Too much of a jump in FTP?

To start off with, my background is marathon running. I have done a little bit of riding here and there over the years, but nothing serious. I got a smart trainer and zwift in the fall. I started out with a FTP of 123 in September. I didn’t do a whole lot of ridding since I had a marathon in October. On January 14th I switched to TR and had a FTP of 128(Zwift) and a few days later, 135 on TR. I think I went soft on the zwift test. I started with the IM Mid volume base plan. I am aiming for IM Lousville with a half IM in June. Today I did my ramp test as I switched to the build phase and had a 146.

So my question is, that seems like a really big jump. Does that sound accurate? A lot of what I read it seems like people only make incremental gains of a few FTP, never +11 in 1.5 months. I don’t want to start my build phase with a FTP too high.

That’s a pretty normal jump, especially starting where you are

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Its quite normal that when most people start structured training they get large % gains in power. Personally I think you need to do the ramp test a few times before you learn how to push yourself on the trainer as opposed to going all out on a climb. Keep it up and good luck.

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Seems very normal for people who are new to structured training, and I bet you’re going to have an even higher bump after your build cycle!

Actually, since IM plans only test FTP once at the beginning of each block, I would say you might want to think about retesting after the first 4 weeks or think about self-adjusting your FTP up (assuming things are going well).

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Similarly, I started riding last spring after a 6 year hiatus, and my 20 min test on Zwift put me at 170 watts. I took some time off this fall due to knee tendonopathy, My first Ramp test was 155 watts. After Traditional Base 1, it jumped to 277 watts. After traditional Base 2 it jumped to 308 watts. I have since learned that my Kickr wasn’t reading accurately, but even so, my FTP doubled based on Traditional Base 1 and 2. I suspect my FTP is really pretty close to 200 watts. I have a ramp test scheduled with my recalibrated Kickr when I get back from a work trip.

Like the others said, not unusual for those of us new to structured training. I’m also a beginner with some running background, and SSB1/2 LV took me up by 30%:
159 (Nov 3rd, first ride on a trainer)
178 (Dec 4th)
197 (Dec 31st, start of SSB2 LV)
208 (Feb 26th)

In between tests, I did slightly increase the intensity of some workouts when it felt like I’d improved significantly.

Its funny you posted this as I saw some FTP improvements in the Your FTP improvements thread that just didn’t make sense. Like 20-25% jumps in 2-3 months over not small starting points.

Yours however makes total sense, I think. You already have a nice “engine” being a marathoner and you’re new to structured bike training and have a relatively “low” FTP I think you’re going to continue to see really nice gains coming

Thanks for all the responses! I felt like I got almost nothing out of Zwift, but I can definitely tell the difference jumping into TR.

As suggested, I will redo the test in a couple weeks. My test went 28 minutes. It even popped up on my screen and said my FTP was probably underestimated.

If you’re confident that your FTP has increased significantly, you can manually raise your FTP before your test to keep it closer to the normal length. I expect that it’s a more accurate test when your prior FTP estimate is closer.

At the beginning of SSB LVI, I was 141 watts. At the end, I was 165 watts. In my latest SSB LVII ride (Donner), I had to reduce intensity to 86-90%.

Donner is a sweet spot workout, and this year of TrainerRoad is my first experience with structured training. I do play tennis on and off, and have done cardio in the gym, so I’m somewhat fit but well below average compared to the TrainerRoad crowd.