Hi, all, I’ve been cycling for around 2 years (1 year using TR). I’ve done the math and think I need to get to 190W FTP (at 55kg bodyweight as a 24 year old female) to keep up with this group ride I really have been wanting to join for the longest time.
I’ve never been completely consistent on a plan (high volume first, then mid volume) and I also broke my elbow riding outdoors which kept me off the bike for months. At my peak I’ve been at around 160 ftp and around 150 ftp right now after around 1 month off the bike due to a second surgery for my elbow. My starting ftp (from almost no training–just a couple of Zwift plans–was around 137–but that might have been incorrectly low since looking back at my training history I was able to complete Tallac +3 (SS 7.8) my second week of TR training).
If I stay consistent on a mid-volume plan, do you think it’s possible to get to 190 FTP in 6 months time? I know everyone is different and it’s impossible to know until I try, but I’m just trying to figure out whether this is a crazy goal or whether I might actually be able to join and keep up with this group ride if I’m consistent about my TR training on mid volume for around 6 months.
Train as best as you can and see what happens.
In the meantime, join the ride and see how you get on. It might not be as bad as you think.
You can definitely do it
But it’s best to be consistent.
For me personally, I follow a low volume plan, so 3 days of training spread out throughout the week ( but that gives me days to recover and do other things off the bike).
But also don’t obsess about that number. It’s a target definitely. But you might exceed it…
Honestly, you should just show up and do it every single week. It’s ok if you get dropped after 20, 30, or 60 minutes. Do whatever part of the ride you can. Often group rides have pee stops or regroup stops where you can catch back on or keep pedaling easy and then let them catch up. Sometimes you can cut a few miles off the course and join back up with the group.
If you stay consistent, you’ll get better and better and better. That is, do as much low intensity volume as your schedule allows. Follow your plan’s couple of hard days (interval sessions). Count this hard group ride as one of the hard day. Take a super easy week every third week or whatever the plan calls for. That’s all you’ve got to do.
I do a hard group ride on way less watts/kg than you are targeting. Last year I would only last about an hour but I kept showing up week after week. This year I’m finishing with the group every week @ 2.75w/kg. This group ride has young racers 30 years younger than me, an ex-pro, an ex-olympian, a current female pro mountain biker, plus an assortment of lower ability riders.
Just want to add that it will also allow you to work on your pack riding skills and drafting, which can give a LOT of “bonus watts” if you weren’t good at it before.
Yeah, completely doable! Go low volume and be consistent and you’ll get there!
Ad riding if you can and want to but nail those workouts!
As others have said, you canjoin and hang on as long as you can but if you have to go all out hanging on it’s probably not the best situation for learning anything
I wanted to restate your question in W/kg terms, since the low raw watts relative to what an average ~75kg dude might put out could be deceiving: You’re currently at ~2.7 W/kg, your peak is ~2.9, and you want to get to ~3.5 in six months. You’ve been cycling for two years, and training on TR for one.
Honestly, 0.8 W/kg in six months is a tall ask. You’re young, so I’d wager you’ll get there eventually, but you’re talking about turning what is now over 125% of your threshold, into your threshold. The only times I’ve had gains like that, that quickly, were when I first started, and when I’ve come back to training after a long break for illness/injury (and when I replaced my wheel-on trainer with a direct-drive ).
TR has some great charts that visualize average thresholds for different buckets of riders on the platform. Here’s women aged 18-30:
All that said, the advice you’re getting about going on the ride anyway is great! Power matters less than you’d think when you ride in a group, so if you can get good at saving energy, you’ll be able to hang even your watts are lower than you’d like.
(I could be completely wrong about all of this. I don’t know you, and my own experience comes from picking up cycling late after no prior athletic history and with no genetic talent. If you prove me wrong I’ll be ecstatic! )
Just go to the group ride and see what happens. Its not all about numbers.