Are there any mere mortals on here?

What’s your FCP (Functional Cake Power)?

6 Likes

I’m at 2.42, not really doing any structural training now, just using TrainNow whenever I have some spare time to complement my recreational outdoor rides. I mainly renewed my subscription for the TrainNow feature and the fancy AI stuff.
Just enjoy what you are doing. I’m not racing, so I think it doesn’t matter too much as long as I have fun. I would not mind getting better over time though :smile:

1 Like

I think this is great for a lot of people and Nate and Jonathan have mentioned this on the podcast a few times that TrainNow can be great when you don’t necessarily want to follow a plan but want to improve.

You are very welcome!

I enjoy this thread, its a great example of those who find themselves to be devalued when reality is there is absolutely no reason to feel this way.

I was on the cusp of a 5.0 w/kg (although never achieved it) and I can tell you first hand it took everything within myself to get there. We are talking about extreme discipline with what I call a hint of unhealthy sickness/obsession.

My meals were basically tofu, rice and beans - absolutely no sweets, soda, beer/spirits or candy. I would always hit my macros or daily caloric intake perfect. I would go out with my girlfriend and be just some random creeper who didn’t eat the movie pop corn and watched her eat pizza.

I would be up at 5am stretching and performing a wake up ride that didn’t count towards my training - I would then go to school/work and after that be destined for 2+ hour ride during the week. I would end the day with light stretching and a little bit of plyometrics.

I would be in bed by 8:00pm to ensure over 8hrs of sleep a day, I passed on parties, family events, friend gatherings all in the sake of being fast.

It was very cool to show up to local rides and hear everyone sigh because their ride just got harder and no matter what race I showed up too I would perform very well if I was smart.

I truly believe that it is possible for most people to achieve a 4.0+ w/kg but are they willing to make the sacrifice is the real question. When I started to “slow” down from being so extreme (A torn MCL and meniscus’s was the start) I started to enjoy a lot of other things in my life so much more, my kids being conceived altered the trajectory of my life and in my opinion for the better. I felt like I was finally living when I started doing “normal” things, and eating my cake too!

The next time you see a pro, you should maybe thank them for being either so disciplined or genetically gifted that it gave you the opportunity to live a normal life haha.

4 Likes

It took me two years (one year of sporadic training and one year consistent, low-volume) on TR to get over 3.0 Watts/kg!! Comparison is the enemy of joy, and there is a lot of joy in the process.

TBH racing cyclocross (and being mindful of eating enough protein!) is what really pushed my FTP higher/faster than ever. When you’re forced to do it in a race situation every week, your body is surprisingly fast at adapting to it if you’re fueling the work/recovery.

3 Likes

It definitely takes a lot of discipline and consistency to maximize one’s gains. And the desire has to be there. Not everybody has the desire and motivation to really reach their peak fitness but IMO that’s okay.

2 Likes

Started TR @ roughly 2.5-2.75 after feeling like I was in my best fitness last fall. Started mid February after getting COVID. Now @ 3.67w/kg. I am 56 and definitely in the best shape I have been in over the last 20 yrs. Try to remember FTP is just a number and should be used to help you set your workout efforts.

1 Like

I also agree that its okay - and even potentially far better for someone’s life.

I don’t want to put down someone’s lifestyle but in my situation with all of the things that happened I was given the opportunity and I say opportunity because when you are in that moment/space it is hard to step back and see what is happening let alone assess if what you are doing is truly “worth” it.

I attribute the peak endurance fitness timeframe of my life to allow/further developmental of mental illness and obsessive compulsive tendencies.

The moral of what I am trying to say is that sitting here now as a 2.99 w/kg rider that I am far happier than I ever was before as a whole. I would not get caught up on them/those or others and truly enjoy the ride you are on.

You can mix it up to make yourself more rounded and overall more excited about cycling.

  • You can find yourself frustrated that you are getting dropped on road rides, go MTB and expand your technical skills

  • You find that MTB technical skills are better - well lets try gravel

  • Its too cold to ride - buy a fat bike and some heated gloves/socks and go explore that unridden territory in your area

  • Your buddy is a great runner and you hate it - hey buddy lets get a swimmer and do a Tri relay

  • Start a club of varying levels and educate/learn more about people and things they do

Those are just some examples of the beauty of being on a bike can bring you - its endless what you can do assuming you have financial resources to “explore”.

This got deeper for me than intended and I just so happen to have some time on my hands today, but being someone who knows/sees and has been through what I would call mental sports illness related specifically to endurance/performance sports I truly hope I can help alleviate someone’s mind on this and put them to ease and let them know “its okay”

If your retired, empty nester, financially stable with low work hours these factors can all contribute to less stress and better performance and you don’t know what the other person is going through or doing at the end of the day.

