What is the plan to raise FTP efficiently?

My goal is to increase the FTP to 280w as quickly as possible.
After the medium volume base phase of SST, FTP increased from 226w to 243w.
I’m now in week 2 of Sustained Power Build plans, medium volume.

In order to reach 280w by the end of the year, what training plan should I transition to after my sustained build is over?

This begs the question that 280 is even possible for you; it may not be, and by December that would mean a 54W gain. Unrealistic is the word that comes to mind.
What are your goals? Why is 280 your goal? Are you trying to chase the mythical 4.W/Kg? If so, why
? What is your discipline? Your goals dictate the training plan; do you have any events lined up?


I sound like Amber here (no bad thing) but you need a process goal and not an outcome goal. A watt target should be replaced with “I want to do a watt PB on date X” and then let AT sort the rest :slight_smile:


No plan or coach can say do this and you will hit 280W by x date. Far too many variables to guarantee any outcome.
You’d be better off just following the plan maybe go plan builder and see where you get to.
There is more to riding than an FTP figure.

YMMV - just my tuppence/thoughts.

1 Like

Assuming you did the full base, that’s 17 watts gained in 12 weeks. Nice work! Your goal is to now gain 37 watts in the next 13 weeks. There is a common misconception (I was guilty of it too) that since the next phase is called build, bigger FTP gains are in order. Unfortunately, that’s not how it works. You’ve picked a lot of the low hanging fruit, and the next 17 watts will probably be significantly more difficult than the last 17. I hope you do it, but my guess is that you will be faster and happier at the end of the year if you temper your expectation.

1 Like

Thank you for your reply.
The goal of 280w by the end of the year means that I want to reach it as soon as possible.
It’s a constraint I imposed on myself when purchasing a new bike. There are no races or events to aim for at that time.

Others have pointed out that it is not realistic, so I would like to review the deadline for achieving 280w a little more slowly.
For example, do you have any advice on which plan to choose if I want to achieve it by March 2023?

Almost every Base → Build → Specialty plan is designed to increase your FTP. I remember reading from one of TR blogs and the plan if your sole intent is to increase your FTP is: Sweet spot base → Sustained Power Build → 40K TT. You will spend quite a lot of time in sweetspot, VO2 max, and threshold zones which should increase your FTP. If you are productively able to complete threshold and VO2 max workouts, you can expect an FTP increase the next time you assess your FTP (using AI detection) provided you stick to the plan.


That’s a good question, and I don’t know the answer. I think if you’re trying to increase your 1 hour power, then what @yajvans said, the sustained power and 40k TT could be a great way to go. But, if you’re relatively new to all of this, you might make more headway with higher intensity work. :person_shrugging: Additionally, if you’re using AI FTP, that number is based on your predicted ramp test score. This MIGHT be a completely different number for you, and in that case, you might do better with something like general build and rolling road race.

These questions are complex, very individual, and a bunch of unsettled science. I expect TR and their data set to have a big impact on where the consensus ultimately goes. If I were you, I’d pick whatever plans get you motivated to train consistently; that is what will primarily determine your success, IMO. For me, those are the blocks with a bit less “sustained” work.

1 Like

If there was an identified, science supported way, that said do “this workout/progamme” and you will gain “x” watts on your FTP no matter who you were or what your genetics/FTP already was i think most on here would be 500watt FTP monsters. Unfortunately it doesn’t work that way.
Read up on the posts and blogs about maximising gains and see how far you get.

When you got the bike why did you pick 280 Watts?

If its based on watts per kg you can also look at the other side of the formula if you have weight you could “re-purpose”.

If you do manage to get there, and I hope you do, what are you going to do next? Why not focus on becoming a faster and more resilient rider and let the numbers work themselves out?

Just a thought as I’m reading a book called Atomic Habbits and it suggests that setting outcome based goals is not as productive as setting identity based goals as people often give up when they reach that goal. Not read it all (yet) though and could be missing the point totally.


Generally improvement is fastest at the start and then slows. So, as others have said, if you’ve put on 17 watts, putting on another 50 watts might be difficult.

That said, if you want quick results, intensity is key. I’d go for plans focussing on 1 - 5 minutes power with a few longer max efforts thrown in


Sounds to me you set yourself an impossible goal. Process goals are better, because they are within your control. Raising your FTP by that much may take years. (It depends on your background. If you come from some other endurance sport, you may progress more quickly.)

I’m going to come out and say it… There are no shortcuts in endurance sports. But what you can do is be smart about things.

Be consistent. Find a routine that works for you and that you can stick with, week to week and month to month. The riders that train consistently have the most consistent improvement in performance. @Nate_Pearson has mentioned this many times when they look at the TR data.

Don’t just do hard work outs. There will be diminishing returns and you will burn out. Try to mix in lots of Z2 work. This will help build a strong foundation that you can build off of month over month and year over year.

Get your nutrition dialed on and off the bike. Can’t overstate how important this is. You need to fuel the work with high quality food.

Focus on recovery. You want to get stronger? You need to recovery, both day to day with high quality sleep, but also built in recovery days/week between blocks. This is when your body gets stronger.

Try to incorporate some lifting. Lots of benefits from lifting including getting faster.


Thank you all for your pointers and advice.

I’m now in week 3 of my medium volume Sustained Power Build plans.

After finishing this build, I’m going to decide whether to go to the 40kTT specialty, the rolling road racing specialty, or repeat the sustained build again, depending on the situation, including my FTP at that time.

Of course, I’ll also review the arrival time of 280w.

1 Like

That’s not a good idea. Just stick to the training plan you have picked now. There is no “bad” plan nor a magic FTP plan.

I think @Kuttermax really summarized it very well: learn to train, learn to recover and learn to eat and sleep better. Endurance sports is a long game, and gains usually take time.

Don’t review it, change your goal to e. g. adhere to a structured training plan for one season. Goals like that are toxic: even if you reach it, you’ll want more and eventually give up on the sport.


When I first started, I was at 175 ftp. The 1st 6 months ftp jumps were great. I got to 230 fairly quickly. My goal was 275 and then 300. That was 6 years ago. After 255-260, the gains were super hard to get. It took me 4 years to get to 280 but the path wasn’t linear. Usually hovering around 255 +/- 10W. When I got to 280, a week later I had Covid which took 3 weeks to get over. After Covid I went from 280 back to 245 and it’s taken me 2 years to get back to 268 now.

Just food for thought. If you want a bike, get a bike. 280w has nothing to do with you deserving a bike. Life is short. Get and ride it with a smile.


Good points above. Dial in your nutrition, work on weight loss if you want or need to. Now is the time to be working on those aspects of dialing in that ftp goal.

Also, I think you should come to terms with you might not get there and no plan from TR, FasCat etc will get you there. You can do the work or you can’t. I thought I was on the path to 5.5 w/kg but fizzled out at 5.2 and has just gone down the chute so to speak.

Best of luck and please be careful!


5.2 W/kg is amazing, and I wouldn’t say you fizzled out. Plus, you likely didn’t fizzle out, it is more likely that you have a life outside of cycling, which in many cases takes precedence.

1 Like

Curious as to how old you are? This doesn’t seem right (not doubting you, but there’s more to this).

47 now

I’m a few years older than you. Big ftp jumps at this age are hard to come by. One can certainly improve but it’s just not easy.