Aside from my previous comment that you need to give some maximal efforts (or very hard ones) for the algorithm to update your estimated ftp, you might just not be handling your 12 hour weeks well. Your ftp is relatively low for that kind of volume IMO.
I personally ride 8-9hours per week and am usually in the high 4- low 5 (based on 20min test). Maybe you need to decrease your quantity to increase your quality. It’s not necessarily that you need more intervals or higher power on them, but perhaps that you need to allow your body to absorb them better.
I personally get a bit run down when I hold 10hpw for a few weeks in a row, tho I’ve got a desk job and 2 kids. Back in my early 20s, my coach rarely gave me a long ride over 3hr because he said none of your races are that long. If you just needed to ride like a pro to be a pro, it would be a lot easier to be a pro. You bump up against genetics and other life constraints. I think yours might be that you don’t handle 12hpw well in terms of absorbing the adaptations.
FYI the fastest local/regional rider that I follow on Strava probably averages 10-12hpw and this guy is a cyborg (5.5w/kg territory). The big miles stuff is a valid approach, but just one of many and not the best route for all
the opposite is less quantity on the quality, and more quantity. As a certified old dude with average genetics, high stress career, and a lifelong desk jockey, I can absolutely and easily push 8-10 hours per week. When I push that a little higher, to 9-11 hours, I simply cut back on intervals and hallelujah the gains come from volume. In my 7+ years of training there is a crystal clear pattern of volume increases / deload / higher fitness. Sometimes less is more, when you do more.
There’s Essentially 4 dimensions to cycling fitness: 1) Pmax (short duration / anaerobic power), which is how hard you can sprint when fresh
2) FRC (functional reserve capacity), time you can hold power much above FTP, which plays into repeatability of hard efforts. This is affected by both anaerobic and aerobic systems
3) Threshold power (what an accurate FTP represents), which you fatigue rapidly above and slowly below. The duration can be as low as 35 minutes and as high as 80 minutes, depending on the next point
4) Aerobic capacity, (aka TTE) is your ability to sustain long sub-threshold power, which varies quite significantly based on training.
Here’s the thing though. 2 is influenced by 3 and 4. And 3 is influenced by 1 and 2. You can’t train only your aerobic system or your gains will stop. There also is a very large aerobic contribution to any power duration longer than ~5 seconds. So even sprinters can’t ignore FTP and TTE.
In fact, many amateurs can sprint with power numbers (Pmax) similar to road pros except they could only do so while fresh. In a road race you never sprint fresh, you do so at the end of a long hard race and the pro road sprinter still has a huge advantage in FRC, FTP and TTE, so the amateur would have been dropped more than an hour ago.
(Track sprinters are a whole other beast because their events are seconds to minutes long).
First, don’t worry too much about your FTP staying the same here. This is normal and something a lot of experienced cyclists will deal with. The longer you’ve been training, the harder it becomes to keep pushing your FTP higher. I can certainly say I’ve experienced the same thing myself in my own training!
Other athletes here have made great points that you’re still making progress in other areas of your fitness beyond your FTP. It definitely looks like your efficiency at Zone 2 is increasing! Other metrics to consider would be your time to exhaustion for given zones and your repeatability of hard efforts as well. In the TR ecosystem, you can see this through Adaptive Training with your Progression Levels and the types of sessions at different Workout Levels you’ve been getting through.
Also keep in mind that each workout you continue to nail gives AI FTP Detection more data that will help lock you in with your future AI FTP Detections. Adaptive Training will help get you the right workouts for your current fitness as well, and as you continue to knock out higher-level workouts, I’m sure you’ll see some more FTP gains coming .
All in all: don’t sweat the FTP number too much and always remember to look at other areas of your fitness that may still be progressing. Being capable of completing workouts that are harder than they were a few months ago is still progress! The fact that you “definitely feel stronger” is a great sign for things to come.
By that rationale who’s to say that any workout is “the right workout”? I do Vo2 )110-130% FTP) at least once a week, with incremental progression, and they’re an 8-9/10 difficult. Along with longer super threshold workouts at 105% FTP. Not sure what else you expect me to do.
Any harder and I’m gonna burnout. My intensity workouts are already an 8/10. And I do no less than 2 a week (no more than 3). My next two rides TH/Vo2 are 5.8 nd 5.9.
Doing 10-18 hours a week. Avg 200-300 miles with 1 threshold, 1 vo2, and the rest easy.
Here’s this mornings ride. Do 2-3 of those a week from 2.5-5 hours.
Some valid points. Bear in mind. I don’t have kids or a 40 hour week job. I ride in the morning, then rest for most of the day, take a nap, an hour in compression boots. Literally zero stress and all the time in the world to recover and eat well.
So another training no no is the weekly group ride that’s too hard. It’s similar to racing every week and expecting to optimise improvements at the same time.
Sunday you are recovering from Saturday so that Sunday long ride is going to negatively affect the adaptations you might’ve got from the Saturday all out ride, at best you aren’t going to optimise adaptations from your long Sunday ride either.
@AussieRider Just a hunch…it would not surprise me if you backed off the indoor trainer for a couple weeks and did a little more easy riding outside (like not much pressure on the pedals/legs) you’d retest well above current values.
Lol. So what is the recommendation then exactly…just never ride a bike and somehow get faster through positive thinking?
That said…this is making me think more and more that trainerroad really is only a thing that should be used over the winter when you cant go or dont want tongo outside…it seems other training plans assume much more realistic riding than trainerroad does…
In the absence of some actual testing, then according to what you have shown us with the TR ai ftp, yes.
If someone comes and tells you that they just completed a 12 week block of training 12hpw and did not improve ftp, what other kind of conclusion can be reached?
Sorry I skimmed the posts, but if using intervals.icu you could potentially look at your power duration curve after a certain amount of kj burned if you’re concentrating on long duration types of efforts, I think there have been some discussions in other threads about after 1000 or 2000kj burned for comparing to pro tour types of performance