My Polarized Training Experience (Chad McNeese & others)


Not exactly speculation, I’m pretty sure I’ve read that is the goal.

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My comment about speculation was mainly about my own hedging as to whether I remembered the info correctly :stuck_out_tongue:


That totally makes sense to me. The hangup I have is that I’m not sure there is any evidence out that that actually proves SST can’t have an impact on your power at LT1.


Very true. And to further your point, they don’t hand out podium spots to the ppl on the most “scientifically valid” training plan. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


This is exactly it. Higher power using fat for fuel. Add the power produced by glycogen consumption = higher overall power output = faster ride.

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And I’ll toss in “how long I can hold that power without my HR increasing” - its pretty easy to see in ride data. Last month I was doing 2.25 - 2.75 hour rides in TR’s traditional base HV-1 plan (60-70% ftp) without any real increase in HR over the ride. Seems to me that is a pretty wide aerobic base. In addition, year-over-year, my HR has dropped 5-10bpm at comparable power levels (low intensity and SSB 88-94% intensity) and almost identical FTP (236 last year, 240 now). Again, another measure of a stronger/wider aerobic base.


Thats the one you can’t easily measure. The lack of increasing HR over longer intervals of time, at a specific low-intensity power level (say 60% ftp) is the easiest one to see and measure.


See Nate’s post on this topic in the following thread:

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I’m not sure I understand what you’re getting at.


@bherbers What do you think of this: SST/Threshold training boosts FTP. FTP is hour power (give or take). When you boost that, you also boost the whole power curve, ergo you lift power at LT1. Sound right? If so, that what @Nate is saying in that other thread and why @DaveWh pointed it out.

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Thx for the explanation Tim. This was my reason for linking to Nate’s post.


Whew! Glad I got that right. It was risky

Fat Adapting Advice?

Yeah, along with a few other seriously confounding variables. Not the least of which is what he ate. If what you’re getting at is SSB can make you “fat-adapted” too, then ok.


Well I don’t really have an agenda one way or the other. I don’t really know if SSB can make you fat adapted. It just seems like the POL crowd is a bit too dogmatic for my tastes.

I’m just curious if there is actual evidence out there that shows what physical adaptions you can get with a POL approach that you can’t get with a TR type approach.

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I hear ya, man. Join the club. I’m of two minds on this intensity distribution stuff. I definitely have biases and preconceived ideas based on “what worked in college”. But that was so long ago and it was a different sport.

I started a thread Science of Sweet Spot Methodology because I didn’t want to hijack this thread with all my questions. Honestly so far it’s trending toward “let’s agree to disagree” with the respective opinions.


in my mind, “fat adapted” = keto

The aerobic base fitness adaptation we are talking about is not fat adapted in the keto sense.

By riding long distances at low intensities, you are teaching your muscles to use more fat as fuel.

Here is an example from the “Base Building for Cyclists” book I’m reading:

HR zone 1 calories from fat increased from 4.2 to 6.7 KCals/min
HR zone 2 from 3.4 to 6.3 KCals/min
HR zone 3 from 2.4 to 4.9 KCals/min
HR zone 4 from 2.0 to 4.5 KCals/min
HR zone 5 from 0.0 to 1.0 KCals/min

(they didn’t give carb KCals/min, see the other thread)

The first win is the muscles use more fat for fuel at all levels of intensity. That means reduced demand on muscle glycogen.

The second win for this athlete was anaerobic threshold increasing from 163bpm to 168bpm.


Hey Chad, just wanted to publically thank you for starting this thread. What a great discussion! It’s challenged me to cast a critical eye on my own training. You are a gracious thread host, hope you enjoy the book I sent. Look forward to reading your analysis when it’s ready!


Yeah, that’s what I meant (and should have written it that way). I think I’m the one that used the term “fat-adapted” but what you said. Base training FTW

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@bbarrera, I’m happy to help spur the discussion :smiley:

Looks like I will get the book today and I hope to start reading it this weekend.

I need to do a full review, but I did a Zwift ride this morning

  • Nailed some new All-Time PR’s around the 1 minute plus range.
  • I had to start hard because I had a TT bike loaded, stopped and switched, then had a chase to catch the group, so a “fun” warm-up :stuck_out_tongue:
  • Did 249w NP for an hour, 2 big sprints and one 1k push for the finish. Not bad considering I was just drafting and saving juice after my early jump, and then setting up for a push at the end (that lead to the PR’s).
  • So, kinda interesting at least. I don’t know if there are any conclusions to draw at this point?

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