setting the bar too high?


New Member
Sep 20, 2009
how would you know if you set the bar too high for yourself doing intervals.. dont want to get too detailed, but i have no hr monitor or power tap, so what i do has always been going by rpm's and feel..

i do an 11 minute interval, spinning at a certain cadence(100-110, increasing the rpm each minute), at the eleven minute mark i rest and spin 1 minute,. then i get out of the saddle for 1:45very hard.... rest 1:15 and do another 11 minute interval.. repeat2 more times.. .. i do 4 eleven minute intervals and these hurt big time.. only 2 times have i not been able to finish the 4th interval.. i get to 4-5-6 minute mark and thats it.. all the other times i finish the workout..

how would i know if i should only go 90-100 rpm's instead of 100-110rpm's? i'd finish the workout all the time if i went a bit slower, or never increased the gear..

my heart rate is way up ther doing these 11 minute intervals..(170- 190) i dont know my max hr,, but many many times i counted 192 bpm doing 4 minute intervals..

so my question is how do you know if you're setting a workout goal too high?
i'm dead tired when i do the whole thing and dead when i almost get the whole workout in..thanks alot


New Member
Sep 20, 2011
If you had a power meter, I could tell you to read the 'Training and Racing with a Power Meter'. It talks directly to intervals and when enough is enough. I sincerely apologize, but I don't have enough experience to help you too much without a power meter. I'm fairly new to this myself, but I jumped on the power meter bandwagon early. Yes, power meters are that good for training. Save your pennies and get one in the future. A HR monitor is substantially less expensive and will help quite a bit vs doing workouts without one.

How do you know your HR w/o a HR monitor. Are you feeling your pulse? That works, of course, but its quite hard to do while doing an interval.

You say you are 'dead' when the you are done. That is technically inaccurate unless you are the undead (thoughts of the Zombie Apocolypse makes me shudder) or have really good post mortem reflexes at writing posts. All kidding aside, if you are pretty much finished after your workout, that is a sign of a good workout. You will adapt to this stress and get better/faster. If you are basing your workouts off of feel, then it will never get easier; you will just get faster.


New Member
Aug 12, 2004
Sounds like you are doing it about right. Even the ones you couldn't finish you got half way through the 4th interval. Take advantage of days where you feel good (and go a little harder) and try to survive the days when you don't (and go a little easier). The only other thing is that you don't want to kill yourself and burn out too early in the year, so I would say that right now you should try not to dig too deep. If you do you will run the risk of getting mentally and/or physically exhausted and come spring you will need some time off, which would be bad timing.