Help from getting discouraged

I just completed my first Ramp test after using either an hour FTP test or a 20 minute FTP test. I had 2 days rest and 1 easy spin before the test. Prior to the test I completed sweet spot base 1 and 2 high volume plans, and didn’t have trouble with either plans workouts. Sure there were some tough days or weeks but I got through them with the targeted power.

My FTP went from 253 to 270 between the two tests in the base phase. Now, after the Ramp test my FTP dropped to 261. I don’t think I’m sore or tired, and all variables are controlled like the previous tests. I don’t want to keep thinking of excuses but would like some imput on a topic that probably been beat to death.

I’ve listened to the podcasts dealing with FTP testing and tried reading as much as I can but just would like to hear some thoughts from other that may have experience the same thing as me and maybe went into the build phase with a lower FTP and came out stronger.

I have years of sweet spot/tempo work, and consider my strength to lie in that zone. I hardly ever do work above threshold, and haven’t done any during the base phase. Was this part of the reason my ftp may have decreased with the ramp test as it involves riding at VO2?

I know I can do some 20 min intervals at my previous FTP and if I can get through them, then I should just use that number as my ftp.

On the other hand, maybe going into the build phase with a lower ftp will benefit me as I will be doing more VO2 workouts especially if I choose a mid volume plan. Thanks for any advice you can offer.

If you completed all the workouts in SSB2 at 270 but tested at 261, I would probably write the test off as an off day.

Keep it at 270 for the next phase IMO

Looking at the last weeks of ssb high volume (:astonished:) I don’t think you’d get through that if ftp had genuinely dropped. Check your power meter and re test

I’m in a similar boat although only in SSB 2 and only doing low volume. I posted last night after a disappointing ramp test - I retested after being affected by end of a cold last week when I started SSB 2 and saw a totally expected drop from 267 to 253. I kept the 267 figure and tested again last night. I’d not had as much rest as you but thought I could test and at least match my 267 score but got 252!. Just like you’ve I’ve been completing workouts at 267 and got a 50/50 split last night as to whether I should continue sticking with 267 or accept the lower test value. I hope I’m not just being stubborn - I’ve kept at 267 and completed Donner tonight - it was tough but I think 3 x 12 mins is meant to be tough! My only concern is I’m actually training in the wrong zones by keeping my inflated value and maybe just being able to complete workouts isn’t an indicator that my ftp is correct.

Hey Phil,

Donner is a tough workout, the last 2 minutes of each interval will tell you everything about your FTP number. If you are barely holding on - your swinging wildy on your bike, really searing your quads. Its probably slightly too high, they should be absolutley challenging, but not at the expense of form. Remember, they are still below your threshold number.

I’d probably knock it down 5 watts and see how a session like this goes again. Remember zones aren’t hard limits, they all sorta blend in with each other. Just coz your 1 watt out of sweet spot, doesnt mean you arent still getting the training benefit of sweet spot. It all counts.

Any chance you are using virtual power? If so there might be more variables to try to control for a case like that…

Thanks. Cadence kept above 90rpm throughout intervals, I wouldn’t say I was barely holding but was as tough as I remember from previous rides.

It was your first Ramp test, in doing it you learned alot about how to do a ramp test, how hard it gets after 17 minutes and how tough it gets after that.

Mark it down as a learning experience. I vote take a rest, re test, as Chad says in the workout text sometimes, gut it out and see how you score again.

You just did sweet spot high volume 1 and 2 man, well done! Your FTP did not go down.

Training is a function of adequate stress and sufficient recovery, and what strikes me is that you’re not incurring enough stress. Lots of sweet spot work only goes so far; you noted minimal work above threshold, which seems especially problematic. You’re not going hard enough. You’re not placing enough of a demand on your body to trigger a response that leads you to adapt to higher power outputs.

At a very basic level, you’d probably benefit from 2-3 hard interval workouts, with pieces at 105%-120% of FTP. Any of the Build phases should have such workouts.