This topic is inspired a bit by the latest podcast. It seemed that TR is building all kinds of stuff to ‘omit’ facing reality and testing and/or going all out. Nate et all. talk about the ability to ‘express your FTP’ and not having to do that in a future feature that ‘estimates’ your FTP based on completing workouts or other types of efforts.
Sure this has its value I guess since probably a large base of TR users just want to ‘improve’ and lack the willingness to do for example a ramp test.
Some critical thinking:
- Coming from a process background one of the main things I find is that improvement can only be measured against a standardized measurement protocol. If you remove this, what is your base measurement going to look like? And how do you keep your data quality high?
For me, I value the ramp test because I get a good sense of improvement if I continue to use the same measurement (ramp test), equipment (my trainer and the bike Power meter), and the situation (indoors, the same amount of cooling).
I used to use Xert which bases the FTP estimate on max efforts and matches this with a general power profile like Coggans power chart. I really hope we do not go that direction, because it motivated me to do max efforts all the time instead of investing in good training. I used to chase FTP improvements ‘on paper’.
The FTP that Xert gave me was an expression of my strongest point. In my case 5-20 sec sprint after some 5min anaerobic interval. I am very good at those. However, the FTP that came out of these estimates i could not hold for even 8 minutes… And most importantly it overestimated my 20min value so much that my power targets were just way too high and therefore training totally unproductive.