It's Q&A podcast time again [Jan 23rd] Submit your Questions Here

I am on your 18 week SS plan. Following with you 6 week SBT GRVL. Then DK200. Both Plans are intermediate. After March, I would like to drop in a big mileage week. Best time to do this? Sort of a week training camp. Third week of a build cycle is what I am thinking, then a rest week. The 8 things to do in 2020 podcast was awesome. Great takeaways for me were butt watts, keep it green & full monk mode. :joy: Seriously good stuff.

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Never mind. Just found your podcast on trading camps. I will listen for my answers there.

I really like the Fascat approach to SS training, but one of the big limitations the plans have for me is the assumption I can ride outside to do the long stuff (i.e. most weekend rides). Due to family obligations, geography etc., this often is not possible for me. Would you ever consider providing alternative workouts that can be done on the trainer?



Hey I was wondering is there a way to calculate how many grams carbohydrates and fat that I will be burning during a workout. I know that heart rate is a good tell, but is there a more simple calculation based on time and power and/or heart rate. Currently trying to loose a bit of weight but want to maximize carbohydrate consumption prior to riding and during the riding to maintain the stores. This area is so confusion and I know everyone is different, however is there a base line guild. I cant find anything on this matter and would love to know more if you have any incite. Any thoughts?

Good q: yes - use your powermeter and pay attention to kiloJoules

I have a question surrounding elevation and adaptation. Im currently living around 400 feet elevation and will be moving soon to Colorado which is somewhere in the 6000 ft range. Im curious on how the changes in elevation could or will affect my training. Id rather not lose fitness in the 21 day range that I am seeing. Is there a way to maintain fitness while adjustments are being made? Thanks. Love the podcast


Hey Coaches,
Question for your team regarding HR and power zones. Ive been doing some research on FatMax wattage and came across a podcast with Steve Neal (Faster - Podcast by FLO - Episode 27: Finding Your Athletic Potential With Steve Neal). In this episode Steve talks about using a HR cap when performing SST intervals. Steve puts a cap of 82% of MaxHR. Ive tried this a couple times and its interesting to see the trend of HR vs. power over the duration of the session. Starting out, Im in my SST range. HR trends up to my cap, and then I start dropping power to maintain the HR at or under the cap. Progressing through the intervals HR stays at the cap but power ends up in upper zone 2. Steves view in these instances the aerobic system is not strong enough at the earlier stages of endurance training this will equalize over a month-is of training sessions.

So with that background - my question is how do the FasCat team view on the relationship between HR and power, and whether there is benefit maintaining zones in proximity to each other?

thanks again for all the team does.


Dude, I love this question! Frank has mentioned in the podcast the freestyle sweet spot ride where you go out and ride at sweet spot essentially to exhaustion. Sounds similar to what youre talking about.

Vern - fwiw, I also listened to the podcast with Steve Neal and tried this approach for about a month in between my 10-week strength build and starting my FasCat SS plan. I was using it as a way to start rebuilding my base and avoid injuries and sickness Ive had in the past when ramping up my SS training.

If I recall, he prescribes 3x20s with the HR cap as you describe. Wk1 I was only at 10 min of SS Power based on my end of season FTP; Wk2, 18 minutes; Wk 3, 23 minutes, and so on. All this with less body fatigue. I can see where it would be very effective to keep going that route as adaptations were still occurring.

That said, when I transitioned to the FasCat plan, I really started feeling stronger and see it on my power meter. Havent gotten injured yet from either and am very happy I used both and may do so again next year when I hop back to base training.

Very curious what Franks thoughts are, too. I do also notice that FasCat builds a lot of Z2 and Z3 tempo into the plans which seems to effectively end up being very similar work to the FatMax approach, building the bottom end of the aerobic base while keeping fatigue down.

Thanks for the feedback. Ive been seeing similar results as what you described. First week was pretty low volume in SS zone, but building week over week. Just to see what my HR would do, i tried using the power range to see where HR steadied out. I was about 10 beats over the 82% cap, which is a bit lower than my LT2 HR.

Ive been using the Z2 Sunday rides on the SS plan with a HR cap as well.

Hey Steve, I think you are right - just a different definition of exhaustion. Makes HR the limiter instead of power. Its a strange feeling to see upper zone 2 watts with the same HR that you started riding SS with.

A metric that I use when Ive done this sort of training in the past is aerobic decoupling. It can be computed in TrainingPeaks automatically. It looks at the average HR / NP for the first half of a lap vs. the second half. If you track this metric week over week of this type of training you will begin to see improvements. That is assuming of course that youre riding at about the same pace, flat-ish terrain, adequate hydration. This metric is meaningless for intervals less than 10 minutes as the rise time of your heart rate throws it off. Unfortunately I havent found a way to display that metric on my Wahoo; if anyone finds it I would love to know!

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Hey Steve,
I do track decoupling but not as a real-time metric. Seems more like a post-ride analysis metric to me. How would you adjust your effort if you saw a certain decoupling value during a ride?

Im on Wahoo as well and didnt see a way to add this to the computer.

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Ya know, thats actually a good question! I guess I might use it real time to make sure my hydration plan is on track, particularly for very long rides. Another possibility is to keep your power in check; if you set out on too aggressive of a pace for the day youll see that youre decoupling a bit too much and know to back down. But I think youre right, its primarily a post-ride metric thats good to look at over several weeks of consistent aerobic training.

Wondering how you approach training for crazy long distance events.

My A ride is a 1200km brevet in August with a 90 hr time limit. My goal is to continue to increase cruising speed and maximize sleep time.

Ive added weight training this year, and will build base via sweet spot and the qualifiers : 200k, 300k, 400k, and 600k. CTL should be in the 90s by June.

Would you change anything in base, and how would you think about build and peak for the 1200k in August?

Thanks to all who submitted questions we answered several of yours from this thread - thanks! While doing so we also referenced previous podcasts of other topics we covered so after you listen to this pod go back to the others for more information and rationale.

Good luck #FtFPing this weekend and as always let us know if you have more qs, and any feedback

Hey Frank and Isaiah, thanks for all the information in the podcast. This was really informative.

with the Polarized vs Sweet Spot debate - one thing that folks seem to be missing Dr. Seiler, in a recent podcast proposed that cyclists are a bit different from Cross-Country Skiers and Runners. Based on some of his recent studies hes finding cyclist benefit from 15 to 20% of SST, which is a departure from the purist Polarized approach. Pretty interesting and aligns with the figures you mentioned during this podcast.

thanks again for taking the time.

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Very interesting, indeed - where did you listen to that or see the study? I would like to read up or listen in that regard, thanks!

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Hey Coach Frank,
It took me a bit to track it down but the guys over at Fast Labs had the conversation (eps 51 and eps 94) and provided the link to the actual study - . This study was performed back in 2015 by Stoggle and Sperlich, so probably not all that recent. Still they have several sets of data that show cyclist tend towards a pyramidal approach to training intensity distribution. Looking at Table 2 in the study there are a few examples of cyclists spending between 10 and 20% of training time in the sweet spot zone.

You probably read pub-med publications pretty regularly and might have already seen this study.


I was wandering what your thoughts were on vegan meats like beyond burger and cheeses like follow your heart. I kinda feel like its manufactured junk food.
Just wanna win in the kitchen

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