Your current position on your life is all determined by where you are at and how you accept it. I still compete in various bike related category’s and at the end of it all I’m just happy to participate regardless of results and am happy I tried it.

1 Like

I agree. I think everybody has to evaluate what works best for them and what motivates them. I have some friends who are way more driven than I am. Other friends just want to get out and ride. I’m sort of in between. I enjoy training and pushing myself but since it’s a hobby I definitely have to enjoy it. Once it starts feeling like I job I step back to reevaluate a bit.

3 Likes

we need more of this, and this is coming from a training addict.

4 Likes

I use TR to keep me fit and then when I ride outside everything is fun and easier due to my training on my LV 8-week Polarised plan.

I use my FTP to not compare against others but more a game in my head to keep pushing to see if keeps going up!

Strava I find difficult sometimes as I sometimes compare my rides to others or have thought in the past “is this good enough” well who cares? So now everything syncs to my wahoo element app and that’s it really.

1 Like

I’m at 2.5 w/kg. I’m about 30 lbs overweight. With combination of losing weight and getting stronger, I think something north of 3.0 w/kg is achievable.

1 Like

With some exceptions, most pros are genetic freaks and also very disciplined to get to that level. I agree with your post though. I’ve seen many high level amateur endurance athletes turn their lives upside down trying to be the best they can be. It’s nice to be competitive in your peer group, but there are other important things in life that suffer if you get too obsessed.

When my kids went away to college and I had more time on my hands, I was able to ride and train more and hit numbers I’ve never seen previously (and I had some decent race results). At the big “destination” races like leadville or BWR, I do OK and I’ll set a results goal of some kind, but the guys winning in my age group might was well be aliens and I am content knowing I’ll never win a race like that. Race day is fun and results are great, but my primary enjoyment comes from the training and prep required to be ready to perform.

The folks at 2.5w/kg want to get to 3. The folks at 3.5 want to get to 4. The 4.5’s want 5, and so on. It’s great to have goals, but once you get to a number, it can be a bit anti-climatic because it doesn’t seen that special any more and you are just looking at the next number. If you are enjoying the process of training and doing the things required to pursue your goals, it should be rewarding and sustainable whether you hit your FTP goal or not.

8 Likes

I feel ya with the mere mortal. I am nerdy about the numbers, progress, etc.

I imagine as the internet goes, the lower w/kg / FTP people number WAY more than the forum represents, we post less because we are less experienced etc when it comes to “bike stuff”. We go here to try and gain knowledge, or at least I do.

I started TR back in February with a 178 FTP ramp test, 223 FTP ramp test a few weeks ago @ 2.55w/kg. Even with those mortal numbers I was able to finish in the top 60% of the Unbound 100m on a single speed. Life is short, do what makes you happy and pet dogs.

6 Likes

First FTP Test was 1.47 w/kg (145w/98kg) and after ~2 years of TrainerRoad and proper nutrition I lost ~20 kg improved my FTP 150w and i’m on 3.7w/kg (293w/79kg) trying to reach 4w/kg, but my ftp hasn’t improved the last few months… although i still feel like i’ve continued to improve, ftp isn’t the only important thing.

I think numbers doesn’t matters as much as patience, consistency and enjoying the process.

9 Likes

Nice progress! What training plans have you done? All a certain volume? @Ddtoco

1 Like

Thanks!

Started with low volume, then mid volume for a while, then high volume it was too much, back to mid volume and now im on high volume again trying to survive :joy:, I like to suffer. From the beginning, sundays have been long free rides (MV and HV I replace the Sunday sweet spot for long free rides) with gf or friends. Started with 35km the first time, almost died, now 80-120km, few times more than that (150k like once every two months and 200 only once but it was too much time so won’t be doing that again soon :joy:)

2 Likes

Hi @rebeccamcshane :grinning:

I think that most of us on the TR Forum believe we’re ‘mere mortals’. That’s one of the reasons it’s a great forum. People willingly share advice and there’s open discussion with little to no ego. We’re all here to learn and improve, in one way or another.

My numbers ebb and flow throughout the year. Sometimes I’ll be 4+wkg, other times I’m just below 4wkg. Depends where I am in my season and what my goals are.

What I have learned is that for the most part, it’s just numbers. Yeah, they sound good at the coffee shop but, they only matter if the mind and body can but those numbers to use.

Keep a focus on you and your goals. Dedication, consistency and the ability to do the hard work will reap many benefits. Good luck on your journey :+1:

5 Likes

Great thread - inspiring persons on here. I wish the pod would focus a little more on this.

6 Likes

Agreed. I used to listen to the podcast regularly, then started scanning segments that were of interest of a mere mortal like myself. However as of late they seem to be a bit more on the “advanced” side. They need a “mortals, ask a cycling coach” episode/segment.

9 Likes