improvements to this formula we could do in a customized plan. :slight_smile:

One last thought / question, @Coach.Spencer.R: In my generated training plan I mostly have a combination of two or three workouts planned for any given “strength”-day:

  • Either Strength + Yoga or
  • Strength + Yoga + Cadence Builds.

Which order would be best?
Do I treat
…cycling as a warm up or cool down?

…yoga as a warm up or cool down?

My intuition tells me to start either with strength or yoga-warm-up then strength, because I need all the energy I have to lift on this day.

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Cool, no worries!
You’ve got the right idea.
Yoga + strength + cadence builds ( or No vid Cadence Drills or No vid Cadence Build and Holds, or No vid recovery spin) is good , as is:
Standing starts + strength + yoga
Let us know how it goes


Hi @Coach.Spencer.R what are your thoughts on the olympic weightlifting exercises for strength training for cyclists? Once Melbourne gets out of a lockdown I’ll be able to go back to my gym where the coach is a specialist in weightlifting (not crossfit). I still squat a lot and I don’t have any problems performing the snatch or clean and jerk. I started these because I wanted to focus on increasing power but I don’t really know if that is the best to improve cycling ability.


Hey @PeterG,
I really admire those that have the athletic ability to engage in olympic lifting.
The main aspect I look at when integrating strength training and endurance training is recovery.
Are you able to adapt and absorb the training load and therefore make gains? How has oly lifting affected your cycling before the lockdown?
You can get a lot of opinions on combining olympic lifting and cycling. Having a coach for direct supervision and experience is a big advantage in programming and injury prevention. Here’s an article you can review along with other suggested scientific articles:

My opinion is, if you enjoy it, do it. If you’re not seeing the results you want, do something different. There is no one perfect system and everyone responds to a training stimulus differently. Keep us informed on how it works for you.


Thanks for the reply. I sometimes get so wrapped up in trying to do what is best that I forget to do what I enjoy.

Having a coach directly supervising the exercises has been great for me. I would never have learnt how to snatch on my own.

I completely agree with the advice to only lift 2x per week. Despite knowing better through past experience, I had a go last year doing 3x per week and it just led to overtraining and burnout. I’ve since cut it back to only the basics and have found it is actually more beneficial to do less. It starts to get scary diving under a loaded bar when your quads are toast at the end of a training block.

One good thing to come out of this lockdown is I have a clear picture of the benefits of strength training. I haven’t been able to lift weights for 5 months and the differences I feel on the bike are now quite obvious. My glutes, quads and lower back get much more fatigued and sore especially on sessions like GOAT or Power Station and the reduced core strength has made high cadence efforts so much harder.


A quick update: I am doing the modified 5x5 routine I posted earlier in this topic and I am having so much fun!

Thank you @Coach.Spencer.R for helping out and giving me some pointers.

So far my progression is going as planned. The weight for each exercise is still quite low and I can concentrate on proper technique. Each session I only increase between 1 and 2 Kg per exercise. I still get the feeling that at the end of october it will start getting interesting.

I am excited to figure out if I can manage to keep increasing the weight and still do all my planned cycling without the one hindering the other.

At the same time I am starting to think about a strategy in case I stall with adding more weight…


Hey @Pierre,
That’s great news! There are always ways to modify/change routines to prevent going stale both on and off the bike. Cheers!


Looks that I am like you, looking for general improvement, incorporate biking as primal but running and strength training also. Because there is not such a builtin plan currently (that I like to very much to have) what is your current plan? I am kind of in-between now and looking or to follow again some APR or Gran Fondo but it is not 100% what I really want.


I’m doing the All Purpose Road, with strength and yoga, and couldn’t be happier at the moment.

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Quick update: I really enjoy the weightlifting part of my training. So much that I changed up my routine, again.

At the same time, I felt I got too hung up with my 4DP numbers and ran the danger of burning out. This mix up over the winter month will hopefully bring my maximum potential of joy back into training and at the same time prevent possible overtraining.

I „hacked“ a novice APRoad plan to accommodate three weightlifting sessions and I am back on the standard StrongLifts 5x5 routine. I dropped half of the cycling workouts on the weekend to lower the training load and moved a few advanced yoga and technique driven workouts around.

I think it looks good. I am starting this month with a heavy emphasis on strength and yoga. If this means dropping even more cycling workouts or lowering intensities - okay.

To go further in my cycling journey, I need to ride less, I think. At least for a while.