What to do when don't have 8 hours a week?

Hello, I am l looking into the training plans and I would be a low volume rider. I for sure have 4 hours per week (usually about 6 hours a week), however, through the fall and winter I likely will not have 8 hours a week to ride (I also don’t think I want to be on the trainer that much per week). Come spring when I add a longer weekend outdoor ride I will likely be riding about 10 hours a week, however, a large chunk of the year I will only be riding about 6 hours
I am concerned I buy the plans and then don’t use them properly (and thus not get the intended benefit) when I can’t do the weeks that have over 6 hours in them (when I am exclusively riding indoors).
Is there a guideline or recommendation on what to do in these situations?

There must be a lot of cyclists like me who have the same amount of time every week and cannot easily ramp it up during a phase due to life, work, family committments. I think I understand the stimulus needs to ramp up over time but is there another way to do this without time being manipulated?

Thanks for any feedback as the plans look interesting but I just want to know what I am getting into before I purchse.
Thanks very much

Hey @maurylum, this sounds exactly what our plans are designed for… the everyday cyclist! (aka not a pro with 15+ hours a week)
The 18 weeks of SS basic plan has an average of 7 hours per week. If you are riding indoors and need to reduce time on the trainer, you can cut down on time in zone 2 during your interval days so that you are not riding the trainer for too long. Also on the weekends you can add in more SS into your ride so that you achieve your target TSS faster. Coach Jake actually just made a video on this and it may interest you.

The “ramping up” will happen as you move through the plan and the intervals become harder. So for example in SS part 1, any of the intervals you do will be sweet spot and tempo. Once you progress into SS part 2 you will move into criss cross, sprints, bursts, and threshold intervals, which will improve your top end. This is all while staying around the same amount of hours each week. So no need to worry about only having 4-10 hours a week. We aim to help ALL cyclists ride faster, not just those with buckoo time to train :slight_smile:


Thank you @Lacey_Rivette , so, just to confirm, on weeks where I can’t hit the full ride time durations, I should still try to hit the target TSS for the week, and how I can do that is try to if I can, swap some of the ride time in zone 2 with ride time in a higher zone (e.g. sweet spot, threshold, or vo2, shoot for the zone that appears to be zone focused on in the training plan for the week)?
Thank you for the help and feedback.

Yes, but if you have significantly less time it is unlikely that you will be able to hit the tss spot on.
During SS parts 1-2, you want to keep everything in aerobic endurance zone… meaning that you do not do threshold or vo2 efforts yet.

So ideally you will increase your time in sweet spot. For example, if you have a 2.5 hour SS ride on the weekend that indicates to aim for 45-60 minutes of sweet spot, you could do an hour 20 minutes in sweet spot and only do 2 hours total. That will help you to achieve a similar TSS to the 2.5 hour ride. Alternatively, if you can do the full time on the weekends and are behind on your TSS, you could bump up your time in SS like coach jake did in the video i linked above. His planned TSS was 170, but he did 214 TSS because he did more SS.