I mean i’d imagine being a little lighter would be helpful for CX. Or perhaps heavy and power = better traction? But at 22% BF you can definitely optimize without losing watts.
Vaguely on topic… theoretically, would it be better to train at maint calories or at a slight surplus? Obviously you’d need to take into account that with a surplus you’d need to go into deficit for a few weeks to deal with any weight gained. This without getting into anything as complicated as nutrient timing for training sessions / events.
I guess you wouldn’t really be putting on significant muscle at maint, beyond a little bit of body recomposition.
Agreed - I guess what I’m trying to get at is that for most competitive cyclists focussing on increasing power is going to offer more benefits that worrying about W/kg. Racing in general you’ll be more competitive with more power vs W/kg - I’d rather be at Rider A at 360W FTP and 4.6 W/kg than Rider B at 300W FTP and 5 W/kg. Sure the weight costs you on accelerations but when Rider A is attacking above FTP Rider B is going to be working in their anaerobic zone and even if they can hold on they’ll generally be shattered before they get to any climbs etc. It’s what MDVP did at Strade Bianche, rode hard at his threshold forcing AP and EB to work well above theirs levelling the playing field for the final climb.
I have made that mistake to focus too much to weight couple of times, recently again. Training results sucks, whole life sucks when eating not enough. At worst it is leading to an eating disorder. Last weekend i felt so bad that i woke up again to focus that training is the most important. Eat more, be happy and enjoy training. Raw watts are playing huge role if you are not obese.
My opinion is to always eat a slight excess, especially while training. You’ll recover faster, less likely to get hurt, and less likely to get sick. You’ll get better results when you’re fueled and can complete the workouts then barely surviving them.
Remember as you get stronger, you’ll be burning more and more calories, even while resting.
I’m thinking more about W/kg as it relates to an individual, not in comparison to other riders. There’s not all that much you can do about your height and frame size. Alaphilippe can’t pack on ~15kg of muscle and turn himself into a MVDP-sized rider or vice versa. But the OP is 95kg and >20% bodyfat. Meaning over time he could most likely turn himself into a leaner ~85kg rider without having to sacrifice any power. So in my view the comparison is actually more like Rider A at say 350W FTP and 3.7W/kg (95kg) and Rider B at 350W FTP and 4.1W/kg (85kg). In which case I hope we can all agree that Rider B wins every race of every distance on every terrain, hands down. If we’re talking about a rider who is already pretty lean then I agree completely, focus on the power.
Now you could argue that by focusing on increasing power and fuelling his workouts, he’s naturally going to shed that excess weight over time. And you might well be right - raising FTP means raising metabolic rate, burning more calories in every workout, etc. But I think that’s different to “not worrying about FTP/kg”. That’s more like “by focusing on the watts the kg will take care of themselves”. And that works great for some people. But I’ve also seen plenty of cyclists and triathletes with that approach who just always out-eat their training and never shift that weight. On a flat course that doesn’t hurt them as much as on a hilly course, but it still hurts them relative to the leaner rider they could be (not relative to MVDP who is a freak!).
Good point about body fat %. 15-17% is a good healthy number to shoot for in general. If you’re over 20% then yeah, probably worth paying attention to some.
I think the opposite. It’s the right metric to compare to others.