Uhl in Eagle, ID – If I’ve learned anything over the past six years of training with a power meter, it is how to train efficiently. With things like TSS and ATL/CTL to help quantify training loads, I now regularly put in the same amount of training stress per week in 8–10 hours as I used to in 11–14 hours.
I’m not a fan of riding just to get in “saddle time”. When I get on the bike, I always have a purpose. With only a few weeks over 10 hours this winter, my fitness is better than it typically is this early in the season. That’s primarily due to training smart and by focusing on Sweet Spot training. The old school definition of “base miles” is gone and has been replaced with quality, FTP-building Level 3 and Level 4 work.
The other thing I did is not let my CTL drop too low. This winter I only let it get down to 60tss/day. This made it much easier to slowly build up to 80tss/day. This is where I’ve been holding it for the past month or so. With the races starting in a couple weeks and warmer spring weather to come, I plan to increase my CTL, probably to 90–100tss/day. I plan to back off a little bit before “A” priority races, as well as periodically when I don't have a race planned.
In the past, 100tss/day seemed to be my ceiling but that’s when I tried to hold it there indefinitely. I think if I get it to 100 then back-off, I can maintain an average of around 95–100 throughout the season. We’ll see, at least now I’m a bit more sensitive to signs of overtraining, so hopefully I’ll catch it before it becomes a problem.