Normal to have to adjust intensity for anaerobic and VO2max workouts?

Recently I’ve found anaerobic works like Striped (15-60s x 140-160%) to be easy but VO2max workouts like Kaiser (6 x 3min @ 120%) to be hard? Does this indicate my FTP needs to be adjusted?

I’ve done Striped twice is the past few weeks and I felt comfortable increasing intensity to 105%. Then last night during Kaiser, I had to reduce intensity to 95% to be able to complete it.

Does this suggests my anaerobic capacity is good but my power @ VO2max needs some work? Can my anaerobic capacity skew my FTP results after ramp tests?

This season I’ve done SSB, Sustained Power build, and climbing road race and pretty much all the workouts felt at the appropriate intensity. Now that I’m doing HIIT maintenance (I’m crit racing now) I’m having to mess around with intensity that I never had to do previously. It feels like something’s wrong? Or do I simply need to work on my pVO2max?

Possibly, but I’d note that Kaiser is particularly difficult. The rests are only 3 minutes, whereas when @chad made changes to the workouts in the training plans recently, the ones with 3min vo2 efforts had the rest intervals increased to 4 minutes because too many people were failing them.

Maybe try Spencer +2 and see how you get on with that.


6x3min@120% might be hard for you, but for someone else with the exact same FTP it might be too easy.

Long version short… If you have to drop the power a bit, so be it. Nothing wrong w/this.

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Thanks for the suggestion. I was actually extending the recoveries even at 95% :confused: I think I’m inclined to either do Kaiser -1 or something with intervals <3mins, like Givens -2, Dade -1, or Hurd -2. And try to work my way up.

It’s just slightly unusual for me, to struggle with VO2max work, it’s been threshold that beaten me in the past. I don’t like messing with the intensity but I guess my power curve is such that 100% intensity doesn’t work as well for me as it once did.

It could be any number of things that caused you to struggle, e.g., not enough sleep, physically tired from weekend racing, nutrition, etc… You could have just had an off day. Or you might need to adjust the power down. The workout targets are descriptive, not prescriptive. I understand not wanting to adjust the intensity, but dropping it down a bit does not necessarily mean you are not getting the intended training effect. If RPE, HR, and respiration were all high, you’re probably right where you needed to be.

As for anaerobic capacity skewing a ramp test (i.e., inflating FTP), yes it can. Have you always used the Ramp test? Maybe try a 20min test for comparison.


I can’t stomach the idea of 20mins of hurt. I’d rather tweak intensity manually or set FTP to what I think it should be.
I’m trying to understand my strengths and weaknesses and what my recent workouts tell me.