Every Workout at 105%

Something I’ve always been curious about. What would happen if every day, I warmed up for 15 minutes, and then just rode a single interval at 105% of FTP to exhaustion?

Is there a reason to NOT try this, or is it just not ideal/efficient a la sweet spot, zone 2, or more varied training? Probably a silly question, but just curious about peoples takes on it.

Big picture: Everything works, until it doesn’t.

Smaller picture: 105% is probably too high to start. I would recommend starting at 95%, and when that is no longer effective (see above), gradually increase the intensity.

Scientific answer: Carl Foster has shown that lack of variety in training (as quantified using his “monotony score”) is correlated with overtraining symptoms. So, you may (or may not) benefit from more variety in your training, even if all of your workouts basically target the same thing.


It just means your zones are off by 5%

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It’s going to be pretty lousy training. You won’t be riding very long at 105% of FTP, so you won’t really be working on endurance. And it’s not high enough to give you the benefits of high intensity.

What is the goal?

It’s probably too much intensity to do every day. In a few days you might be fried and lose motivation. Now, if you were super time crunched, I bet one could this workout twice a week and make some progress.

Maybe read the world record / gold medal speed skater’s manifesto on his training. He did an endurance block (5 days on / 2 days off) and then a threshold block (5 days on / 2 days off). Some weeks he took 3 or 4 days off to recover.

Even a world record holder needs to manage training load and fatigue.

Meaning variety within the individual workouts, within the training block(some interval workouts, some z2 stuff, etc), or just general base, build, etc?

Could be wrong, but didn’t Graeme Obree do sort of similar training? I think I recall he’d warm up, hit it hard, then be done. If he felt bad, he didn’t ride.

Again, I could be misremembering what I read

You’d effectively be doing a 20 minute FTP test every workout. Think of it like this: how many tests could you do in a row / week before crashing and burning, or hating the site of your bike?

basically a daily 20 min. test

Foster’s session RPE provides a single number for each workout. The monotony score is then the standard deviation of such values across a number of workouts (sorry, I don’t recall how many). It therefore only accounts for variations in how hard you perceived each workout to be, not any variation between or within workouts in what you actually did.