6 weeks off! Getting back into it

Hey all!

Just after some advice, I’ve been searching around and cannot find any answers.

Basically I started cycling after a 9 month lay off last October (baby number 2 was born) I was supposed to be racing 2020 but due to Covid for obvious reasons that didn’t happen.

Last winter went pretty well started off (October 2019) FTP at 230 watts at 80kg (definitely carrying timber here) tried trainerroad for a while but couldn’t stick to the workouts (found sweet spot extremely hard) so after maybe 2 weeks I chucked in the towel and did some zwift and usual base junk miles.

Ftp best this year I put at 300 watts and 69kg this is a guess from my best 20 min being 320.

I did 10,000km this year up to September then took 6 weeks off (4 weeks I ran most days then 2 weeks completely off)

Straight after two weeks off doing nothing I did a ramp test and got 258. Which I expected due to the time off. (This was last week)

Now I set my ftp at 250 thinking I wanted to start off being able to finish the workouts and apart from the endurance workouts like petit I’ve not been able to finish the sweet spot ones, I’ve started sweet spot base mid volume 1 and finding it super hard again.

I’m thinking (hoping) this is just due to getting back on the bike and starting again from nothing.

Current weight is 73kg so would have thought these workouts wouldn’t be too bad.

Now I do believe sustained power is a massive issue for me, I’m very anaerobic, sprinting peak above 1600 and 1 min best was 700 this year.

Would really like to stick to Trainerroad this winter if possible so if anyone has any advice for me, I’ve got the Wahoo fan set up so over heating isn’t an issue.

Not sure if I need to lower ftp more or just keep at it hoping after a couple of weeks it gets better.

Thanks in advanced Oli

Short answer: your FTP is set too high.

There will be a decent anaerobic contribution in obtaining your FTP number by ramp testing (I’ve set 5 min PR ramp testing before). If you’re very anaerobic, then the FTP result is likely overstated.

Try a different testing method, or manually reduce your FTP until you can complete the sweetspot workouts. Sweetspot shouldn’t be very hard. You could probably dial it back up for z5/6 workouts.

1 Like

Consider a week or 2 of low intensity endurance rides just to gets the legs moving again. Jumping back into sweet spot after 6 weeks off the bike sounds like not-fun. At the same time, with only 6 weeks off, it should come back fairly quickly.

That’s what I would do!

I have just started back after 4 weeks off. I started last week doing 1 hour of sweet spot Abbey. I took 30 watts off my FTP, First ride felt a bit hard , heart rate was high for my “Norm”. 2nd ride, Abbey again, heart rate back to normal for that effort. I am Doing another week of 1 hour sweetspot, 4 rides planned, Then starting Base MV Next week.
I would reduce the % during the sweetspot rides you are doing, Till your heart rate is the Normal level you feel you can do during 1 hour of sweetspot. Then Remember that sweetspot is 88-94% of FTP. You can calc your FTP and set that for training to.

Cheers for the reply, going to take it easy this week knocking back the percentage 3-5% see how it goes.

We know the ramp test formula, 75% x last avg min power… the 75% is not set in stone, everyone isn’t the same, believe the 75% was ‘accurate’ for majority, though some do need to take it down to 70 and others up to 80. We are all different…

You may find altering the formula gives yourself a more accurate FTP. If I was finding it over estimating, I would change the formula to 70% x last avg min power and see how that works out for you Then take that formula forward for all future tests.

There are some threads on over testing you may find interesting.

1 Like

I have a similar issue with TR. I simply cannot finish their workouts (i have never tried them outdoors, however). Historically, sweet spot intervals have been pure torture for me. Reducing power by a couple of percentage points simply doesn’t help. Given my similar determination to make TR work this winter, I devised a plan to build up to it, and so far it is working. Let me also add that, in general, I have hated indoor training of any kind but am slowly coming around to that as well.

Here is what I did:

workout 1) Alternate between 5 minutes at 130 watts, 5 minutes at 230 watts (FTP is 245). I did this for 45 minutes. I also cut the last couple at 230 to 4 minutes

workout 2) Alternate between 5 minutes at 130 watts, 6 minutes at 230 watts (twice). then alternate between 5 minutes at 130 watts, 5 minutes at 230 watts. did this for about an hour.

workout 3) 5 minutes at 130 watts, 2x10 minutes at 230 watts. then alternate 5 minute intervals at 120 and 220. did this for about an hour

After this, I had the confidence to do a 3x20 sweet spot interval. I completed the first 2 and got to 15 minutes on the last one. I just completed 4/5 sets of over unders this weekend. I felt pretty good about that given my inability to complete essentially any of their workouts a couple of weeks ago. Now I actually like indoor training. For me, it was all about getting used to the trainer, and building confidence.

The other thing I can’t stress enough is carbs. that has helped me a ton as well. I drink 2 bottles with 4 tblsp sugar in each. for hard workouts.

like I said, lowering intensity never helped. I also do not think i overestimated FTP in the slightest. In fact, I think it is underestimated, I just am not used to indoor training.

I’m actually agree with Voldemort, I’ve always found indoor training hard, I remember doing some workouts including sweet spot outdoors last year and actually hit numbers over the prescribed.

I’m going to leave my ftp for now where it is, the workouts I’ve failed on last week were Geiger +1 ( managed to complete the first 3 sets and Hunter (only completed one set.

I’ve got Ericsson tonight which is 8 mins at sweet spot which I think I can manage, I’ll report back in a bit :muscle:t6:


Managed to complete Ericsson last night no problems, fingers crossed the rest of the week follows suit.