Life is doing what it does best, and rescheduling my perfectly planned training calendar. I’ve now not trained for over three weeks, and it’s going to be two weeks before I can get back on. I COULD force in some 30 minute rides here and there, but honestly I feel like my stress load is high enough that allowing myself to be okay with taking a little time off from training will be helpful. So the big question, how much should I expect to lose? I’ve been training for a year, my A Race was about thirty days ago and it went very well. I’ll be starting sweet spot again in two weeks once my schedule becomes more manageable. I was 215w, 68kg. I realize this is likely highly dependent on the individual, but I’m interested in hearing your anecdotal information.
Highly variable, but if I take two weeks fully off, I usually expect about a 10% drop, unless I really hit it hard going into the break, in which case the drop is less since you get some super compensation followed by a drop. Usually takes about double the time off to get back to where I was.
For 5 weeks, I’d expect 15-20%, with getting it back somewhere in 8-10weeks.
Dont worry it will come back! I am always surprised how very little nice easy ride can be sufficient to maintain decent fitness.
Anyway last January 2019, I almost did no riding and I would say I went from 240ish to 200ish FTP
Should I preemptively adjust my ftp down prior to my test? Or should I just plan on the ftp taking 10 minutes, lol.
Nope I wouldn’t adjust down before the test. If you want, take a few days of unstructured riding to get your legs back in the swing of things and then just give the test a proper effort.
Dropping your FTP won’t meaningfully affect the results.
Excellent, thanks @stevemz!
These would mitigate more losses for sure. 3 weeks is a long time off, 5 weeks is VERY long. You’ll bounce back for sure, but just be okay with it taking time.
I find it depends a lot on how you’re spending the month. If it’s a low stress time where I can still eat and sleep well and maybe do some strength work or low level non-cycling exercise (e.g. holidays or when I’m injured) then I usually spring back very quickly and often stronger than before. I guess partly due to getting all the fatigue out of the system and partly due to hitting training again with renewed motivation when I do get back.
If it’s time off for stressful reasons like work or moving house then I seem to lose more fitness and/or take longer to get it back. I think the stress means I’m not really recharging my batteries, plus tends to lead to other bad habits as well like eating badly or drinking a bit more than usual. I’ve found it’s much better to try and keep some training going during these periods, even a 30 minute workout is enough to get some benefit, can help de-stress me, may help remind me of the importance of good nutrition, and is still what most of the population would consider a long workout!
Welp. Looks like I’m a golfer now.