Tempo work - max heart rate 190bpm

Doing 2 x 30min tempo intervals at 85% (277w) of FTP (326w) and heart rate average at 180bpm maxing out at 190bpm. Is my FTP set to high or is it a cooling thing ? Is inside and outside FTP different ?

Heart rate depends on many things e.g, dehydration, insomnia, incoming sickness. Take a look in the forum and search for heart rate and think about your current situation if something puts additional pressure on your body.

Yes, indoor and outdoor ftp are different.

Yes, cooling affects your heart rate. What is your situation here, do you have any fans?

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Thanks for the reply.

Looking back I was a little dehydrated.

I have two fans on full blast - they’re nothing special, basic pedestal fans from Bunnings Warehouse (https://www.bunnings.com.au/click-40cm-black-pedestal-fan_p0104281). The room does get quite hot and there isn’t much fresh air circulating the room.

HR does sound high but you haven’t noted your max or resting HR. We’d need to know at least one, preferably both, of those to advise you better.

Resting heart rate is around 48-58bpm and from previous efforts my max heart rate was 189bpm

The max HR you specified doesn’t seem right. Do a couple of an all out sprints and see where it peaks.

That’ll be your starting point.

Also, as others pointed out, a lot depends on factors such as cooling, fatigue, etc.

No way you should be exceeding previous max HR values on a tempo workout. That sounds so far off base that I’m not even sure it could be accounted for by hydration, cooling, sickness, etc. I’ve had some days where HR is higher than usual due to those factors but it’s never got anywhere near max on a tempo or even SS workout, and if those issues are bad enough to cause a significant rise then they’re generally bad enough that I can’t even finish the workout anyway. My max HR is mid 180s, normal HR for tempo is high 150s, for SS is low 160s, might have touched 170 when I’m having a bad day but never got within 15 beats of max.

Is it possible it’s a tech issue? Low battery, loose strap, intermittent connection, etc? How was your RPE? Did you double check your HR by holding your wrist and counting beats?

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I don’t think it was a tech issue, my garmin watch was giving me the same reading.

RPE was very high, as you could imagine. I didn’t complete both sets, only managed to finish 1 set and then after 5mins into the second set I pulled the pin.

My only other thought is I had a week off and the week prior to the week off was festive 500 - which I did over 800km and over 14000m vert

how did you determine your FTP?

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Sounds like your indoor FTP is set to high. Do a ramp test!

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Well, do you think you could complete the same workout at 95%, so 2x30 mim. At 310w?

If you can’t complete this workout when you are reasonably rested, then your FTP is likely set too high.

After I held 2 x 12min @340 outside. Probably should do an indoor ramp test.

Not sure to be honest.

I’d partially agree with that, but if if you’re FTP is set close, this should be doable after at least a block of SSB. I’d argue that the OP shouldn’t be doing tempo blocks that long if their avg hr is that close to max, because it’s really threshold at that point.

I’m not sure you can have your FTP set correctly and not complete a 2x30min effort at 95%, assuming you didn’t use a longer testing protocol like say a 40km TT, like many high level coaches advocate. The situation you are describing is likely a result using a testing protocol such as a ramp test, and where the value you produce overestimates your 1 hour power (assuming you don’t have the muscular endurance you mention), which indicates it isn’t actually your current one hour power, but merely an indication of what it could be with the proper training. The other possibility is the short test protocol shows you are better at anaerobic efforts, which again is over estimating your FTP.


What was your HR during those two intervals?

I dont believe TR changed plan intensity prescriptions after switching from longer FTP tests so a ramp test “FTP” doesnt really solve the issue. You could just as easily have adjusted those percentages for vo2max and endurance rides. Its just as likely that someone with an ramp FTP set too high will be training endurance and vo2max at levels too high as well

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Unfortuntely I did not have heart rate that day. Looking back at other workouts that I did outside, my heart rate was 170bpm whilst doing 3 x 12mins @330w.

Yesterday I did Gibraltar -2 and dropped my FTP to 315 and had an average heart rate of 150 and max of 165bpm. Maybe a more accurate indoor FTP?

Where did you end up with this?

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I dropped my indoor FTP by 15 watts (315). The last two weeks of SS workouts have been sub-threshold heart rate - 160-170bpm. Perfect and in the correct zone