Listening to and reading discussions about polarized training, making your easy days easy / hard days hard, and holding FTP for a full hour has caused me to take a step back and consider my training. Preemptive disclaimer: I don’t know that all my thoughts on this subject are well formed into questions. This may be better approached as an opening for discussion rather than questions to directly answer.
Since starting structured training I’ve been more inclined to nudge the workout intensity up a few points whenever I feel like things are getting too easy rather than rigidly adhering to my most recent assessed estimate. Doing this has caused every ramp test I’ve ever taken to return a lower value than what I’m currently working at. So far I’ve chalked this up to my power/duration curve falling outside the standard, opting to continue from where I was (plus my ego isn’t inclined to accept that lower number).
But what if that ramp test is right? What if I’m not as strong as I think I am? Is it possible all my zones are off? Have I turned my endurance rides into tempo? Tempo into sweet spot? Are those VO2 max repeats hitting my anaerobic system more than intended? Should I take a hint from the thought of actually holding my FTP for an hour makes me laugh? Is everything I think I know a lie???
I’m being intentionally dramatic here, but it’s made me wonder what if any downstream impact this has on training. Is it possible I’d be getting better results from doing less work? At face value that sounds crazy, but there’s a reason we don’t go 100% every session.
Like I said up front, I don’t really expect clear answers to any of this but I am curious to hear anyone else’s thoughts or experience here. Also, while I don’t intend this to be directly about me, I figure the question about my own workout compliance will come up. You can be the judge - https://www.trainerroad.com/career/ryann/rides