Since the middle of August and up to the middle of September, I had intended to back off from structured training, just to allow physical and mental recovery for a longer period. The plan was always to start back with proper intention from the 5th October with a training plan. So the few weeks prior to this it was a case of building back up gradually.

Below shows the week as fairly favourable for recovery and energy, with a few exceptions being on the 28th September and 3rd October. The 3rd was due to a club ride that day, my first one with them, so was a bit of anxiety, poor sleep etc, and so it was to be expected. The ride went well, and in the two hour ride, 48% was at recovery pace and 21% at endurance pace. This was due to being in a group ride, although we all had turns on the front.

The 29th I did a 1-hour turbo endurance session with a 20min tempo effort, keeping the cadence to around 100rpm throughout. 1st October showed a good reading, so again a 1-hour turbo session of endurance, but with 2 x 5min threshold intervals with 10mins between, again all higher cadence.

On the 4th October following the club ride, it was a 1 hour road session at easy gear low endurance with high cadence again.


The period for the week shown below is the start of the power based training plan. At the moment it is base work for 3 weeks. I have not done a periodised routine before, but I am keen to learn what kind of training sessions should be used in base, build and peak periods, in order to see how this affects HRV, to better understand in future what sessions I can use depending on my ithlete Pro reading on a training day. This is going to be a learning curve exercise over 6 months. What will be interesting, is to see if there is a natural over-reaching element and then the recovery from the built-in recovery weeks in the training plan

Generally the readings were good, mostly in the normal range. The training sessions were on Monday 5th and Wednesday 7th each 1 hour endurance with 2 x 10min tempo intervals with 10min recovery and Friday 9th 1 hour endurance with 10 second FTP bursts every 10 minutes. Saturday 10th was a 2hr 30min club ride 70% in heart rate zone 2, and Sunday 11th an 80 minute road ride, 60% in heart rate zone 2 and 34% zone 3 (remainder of percentage at zone 1)

Week 2 of the training plan, leading up to a Sportive on Sunday 18th. The first training day on the 13th gives a good reading for the 65 minute session of endurance with 3 x 10 minute tempo efforts, which was also repeated on 15th. Following both of these there is lower recovery readings the following days, but not enough to cause any concern. Saturday 17th was a 1 hour recovery/endurance ride, leading to a favourable reading on the 18th for the Sportive. The intention for this was not performance but to simply get a longer ride in, with the majority of it in the endurance range. The actual zones were 40% Z1, 26% Z2, 14% Z3 with the remainder in the higher zones. So I was surprised to see the reading on the 19th, considering where I have done much harder rides and got a high recovery in the HIT zone reading. But I did have a poor nights sleep with a stomach ache.



The week below shows the third week of the training plan, which I altered slightly to allow for the Sportive. The 19th (as mentioned above) was a poor reading, and also the 20th wasn’t much better, so maybe the stomach issue was viral. There was a planned session on the 20th, but avaoided this in the hope that my reading on the 21st was better, which it was. I repeated week 2 session, instead of 4 x 10min tempo , it was 3 x 10min, to allow for the fact I did the Sportive on the weekend. The 22nd was a good reading (hidden behind 26th) so repeated the session of the 21st. Friday the 23rd dipped maybe due to two continuous days of training, and the 24th was a high activation due to the club ride on the morning; 40% of the ride was in recovery zone 1, 19% in endurance zone 2, 14% in tempo, with the remainder split in the higher zones. 25th was a 75min turbo session all in lower endurance zone 2, high cadence, easy gear. This was verging on a recovery session, therefore a decent reading for the 26th. Next week will be a recovery week.

looking at my ithlete Pro Timeline below, there is a definate dip at the beginning of September. This follows a 2 week holiday and coming back to work with a very busy period. Stress levels were higher and therefore an impact on sleep patterns. But as from October, HRV starts to climb again, co-inciding with easing off of the workload. I attribute ithlete Pro for helping guide me through this and sensible training suggestions- priceless!


Andy Dolphin Profile:

I am a recreational athlete, who has around 5 to 8 hours a week to train (season dependant). I have a family with 2 young children and run a business. Therefore the ethos of my training is to use training principles that elicit the best results in minimal time. By comparison to my cycling friends, I would class myself as average