Zwift prevented me from training. I don't get it

I’m brand new to training indoors and Zwift. I set everything up over the weekend and had two short practice rides. I then signed up for a training plan specific for mountain biking and it said I had to wait 7 hours. I thought that was odd but I was happy to go along with it as I intended to start today, Monday, anyway.

So today I get on the bike ready to start the training plan but I hadn’t selected the mtb in Zwift and I’d read you need the mtb rather than road bike when doing an mtb course. So I stopped the first session before I’d started riding and deleted it. I then swapped over to the mtb in the garage and went back to the training plan and started it again.

The training plan then started on the second session as though I’d completed the first which I hadn’t. So I ended that and deleted it and then looked for a way to start the first session but couldn’t find one. So then I deleted the training plan and re-started thinking that would start me at the first session again. Wrong… it now says I have to wait 15 hours to start!!!

I simply cannot see any reason why you would make people wait to start a training plan. What purpose can that possibly serve? Please can you explain the thought process being this?

I’m now sat at my computer typing this. Having been sat here all day working already as I was trying to find an answer/way to restart the training plan now but there isn’t one. So, what should have been the first day of training on Zwift has turned into more sitting at my desk. I’m so annoyed that I have thousands of pounds worth of equipment and I can’t use it for 15 hours.

To top this off, I tried to ‘chat’ to a support agent but nothing happens after clicking on ‘launch chat’. So I’m not able to access support for a quick response and start the plan this evening as I’d hoped!!

So it gets worse… I see a thread on exactly this subject started in 2019 so I guess the answer is that Zwift won’t be changing this anytime soon. I’m still in my 7 day trial period so will look at other options. It seems that if you go away or are ill during a training plan then it’s tough. You miss that week and that’s that. Crazy.

Sorry to hear about all those issues Mark. I don’t know why the program makes you wait to start training, that seems to be a new issue. A while back Zwift made changes to make training plans MORE accessible by allowing you more choice, however, they did force you to wait 8 hours between training sessions. Perhaps that is what is causing you these problems today?

When doing a training plan or workout, this is less of a “requirement”. MTB’s are faster on the dirt sections of Zwift and are forced on the one and only MTB course, Repack Ridge. When doing a training plan, even the ones specific to mountain biking, you can choose any route or roads you wish. I would suggest ticking off the routes you don’t have completion badges for yet. You can use the road bikes in Zwift if you are on a paved route, you don’t need to use the MTB.

Also, you can pause the workout to switch bikes, you don’t need to delete the ride and start over. As you have found, that resulted in Zwift thinking you had completed the training and wouldn’t let you start the workout again.

Thanks Mike. I haven’t done any training since last night so it’s almost 24 hours unless it’s logging the deleted sessions but I literally didn’t pedal in either of them so I’ve done no exercise at all today on Zwift.

I tried this yesterday as I was on an mtb and wanted to do a road ride and the other two bike options were blacked out. I had to end that session to change bikes so that’s why I ended the training plan session today to swap them over.

did you come to a complete stop before trying to switch bikes? If you are pedaling, producing power, you can’t switch bikes. This was put in place to prevent people in races from easily switching bikes at the bottom of hills to the climbing frame, or whatever bike would be faster for certain sections of the race. Once your avatar stops, you can access the different frames and wheels.

1 Like

Yep, complete standstill.

I know you’re trying to help and I do appreciate it but I’m in a stinking mood about it all. I’ll wait the 15 hours and try again tomorrow. Thanks.

Sorry you had a rough experience Mark. More options for on demand training is something we’re hoping to have a look at over the coming year so hopefully experiences like yours will be something that can be avoided.

1 Like

Does that mean you’ll allow people to train when they want to without these enforced start times in the training plans?

Is there a reason these start times exist in the first place?

Looking into this further, the inflexibility of Zwift training plans has been complained about before.

My complaint is that I can’t just choose a training plan and start it. I selected a training plan on Sunday ans it made me wait until Monday. Then on Monday I cancelled the plan, as explained in my original post, and then restarted it but then said I couldn’t start it for “15 hours” or until Tuesday. Why would this be?

If I understand the purpose of this then I may be able to avoid or plan my training around it.

Further, there is an entire thread, started years ago, that continues to be added to, discussing the inflexibility of training plans and Zwift preventing users from completing them. What exactly is going on here? Is there somewhere that explains how this all works and why? Again, knowing this should help users understand and avoid the issues they’re having.

I signed up to Zwift so I could train and become fitter/healthier so to discover that it prevents me from doing this is really disappointing. I want to train from home for convenience but having these limitations is like using a gym with opening/closing times.

Sorry but this really doesn’t make any sense to me and is the reason I’m going to look foe an alternative before my 7 day trial ends. If I find one, I will 100% leave Zwift. Why would I pay for Zwift when it demotivates its users and doesn’t listen to their complaints that have been made foe years.

