It’s a good idea to do it for several durations so that you know where you’re strongest and weakest. Do you race at all? With 4 x 5min moderate intensity intervals, you will be introducing yourself to the duration of the final test session in 4 weeks time. Without providing our body with the amino acids, vitamins, and minerals required to recover, rebuild, and optimise hormonal regulation for good health, we can potentially run ourselves into the ground with heavy training. The idea of a 1hr test every time I want to set my FTP just does not appeal to me. Knowing your Functional Threshold Power (FTP) is critical to accurately analyzing your workouts and seeing long term trends. It is a product of an objects drag coefficient (Cd) or “slipperiness” and it’s size, critically it’s frontal area (A). It is good if you can handle 2 x 20 minutes intervals at your Functional Threshold Power. It can go up, if you put in training to increase it. Sign up to get tips, how-tos, videos, podcast episodes and product updates delivered to your email. Share: Previous How to Watch Zwift Races Live on Your Computer. Simon Marshall, author of The Brave Athlete, says a 2.5 percent increase in FTP in a training cycle (around 6 to 8 weeks) is a good power increase. There is a good table in this article: High-intensity workouts demand increased levels of carbohydrate, but perhaps more important is what we take onboard post-workout. So, the higher your LT, the higher power that 95% represents, which translates in to a higher speed you are able to travel at. Since FTP is a measurement of your aerobic fitness, training that improves your aerobic capacity and muscular endurance will likewise increase FTP. This progress is incremental but it has benefits to endurance and power. The “gold standard” FTP workout is 2×20 minute efforts at 100-105 percent of FTP with 10 minutes of easy spinning between efforts. It doesn't increase linearly either. It’ll go down if you sit on the couch for weeks on end. The occasional long ride is an excellent way to improve your aerobic fitness, which ultimately determines your FTP. FTP is meant to be an indicator of our aerobic ability and we spend countless hours on the bike trying to increase our ability to metabolize fat more efficiently at higher work rates. Your fitness has improved, and you’ll need an updated FTP if you want to continue to grow and challenge those higher power zones. Your training plan focuses on endurance and expanding stamina in a number of ways. Increasing your FTP increases your ability to hold higher power values longer making you a faster cyclist. Next Levels increased from 20 to 25. At one point or another, you’ve probably wondered what’s better – improving your FTP or increasing the amount of time you can spend riding at FTP. It’ll go down if you sit on the couch for weeks on end. This can occur by either earning more and spending more, or earning less and spending less. For more info on Power Profiling – I suggest reading the following, straight from the inventor himself – https://www.trainingpeaks.com/blog/power-profiling/. Training Plan Guide: How to Coach Yourself to Peak Fitness. Remember that you can spend just minutes being over your threshold and much longer being below it. Once you’ve completed the 20 minute test, note your average power and average heart rate. FTP can fluctuate on a daily basis, and can be affected by hydration and glycogen levels. We then increase the wattage 20 … The most widely adopted way to profile a bike rider is to complete 4 max efforts across different durations, which are; 6 seconds – to ascertain Neuromuscular Power. Photo: Lindsay Goldman How to measure your FTP. But even if you think you have a good grasp on your current fitness, it's still a good idea to back up your perception with actual performance. With 4 x 5min moderate intensity intervals, you will be introducing yourself to the duration of the final test session in 4 weeks time. Also, your FTP is related to your size - a heavier rider will tend to put out more watts than a lighter rider … About The Author. And, regarding TT, like others have said, aerodynamic drag being quadratic to speed, once at a certain speed, it is pretty hard to increase speed by increasing power. Luckily, it’s easy to keep your training on track and your zones in line when you assess your FTP regularly. FTP training aims not only to raise power, but also to increase TTE, so I made these tests equal to or longer than TTE in order to bridge the inflection point where the power curve begins to drop off more rapidly. Join for the latest training, racing, and software updates from TrainerRoad. They found that regardless of what your FTP is, it will always be lower at elevation than it is at sea level. For the purposes of power profiling there are four standard durations: 5 second, 1 minute, 5 minute, and FTP. Do the first session at 85% FTP then increase by, say, 2% each session. Having a high FTP will help ensure you are fresher when it comes to making this effort, however having the ability to push out a lot of power for a short period of time – our anaerobic capacity or engine size, also in part, determines our performance. You might even be tempted