Kolie Moore's FTP test protocol

So first stab at the Baseline test. Ended up letting my ego get the best of me during the test and instead of dropping the power I stuck with the target power based on my current Ramp Test FTP and blew up at 17:45. FTP was set at 332 so the 2 steps were 319 and 339. I averaged 325 during the first section and the 337 for the portion of the next step. 325 felt right about my true FTP. Humidity in the garage got pretty high and the open endedness played with my head and not having a time target made it hard for me to keep pushing but that’s just an excuse. I was just going too hard.
I’m thinking of moving forward with an FTP of 320-325 but any insights would be welcome.

Instead of thinking it as bad news, just look at all the workouts you should be able to nail now which will give you loads of satisfaction!

If your garage was pretty hot then that can definitely affect power and certainly RPE.
There’s a couple of ways of doing it, you can try building into the effort so not starting out too hard or if you already have an idea of what your FTP is, then aim to hold that for a set amount of time.

Certainly takes a few of these tests to get the hang of them. If feel fro more like say 320 then next time a threshold type workout is in the plan just substitute it for baseline test and think, I will stick at steady power around 320-325 for 40 mins. If feel good it last 5-8mins then can increase a little but for first 30 mins I’d stick to 320-325

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It was about 77F and started around 61% humidity and ended just under 80%. The sweat was dripping at the end so I just wasn’t cooling effectively even with 3 fans (2 box and a lasko). Obviously it’s hard to disconnect the effect of the heat and too much power…

Do you think it would be a good idea to retest or do you think I should just move ahead with a 320-325 FTP and then retest again in 4 weeks. I had planned on doing an FTP block for the next 3 weeks after several weeks of SS and endurance rides and now sustained efforts over threshold other than MTB rides in almost 2 months.

Oh, absolutely. I’m definitely not looking at this as a negative but a huge positive. In two days I’ve learned a ton.

After having a super tough build phase back in June, I learned that I should be using RPE and HR rather than attempt to hit an exaggerated power target. This is just more confirmation that I’m on the right track.

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When I compare your HR to mine when I did a similar test, the first thing that jumps out is that your bpm is rising all through the first 10 minutes at 96%. On mine it rises through the first 5 minutes, but then is pretty stable from 5-10 minutes.

Maybe keep an eye on that HR in the first 10 minutes. If it doesn’t stabilise, knock the power back a bit, or else it’s only going to keep rising and rising when you go to 100%.

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You were over FTP the entire time. Start well under your current 40-min power, like 90% if you have good data, hold for 10 minutes, then start a slow ramp as long has your breath stays heavy but not ragged. You basically haven’t performed the protocol yet.

Your recent 40 min PR is 290W. So start at 260. Hold that for 10 min. Then start your ramp. This is how I pace the ramp generally: Have your 30s power and your 5 min power showing on your bike computer. Make your 30s power read as your 5 min power +5W. If your breathing starts to get off ride at your 5 min power. If you’re ‘recovered’ you can try to start ramping again. Go until you can’t turn the pedals anymore.

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Yes, I noticed that as well and was just about to comment. Well over cooked, literally by the sound of the heat and humidity.

As workout at least you got an interval in above FTP. I’m not sure that as a FTP assessment it was too successful, or that you can really drawn any conclusions.

Personally (not taking the heat into consideration) I’d put your FTP under 320 (prob < 315), and if it was me I’d be starting the test around 300 - 310 watts absolute maximum. IMO it is better if the beginning is a bit under your FTP. You’ve got a minimum of 25 minutes (longer if doing the progression tests) to find and settle in at your FTP before you start to pick it up on the ramp towards the end.

Edit: and I agree wholeheartedly with whoever said that following a set TR workout doesn’t work to well, I might be wrong but the idea is to ride on feel, use RPE, secondary you can consider HR, don’t follow a blue block… when you get to the 100% section minute by minute use the +/- workout percentages if you really want to follow a visual i.e the blue block.

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I think there’s a pretty common theme, and I’d agree that its probably more in the 315w, 320w max range. Not a wasted test at all though, you did something more like the TR 20 min test. So if you also had a valid test at 40+ min long, you would have just proved to yourself that your recent training has brought you to be able to do ~104% of FTP for 17:45, and some people find that good information to know. One case might be a shorter TT and you need a pacing target, for example.

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In my experience heat and humidity are the most important factor in this efforts. During warmer days, when it was 75-80F in the room (3 fans) I could hold my FTP for 30 minutes and then blowing out (and my TTE is 60 min from KM test)

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I believe you have to make it to the ramp in order for you to take the average of the first two blocks of the interval. You’re FTP is set way too high. Drop it to 315 and make it to the 40min mark of the test before putting it any higher…

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I tried doing one if the KM tests a few days ago…paced it a bit wrong and only made it to 30min. There’s definitively a learning curve involved! Still think it gives me a reasonable FTP value to work with.

Then did a TR ramp test today, and it came in 3W lower than the long test, so pretty much spot on. (Considering my KM test is probably a bit high, because it was too short, and that I’m a bit tired today, because I did quite a few max efforts this week).

Great result! What sort of sessions have you been doing @Captain_Doughnutman? Threshold or Sweet Spot efforts mostly? Are you making your own workouts or using the Sweet Spot and Threshold sessions on TR?

This is one of the questions I had for everyone @paulgrav. Recently I have steered away from an over focus on target watts and have instead switched my focus to RPE and HR as my focus metrics intra-workout.

