Pro/Elite training

Let’s have a thread to share any info on pro/elite training. I find this topic highly interesting and inspirational.

I will make a start:

Mathew Hayman

Cody Beals, triathlon

Michi Weiss, triathlon

BMC racing team, pre-season training

and more to come. Furthermore, I can grab pro Strava sites and have them summarized automatically. I just have to brush up the summaries before they are presentable.


That’s very interesting. Matt Hayman’s power numbers are strangely low; the fall off from 20min power to 60min is 16% (ie vs the 5% most 20 min power test apply for your ‘FTP’). if that is right then it does give argument most people over estimate their 1hr power

He has won P-R and you used to see him sit at the front and pull the peloton along at 48kph for hours on end. I would have thought his 1hr power was well north of 400 watts, esp at 80kg +

Very few amateur cyclists will be able to hold their FTP for an hour. 20 min tests are not equal to 60 min tests and ramp tests are even less of a 1=1. There’s a reason 2x20 is the classic threshold interval and even that is plenty taxing for most folks.

A guy like Hayman doesn’t have to have the biggest FTP, but he has the big aerobic base to work at a high percentage for long periods of time, and to hit his 20min power consistently (these guys don’t pull for hours, but 5min over and over and over…) after 3000kj of racing. This type of fitness takes lots of time and volume and neither the training or even the racing application has much to do with an amateur athlete and what they encounter.


His FTP when you work it backwards from the data was around 410.

He was probably doing most of his pulls at the front of the peloton in high tempo, which he could probably hold for a very long time.

Doing 48 on flat with a peloton at your back… i dont think you need to do anything near 400w maybe 330-350 would do

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Surely FTP is a proxy for what you can do for 1hr?
So saying you cant hold FTP for an hour means your FTP is lower than you think (which is what Seiler keeps saying about most amateurs; we are obsessed about hitting an arbitrary number…)

I think its just funny we have threads about TR users who have a FTP of 5 watts a kilo; and you have an 18 yr pro, who has won a monument and he is at 4.6 w

just shows; FTP and w/kg a) need to be measuremed accurately and consistently otherwise we are all talking about different things and b)are not the be all and end all
Your ability to operate at very high % of FTP etc are ultimately as, if not more, important


This is incorrect. FTP != hour power. An hour TT can be a close approximation depending on the individual and their state of training.

FTP = MLSS which has a variable time to exhaustion when ridden at continuously between 30-70 minutes depending on rider phenotype.

(also, Seiler is frankly not a reliable source when it comes to cycling. The majority of his research is on runners and cross country skiers and much of his cycling data quoted in his studies is actually contradictory to his other meta-analysis conclusions)


I’m with you. This is what I’m typically saying, but I wouldn’t even stress accuracy too much. As long as you’re working with consistency the number is secondary (ie an old dumb trainer using estimated power).

FTP is technically a number but in training I see it as a guideline. If you measured MLSS daily you wouldn’t necessarily measure the same on any two days. Slavishly chasing a power target isn’t smart training.

Also agree 100% that the ability to hold a high % and actual endurance is where it’s at. No need to go put in pro hours to compete in 3-4hr amateur road races, but the ability to ride 1550- 2000kj of HighZ3/SS and still have enough in the tank to make an attack stick will serve you very well.


There’s a young pro rider (w/ CCC maybe?) who has training structured like this; his coach calls them ‘Tired 20’s’. It would be great training for any level of racer, given an applicable kJ range, of course. I’ll try to find the TP link.


Me too, thanks for posting. Was surprised to hear about Hayman’s two-a-days. Pro cycling is changing. Interesting stuff.

With you on Seiler. I actually tend to enjoy him but don’t think much of his training advice is helpful to the average amateur cyclist.


Will Barta. I think you posted it a while back.

Perfect example. Also look at a guy like Phil Gaimon. He trains nearly as much as a domestic pro and it gets him world class 5-20min power but he readily admits he’d get destroyed trying to ride 200k at world tour race pace. That sustained power and endurance is what all those 30+ hr weeks get you that no amount of HIIT is ever going to touch.


Then you both misinterpreted the point of FTP. FTP does not and has nothing to do with hour power. UNLESS, you are training for a TT. FTP is a training tool to set training zones. Which as @stevemz stated would be your ability to hold your FTP from 30-70 mins.

Why would I ever want or care about some theoretical “hour power”, I race XCO so my actual hour power is useless knowledge and certainly something I would never waste my valuable training time on. FTP is a proxy for one’s maximal lactate steady state (MLSS) and work load (MLSSw). Your FTP allows one to train at appropriate power levels. Then, through training you chose how to express your FTP depending on your cycling discipline and goals.

For example, two riders at 5.0 w/kg with the same age, weight and height; but one races road centuries and the other races XCO (or crits), may have the same (and accurate) FTP, but are able to express that FTP in vastly different ways. It does not mean the the rider with the sustained ability to hold his FTP for 70 mins is somehow better. I assure you that specialty trained century rider will not fair well in a crit.

This “hour power” thing is foolishly traditional thinking and an ignorant way people use to minimize/belittle another’s stated FTP or w/kg.


Let’s stay on topic with the Pro/Elite training articles and season breakdowns. I’m sure we could all debate FTP and comparing similar w/kg in the other numerous threads :slight_smile: (and I fully admit I may have opened up that can of worms)

Here is the article that @Captain_Doughnutman was talking about about Will Barta


Just to point out that the 60 minutes was (a) on a TT bike whereas the 20 minutes was on a road bike, and (b) on the final stage of the Tour de Suisse 2013, coming in nearly 9 minutes behind Rui Costa to finish 94th overall.

So I’m guessing that he probably wasn’t really pushing himself. In fact he’s probably never really tested himself for 60 minutes in his career.


Love this thread (or at least the OP dealing with pro training)! Definitely following. Cody Beal’s articles are great. You can check out some of Lionel Sanders’s original videos too for a look into what he was doing

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You know that Phil Gaimon was a World Tour rider right (Garmin, Cannondale, ?) He retired (2016?). His training now is on more focused on short efforts for his Strava KOM efforts and Youtube channel.

Yes. That was my point.


folks, I would appreciate if we could stay on topic here. Discussion is always good but please, please, please, on topic. And especially not on how FTP is defined, I’ve already endured this discussion/slanging match on the Wattage forum for years. I’m really tired of this.

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