Undertraining indoors?

I’m a Suito user too and I also don’t like ERG (whether or not the Suito is the problem :thinking:) I save them for off season but I prefer a non ERG FTP test like the 20mins test. If I get the pacing right on a 20min test my FTP is 30-40w higher and even if I don’t get it right and blow up before the end of the 20mins it will still be slightly higher. I’m doing all my training with ERG off now.

Edit: My FTP indoors in a non ERG test will be slightly higher than I usually get outside unless its a perfect outside course with no traffic etc to worry about. :wink:

  • Well, I have spent nearly 6 years testing motion of all sorts, and have a different opinion about the need to exactly replicate the motion we get outside, in order to get useful gains inside.

  • I’d rather not push this topic that far off the path, so if you want to talk more about the specifics of trainer motion in light of outside motion, my main rocker plate thread is more appropriate.

  • Indeed, most are on fixed trainers, and I think that aspect is a HUGE difference when compared to the freedom we have outside… and is the reason I mention it as something to consider when trying to account for differences in output between riding inside and outside.
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I don’t mean to suggest you can’t get gains indoors - on the contrary, myself I just stick to ramp test results (or general effort RPE) and do all of my hard/complicated workouts on the indoor trainer. For indoors, I just know that my power will be lower. For outdoors I take into account that my power is higher per given HR or RPE, and just let it be at that. It does mess up the TSS somewhat, but the workouts are still the workouts, and as long as you are honest with yourself re: workout goals and energy systems, you will be fine. At the end of the day, these differences don’t change the nature of the workouts - if you are doing 102% indoors and 106% outdoors, you’re still extremely close from a macro- standpoint

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Outside of upper zone 6, or zone 7 efforts, there’s no need to be yanking on the bike to get into the power zone.

If someone has to yank on the bike to do their SST, or even their zone 5 (maybe you just do them at 110% of FTP if that’s what you can do indoors) work, there’s another problem, and it’s not the equipment.


I’m exactly the same with the power difference and I’ve come to accept it. What I have noticed though a 20w increase indoors does translate to a 20w increase outdoors so try not to worry about it. I just wish the software would allow for 2 power profiles for it to work from

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But how come… if I cannot hit the numbers is the same… if my outdoor vo2max power becomes FTP power inside, why to do 4x4min of FTP?

Big chainring is too loud so I’m using small one. I tried the big one but there was no big difference (at least on the ramp test)

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so you learn how to hit the same power inside

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I’m not sure what yanking on a bike looks like, but if you read down a bit, there is a description of what I am talking about.

you shouldn’t have to rock side to side like a circus clown to make SST, zone 4, or zone 5 workouts, either.

I don’t think any of us advocated “circus clown” level motion. However, there is a notable difference for me, in those zones when rolling a rigid trainer vs a setup with motion. It may not yield the larger power deltas mentioned above, but there may well be some longer term differences in feel and power production with vs without motion.

I refuse to believe that rigid riding inside is the same or a negligible difference when compared to freedom and actual motion we apply outside. I know for a fact that the bike moves far more under a rider than we think. Plenty of people assume they are perfectly vertical when that is far from the case. Just watch any riders more closely in your next group ride and you will see that seat tube moving plenty for most riders, at a range of power levels. I don’t know if actual power deltas exist between rigid and motion, but I sure think something is possible.


I don’t think any of us are talking about movement to that extent. It’s minor movement and perhaps it’s more about counter balancing the pedaling motion. In my experience, without the counterbalance my body movement would actually increase. If I take hands off the bars and sit up it causes my movement to drastically increase. This may be due to a weaker core, but it is a thing. If you think about physics, the ability to jump doesn’t just require you to put force down into the ground, but it also requires the ground to put force back up.

fwiw I think for me it’s far more psychological than anything else. I have the rocker plate, the cooling (3 air movers - front torso, rear torso, head), but I just can’t hit the numbers in a ramp test* I can out on the road, particularly in races or climbs where I’m really not thinking about it. Actually even on zwift races/ events over lockdown I was hitting higher numbers than my ramp test would indicate. I’m really hoping AT will ultimately solve this for me!

My approach has been to self-select, and then adjust intensity up or down. I’m normally ok on threshold, but my VO2 max is a weakness exposed on the ramp test.

*Yes, I can use longer protocols and get closer, but that’s really not much advantage on self-selecting and verifying with a workout you know/ Lamarck. You have to go in with some kind of idea with a 20 minute test or the Kolie Moore protocol.

I was quite surprised when I got a rear facing camera on my commuter! I built something based on the RockIt Launcher, but saddle comfort has been more the benefit than in tests to be honest.

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