mFTP v. Ramp Test

I’m sure this has been discussed here before but I’m having trouble finding exactly what I’m looking for. I did a TR ramp test this morning and it put me at 283. However, my mFTP in WKO5 is 305. I’ve seen here on the forums that mFTP is based on what you’ve actually done while the Ramp is what you can do on that day. A 20 W difference between the two seems a bit extreme though. Any thoughts on whether I should nudge up from the 283 or just play by ear in the early workouts? Also, for context, I’m generally a steady power TT guy, traditionally not great with the V02max or anaerobic stuff.

You could always do a 20 - 40min FTP test to see how it compares to the new mFTP. I think it makes sense for people to try a variety of FTP assessment protocols and see which works best for them. Not shopping around for the highest number, but finding the most accurate estimate of FTP.

Personally, I’m also a steady power TT type rider and ramp test under assesses my FTP by 10-12%. Or to put it another way, I can hold 83-84% of my ramp test MAP (i.e. max aerobic power - last 1 min power and roughly my 5min power) for 40+ min. Ramp test estimates FTP at 75% of MAP. I also personally find the eFTP from intervals.icu to be a little high if I rip out a full blast 20min effort.

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Ditch the ramp test. With the progression level introduction in TR i don’t really see a need for it anymore. If you can hit the workouts at 305 at lower progression levels then stay with it, and look to increase these levels.

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Ramp is a simple, repeatable test that doesn’t destroy your body. It doesn’t mean it is the most accurate for everyone.

If it was me (personally), I would add 1% and if I hit all my targets, do another 1% until I hit my limit. Well, that is what I did when I was returning from a car accident and knew my body would ramp up fast and didn’t want to test every few days.

Not everyone has access to AT yet…

I am still scheduled for a ramp tomorrow.

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Any ftp test should not destroy your body TBF

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Ignore the A vs B metrics for a minute, do you have a sense for what power feels right? If you look at your workouts in trainer road at different zones or if you were asked to go out and do a 20 minute interval as hard as you can sustain, which of those numbers makes the most sense? Some people just test poorly either consistently or as an isolated occurrence, conversely, WKO+ could be off as well depending on the focus of your recent work. If you’re on the fence, you could split the difference and observe how your adherence plays out and adjust up or down. You don’t want to be breezing through your workouts, nor do you want to be setting yourself up to fail. I know this doesn’t give you a firm answer, but without retesting (which could elucidate nothing) you really have to rely on your own performance and understanding.

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You don’t need access to AT. All workouts now have a visible progression level. You would just make adjustments yourself as opposed to AT, which i assume would do that for you.

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You might underperform on the ramp test. Ramp is pretty accurate for me, probably over my mFTP by 2% or so most times. But I train by my mFTP supported by field testing.

Best way to confirm is riding to MLSS by feel and holding it as long as you can. Once you do that a couple of times, you can periodically dial in your FTP without incurring a bunch of fatigue.

Remember FTP isn’t a precise measurement - it varies day to day and there are errors associated with measuring it. Getting it within 5W or so is good enough for most.

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Thank you, everyone, for the most excellent advice! I think I’ll split the difference between the ramp and the mFTP and then let the workouts be my guide going forward.

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which is why I will never do the Sufferfest’s 4DP test ever again… :slight_smile:

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mFTP is modeled based on your power curve. You need to have max efforts at key durations (think max power, v02max, threshold) for it to be accurate. If you haven’t done any max shorter efforts in the 90 days (or however you have wko5 setup) it thinks you have low anaerobic capacity (basically FRC). Underestimated FRC = overestimated FTP

If that’s the case for you, try some all out sprints and then a max 1-2 min effort and see how FRC and mFTP change.

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I guess I don’t understand how that works.

Well that’s interesting. I have done some 1 to 5 minute efforts and hit highs in the last few weeks. But no sprints. Wonder how that effects the mFTP.

Maybe it’s ok then. What is your TTE? That’s the estimated time you can hold mFTP. When my TTE is < 40 min I usually know the mFTP is slightly high.

Lots of resources out there to help understand the wko5 model, but this hits the main points as good as any - Why Did my Power Duration Curve or Power Duration Metrics Change In WKO5? – TrainingPeaks Help Center

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Oh, and the other real possibility is mFTP is accurate and ramp underestimated for any number of typical reasons discussed on this forum. Should be able to hone in on the right number after a few long threshold workouts. I recommend swapping one for one of the kolie Moore test protocols

Does your mFTP include outside rides? If your mFTP is referencing outside rides and races then this would explain the difference in estimation. We can assume that your outdoor FTP is 1.07x (most likely to be in range of 1.03-1.12) your indoor FTP then 283 indoors could be roughly equivalent to 303 outdoors.

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Yes, definitely includes outdoor rides and most of my high power lately has been outside. That’s a really good point.

1.07? Where did you get that? My best 20+ min power numbers are on the trainer… granted some of that is probably inability to find a good long stretch of road near me, but I train in/out at same numbers and feels the same to me

After i got adequate fans my indoor and outdoor ftp are similar. If anything on hot days i can hold more power inside than out. I think the 1.07 rule is not true.

1.07 is not a rule [I think this number came from a podcast with a EF Cycling coach] by any means because this performance discrepancy depends on heaps of variables and the rider. Just like the majority of riders will make less power in a TT position relative to their road position. This is not true for everyone but on the whole it [3-12% range] characterizes the performance of most riders.

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