Doesnt Max Heart Rate tell you your FTP?

I think thats the answer. Thank you

everyone is different, but for myself workout HR is pretty consistent. And HRmax is rarely reached, and never on a ramp test (highest ever was 172bpm, but outside I can hit 175bpm). And always after something like a hard group ride where we’ve been on our limit for 20 minutes and it ends with a 5+ minute effort above threshold and then ‘sprinting’ over some kind (either a really steep pitch on a climb, or an actual town line sprint).


Nope. You likely won’t hit max heart rate in training. In my two most recent races I maxed out at 184 bpm with two very different efforts (a crit race and a short hill climb TT). The efforts were completely different, yet I hit max heart rate. For reference, during training and ramp test I don’t get anywhere close. During ramp tests, I max out at 173ish bpm.

Also, your assumption is that you are maxed out when you hit peak heart rate. On my hill climb TT I maintained something close to heart rate for a good minute. So I would not assume that you have given all that you can give when you hit what you think is max heart rate.

If you want to do a ramp test, you should not look at heart rate, but breathing. A ramp test determines your maximum aerobic power (MAP), and the best sign that you did a ramp test correctly is that you fall off the bike, panting for air. :wink:

“the best sign that you did a ramp test correctly is that you fall off the bike, panting for air”

Thats pretty much where I’m at after a minute or two of 172bpm regardless of the power output. I looked at my last “blow up” race with an HR monitor. That was in Prescott, AZ, 4500ish ft. (:point_up:)Its showin 172 as well.

I’m thinking all you riders who never hit max bpm are just animals :muscle:I’ll keep workin it :saluting_face:

But thats not because you have hit your max heart rate, it’s because of the fatigue and the lactic acid in your body, I think you are presuming that “because you are out of breath” max heart must have been reached

Try doing 30 x 7 second all out sprints, no holding back, with 30 seconds between (until you fail), blind without being able to see what heart rate is, and see if the max is different to what you are seeing, if you are able to hold your max heart rate for 2-3 mins you have amazing lactic clearing, must people can only hold it for a few seconds


I do like a new challenge! I’ll give it a shot a post results. Give me about two weeks👊
And no… I CANNOT hold for 2 or 3 mins… I’ve gotten close to 2mins only a couple times

Like I said

172 Might be your max, just most people don’t find it by doing a ramp test or in a endurance race, or are able to hold it for more than a few seconds before the lactic builds to a level you can’t deal with, which is why a max heart rate test is different to a ftp test (which is measuring your endurance power)

All I’m suggesting, is give it a proper test before you are sure that 172 is your max, my recent Ramp test Max HR = 178 (panting for air) , sprinting for the town sign on a group ride last week, 189 … not panting for air


Not hitting max hr not necessarily is not a sign of fitness but also fatigue. Levels of HR have also tendency to be surpressed when training hard.

I can hit hr max on ramp test, my highest HR was 5min max test and the end results was falling from the bike, lying in embrional position and gasping for air like MvP during his training :slight_smile:

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I get it. Consider this…
Lungs v Legs
By lungs i mean cardio ability
Legs = muscular endurance
What if, maybe, my lungs (cardio) are my limiting factor due to age, time off the trainer, etc. In other words…my muscular endurance is currently better than my cardio??
Just a thought. I’m no coach

Agreed with everything above. I, at best, when willing to make myself truly miserable…get within about 5bpm of my max heart rate on a trainer ride.

On a group ride…usually when sprinting or going off the front after a hard stretch, will either hit my max hr…or set a new hr PR by a beat or 2…and it’s always surprising…very much after the ride an, “oh, didnt know it went that high” kind of thing.

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Thats cool…Maybe this year I will see that. We are just now coming into our season :call_me_hand:

I have to absolutely destroy myself to hit my max HR on a bike. Definitely not possible on a ramp test. Easy to hit max running without being shattered.


If my heartrate running hits my cycling tempo heart rate I am absolutely shattered :flushed:

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A lot of comments about “not possible” to reach max HR on the trainer or in training. Absolutely not the case and all individual.

As to the OP, it doesn’t sound like a good way of establishing your FTP. Maybe try and scale your responses to your workouts up one and see if AIFTP is more accurate.

Like you, I find it is typically a touch higher than what I deem MLSS. Ramp tests also put it higher. AIFTP has gotten a lot more consistent recently though so I think there is value in still checking in to see if it starts to dial into your abilities/responses.

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Good call. I’m sure they probably dialed it in more by now. I should give it another shot. Although… now that I think about it, I did just do a ramp test and the AI FTP came in 4.5% higher. And of course me, I accepted the higher one yet again k owing I might be writing checks my butt cant cash😂 oh well. I’ll play with those responses too. Thanks for the input.

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True, individual. I am not sure anyone said its not possibly for anyone, just for their N=1. It is however unlikey during a ramp test but not impossible. It not the idea of the ramp test but if you know you are just about to pop during the ramp test and you forget the power target and sprint out of the saddle I would suggest a majority would get another bpm or two. I bet almost no one has tried this so they wouldn’t know.

A good way to hit max HR on a trainner, IMO, is to ride at or just under Threshold for 30-40 minutes and then do a max sprint for as long as you can.

^ This also works well for a lot of people inside or out, however it is easier to sprint outside because the movement of the bike.

N=1, but the ONLY times I’ve ever hit my cycling max HR has been during a ramp test. In fact I’ve never even come close to my “max” HR seen during a ramp test compared to over 1,000+ TR workouts and 50+ races.

I haven’t done a ramp test in a while since AIFTP, but my last ramp test I recorded below (as a memory since I’ll probably never do it again, lol). It was within a few watts of my AIFTP. I hit 191 max HR and since then I’ve never seen my HR in the high 180s let alone 190s.

Also, at no point at the end of any ramp test I’ve ever done do I recall being able to stand and sprint at the end for a few HR beats more. I can barely function let alone try and stand.


I’ve never hit my Max HR on a ramp test or a TR workout. The highest I’ve ever hit was a 20 minute max power test and I hit it right at the end as I was basically “sprinting” with everything I had left to finish (power was dropping and I was seated, so not sure how much of a sprint it was) . Had to lie on the floor for 10 minutes afterwards. Haven’t hit that same HR anywhere else on the bike, inside or out

The premise of the question doesn’t make sense to me…

The whole point of the ramp test is you ride to failure (or close to it). There is no “3 minutes left”. The ramp is on 1-minutes increases, so there’s no steady-state 3 minute block. What am I missing?

Anyway, on ramp tests, my HR usually caps out around 175bpm and my actual max is around 185 (which I only see during certain sprint efforts or racing).

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