Really interesting to see what your graphs look like Milnicmy. Really highlights my lack of consistency!
I made it to about 285 first year (~3.3w/kg), 310 second year (3.6w/kg) and at my all time high now 317 (3.9w/kg) with this years 5min power pb at 386.
I feel like I’m kinda plateauing but have never really carried consistency through winter so seeing your chart has inspired me to press on and see if I can make 4.5 next year.
This years PBs (dark blue) vs all time
Did you just copy my numbers? My 5 min is 373 W (two weeks ago) and I did 302 W for 33 min in the spring. But all is not lost, I did also 335 W for close to 15 min recently.
I thought my limiter is VO2Max and the recent 5 min PR surprised me actually. I guess you just have to be fresher for this kind of work. Back to the longer stuff I guess.
This year try to only take about 4-6 weeks of unstructured (but at least consistent) training. Just use the mentality that something is better than nothing and just do some sort of activity on a regular basis. You’ve got some low hanging fruit, and could probably make the jump to ~4.5ish in one season.
Did TR ever release their data on % of 3 w/kg, 4 w/kg and 5 w/kg?
I think my genetic max is probably around 4 w/kg - if that’s all I did.
Yup… we appear very similar. I’ve also been working on the sustained efforts lately and feel like the VO2 stuff is being neglected. Are you seeing results? If so, what is working? Fortunately, I still have a decent 1400ish watt kick that keeps me in the game.
My sprint power is non-existent Over the summer my training was mostly “Ride a lot, some of it hard”. Lots of tempo hills on vacations in French Alps, otherwise I do VO2Max, SS, OU or threshold sessions on Tu, Thr, Sa, rest of the week is easy, Sunday long. FTP hasn’t moved really but I see some improvement in the 5-15 min range.
Yup. Thats my goal.
I’m at 3.2 right now after a year of training…85kg and 270 FTP. Barring winning the lottery and retiring early…I cant really fathom mustering the time required to get to 5.
But 4watts/kg I think is doable. 320 ftp, and I think I can get down to 80 kg over the winter. I’ve been making steady gains on low volume plans this year. Eat better over winter, cut out most of the alcohol, and shoot for higher volume next year and I’m thinking I can get to 4 before cross season.
I think you are working towards walking on tight rope. Just a bit to much and the potential down fall will be worse than being slightly to high BF. i tried working my weight down about 2 years ago and found myself sick more often than not also struggling with the black dog, not a comfortable thing when I have a history…Cycling was my saviour and didn’t know it could take me back there.
but good luck I will continue eating to ride.
When you say FTP work, what are the kind of intervals you are referring to? Is it ranging from sweet spot to supra threshold? Some where between 85% - 105% of FTP?
Sweetspot. Work your way up towards the longest duration of intervals and the highest amount of time in zone for a given session.
I’d say if you can do 90-120 minutes of higher end sweetspot in a session with short rests, it’s time to retest.
Well this is an inspiring thread. I’ve been shooting and hoping for 4w/kg, but 5 seems more exciting to try and reach
Yep, following the training peaks model. You start with base miles, tempo work, which turns into long tempo. Then it progresses into SST and Threshold work then it moves into FTP/FRC (v02) work then FRC and FTP Speed work. Think of that in terms of base, build, race.
Example: Base / Tempo
- 30 minutes z2 to 45 minutes tempo divided into 3 cadences 65-75 + so on then 30 min z2
then move to Long tempo - go as long as you can
- 30 min z2 then 85% of ftp till 5% power drop
- these start to be based off time to exhaustion and you’ll have to measure that yourself of use wko
- Another type of workout - 2 or 3 intervals 89-93% of FTP a little over TTE
I’ll stop there but you get the idea.
After 3 months of nothing but HFLC fasted Z2 rides I’m almost back down to my 2018 race weight (damn you, emotional eating!) which puts me at 4w/kg. It’s kind of eye-opening to realize that weight loss and a sh!t ton of Endurance work will get me to 4…but to get to 5 is going to be all power #thehardwork.
I did a 20 minute test; more to see where I’m at for HillClimb Worlds, but really I wanted to crack 5 w/kg. To do that, I have to hit 300. I weigh 60kg (132) and somewhere around 10-12 body fat. At 47, that may be my floor (according to some), but I’m hoping to hit 8%.
Hit 288 on a 90 degree day up Highway 38 (Onyx Summit) for 4.81. This puts my mFTP at 4.6. I don’t think I hit it perfect (lost my water bottle 5 minutes in) but I wasn’t going to crack 300.
Since I am probably going to drop another 2 kgs, I’ll have to hit 306 for 20 for the .95 of FTP and 291 for a 20 minute value. Certainly tough but doable.
