Michele Ferrari training model

Let’s look into the dark side of cycling training. How does this controversial charcter see training. He was influential for at least a decade, so it is interesting to learn about his training model.

I was aware of his website but have never really looked into the forum. Some interesting insights there. I will simply post as I make my way through it.

Feel free to contribute.

I just post his positions, I don’t claim they are correct (with a few exceptions where I have a distinct position … has something to do with a certain Texan prof living in NO). I don’t advocate any of them. I don’t claim he has found any magical formula.

I’m just interested in his viewpoints on training.


He’s clearly a tempo guy:

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Endurance up to 2 mmol, this so tempo

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if 2mmol is something like 91% of 4mmol La, base work has been successful


mix it up, something we see often in pro training (context here: weeks before an important race


training at anaerobic threshold is the best method to improve anaerobic threshold (which contradicts some modern school of thinking --> threshold training is supposedly bad)

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(note: he advocates a lot of Medio, e.g. up to tempo; this comes on top of 1-2 threshold)


his take on polarized training
(damn it, I guess it is not political correct to say “I like this guy” :slight_smile: )

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Don’t forget plenty of orange juice :wink:

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My all time favourite training website :sunglasses:

He started my obsession with VAM

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Interesting. Thanks for posting. Seems like these different schools of training are akin to diets. They all seem to work for their respective practitioners. Which means that we should focus on the commonalities. That brings us back to principles:

  1. Avoid overtraining.
  2. Enough volume to create adaptation
  3. Variety of stimuli
  4. Progressive load
  5. Diet, Recovery, Strength Training

Many ways to skin the cat and you can try what works for your specific genotype and general disposition.

Cheers. H

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Further in the program

AT2 training for ironman

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on base rides

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pushing up FTP

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or this

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working towards a specific climbing goal (short term)

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this one for the excel engineers here

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more pushing than pulling

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hot topic: stroke volume

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Love the word “Soglia”. :sweat_smile:

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Great great summary. And in all honesty what I feel works for me. Z2,3 and 4 with little above z4 just close to races otherwise I don’t recover and my form goes down.
In other words Lento, Medio and Soglia rock.
Super Soglia not so much.

AT2 and AT4? Do those line up with basically endurance and threshold zones ala Coggan?

No. AT2 is clearly above 75%FTP for most folks. AT4 would be close to Coggan threshold. However, see his comments on the relationship to 20min allout.

and then there is always variation, variation, variation

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Adding to this comment here how this level compares to 20 min power:

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Also lets keep in mind he is referring to 20 minute critical power not Coggan FTP protocol and therefore this are %s of 20 min all out power if I am not mistaken

I 100% agree with this. 2mmol in my experience marks Around 90% FTP and is not the top of zone 2/ bottom of zone 3 boundary.

Sieler in his 3 zone model has 2mmol limit for zone 1. But this includes tempo/ medio zone and is not “ easy “ pace. Tempo pace is 1-2mmol. Classic zone 2 upto 75% ftp is baseline lactate.
threshold zone is 2-4mmol - usually 10% of ftp power covers this.

Gold nuggets everywhere: image
Where are the proponents of polarised now?

Doesn’t polarized Z1 contain Medio?

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I swear this is becoming hip again now, and not just because I’m doing it :stuck_out_tongue:

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Polarised suggests up to 40% of the total volume at an intensity of 75 to 80% of your CP20 (max 20 min power)? I really thought it did not.

How to taper:

I’m through with it, the last ones (which are of interest to me)



weight loss:
Caloric deficit should not be longer than 2 weeks.
Two periods of a couple of weeks , separated by 1-2 weeks of no deficit, should be right.




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Surprisingly I have seen him mention to forget classic VO2max 5 minute intervals to raise power as they are too anaerobic and can result in reduced AT4 power unless they are needed for the specificity of a race

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