FTP and intervals. How often??

A light bike doesn't replace good fitness.

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dgasmd
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by dgasmd

I know this may seem "basic", but here it goes anyway. So, how often in a year would you measure/test your FTP to evaluate and correctly adjust your interval training? Surely if there is progress with the training, then your FTP will go up. But how long do you need to continue to train before you re-test it and see a useful nd significant gain?

boots2000
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by boots2000

Are you training with a powermeter?

by Weenie


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dgasmd
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by dgasmd

Yes. Thought that was implied!

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by calleking

4-6 weeks.
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bilwit
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by bilwit

When I'm doing a structured, periodized plan it's every ~5 weeks, but in between periods I ride unstructured with the results of the last test. It becomes apparent to me if it needs to be adjusted during in between phases, which I self-adjust accordingly (ie. if I'm blowing 8min-20min power PRs then I need to bump it or, like at the start of the year for me, riding at the latest FTP is consistently way too hard then I need to knock it down).

TobinHatesYou
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by TobinHatesYou

First, what are you goals or reasons to track FT?

As soon as I started racing, I stopped caring about FTP because 1) my training volume went down to fit in races...my FT went down briefly, and then my weight went up, and my FT went up with it. 2) FTP doesn't win most races here...it's all about smaller efforts at key moments. To that extent, 2-5-10min power plus your ability to recover quickly and do it again is way more important.

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dgasmd
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by dgasmd

TobinHatesYou wrote:First, what are you goals or reasons to track FT?
Improving power and endurance and higher power. No interest in racing. Zero!! Just wanna go faster at longer events like Gran Fondo, climb better, and do faster/harder group rides. In other words, improve fitness to the max!

zirxo
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by zirxo

Like once a month during the winter and never during the race season. But I don't base my intervalls above FTP on FTP but on how hard I can do them. For efforts at or below FTP I usually go by feel and some form of approximation of what my FTP might be at the moment, but most of my intervall work is done way above FTP.

mvnsnd
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by mvnsnd

If tracking fitnes is your only real goal, something like Golden Cheetah software will allow you to track various performance metrics like 1, 2, 5, 20, 20, 30 , 60 min power over several months. This would be more telling of general fitness than pure FTP, as you could see changes in those metrics and address them individually.

Jugi
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by Jugi


dgasmd wrote:I know this may seem "basic", but here it goes anyway. So, how often in a year would you measure/test your FTP to evaluate and correctly adjust your interval training? Surely if there is progress with the training, then your FTP will go up. But how long do you need to continue to train before you re-test it and see a useful nd significant gain?
When going through a training program filled with interval work, testing every 2 months is reasonable as in that timeframe it is possible to quantify a 1-3% change in FTP.

When not on a program and just doing interval work, go for a max 20-60min effort when it fits your schedule.

TobinHatesYou
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by TobinHatesYou

dgasmd wrote:
Thu May 09, 2019 10:40 am
TobinHatesYou wrote:First, what are you goals or reasons to track FT?
Improving power and endurance and higher power. No interest in racing. Zero!! Just wanna go faster at longer events like Gran Fondo, climb better, and do faster/harder group rides. In other words, improve fitness to the max!

I’m not even sure I’d bother with structured training for fondos. Those are all about conditioning your body not to cramp over long distances...by practicing long distances. They’re more about nutrition and hydration than structure. Climbing? Pick your favorite 20-30min climb and just keep bumping the target wattage by 5-10W and seeing how long you can hold it. If you are supposedly fresh on a temperate day, make sure you find yourself at your LTHR after about 5min otherwise you probably aren’t going as you can on a 20-30min segment. In Florida? Well that sucks...

On group rides, do long pulls (with permission) or ride behind them (at least 20 meters for big groups...the draft can be huge.)

As of yesterday my 20min power is 4.8w/kg ~ 300W, up significantly from just a couple months ago. All I’ve been doing is base miles and trying to keep up with the fastest riders on the no-wait weeknight A-rides.

AJS914
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by AJS914

dgasmd wrote:
Thu May 09, 2019 10:40 am
TobinHatesYou wrote:First, what are you goals or reasons to track FT?
Improving power and endurance and higher power. No interest in racing. Zero!! Just wanna go faster at longer events like Gran Fondo, climb better, and do faster/harder group rides. In other words, improve fitness to the max!

You should read this topic if you already haven't:

viewtopic.php?f=8&t=155915

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dgasmd
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by dgasmd

TobinHatesYou wrote:
Thu May 09, 2019 7:44 pm
dgasmd wrote:
Thu May 09, 2019 10:40 am
TobinHatesYou wrote:First, what are you goals or reasons to track FT?


Improving power and endurance and higher power. No interest in racing. Zero!! Just wanna go faster at longer events like Gran Fondo, climb better, and do faster/harder group rides. In other words, improve fitness to the max!



I’m not even sure I’d bother with structured training for fondos. Those are all about conditioning your body not to cramp over long distances...by practicing long distances. They’re more about nutrition and hydration than structure. Climbing? Pick your favorite 20-30min climb and just keep bumping the target wattage by 5-10W and seeing how long you can hold it. If you are supposedly fresh on a temperate day, make sure you find yourself at your LTHR after about 5min otherwise you probably aren’t going as you can on a 20-30min segment.
In Florida? Well that sucks...

On group rides, do long pulls (with permission) or ride behind them (at least 20 meters for big groups...the draft can be huge.)

As of yesterday my 20min power is 4.8w/kg ~ 300W, up significantly from just a couple months ago. All I’ve been doing is base miles and trying to keep up with the fastest riders on the no-wait weeknight A-rides.
Thanks for the replies. Not sure where you live, but maybe we can talk during winter and address your statement about FL :D :D :D :lol: :beerchug:

TobinHatesYou
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by TobinHatesYou

dgasmd wrote:
Thu May 09, 2019 10:31 pm

Thanks for the replies. Not sure where you live, but maybe we can talk during winter and address your statement about FL :D :D :D :lol: :beerchug:

California, so you just have to deal with AQI of 200+ when the valleys burn down every summer.

spartacus
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by spartacus

For me, FTP is difficult to test for and isn't easily repeatable. Not to mention that apparently the very definition of FTP is debatable (whether it's 1hr power or some number you probably can't hold for an hour - depending on who you talk to). Lately I've been using strava's power curve to track my performance. It seems to me that interval power may not be best based off of FTP anyway, some people can ouput more or less power for short durations relative to their FTP.

by Weenie


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