I am not 5 w/kg – but now that I"m down to 70.5 kg, I’m knocking on the door at 4.89, at 52.
I used to be there – a long time ago. Weight is the big thing. I weighed 152-56 all through my 20s and early 30s, but after getting married and starting a career in 2000, I’ve been up and down down from 152 to 175. I hope I finally have it licked.
As for getting to 345w at FTP (since TrainerRoad uses 8min tests, my best 8min in recent weeks has been 380w – after 20min at 315, so that 380 probably is just about what I could hold for a 2 x 8 test) – increase in training volume. From 2004-2015 I aimed for 500 hours/year. Since 2016 my target has been 600. I haven’t added more interval days or more intervals on the interval days, just training more overall. Along with the weight loss, that’s been it.
Train a lot. Have decent genes. That’s about it.
After having followed this thread for quite a while and having reached > 5 watts per kg @ threshold I thought I would give some insight into my process and thoughts.
I have been cycling for a few years now, however have only followed a structured training since winter 2018 with a PM. I also worked with a coach in 2018 until September but have moved to trainerroad since then
In May 2018, I tested 20mins @ 320 in and did almost exactly 305 over 1 hour a few days later, so the 95% of 20 min applies quite well to me for the threshold approximation. Weight was 67kg
Later in the season did approx 320 for an hour. However, keep in mind these tests were done outdoors and on a climb. My power on the trainer is approx 20 watts lower
2018/2019 winter I did traditional base mid volume with a lot of skitouring on weekends, followed by sustained power build high volume and century specialty high volume. Mid May 20 min test @ 335 watts, weighing 65kg, hence slightly under 5 watts / kg
Sunday did my last 20 min test @ 345 watts, weighing 63.5kg. Applying 95% of 345 leaves me at approx. 5.15 watts / kg.
You have to love riding your bike A LOT and put in the volume. I ride 6 days per week and would ride even more if work would permit.
Stay healthy. Thankfully, I have stayed healthy most of the season and was able to train throughought the year
Best consistent: ride your bike at least 3 times per week (ideally in a structured manager), even in the off-season, and do other aerobic exercise if you are on travels or similar.
Have your weight under control: As you can see from my increase in watts I was only able to increase my power from last season by a meager 10 watts over 20 mins, the major gain in watts / kg is from my lower weight. Taller riders are obviously at a disadvantage
- Thoughts and learnings
You will never the fastest rider out there. Having reached > 5 watts /kg I am still not the fastest rider: I get by but kicked up climbs and blew up on the last climb of my A-race - it just goes faster, hahaha
The urge to go faster never ends: I still want to improve and feel there is potential, however, it just gets more difficult
The doubting never stops: As I reaved > 5 watts / kg also due to decrease in weight (63.5kg @ 181 cm is the skinniest I want to get) I question myself if this is sustainable and whether I will be able to reach these power numbers again next season
Question where to go from here: How do I continue improving. I feel I have a quite strong base and feel comfortable at riding extended periods at sweet spot or threshold. However, my V02 max efforts and sprint efforts really suck. I would like to try to continue growing my threshold by work on supra threshold power. I am open for any recommendations. Plan would be to do sweet spot base high volume with a long mountainbike or trainer ride on weekend. Build I have no clue yet, but most likely I will follow general build, as it has a nice mix of all kinds of efforts.
I hope my experience is valuable for someone out there!
Keep on riding,
Thank you and well done! Some really useful info in there. Questions - what were your total weekly hours during base, including the ski touring as well as the cycling? Also were you just following the TR plans during Build and Specialty or were you supplementing with extra long rides? Or making any other changes?
Re the VO2 and sprint power I suspect you would find that you could make gains in those areas pretty quickly by doing the Short Power build and Crit Specialty. I was in a similar place to you at the start of the year, had been training for triathlon and TTs and my sustainable power was great, but in road racing I was an also ran. Dropped the run and swim training to focus on cycling, did some higher intensity work and the gains kicked in very quickly.
A typical week in base would be doing the Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday workouts, followed by 4-6 hours of skitouring on Saturday and a two hour trainer ride on Sunday.
In warmer weather I always tried to do the weekend rides outside, hence I would substitute one workout for a longer base ride (approx 4 hours) with family or friends but include one or two threshold efforts on the climb. The second workout on the weekend I would simply do as prescribed outside and follow up with another hour of base.
Lastly, what I feel was very beneficial were training camps or extended blocks of training. I spent 6 days cycling in tenerife over Christmas, was skitourig for one week, eight days on a training camp in mallorca, had another hard 4 day block in bormio and was cycle touring in Japan for 14 days. Consequently, I believe volume is really important and getting it in over such blocks is easier than in your day to day life. Just as an info I love cycling and hence dont view these large blocks as obligations but rather something to look forward to!!!