Rename Sequential Base Phases, Feature Request

feature-request
training-plans

#1

This is the most recent example of confusion around the order of training plans in the Base Phase.

Specifically, the most common issue I see is that people don’t understand that the order should flow from 1 to 2, 2 to 3. I know they are grouped well on the page, and the accompanying text outlines the right order, but this confusion happens frequently.

  • Sweet Spot Base

  • Traditional Base

    • “Low Volume I” should be followed by “Low Volume II”, which should be followed by “Low Volume III”
    • Same pattern for Mid and High Volume

I mentioned this on the FB group, but I think the name should be more direct. Here are some suggestions that use a specific word to identify order and regular numbers (even though Roman’s are cool).

  • Low Volume Part 1
  • Low Volume Part 2

  • Low Volume Part 1/2
  • Low Volume Part 2/2

  • Low Volume Part 1 of 2
  • Low Volume Part 2 of 2

  • Low Volume Stage 1
  • Low Volume Stage 2

  • Low Volume Weeks 1-6
  • Low Volume Weeks 7-12

There are likely other options, but I do feel that something should be done to improve the compliance and understanding of the intended path.


#2

Part 1
Part 2

Problem solved.

The terms confused the heck out of me when I started. “Volume” is am ambiguous term in that context. “Low Volume” (like training) or “Volume 1” (like a book)


#3

I don’t think it’s needed, just make sure you’re reading it all.


#4

Agree - lots of misunderstandings about this, particularly since only base is broken into these more modular pieces. Part 1, Part 2, Phase 1, Phase 2, something along these lines would help new users


#5

Can also be solved with a wizard that recommends next phase of training based on previous phases and answers to a couple questions. Personally I think that is better approach than simply renaming the plans.


#7

I would avoid “Phase” since that term is already in use to distinguish between Base, Build & Specialty.


#8

I concur with this. It’s a very common confusion I see in the forum and on FB for people new to TR. It’s definitely a usability issue that needs addressing. No new user should be confused by this, the real question is what would resolve the issue. I’m sure TR is aware that there is confusion and the current plan presentation represents the best current thinking. But clearly we still need to improve.

Like most things, once you know it’s very easy. Once you’ve taken the time to understand the plan construction it is actually very intuitive. I like how it’s broken into components that allow me to mix and match plans to suit the kind of performance gains that I’m looking for. I would consider myself an advanced TR user. I’ve listened to all the podcasts, read all the blogs and spend a lot of time here on the forum. I recognize though that there is a learning curve. A new user shouldn’t need to dedicate tens of hours of listening and reading time to get there arms around what they should be doing after the first training block. Equally, as an advanced user, I don’t want to be spoon fed a plan structure either, I know what I need and I can construct my own plan design thanks very much. The “don’t be dumb” comment earlier in the thread actually highlights this point, although more crudely that I would have said it. At some point we were all uneducated/dumb, but then once you know, you know. The goal is to eliminate that knowledge gap.

So, this leads me to the conclusion that there likely needs to be a dual plan construction function. For users that are confident of designing their own training structure, keep things as they are, here are all the bits, go for it. But for brand new users or users that have less confidence, I think a more handheld approach would be beneficial. I don’t think just adding “Part 1, Part 2” will go far enough. The goal should be 0% confusion. As mentioned above a wizard that guides plan selection is probably the right answer. What type of rider are you? What is your experience level? Do you know your FTP? Are you training for an event? When is it? What are the demands of the event? etc. The outcome of the wizard would be the first training season (28 weeks) and an estimated FTP (unless known). This would auto-populate to the Calendar and you’re ready to go with the Ramp Test to get started on the plan. This would also include the ability to modify the plans around events. It’s also common to see new users preparing for an event that is less than 28 weeks out. 12 or so weeks seems to be common and you really need to know a lot to know how to maximize that time. A really common approach for new users is to jump to the end. It’s not intuitive to only do Base if that’s all the time you have. A wizard could address that problem too. Oh, you’re a recreational cycling training for their first fondo and you only have 12 weeks until the event … here’s your 12 week Base plan.