The question that I have is, is the goal of training not to spend time in different zones, with HR being a great indicator of what energy system you are currently using/have used as well as where you are currently working, instead of relying on target watts? I’ve always been under the impression that the goal of a session, lets say a VO2 session for example, is to put your body into the VO2 training state, and that gauging HR is a great way to see if you are in that ‘zone’? This goes both ways too in that sense that you could also see if you were under training and doing Endurance work instead of say Sweet Spot work etc.

I understand that there are training adaptations and that naturally as you get stronger, you become more efficient and HR will drop when in those zones, but if you constantly perform an FTP test like the KM Progression 1 FTP test mentioned in this thread - every three/four weeks let’s say - then your HR zones will stay fairly constant with the increased load, and thus, the training stimulus in those zones is maintained. Am I on the right path with that?

By the way, this is a great thread. I am definitely going to give the KM Progression 1 test a go in a weeks time when I reach the mid way point of the General Build HV plan. Not only is it a great workout in itself, but I feel that it suits my physiology a lot better than the ramp test does.

I did the ramp test at the start of the program and it just did not feel right at all. Looking forward to giving the KM Progression 1 a go. It also suits my goals toward the end of this year over the Christmas Summer period down the coast and riding at threshold for a longer/extended period of time (I guess this means having to increase my TTE per-say? Something that the ramp test doesn’t give me.) Having the TTE metric is something that I want to improve on so I feel like it gives me something other than FTP to have as a goal as well.

I know that the test set up by @alexgold123 has been created so that it can be done in ERG mode and after 20min of the test (10min @ 98% + 10min @ 102% FTP) you should see a slight increase in FTP however, the test should be a minimum of 25min long to get a reliable estimate if I have read all of the above correctly. With that in mind, if you last 25min as your TTE, you should see an increase in FTP. I think.

The consensus though seems to be to do the KM Progression 1 in Resistance Mode instead of ERG. Will the KM Progression 1 test in the Team Gold still be fine to do in Resistance Mode even though it has been set up for ERG mode? Is Resistance Mode the mode whereby you can control everything and can spin at higher or lower watts depending on gearing - just like outside?

The protocol really isn’t so complicated that you need a planned workout. If you want to do it on TR I would just pick a 120 min free ride. Do whatever your standard threshold workout warmup is. Rest 5-10 minutes. Hold sweet spot level effort for 10 minutes. Slow ramp until your breathing starts getting off. Surf that effort level until you pop.

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2019 was mostly a bust for me, i.e. no intensity training, so I basically started 2020 as a fresh newbie.

To start with I did one block of each zone – Endurance, Tempo. Sweet Spot, Threshold – 2 weeks on/1 week off; all TR workouts (but not TR plans). Then I did a couple weeks of chasing KOMs. After that I did 2 months of 80:20/Polarized training. It wasn’t perfect in either compliance or structure but fun to experiment. Just finished 6 weeks of SS (with a bit of Thresh); again, all TR workouts (but not TR plans). I’m now doing ~3 weeks of anaerobic work. After that…I dunno! Probably some rest and then a big block of Z3/Z4 for the Oct/Nov/Dec. Might do a 2-week VO2max booster before that.

It all depends on how much time the pandemic giveth or taketh away from me.

Um…no. FTP and below, yes, very much use power and target watts as your main metric. Unfortunately, HR is not a “great indicator” as so much effects it. Work done over FTP should be more personalized, esp the further away from FTP you get. There are a couple of specific “zones” where HR is perhaps most useful (although breath is an even more precise metric): 1) VT1, kinda at the top of your Z2 zone; if you want to go out for a long endurance ride without starting at your numbers all day, breath through your nose and you’ll be fine; and 2) VO2max; please refer to the other KM threads for all that info (or his podcast!). Everything else, power.

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What you describe sounds similar to what I’ve been doing. I don’t know if that’s the right path for you, I barely know what I’m doing.
VO2 is tricky. At that intensity it’s hard to look at numbers to moderate effort level. I don’t think 120% of something works for me; it can easily be too hard or too easy. I found outdoor efforts were effective. 6 x 3min, and go as hard as you can. Riding your bike outdoors is nowhere near as mentally taxing as being pinned to a specific number of watts whilst counting down the seconds of sufferance.
Breathing is another important cue to whether I’m in the right zone. Sweetspot is a bit above the point where talking starts to become difficult whilst endurance is where I can talk comfortably.
I’m trying to keep my workouts to be a sub-set of what TR prescribes so that I can better compare performance over time. My hope is that I will see more watts for the same number of beats. E.g, Truuli is always the first workout I do following a vacation. Not only is it a good workout for preparing my body prior to a block of training but it gives me a great indication of whether I’ve detrained or if I’ve had some positive adaptations or if I’ve recovered from the travel. Likewise, Wright Peak -2 is a sweetspot workout I do on a regular basis. My HR should be around 150 for each of the efforts so that I can compare avg. watts. All this means I don’t need to rely exclusively on an assessment to determine progress.
RestingHR can sometimes explain poor performance or elevated RPE. I monitor my restingHR on a daily basis and will update my training notes if I see anything unexpected.

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I’ve been doing a zone 2 block after finishing up Century Specialty build early summer. I have seen my power increase 15 watts for the same pulse. One other thing that I’ve noted is that my pulse goes higher before I reach VT1 subjectively. Currently doing 3 x 2 hr isopower workouts/week with one group ride which is the usual hammerfest. I often tack on another hr of zone 2 after the group ride.