In case someone ever looks to this forum for info, I'll say that after over a year of riding my cross/road bike combo, I have left the front rings all the same (46/38). I race with my biggest cassette cog at 25. However, for road and ANY CROSS RIDE that is not a race, I have to switch to my other set of wheels with a bigger cassette large cog. The couple of times I've tried to grind up small dirt hills on the 25, I've been worried I was going to rip my bottom bracket out (and I couldn't make it). For road and non-racing cross, I use a larger 28 rear cog.
One last thought. I do spin out the 46/11 on road rides. But since I don't do road racing (and I'm too scared to go that fast in my aerobars during a triathlon), it isn't a big deal. I think of it as an automated safety mechanism. I can't go any faster than about 38mph even if I wanted to with my current gearing.
I finally gave the 42-11 high gear on my gravel bike a workout last night. There are some instances where I nearly spun it out on a long gradual downhill. We do have a lot of those around here. One thing I have lost over the years is my ability to spin, so this is an opportunity to work on that. 42-11 is a bigger gear than most people used in the past, 52/14 was a really common high gear for decades. I think that really only changed due to changes in bike racing practices, changes that don't affect most of us.