The “blackout window” exists to stop over training: Zwift Adds Training Plan Flexibility | Zwift Insider

Full appreciate that you wanted to start a training plan and encountered difficulties. Have you also looked at the significant number of workouts in the training menu that you are able to complete whenever you like.

I am here. I listen and I share feedback. As I mentioned last night we’re looking at increasing the amount on on-demand available workouts this year.

I understand about the overtraining but I’ve done no training so far as it’s made me wait two days on the run. Surely that’s an issue that needs looking into urgently?

Yes, but I wanted to complete a training plan. This is why I purchased an indoor trainer. I want a plan to follow to get me on the right path and see improvements. Some of us need a structured plan showing when to do an exercise with a plan that steadily gets harder as fitness increases. I thought that’s what the plans were for? It’s much harder to pick a random workout as I don’t know what order to do them in i.e. easy ones for first week or so and then harder ones. I also don’t only want to do random rides that don’t count towards an overall training plan and therefore path to better fitness. This is what motivates me.

The lack of on-demand workouts isn’t the issue here. It’s that the plan start days are being unnecessarily delayed. In my case, 7 hours on day 1 and then 15 hours on day 2. Then, when you’ve started a training plan, missing a week isn’t optional and you have to start again… according to comments on this forum. I’m on holiday 4 weeks from now so that means I can’t start any training plans because if I complete 4 weeks of a 6 week plan and then miss week 5, I will have to start over again? If this is correct then how does Zwift expect users to keep motivated knowing they might never complete a plan due to holiday/illness/other? As I’ve said already, it just doesn’t make sense to me.


Totally get and understand all your feedback. I’m just trying to offer what information I can.

And I appreciate it but I’m also trying to understand if this is a fault or if Zwift is working correctly re. the delays to starting training plans. Also, I want to know if Zwift are aware that a lot of users aren’t happy with the way the training plans work and, if so, do they intend to amend this? Thanks.

Your feedback around the timings and not being able to miss days through illness/hols isn’t the first time it’s been raised.

It’s something we’re aware of and I hope this experience doesn’t put you off hanging around. There’s an awful lot more to Zwift than just workouts!

1 Like

I am put off because the training plans are the main reason for needing Zwift and it sounds like this has been an issue for years yet nothing has been done. It’s not like you’re able to justify why these limitations are there in the first place. There’s no good reason for it. So why not sort it out?

Knowing that it’s not going to be something that’s addressed in the near future it’s hard to invest either financially or mentally into Zwift.

As noted above, fully understood.

Zwift does not work. There’s no help. I feel ripped off and totally disheartened.

Subscription cancelled.


Intresting to read your frustrations and the following may now be a moot point as you have cancelled your subscription.

From what I understand structured training will include recovery periods between session. This is the time when your muscles repair themselves and is very important, hence why time delays between sessions.

To have a week or two off in the middle of a plan would also upset the build/repair process. Not saying it could not be planned in but that would take some customisation. I am aware of other platforms which for premium accounts give you some flexibility with sessions (I do not think they extend to weeks though). However Zwift has taken a more rigid approach.

I did the dirt destroyer plan a while back as build up to a mtb event. I did have to watch when the next session was scheduled for and make sure I could do it. The time windows given seemed to be workable. I have read on the forum about requesting more flexibility with this.

Given your initial enthusiasm and pretty nice setup you have. If you are keen to start a plan (whatever platform you choose) and feel what’s the point as you are on holiday in a few weeks. I would say start the plan as it will allow you to familiarise yourself with workouts and the trainer. It should also allow you time to familiarise yourself with your power and heart rate.

Like I said I used the plan as a build up to an event. I knew when my goal was and worked out when I needed to start the plan by. So I knew in that time I would not try and take holiday. The downside of any training plan is it requires time and dedication.

Good luck with your training endeavours.


Your experience is very frustrating.
Even if you can’t do a workout in the training plan, you do have access to hundreds of work outs and you can select a workout of similar design.
Workouts can be repeated as much as you like.

Also, much of your frustrations stem from your unfamiliararity with the platform and training plans in particular.
Perhaps Zwift can make certain instructions more clear but there is always a learning curve.
I recommend you give it another try.
That said, I like Zwift a lot but the works are difficult to sort thru, you can’t save favorites and there are some that aren’t very good.

1 Like


I have the same issue that this person describes. I tried to start a plan today - Monday in Australia at 9am. AEST time. The issue I have is I think the app is using the wrong time zone. I didn’t ride on Sunday so no over training. The app said I had to wait 7hours, which means I couldn’t start my training on Monday morning. I have also noticed that the goals are also out in terms of days and times. This is quite frustrating as I don’t like training in the evening.


1 Like