to skip your Ramp Test and continue training with the same power values. */. FTP is an important fitness metric as it indicates the amount of work you can sustain for long durations. Watts/kg is all well and good, but can be just as highly dependent on your body mass as it is on your power, I mean afterall the title of the thread is "what FTP" but all we've been talking about is W/kg. Plan Builder will take the time you have, experience, and goal event to create the perfect plan—one that works for you. Over time, the power that was your threshold can eventually become more like your sweet spot. I plan to start a Zwift FTP plan once I'm back at 190W FTP. But even if you think you have a good grasp on your current fitness, it's still a good idea to back up your perception with actual performance. You can be confident that you will become a faster cyclist, and over 1,500 stories from TrainerRoad athletes prove it. You will see diminishing returns from FTP increases. What would the best training plan to increase FTP be? Increasing the time you can spend in a power zone is intended to increase your muscular endurance. Your individual aerobic fitness level determines your heart rate on the AT so there isn’t one specific optimal threshold. Maybe best to set a goal to increase your ftp by 5-10% in 8 weeks, then maintain it for 8 weeks while working on max power and racing, etc. Eric … Where we get lost is when we become obsessed with our 20 minute power. Share: Previous How can I measure my FTP? I can’t to do active off-season plan since I’ll only have a left side power reading, and it has single leg drills so when it gets to my right leg it won’t be getting any power. Training at the top end of your tempo range will improve aerobic capabilities by increasing muscle glycogen stores. Ask a Cycling Coach — the only podcast dedicated to making you a faster cyclist, Ask a Cycling Coach Podcast 007 – TrainerRoad Podcast. We’ve reached out to the athletes featured in this story to get that info and will update the post once we’ve received it. Before doing any of the following FTP tests, you must do a long and thorough warm-up. Where we get lost is when we become obsessed with our 20 minute power. The Ramp Test is placed at the beginning of your plan to keep your training on track, and ensure that you are training in the most efficient and effective way. There are seven different power zones. Those same people will see their FTP fall again when they return to altitude. For example, at 5,000 feet (1,516 meters) the negative effect of altitude is between 5% (acclimated to altitude) and 9% (not acclimated) according to Bassett et al, 1999. altitude increases above sea level aerobic capacity declines which means that one’s average max power over a one-hour period would also decline. It is just not a good idea considering there are shorter and less strenuous testing methods that will help you approximate the same end result. Try TrainerRoad with a 30-day, money-back guarantee. But VERY effective at increasing FTP. Dennis P says: October 26, 2016 at 10:46 am. We recommend moving this block and the preceding CSS link to the HEAD of your HTML file. A short session to get you started on your FTP journey. We then benchmark, using Dr. Andy Coggan’s Power Profiling Tables – which is nothing new to the coaching world, however the concept of ‘power profiling’ seems to have taken off from a marketing point of view. altitude increases above sea level aerobic capacity declines which means that one’s average max power over a one-hour period would also decline. What's your end goal? Then decide where to go from there. Today, with the entire world on the internet—good, bad, and ugly—companies need the ability to share information without fear that it will be compromised. ftp is not very comparable between individuals, if you are large chances are good that your ftp is highr, since you have more leg muscle and more ability to do work. Share this: Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Related . Essentially, there comes a point where being able to hold a power value for a certain amount of time is an indication that your FTP and your zones are higher. While you can … FTP is just one number. It is a part of training on power and this type of training is getting more and more popular because it’s very accurate Anyway, I typically do 95% of 20, but then confirm it with other things like NP for an hour and yes some longer 1hr non threshold efforts that come in the ball park of my FTP. This isn't to say that the test is completely useless, it is, however, a very limited application of measuring cycling performance. If you can spend an extended amount of time in zones like threshold, VO2 max, and anaerobic capacity, this is an indication that it’s time to reassess your FTP. By steadily increasing the time you spend in the sweet spot zone your workouts are improving your strength and muscular endurance. Specifically, what a FTP test isn't designed to determine is how you respond in the hills. As a result 95% of the 20 minute average power is used to determine FTP. Next … As a bonus workout, to train for longer road events and being able to perform strongly at your FTP at the end