Personal worst FTP test result?

Curious what peoples worst result has ever been on am FTP test. By worst here, I mean most artificially low from where you would normally perform.

I will open with my experience this week, where I tested 17% lower than my prior test - 50w lower! I had hit my max HR by the end, so effort was not in question, calibration was fine, etc. The week before I had been doing threshold o/u with no difficulty based on old FTP, and later that same day I did a sweet-spot session that, if based on my “new” FTP would have meant I was doing 20min VO2max intervals.

It is really not clear to me why I blew up that day, as there was nothing obviously off. Which on it’s own is disconcerting, but I think speaks to the degree of variability in testing that can happen.


It’s not happened to me on an FTP test, but I’ve failed quite a few workouts that were easy on paper.

It’s usually a combination of 2 or 3 of the same things, looking back; poor sleep the night/few days before, stress at work/home, a build up of fatigue, coming down with a minor bug, insufficient cooling, fuelling or hydration, or simply not being in the right mindset for a challenging workout - delete as appropriate.

My mantra is have a couple of days off, then try it again. If it goes well, just move on and maybe try and work out what (if anything) went wrong before - you can usually work it out, but don’t stress if not. We’re not robots and just have bad days sometimes. If it goes south again, you probably need a closer look at the overall program and lifestyle/nutrition factors.

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I had a really bad result where I lost 80w once! It was a combination of a couple of things: I had just come across to trainer road from zwift and my first FTP test was 343w. Awesome! However this was brittle fitness from short zwift races and very low TSS (averaging around 120TSS a week), ie no base. I then got sick because SSBLV1 was too much intensity and my FTP was estimated too high from the ramp test.

I was completely off the bike for 4 weeks (pretty sick and some work travel didn’t help). I got back on the bike for a couple of outdoor rides and then tried a ramp test to see where I was at…260w. Ouch. I wasn’t fresh and the feeling of not even being able to reach my FTP wattage on the test was incredibly demotivating. I tested again a few days later and was up to 280w. I waited another couple of days and got 290w, so I decided to start SSB1 with that, a 50w drop.

I’m still not even back up to that 340w FTP, but I’ve decided to stay the course and develop some base fitness before I try and add some short duration power.


Worst was after a weekend of stress-related lack of sleep and a bit of booze. 9% overall dip.

Worst FTP test result not directly attributable to life was my first.

I think my lowest ramp test before I stopped doing them was 227w. I’d held 250NP for an hour outside a month earlier, done 263w for a virtual 40mins a month before that and 296w for 20 a few months before that and 246NP the day after for a 45 mins of TR work out. At which point I switched to 20mins tests. The first 20mins test was 284w but the last one was just 267w so I am currently using an FTP of 250w :thinking:

My best 20mins was 325w in an interval session but I doubt I’ll get back there it was 2 years ago on Saturday (feels like 3), when I was 3kg heavier and had 3inches more of colon (and they say things come in threes :roll_eyes: ). The numbers were also boosted by Iron tablets prescribed to fix a chronic deficiency.

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My first ramp test was something like 237w, where my off the couch fitness is typically 260-270w. 280 is when I’m just riding a lot, or now in base where the focus isn’t a high FTP. Saw 310 over the summer last year and hope to improve on that this season with a better and more sustainable approach.

My first ramp test with TR got me 187. I thought I was closer to 200 than that and was really bummed out about my score. Then I did some races and realized just how far off the pace I was from even being relevant.

With my weight at 155 lbs (70 kg) at the time of that 187 test, that was right around 3 w/kg for me. Last week, I bumped up to 251 at 150 lbs (68 kg) putting me at around 3.8 w/kg (technically 3.79… fml). So that’s a steady growth from 3 w/kg in May 2018 to 3.8 w/kg in February 2021.

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I tested 22% lower than my previous test at the start of this year (from 306 to 241).

I was, and still am to some extent, dealing with the lingering effects of Covid but it was still a bitter pill to swallow.

I’m now dreading my next test having struggled through build even at the significantly reduced FTP… strangely I used to look forward to testing in the past, especially after a solid block of training.

Roughly 60W. Same PM/bike. Ramp test with dumb trainer vs. outside 20 minute protocol. 1 day apart. I honestly do not know why I struggle so much on my trainer? Perhaps the bearings need attention or something. IDK. All I know is training inside isn’t worth it on my current trainer. I think TR has some great features but, until the day I buy a smart trainer I’ll just ride outside (live in an area easy to do so year around).

Was off the bike for 2.5 months… was running and focusing on endurance only.

Let me tell you… that upper end gets weak REAL FAST. My max HR last i checked is low 190s
I got to 173 on the ramp test and had to stop. On the bright side, this means i can get some watts back easily from a bit more of vo2 max/anaerobic work.

Long story short i dropped about 20w so i can only get better from here lol