FTP to high or not trained enough?

I’ve just attempted a 3x10 @ threshold (Kaweah - 2 - TrainerRoad) and struggled with it. I got through it, but it was harder than I thought it would be. I took a back-pedal of 15sec in each interval at around the 7 minute mark.

This was marked as a Stretch effort. I had also had my FTP set last week by the new AI FTP Detection functionality.

Given that the definition of FTP is more or lesss “the power you can hold for 30-70 mins” I was wondering if:
a) I need to drop my FTP to the point where I can do this workout or
b) My FTP is probably fine but I need to work up to 3x10s with something like 5x7s or 4x8s i.e. it’s more a case of just not being used to doing longer intervals

I guess I would have thought if my FTP is correct I could do 30 minutes of threshold work :person_shrugging:

You will get a wide range of answers that will leave you probably a bit more confused than you started. I would say the first thing is, don’t think of the TR FTP as your FTP. It’s just a number to base your workouts on. Once you separate the TR FTP from the idea of FTP, then you have options open up.

With Progression Levels, TR has a fairly wide room for error with your the TR FTP. You can start with low-level workouts and progress in small chunks OR you can lower your TR FTP and complete higher level workouts.

Or perhaps somewhere in between. Me personally, I am trying to extend my Time to Exhaustion Threshold, so lean towards longer intervals, which are typically higher up on the workout level scale. Therefore, I choose not to be quite as aggressively trying to raise my TR FTP. TR suggested 313 for me today using FTP Detection, but I chose to leave it at 310 and even considered dropping it some.


Your FTP could be too high but last week I bought a new heart rate band. Normally my fan ramps up with hearts rate but with the new heart rate band it somehow didn’t and after a while when I figured it out and manually cranked up the fan it was already too late and I just couldn’t finish the threshold workout (at least I hope that was the cause)

to contribute to the confusion I would say that (for me!) at approximately threshold pl 5.5 your ftp number in tr is close to lt2 and/or what most people would consider “ftp”.


Did you have some fatigue coming into this workout ?
Was this workout one you selected? If so a stretch is a stretch and makes sense why it was hard. Great suggestions above and I feel the same way about Threshold PL of 5.5-6 means your ftp is the “true” ftp. Also somedays workouts are just hard from a lot going on in life. I had an achievable Vo2max workout today that was very hard but I also walked about 15 miles over the weekend on top of my training.
My only suggestion is make sure you do an achievable workout next time and move on from there.

TR had a mention that said during the AI FTP process that the number is not your hour power or what you can hold for xx minutes. The number given is used to set your training number. I am having a hard time finding the info to add here - not sure if it was in the original forum post or in the app when accepting it.

Right. So it sounds like the TR FTP needs to be used in combination with workout levels to pick the right workout.

It also sounds like the consensus is that the TR FTP number is correct if you’re on target with a progression level of between 5 & 6

I’m really not fussed what the number is, just that it’s right :rofl:

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In that case TR should call it something else…or just use it in the background and don’t tell people anything.


Then again … who can hold their ftp for exactly 60min or is it like Coggan himself says something between 40 and 80 minutes?
Tr ftp with low pl is closer to a „40min ftp“, tr ftp with high pl is closer to a „80min ftp“.

If you want suited tr workouts, tr ftp is great (at least for me it’s spot on).

If you want to brag in front of (sorry, what I meant was „compare with“ :wink:) your friends, add 20watts to your tr ftp if you have a threshold pl >7 or subtract 20watts if it’s lvl 3.5 or below (the case with me right now :cry:)

If you want to know exactly what your body does, get a lt2 test.

It’s not that hard :grin:

I’d agree with all this and add that the duration of the workout impacts RPE for a given PL number, at least for me. So, for the same fitness, I would find something like Lamarck or Smith -2 that are 1:00 workouts around level 5 PL harder/more likely to fail than Mt Baldy+4 or St Elias, which are 5.2-5.3 PL but 2 hours. Stated another way, I have less margin for error on my FTP input on 60min or so threshold workouts than 90-120 min threshold workouts.

Or…just go ride hard for a certain amount of time. The more often you do it, the better you get at pacing and figuring out your capabilities. That makes MMP curves highly beneficial for figuring out power for given durations…even better is converting MMP curves to work rather than power. You can get really good estimates for different durations in that case if you have a few really hard efforts in that 2-60 min range since work you can do at a given duration varies with a strong linear trend in this region.

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Is there any data that actually validates this? If you have a 40min TTE, then breaking that up into 3x10 shouldn’t be difficult at all, let alone requiring a backpedal mid interval

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I hadn’t seen or heard anything to back that up.

But interesting idea … is there a minimum threshold TTE for a given ftp :thinking::person_shrugging:

I’d say if you are truely below 40min TTE at the FTP set, you would gain more from dropping the power for the intervals and extending the length of time so the total time in zone is higher and build that up in terms of progression, then start connecting intervals so you can do the threshold in longer blocks