of a hard race, rather than doing FTP efforts as a set, do them spaced throughout a long endurance ride. When your FTP raises, your zones change. Which is okay! FTP is meant to be an indicator of our aerobic ability and we spend countless hours on the bike trying to increase our ability to metabolize fat more efficiently at higher work rates. For example, the AT of people with poor aerobic fitness may be at 60% of their HR max, whereas the AT of trained athletes may be at 85% of their HR max. The last person “… recently took 8.5 hours off his most recent race”. Basically what happens is after a good warm-up we start the test by pedaling at 200 watts (a relatively easy pace for most people). Basically what happens is after a good warm-up we start the test by pedaling at 200 watts (a relatively easy pace for most people). If you head over to any bike … FTP is just a number used to calibrate your training. Best not to worry about the FTP as such too much, and look at seasonal increases if you are looking at making training plan adjustments. Essentially, to raise your FTP, you need to grow your aerobic base fitness, then build upon it with more specific training. If you just finished a block of training where you missed some workouts, took a vacation, or had a lot of real-life stress, you might see that number decline. During a structured training plan, your ability to ride at threshold will increase, but realistically you shouldn’t be able to ride at your threshold forever. If you are not getting up hills, you need to climb. It’s good to take a break from time to time, but he noticed “the lack of structure made me slower.” Brad examined what was holding him back and realized that “the times when I was getting faster were the times that I was consistent in my structure. That is significant. Everyone’s aerobic threshold is different. Visit my cool blog: http://sickbiker.com/ HUGE bikes and components SALE: http://tidd.ly/a60a97ae The higher our LT, the greater our ‘buffer’ to LT, which means that come the end of your event, you would not have had to work as hard. Boring as hell. The ability to make an explosive effort, for a few minutes – to close a gap, get up a climb or attack a group towards the end of your event. We all know that feeling of coming to the end of an event, getting out of the saddle to sprint, and the legs give way. If you want to increase your FTP, you are better off understanding what your VO2max and/or VLaMax are to decide which you need to work on. The workout in your plan that looks impossible today will be possible one day. We have simply burnt all our matches. The best way to measure your FTP is with a 20 minute test on the Wattbike. Reply. I experienced a ~21% increase in 6 months by progressing from Low Vol --> High Vol plans (but I was also coming off the couch). For example, athletes can generally stay in their endurance zone for multiple hours but can only stay above anaerobic capacity for a handful of seconds. Do a longer ride 1-2 days a week too. This point is shown in the graphs above as the vertical blue line. This is an estimated measure of your highest sustainable power that can be held for one hour. Working at time trial pace, or just above it, in intervals is a good way to boost FTP (Pic: Roz Jones) Maximum sustainable power. measured in Watts. I suppose I need to invest in a good Lion to chase me down the street. Now let’s say that through smart training the athlete made a 10 watt gain at the FTP range. Currently the most popular categorization scheme for Zwift races is as follows: A: 4.0 w/kg FTP or higher. Share: Previous How can I measure my FTP? Riding at LT results in a horrible feeling in the legs, whereby they feel full of lactic, however the effort is sustainable for a long period of time (for one hour if push comes to shove) as the lactate is being recycled efficiently. Time Trialing. /* Add your own Mailchimp form style overrides in your site stylesheet or in this style block. FTP is just a number and an indicator of fitness level. New episodes are released weekly. You’ll be prompted to take a Ramp Test at the start of each new training block to keep this number up to date. Zwift automatically tests your FTP on every ride, prompting you if an increase is detected. Also, your FTP is related to your size - a heavier rider will tend to put out more watts than a lighter rider … To increase your Functional Threshold Power you have to spend time in this zone, to be more precise between 93% and 105% of your FTP. I took 6 weeks off the bike, my FTP dropped to around 164W, so I started this current routine of daily 45mins 'easy' rides (with 1 rest day per week) to regain fitness. B: 3.2 w/kg to 4.0 w/kg FTP. I attribute my FTP increase on both increased fitness as well as training at FTP and above. What is a good aerobic threshold? Beginners/untrained cyclists might put out 2-3 watt/kg. After establishing muscular endurance in the Base phase, the Build phases focuses on increasing your FTP. “You are using 100 per cent of your FTP if you’re using wattage. We then increase the wattage 20 … Come the end of an event, whether that’s a road race, criterium, sportive or weekend ride with friends – it’s often not the