Side note: I’ve seen update notes that describe changes to Onboarding, but since I’m not a new user I don’t know what that is. It’s possible some of what I’m describing already exists. Is there a way to see the Onboarding content if you’re an existing user?

What I’m describing with the wizard is likely quite a lot of work and I agree that TR should not let perfect get in the way of the good. A quick fix is likely a much more detailed “Intro to TR” section not unlike what the Forum has when you first join. There are countless forum posts here that describe how plans fit together and could be adapted and cleaned up to give more or better explanation to folks.


#9

@julianoliver agree, IMHO the only way to virtually eliminate confusion is by having a wizard. And the first screen should let you click “Advanced user, let me pick without help” or something like that. A wizard is quite useful for most people including on-boarding new users and anyone that wants to follow best practices without having to go read support articles, blog posts, the forum, or listen to podcasts.


#10

I’ll concede on this one guys but it is an easy short term fix. That other stuff takes a lot longer to implement :sweat_smile:


#11

I Agree. Another option could be Part 1/2 and 2/2 or “1 of 2” and “2 of 2”?

With a wizard they could also aim at the users that don’t want to dedicate time or effort for the whole base build speciality approach and then use the enthusiast/maintenance mode:

  • How much time or days per week do you want to train?
  • Do you want follow x months of structured training (for best scientific gains) or prefer to go week by week and maintain your fitness?

(But maybe sth like this is already in the pipe with more individual training plans?)

On the other hand I would not want TR to waste a lot of development time if maybe a simple graphic / introduction screen could be sufficient.


#12

Great thoughts above. I do think a wizard would be really helpful. But I know it will take some serious time to make it functional.

The renaming is a small and short-term suggestion, but not a great overall solution. I think there should be something done sooner than later, even if it is a stop-gap measure.


#13

Weeks 1-6
Weeks 7-12


#14

I updated the OP with the rename examples suggested.


#15

Also in the graphics the " > " is not clear enough (maybe make a bigger arrow or add text). Just some quick mockup with some spots that could be better used:

And just as a side note:
I personally like the flexibility and to evaluate again after a part, for example SSB Part 1 (so maybe switch from LV to MV or vice versa etc.) but since the usual recommendation is LV1 -> LV2 or MV1 -> MV2 etc. I ask myself why there is no option to add a “SSB LV complete plan” or “SSB MV complete plan” in the first place…?


#16

Right. One suggestion we discussed earlier was to make it a single 12 week block.

But like you, I find that limiting and like the flexibility of separate blocks. With that, it is important to make the general layout direct and obvious, if possible.


#17

Good idea. I’d add the end to make it clearer:
Weeks 1-6 (of 12)
Weeks 7-12 (of 12)

Weeks 1-4 (of 12)
Weeks 5-8 (of 12)
Weeks 9-12 (of 12)


#18

It made sense to me on the surface but reading this thread I’m now not clear why it’s even broken up , unless you can switch out from various programs? Ssb 1 low volume to ssb 2 medium volume or even across program types. What purpose does it serve to add the parts separately? Especially now that we have the calendar, it’s very easy to push weeks if needed.


#19

Yes agree with you that small naming changes could and should be done to improve clarity. I guess that’s what I meant by:

Hopefully it’ll make it clearer for some people, but I’m not optimistic that it’ll solve for everyone. Incremental improvements are still improvements though!


#20

https://indoorsportservices.co.uk/training/interactive

Here is an example of an indoor rowing online service that asks for some inputs and spits out a fully integrated training plan going through all the training phases up to the date of the event. For cycling you might need one for Crits, another for Road Racing and one for Tri’s. For cycling, you would input variables such as: W/kg, training days per week, level of experience and time to event and voila!


#21

When I signed up for TR I did so and wanted to start a plan the same day. I opted for SSB II because SSB 1 looked less interesting and I came in with a decent level of fitness.

After starting the phase and reading up on how to implement the TR plans/phases, it became clear that I technically should have started with SSB1. I don’t know that it was an issue of reading comprehension for me so much as a desire to jump in and get started without really understanding the “methodology” before taking that jump. I do think a wizard would have helped guide me but a few nights on the computer learning about the phases would have helped as well. In other words, a wizard or shortcut would have probably been helpful.