Is AI FTP "right" for me? Or is it the training plan?


I have been using TR since early this year after a few years as a coached rider. Mostly CX oriented. Always been good at shorter intervals/ sprints/ surge & recover; struggled much more with anything medium to long (e.g. 6-20 min in my book). Although smashed 10-15 min OG efforts out of the park every time.

Coached FTP was 270, but I think this was over estimated, esp for the longer intervals.

Did an FTP test (ramp) and struggled as it is a long interval, which threw out 230 or so. Thought this was too low, so plugged in 250 for the first plan.

First plan (Feb-April) I felt the endurance intervals (build) etc. were too easy, and started running them at 110%… still finding easy/ very easy. The other intervals were OK but rarely stretching (i.e. completed every interval every time). I tended to go hard on the outdoor rides (well over the numbers), and then get red-zoned so subsequent workouts cancelled.

Then AI FTP kicked in - giving 253. Which made me thing 250 was about right.

The second AI FTP remained about the same, which I was OK with as I had been ill.

But the third has also not shifted (actually 253W), which is a little worrying, as i) I have not progressed; and ii) I am not really being challenged by the workouts.

Anyone got any thoughts on i) cause; or ii) what to do?

Do I just crank up FTP and see what happens?

My problem is that I want to rely on TR to do all the planning for me, fatigue management etc… don’t have the headspace to think all that through. Just want to ride faster.

Have you been rating all the workouts as Easy? If you have been rating them like that then it should increase the ramp rate and find you harder workouts quite quickly.

Don´t do anything to the FTP number before you have your PLs above 7. That is for the ones that are active (probably SS, Threshold and VO2) and don´t care about the endurance PL. In my book you can go as hard as you want on your VO2 and Threshold rides outside but not on your z2 rides. If you get the work-out canceled (red light) and don´t do them anyway TR we probably see the work-out as missed. So get your PLs up and maybe speed the process up by using the alternates in the beginning.


I wouldn’t hang everything off FTP, it just one indicator. Whilst that number might not have changed the time you can spend comfortably in it has probably increased and you’ve substantially improved. My best season results wise came prior to AI FTP when I just set my FTP at a stable 250w and left it there all season.


Thanks for all the engagement.

i) I have rated the relevant workouts as easy, but the PL levels don’t seem to be ramping up. I am in build, and endurance is at 4.7 (crazy easy, even at 120%). SS is at 2.7 (not too hard) and the rest are below 2.

ii) I should add I am on high volume, masters plan.

iii) Tip to do alternates is a good one (presumable with higher TSS).

Hey there,

I took a look into your TR account to get an idea of what might be going on here.

One issue I see that might be affecting your AI FTP Detections is consistency. It looks like every 2-3 weeks you miss half (or more) of your workouts.

Consequently, this has an impact on your Progression Levels and the corresponding Workout Levels that get slotted into your plan. This sort of touches on what @Hhansen mentioned above – some of your workouts may feel a bit easier than you’d like because they happen to be lower-level workouts. As you train consistently, your Progression Levels will increase, and you’ll start to get more challenging sessions.

As for the Endurance/Zone 2 workouts, I wouldn’t recommend increasing the intensity for those – Z2 riding isn’t supposed to be hard.

I don’t think this has much to do with your current FTP. If your coached FTP was 270W and you got a result of about 230W on the Ramp Test, then manually entered in 250W, it sounds like you should probably be in the right ballpark by now. I think it has more to do with your training consistency and your current Progression Levels.

If your workouts feel way too easy, I’d recommend using Workout Alternates to search for replacement sessions at Workout Levels 3-4. That’s generally a good starting point for athletes who already have some training history behind them. As you train and move through your plan, Adaptive Training will see that you’re capable of knocking out workouts at those levels, and adjust your plan as necessary so you get dialed into more appropriately challenging sessions.

Hope that helps – make sure to prioritize consistency as much as you can! It’s obviously tough if illness strikes or if you have to work around other life events, but I think if you can nail down some better consistency with your training, you’ll start to see some of the gains you’re looking for.


Thanks for taking the time on this.

I get the point re. consistency being key to improve, but for me the current issue is more along the lines that i) there is not enough challenge in the workouts, and ii) that when I ‘tell’ TR this, the programme does not really respond.

For example, today I ran a workout (endurance) at 110% and marked it down as "easy’ [it was - could happily have done it all over again back to back], yet progression levels did not change, and no adaptations were suggested.

Similarly, last week (which was recovery anyway), I ran the workout at 120%, marked easy [I could have ridden hours at that pace] and again nothing changed.

Which makes me wonder what has to change to climb the slope?

This is sort of the part of TR that isn’t obvious if you don’t spend much time on the forum. PL & AIFTP don’t take into account when you adjust intensity UP. And your PL only reflects the level of the workout that you completed. So if you do a 2.0 PL workout at 200% - your PL will only go to 2.0. Instead of bumping up intensity - pick a higher PL workout. Then going forward (aside from recovery days/weeks) all of your workouts in that zone will be at that PL or higher.

But when you miss workouts or don’t do a specific zone for awhile your PL will decay. So if you think you are stronger than a SS 2.4 just because you haven’t done it in awhile. Do a 4.0.