fastest person that wins or is able to produce the strongest sprint, it’s the person who has the most left in the tank. Briefly, if you want to be good at riding up steep climbs, or covering a few km quickly, or simply ‘packing a punch’ so you can tackle climbs in sportives easier – yes, developing your FTP will help, but arguably even more important is your ability to ride anaerobically for a short period of time. Share this: Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Related . FTP is short for Functional Threshold Power. Lots of strategies here, but here’s a good article from Nate Wilson at Training Peaks: Three Ways to Improve Functional Threshold Power. That requires a lot of speed with FTP of 272. If you have any doubts in the accuracy of your FTP, you can apply that quick fix of a 2-3% intensity increase until you feel you’re in the right spot, but we always advocate testing as the best way to resolve this issue. Functional Threshold Power (FTP) is a measure of a riders ‘Lactate Threshold’ (LT) which is the point at which your body is able to flush or clear lactate away at the same rate that it is produced. Working at time trial pace, or just above it, in intervals is a good way to boost FTP (Pic: Roz Jones) Maximum sustainable power. For example, at 5,000 feet (1,516 meters) the negative effect of altitude is between 5% (acclimated to altitude) and 9% (not acclimated) according to Bassett et al, 1999. At higher altitudes the thin air limits your oxygen uptake and lowers your FTP. The higher a riders Lactate Threshold, the more Watts can be produced ‘at threshold’, which is represented by a higher FTP. It depends on the length of the time trial, but whatever the distance, you will be riding around your LT. Let us take a long time trial, say 60km – you may be riding say 95% of your LT for the majority. That is the way it is so important to increase as high as possible. Keeping your FTP up to date keeps your training tailored to your fitness. The Ramp Test is designed to accurately assess your FTP. Since FTP is a measurement of your aerobic fitness, training that improves your aerobic capacity and muscular endurance will likewise increase FTP. Rider A is using 300W to drag a 60kg mass along, whilst Rider B has the same power, but has to drag an extra 30kg along with them, which results in Rider B being slower. “You are using 100 per cent of your FTP if you’re using wattage. With that said, you can’t increase your ability to spend time in a power zone forever. I knew what I needed to do.” Another challenge for Brand concerned his performance in events. Work on both – in separate sessions, or combining the two in a session known as ‘Under – Overs’, where we work under our threshold for say 4 minutes, then we tip above for a few minutes before returning to an aerobic state. Remember that your FTP is a tool used to keep your training accurate. In real terms, a higher FTP means we are producing more power, which translates in to being able to cycle faster – which is surely a good thing, right? How can you do this? Using the Wattbike Atom, you can measure, adjust and tweak your pedal technique live to improve your pedalling efficiency, potentially increasing your FTP as a result. The goal of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is to get your heart rate up, increase the levels of lactate in your legs, and get a good workout in under 60 minutes. So, riding for three hours or … For ease of understanding, LT is quantified as the power that a rider can sustain for one hour, measured in Watts, i.e. A short session to get you started on your FTP journey. The idea of a 1hr test every time I want to set my FTP just does not appeal to me. Your FTP needs to be updated in order for your workouts to accurately target all of your power zones. Racing is quite bursty so you need strong 1/2/4/8 minute efforts etc. How to measure your FTP. The Build Phase of training uses workouts, like threshold and VO2 Max, to raise your FTP. It can go up, if you put in training to increase it. C:: 2.5 w/kg to 3.2 w/kg FTP. The goal of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is to get your heart rate up, increase the levels of lactate in your legs, and get a good workout in under 60 minutes. You’ll start with Sweet Spot Base, then complete Sustain Power Build and finish more threshold work with the Time Trial Speciality Phase. Once you’ve grown your aerobic base, it’s time to build upon it with more specific training. This switching from aerobic to anaerobic, producing lactate and recycling it forces positive adaptions to our efficiency and LT. My personal favorite session is the following 1 Hour 10 Minute Session – give it a go and let me know how you get on; 10 Minute Progressive Warm-up inc. 3 x 6 second surges, 2 x (12 Minutes Sweet Spot – 8 Minutes Recovery – Zone 1), 2 x (4 Minutes Zone 5 – 4 Minutes Zone 1), © 2020 Rowe & King - Website by Celf Creative, https://www.trainingpeaks.com/blog/power-profiling/. It is important to remember is that FTP constantly fluctuates – it changes every week, and even day-to-day. The goal of a structured training plan is to increase stamina and power progressively. If you improve your FTP at elevation, it will also increase your FTP at sea level. Take climbing a hill at 20Watts sub threshold, if our threshold increases, we can either climb the hill still at 20W sub threshold and go faster, or we can ride at the same power output and speed, but we are then our sub threshold effort becomes ‘even more sub’, which results in the effort being easier. FTP is just a number and an indicator of fitness level. After the Build Phase, the Speciality Phase strengths your ability to express your FTP for what you need on race day. Meghan Kelley is a writer, XC MTB racer and all around fan of trails, rocks, dirt and the desert. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. “It’s a good session as you’re approaching the season, and to maintain your fitness over the season,” he explains. Your email address will not be published. But the best training plans won’t work unless they are built around you, your goals, and your life. Guessing one’s FTP based on perceived effort in order to set zones/levels – While this is likely the least accurate way of estimating your FTP, it makes sense in certain situations, for example if you are pregnant or if you are coming back from injury or sickness and your body isn’t ready for an FTP test. Very well train athlete can spend even 2 hours around his FTP level. The best way to increase your FTP is by strengthening your aerobic energy system. Create a custom training plan with Plan Builder, complete workouts indoors, outside, or with friends, and prove that your training is working with post-ride analysis tools. FTP testing is a very basic way to get a snapshot of how fast you can go on flat roads. About The Author. Unless you are a 40km TT specialist there is a lot more to cycling fitness than ftp. 6 months is a very long time -- are you sure you want to prioritize aerobic/lt for that long? This is why in addition to workouts increasing your stamina and ability to spend time in a zone, they also focus on raising FTP. It's a good idea to assess your FTP prior to beginning each training season unless you already have a good sense of your current fitness and your sustainable power. Is My FTP Good? D: Under 2.5 w/kg FTP. (function($) {window.fnames = new Array(); window.ftypes = new Array();fnames[0]='EMAIL';ftypes[0]='email';fnames[1]='FNAME';ftypes[1]='text';fnames[2]='LNAME';ftypes[2]='text';fnames[3]='ADDRESS';ftypes[3]='address';fnames[4]='PHONE';ftypes[4]='phone';}(jQuery));var $mcj = jQuery.noConflict(true); Your email address will not be published. They found that regardless of what your FTP is, it will always be lower at elevation than it is at sea level. Although technology and workarounds exist to increase the security of FTP, they add complexity, latency, and end-user frustration. Essentially, to raise your FTP, you need to grow your aerobic base fitness, then build upon it with more specific training. At higher altitudes the thin air limits your oxygen uptake and lowers your FTP. Well, there’s good news and bad news, as Gary Mckeegan, ... Sets of five intervals at 110-120 per cent of your FTP is enough to increase your lungs’ ability to absorb oxygen. That would increase strength to weight ratio to 3.77 w/kg, a .44 w/kg difference and equivalent to approximately a 35 watt gain in power in the FTP range! Then decide where to go from there. Visit my cool blog: http://sickbiker.com/ HUGE bikes and components SALE: http://tidd.ly/a60a97ae The best way to increase your FTP is by strengthening your aerobic energy system. It’s harder to make gains the more fit you are so maybe +7% with ~100hrs training is good for where you are at. Anyway, I typically do 95% of 20, but then confirm it with other things like NP for an hour and yes some longer 1hr non threshold efforts that come in the ball park of my FTP. Will really target FTP but not much else. A well-structured training plan progressively increases your Functional Threshold Power (FTP). Your FTP may increase by 2.5 % by altitude training. Unlike FTP or PMax, W/kg is not a static number, but rather one that corresponds to different durations on the power duration curve. In conjunction with improving endurance, your FTP needs to increase too, so that you can continue to challenge and grow your power zones. Why Is There a TSS Drop from High-Volume Sweet Spot Base to My Build Plan? Finally, FTP is used to estimate your maximal steady-state power, and this power seldom falls neatly at 1 hour in duration. Incremental but it has benefits to endurance and power progressively get you started on your Computer way to measure FTP! 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Spending less steadily increase in FTP threshold for so long before it your. Any of the 20 minute average power and average heart rate blue line will take the time you can in! Intended to increase your muscular endurance will likewise increase FTP to the head your..., 5 minute, and your zones in line when you assess your FTP journey further training built! Is when we become obsessed with our 20 minute power 178W by muscle. Active recovery, endurance, tempo, Sweet Spot, threshold, max! That requires a lot more to cycling fitness than FTP and thorough warm-up what is a good ftp increase good Lion to chase down!