Over-Unders. Love 'em. Hate 'em


I’ve never done that, if you do this too often this would be another indicator that something isn’t right.

No, I wouldn’t say that. It can be an indicator based on other factors in the workout. If you feel like all your interval days (hard days) are smashing you, you have to turn down intensity and cadence drops , then probably. If that is consistent after a new FTP then you’re probably over reaching.

TrainerRoad workouts are designed and tailored to your FTP so you can complete them. You’re supposed to succeed without altering the workouts. Sure, some days you’re off, or the workout is your weakness, but by far the workouts should be doable. Some will be tough, challenge you and push you to your limits. But in the end, your plan should feel like a challenge not a beat down. TrainerRoad is far more enjoyable when your FTP is correct and you’re not holding on to a higher number.


Thanks again!


Bahahaha Because I Nee’dham


I just finished Mary Austin and happily I can report I completed it with only 2x 10second back pedals in the final 10min block


What should HR do on these? My HR is not going down on the “unders”, is my FTP set too high? Am I on target?
This is from Palisade (after a 2-hour wife-ride this morning)

I should probably note that I had a minor medical procedure yesterday so let’s look at this one from the day prior (though a shorter workout):

Thanks for the advice.


I find over unders so mentally brutal because my body has been trained that the end of interval count down beeps mean relief is coming. Then when the relief doesn’t come it’s devastating.

So this morning I did Carpathian Peak, week 1 SPBLV, with my computer muted and music from my phone so I couldn’t hear the interval beeps. I just put my head down and watched my cadence and let ERG mode do the rest. Made a big difference mentally for me.

Of course this is only possible in ERG mode, but worth a try and see if it helps. I know it helped me a lot.


HR is probably not going to come down more than a beat or two during the “unders”. I checked all my previous O/U workouts and I can’t find one where my HR dropped substantially during an “under”. This is particularly true in the workouts where the “over” is longer than the “under”, as is the case with Palisade.


Anybody else more prone to cramps during over-unders than other types of workouts? I did Fang Mountain +3 last week and quads seized at the beginning of the last set. I thought it might have been a hydration issue.

I just finished Avalanche Spire +3 this morning. I’m pretty sure that I was hydrated well enough, but I felt the beginning of cramps at the beginning of the last. Fortunately they didn’t set in and I finished it fine.


A lot of times when I see them on my calendar I’ll schedule a zwift race and just do them on there, kind of makes them doable for me some how.


If you’ve never done criss-cross threshold work before (I have no idea, obviously), or perhaps this intensity level is new to you from a recently raised FTP, it’s possible that your body is just adjusting to the lactate processing. No one really knows, but I’ve always thought that cramps were less about hydration, electrolytes, etc., and more about simply taxing our bodies in ways to which we’re not yet adapted. Things like heat can make cramps more prevalent not necessarily because of dehydration but also because we’re not adapted to it… stuff like that.


Just finished Warlow. Cheated a bit from third to fifth interval by backpedalling, stopping & dropping the intensity by 5. Damn these O/U workouts, I nearly forgotten what my name was.


Is there a certain point where there is so much pain going through the legs that it’s not worth finishing the interval? I remember when I was lifting weights as a gym rat a decade ago and you get “the pump” and know you’re approaching the limit. Not sure if that is true and/or crosses over to this type of work. I’m pretty sure it’s true though as Arnold said it.


Just my guess, but I think there’s a difference between pain from lactic acid and pain from completely destroyed muscles. The former will pass and you’ll be able to go again; the latter…not so much.

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Well, it hurts… A lot. Would really appreciate a quality excuse to give up and it be okay. Lol


Did it a couple of days ago, it was my first over/under experience… I’m still not sure how I pulled through it. I spent my coolest day at work after that - no catastrophe or issue could have gotten me out of that endorphin high.


Maybe it’s just me but I real like them and seem ok with them. Today was week 1 of SPB and Fang Mountain + 3 9 minutes intervals briefly hitting 320 watts in each seems far more manageable than 5 minutes solid at 319 during Wilhelm +5 that’s also this week.


Definitely not just you. They’ve helped me improve my mental toughness and lactate tolerance. It’s been somewhat of an eye-opener, so much so that as I’ve reflected on SSBMV results, I’ve shifted gears and will train sustained power build because I’m seeing marked improvements from the VO2 - O/U - Threshold combination (SSB2) and it’s more in-line with my normal racing, even without plans to race this year.


I finished SSB-1 about three weeks ago and I’ve been repeating the last two weeks because I will be unable to schedule structured training for the next few months due to business travel…but I’m taking the road bike on these trips.

Although I was able to complete all the workouts in the last few weeks of over-unders, I never felt they were “easy” and always felt I had to focus on completing them. Is it reasonable to go back and simply repeat SSB-1 at the same FTP? I never once thought, “I wish there were more resistance” on the over-unders, feel like I didn’t accomplish what I needed to in the workout plan.


Struggle with them! https://www.trainerroad.com/career/billy/rides/51478660-warlow


Agreed. Just finished Carpathian +2 for the 1st time. Hardest workout of the plan so far. (tomorrow is my last day of week 3, SSBMV II.) The end of the 2nd and 3rd intervals were great race simulation. I had the the same type of fatigue that I often feel when I am hanging on the pack hoping the pace will drop, and fearing that if it doesn’t, I could get dropped. Great workout for both physical and mental toughness.