Getting the Balance Right, 4 Months On

The last 4 months follow similar trends to the previous two years, that is, a rising level of fitness (CTL) followed by troughs of decline and the reason for the dips is either holidays or illness. Therefore, I can only conclude that my rate of TSS increase when training is too quick and in order to make steady consistent gains then I need to pay close attention to total TSS each week and ensure I continue to factor in recovery weeks. This can be quite frustrating because I want to train harder but if I do then I know I will suffer some kind of illness that will prevent me from training until my body decides it has adequate rest.

Looking back at the last post I can see that I am ambitious in my goals but my body is unable to achieve the TSS targets I have set myself. What I need to do is look at increasing my TSS over a longer period. I can currently comfortably do around 500 TSS at the moment which equates to a daily TSS score of around 70. I remain focused on increasing this to 100 TSS per day or 700 TSS per week. If I increased my TSS by 50 points per month or around 12 TSS per week then it would take me four months from today to reach my goal of 100 TSS per day.

TSS feeds into my main goal of achieving an FTP of 300 watts. My FTP is currently around 240 watts. If I were to increase my TSS to 100 per day then I think I could raise my FTP to 275 watts over the same four month period. I could then focus on the next four month period to increase my FTP from 275w to 300w. Overall, my training would then follow this pattern:

January 550, 240w

February 600, 250w

March 650, 260w

April 700, 270w

May 750, 280w

June 800, 290w

July 850, 295w

August 900, 300w

Is it reasonable to assume I could increase my FTP power in the timeline outline above?  I managed to raise it to 270w in 2014 so at least there is some solid data available to support the above. That being said, I’ll need to do some validation.

One of the most important aspects of my training will be to raise my FTP and therefore all my training will be geared to increasing this. I anticipate that any weekday training will be short due to family and work commitments so for these shorter sessions I will make them more intensive with a view to increasing my FTP. At the weekend I will reduce the intensity but increase the volume and do much longer rides. My view is that longer rides help build up mitochondrial numbers and activity in slow-twitch muscle fibres and this allows fast-twitch muscle fibres to clear lactic acid more quickly during intensive activity.