Best use of an additional day off work?

Hi All,

I’m going onto a four day working week. My additional non-working day will be Mondays. I’d be interested to hear people’s thoughts on how I might make the best use of this. As a masters rider my inclination is to use it as a full recovery day, but might it be worth eg (sometimes) doing some 3 day endurance blocks?

For context my goal is to get back to race fitness (and race!) so I’ve just started doing Trevor’s 5x5s twice a week and a long-ish Sunday ride, as well as commuting by bike twice a week about an hour each way and a 50 minute run on one of those days. I realise I also need to fit some off bike strength work in - maybe that should go in on the Mondays? Or better to do on the morning of a threshold day and keep Monday a full rest day?



I’m not going to advise you what to do, but rather note the amount of sessions you have:

  • 3 non-working days of an endurance block
  • 4 commutes (2 per day) - how intense are these commutes?
  • 2 5x5 sessions (hard sessions)
  • 1 run (50 minutes could be quite intense depending on pace)
  • 1 gym

I’ll also explain why I train on a Monday and not a Friday (most weeks).
Try things out, and find out what works for you.

Before that, one of my athletes does gym work on a Monday, and then trains Tuesday to Sunday based on the plan. Some weeks we can squeeze in the required hours/TSS for the week in 4 days instead of 5.

As for me, I train in the afternoons as I struggle to get to bed early enough at night to get enough sleep to be rested for the next morning. After many years of early morning training, I made the switch two years after my first daughter’s birthday. Family and work kept me off the bike for long periods for about 2.5 years after her birth. This was the same time I also switched from every ride outside, to almost everything inside during the week.

So why a Monday?

  • Mon & Wed afternoons, Interval days

  • Tue & Thu afternoons, Z1 (of 3) days

  • Fri - Rest

  • Sat morning - Long group ride with the club (3-5 hours depending on the time of year)

  • Sun morning - Optional training day, or races, or the odd run

  • It’s nearly impossible (for me) to train Friday afternoon and then Saturday morning (sunrise start). I’m just too tired if I do it every week. The occasional week is okay though.

  • I can do a decent 2h Sunday ride or a 30-45min run, and still recover enough through to Monday afternoon. If it was a race on the Sunday, I’d swap the hard and easy days around so Monday is an easier ride and then do the harder workouts on Tue/Thu.

  • If life throws a spanner in the works, and I’m forced to miss a week day session, I can record it as an “Unplanned Rest Day”, but have the option to use Friday as the catch up day. It helps me that I can anticipate possible late days and adjust the plan accordingly.

I didn’t learn this in one season, but over many year, and also just trying things and seeing how it works and how I respond to the training.

1 Like

Thanks @geraldm24,

To be clear I was wondering if (for example) I should throw in the odd 3 day endurance block to mix things up rather than do that every week on top of all the other stuff! I was thinking of something like this as a typical week:

Monday - complete rest
Tuesday - 2x1 hr commute <65% of max hr ie endurance pace, including lots of stops for traffic lights (so really building a small amount of fatigue rather than having any training value though I might be able to do eg cadence work)
Weds - Trevor 5x5 intervals, correctly executed on the rollers
Thursday - as Tuesday (but more like recovery pace in the morning) + 50mins run at <65% of max (running) hr after getting home
Friday - complete rest
Saturday - as Weds + morning S&C session
Sunday 3 - 5hr base ride <65% of max hr ie endurance pace


I really like @geraldm24 statements.

There are a few ideas here.

1 use the 3 days as a block as you suggest, and I do this quite often when doing endurance work, endurance and tempo work, and endurance and race-specific work when I want the athlete doing efforts when fatigued (to get used to stage type racing).

So if you have a good tempo base, then a good way to improve on it is to start blocking tempo days 2-3 days in a row. This will allow for some recovery from these efforts and still allow for one hard session a week that is protected.