I have a race planned for Nov 15th and have been following a Plan Builder-crafted plan to prepare. All was going well until I hit Rainbow (3 x (anaerobic race starter + 19 minutes at 96% FTP)). I can’t pass it. I made about 5 attempts now. My FTP is set at 293W. In February I was able to pass the workout with FTP at 300W, but here are some differences between now and February:
All my TR rides up to and including Feb were on a gym Stages bike (with a Stages 3rd gen power meter); all TR rides afterwards are on my dumb-trainer-installed MTB at home (also with Stages 3rd gen power meter on left crank)
In the beginning of the year I switched from clipless to flat pedals for the whole season and have done the same for indoor training (to simulate the outdoors riding better) - I immediately lost about 3-5% power.
My question: based on the info provided, do you think the switch from gym bike to my own MTB bike for indoors training, or switch from clipless to flats, might explain the loss of muscular endurance that’s making me fail Rainbow? I can still pass extended VO2 max workouts like Red Lake. Alternatively, should I look for another underlying reason for being unable to pass, such as hydration, nutrition, sleep, getting old, etc?
PS On my most recent indoor attempt of Rainbow I switched back to clipless but found my “up muscles” have not been firing correctly after a full season “off”…I will need time to get them working again.