THAT is really helpful - now I know what to do.

Minor follow up - when I do outdoor workouts, does it look at the actual workout, or just assume that I have done it as scheduled (if I say I have)? Or in other terms, does it look at my actual NP, HR or similar, or just the amount scheduled.

I know that it looks at actual TSS as I usually get red-zoned after a good outdoor ride with friends

Hey @abonwick,

Just to clear things up, Endurance rides should be pretty easy (especially recovery ones). If you end the workout thinking that you couldn’t have done it all over again if you needed to, your FTP is probably set way too high. We expect some workouts to feel easy, and if you rate them that way, that tells us that it was appropriate for the expected effort and overall intent of the workout.

Additionally, not all prescribed Endurance workouts are going to be classified higher than “Achievable,” which means that you won’t be assigned workouts rated higher than your current Progression Level every single time. Therefore, your PLs won’t increase after every single ride.

The reason you didn’t get an increase in your Endurance PL from this last ride is that your PL was already at 4.7 and the workout you did was a level 4.3.

Your PL was somewhat falsely inflated though in my opinion because you matched a level 4.7 TR workout (Hinch) to an instructed ride on May 13th to get that bump up to 4.7. That ride didn’t really match the structure of the workout, and it’s best to only associate TR workouts with activities where you followed along with the workout. We aren’t going to go through your paired ride file to ensure that you’ve actually done the work, we’ll just trust that you have, so feeding the software misleading info can make things go off the rails pretty quickly. :sweat_smile:

One thing that could help you gauge your efforts during Endurance rides as well further dial in your FTP & overall fitness is to figure out your heart rate zones by using a lactate threshold HR test if you haven’t already. This can be really useful info to have when ballparking your efforts in and around zone 2.

Your prescribed workouts are based on your FTP, so if your FTP is set incorrectly all of your workouts will be slightly off target, and knowing your HR zones can help determine where your internal effort truly lies, especially when riding below FTP.

For example, my threshold HR is around 176bpm so I know my zone 2 range is between 123-152bpm. This tells me that my HR shouldn’t really go above 152 when riding at the top end of my Zone 2 power range. I use this info when doing Endurance workouts quite a bit. If I’m feeling really good, sometimes I’ll increase the intensity of the workout but I’ll watch my HR and make sure it stays below 152bpm. Keep in mind though, just as @slipdog said, Adaptive Training won’t necessarily give you more PL credit for increasing the workout’s intensity, so if you know that you want a harder workout than what’s on tap, use Workout Alternates to find one that fits what you’re looking for.

This is just another piece of the puzzle but it can be really useful info to have, especially when you’re still dialing in your fitness. If you wanted, you could find out your FTP and HR zones all with one 20-minute test. Then you should have things dialed in really well and have some useful info for future workouts. :innocent:


Outdoor workouts are a pass/fail and are a default pass if you associate the outdoor ride to the workout. TR will analyze the outdoor ride for AiFTP, but not for anything else. So if you go and do a 2.0 VO2 outdoors and do 40w over prescribed wattage for each interval, TR will just say it’s a pass and you will be at 2.0 VO2. Whereas if you were to pick a VO2 workout that matches the work you actually did, you’ll get the higher PL. If you want to do some reading, Workout Levels V2 is the future improvement that will start assigning PL’s to what you actually do outdoors, but it’s a very complicated code and is taking longer than expected.

I agree with the TR answer and rest of the discussion. Take a look at some of the workouts you’ve completed at 110-120%, and find an Alternative Workout that would be similar or appropriately hard and do that workout. That should help accelerate your progression. Although I am surprised that you haven’t progressed faster by marking everything easy.

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Thanks again, everyone.

My key takeaway is to use the Alternative Workouts to up the ante a bit, and see where that takes things re. what TR throws out for the following sessions (and how achievable/ progressive they are).

Re the outdoor workouts, I get the point re. not matching rides that do not follow the structure. I guess the difficulty is that as the good weather descents on us, outdoor will be a bigger part of the overall training load, with the ride structured mainly by the terrain. Failing to mark things in at all will cause PL to fall back.

SOund like it is useful to game the system a bit to get best results.

As I mentioned in my last post, I wouldn’t recommend “gaming the system” as it’s likely to make a mess of your Progression Levels and prescribed workouts. :face_with_peeking_eye:

Progression Levels aren’t the be-all-end-all, and it’s not super wise to assume the outcome of any specific workout at any given time.

I’d recommend doing the workouts that you can, and riding your bike when you feel like it. If the ride was really hard, replace one of your hard workouts with that ride. If it was really easy, replace an easy workout. There’s no need to tell the software that you’re doing workouts if you aren’t, and, again, it will cause issues down the road. I’ve seen it far too many times! :smiling_face_with_tear:

It’s common to worry about getting “credit” for the unstructured rides you’re doing, but I’d focus on enjoying those rides and then knocking out the workouts that you do decide to do. Adaptive Training will see your progress in the TR workouts that you complete.

That’s the best way to communicate your progress to the software.

Let me know if this helps and if you have other questions down the road.

Best of luck!