How to increase FTP after learning new pedal stroke

Hi folks–

I have a recurring injury that I’ve worked through with a physical therapist, and am back to starting on the trainer. My goals right now are to maintain my newly learned pedal stroke as I increase FTP. I did a ramp test to see at what FTP I could maintain my form, and it’s pretty low right now – about 100 watts lower than my normal FTP. That’s fine, but my question is about whether I should do ramp tests more frequently as I ease into my new form. I definitely have the fitness for it, so if I wait six weeks until I’m through SSBI, I’ll have spent six weeks doing very little for my fitness. Given that, do you think I should do a ramp test each week or just re-test after six weeks?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts, and happy to provide more information if that’s helpful!

I prefer to reply based on personal experiences, though I can’t in this case I can relay info from others I know that have been forced to spend plenty of time on PT and really focus on their form.
Jonathan also mentions this on the podcast related to his nagging injury, I don’t think he goes into great detail but it’s worth checking into the related podcasts on that.

That said, it seems commonly suggested to spend time doing long low endurance rides and really spending time on your pedal stroke and form before getting into the harder efforts. I would think a ramp test is potentially counter productive and easier to put you back into old pedaling habits?

Have you considered traditional base with some long/low rides focusing on form during that time? Or do you think sweet spot will be manageable with the focus on new pedaling form?

Hmm. Interesting questions. I did the ramp test, but testing until my form deteriorated so figure out what kind of effort I can hold while maintaining form. My PT isn’t someone who cycles, but she said the trick is to slowly increase effort. So my intention was to use the ramp test to test form, not my fitness. If that makes sense?

Traditional base isn’t a bad idea… I’ll look at that more closely.

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