What's a better way to raise FTP if using RAMP test?

What training approach were you following in the first 9 months of 2020? Because that was clearly working - your 281 test wasn’t a blip but the end of a steady progression throughout the year before your training fell off a cliff.

So I would revert to whatever worked for you then and make incremental changes rather than taking a whole different approach. Evolution not revolution. E.g. Try to sleep a bit more, eat a bit better, add in a little extra z2 volume. And don’t skip recovery weeks - looks like you did 5 big weeks in a row in September before getting your PR, then never really got back to that level of training, so it’s quite possible that you simply over reached a bit and that’s why you started struggling with motivation.

Assuming you get the consistency but sorted out I would expect that you are not adding 5 hours of endurance riding to the high volume plans. That would put you easy in the 800-900 TSS range. Quite a lot.

Note that I wrote burn out mentally, I was referring to the boredom of always doing the same thing. That might be equally likely with polarized training.

Thinking about my reply some more, I think your plan is just a bad idea all around. I have the impression you want to benchmark TR’s Base + Build (- Specialty) approach to polarized training. But neither is designed for maximizing FTP. Base might, but Base is just one out of three phases. And one of the main benefits of polarized training is that it raises the tail end of your power curve — also that is not easily detectable with a ramp or 20-minute FTP test. Lastly, I reckon with any sensible structured approach you’ll see improvements.

Personally, I’d just try to improve aspects of your training while maintaining a structured approach as if it were a season. That’s what I did last year and that’s what I am doing now.

For example, if you want to try polarized training, you should find out what a 1-season polarized training plan actually looks like and follow that. @Bbt67 followed a polarized approach with a coach, and he recounted some of his experiences in the Seiler thread and the polarized training thread. He was reluctant to share his training plan, because he wanted to protect the work of his coach, but perhaps he’s willing to share more details if you DM him. One of the things that surprised me was that his coach sprinkled in some Z2 (of 3) workouts every other week.

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Here’s my 2020 looks like

Plan start date end date FTP notes
SSB HV-I Jan 13 Feb 08   skip 3 sessions
4 wk unstructured Feb 10 Mar 07 263  
SSB HV-II Mar 09 Apr 18   Most outdoors by following TR plan roughly 80% consistency
One easy week        
SPB HV Apr 27 June 20 267 Excellent consistency
Criterium HV Jun 22 Aug 22 272/276 A combination of indoor and outdoor roughly 85% consistency
One easy week        
SSB HV-II Aug 31 Sep 11 274 Indoor; 95% consistency
4 wk unstructured     281 Maximum FTP observed at the starting date during this period
SSB HV-I Nov.10   259 Lots of unfinished session; 50% consistency
UoT Trainig study Dec.01 Jan 08 244 Doing badly due to ignorance
5 wk unstructured Jan 12 Feb 11 248  

I think a confusing part for some people (myself included) is that the ramp test is used to estimate FTP. But it doesn’t sound like you care about FTP, you care about the last minute of the ramp test (i.e max aerobic power.) You’ve also indicated you think you are anaerobically inclined, which could mean you are more prone to over performing on the ramp test. Am I correct in thinking that you don’t really care about your FTP directly, you want to raise your MAP to 400w?

I think the confusion is that, if getting your MAP to 400w is the goal, just make that your goal. If you want to reach 300w FTP estimate on the ramp test (which would require approx 400w MAP) but don’t actually care that the number is a semi-accurate estimate of your FTP, it causes confusion. It sounds like you are trying to ‘game’ the ramp test. Which is fine, but for training threshold and below its better to have a semi-accurate FTP estimate.

As I think someone else mentioned, I think it would be worthwhile to do a longer test like the 20min test to get your FTP set. Then use the MAP from a ramp test to set your VO2max interval intensity. That way you are not doing all your SS/threshold work at too high of an intensity but also do VO2max work at a high enough intensity.

All that said, I have some unstated number goals for myself, but I don’t know if they are possible given my time training and riding, age, and genetic factors. I think it is better to lay out a training plan to follow that gives me a path to get to that ‘goal’ but make the actual goals I try to tick off be process focused. There are factors beyond your control that could prevent you from getting to a 400w MAP, so focus on the things under your control that give you the best shot of getting there.

My thoughts on your situation is this.

  1. I would really work on following the given plans with more consistency first since you mention that consistency is not the best

  2. if you want to know what training methodology is more optimal you need to do a detraining block followed by a polarized block followed by another detraining block and then a sweetspot block. Otherwise it’s all guesswork

  3. ftp isn’t everything

  4. I would spend the 5 extra hours in the horizontal position resting Bc you can never have too much rest when doing high volume training


Yes. I would like to do it at least a full cycle this year and perhaps 2 to 3 times this year. Currently, I am good.

I concur with you. Base lays the foundation of my fitness. I think that I might do too much time in the sweet spot zone. I think that the Short Power Build will add a decent time in the zone over the sweet spot. But I would like to say that I do not know that such a time and power distribution would benefit my goal this year, i.e. target at 400 MAP using TR ramp test.

I am glad to see this. Would you like to share what you did this year? What was your goal last year? How is this year? What would you like to compare? I am sure there are many people who like to see such a long time experiment at the personal level. I have a similar plan to see what works whatnot. It will take time to see the result, but I think it is fun.

Exactly, I would like to do the baseline as a comparison group this year and I will probably do the POL next season to see how it goes.

I will definitely contact @Bbt67 sometime later this season. I would like to see if I can consistently execute TR plan first before consulting with the expert.

I think you should stop HV immediately and switch to MV. You need consistent training stress and growth over time - not the most you can do now.

And forget short power build. This is a maximal aerobic power test.

SSB 1 MV, eat and sleep well and record your outdoor rides. SusPB MV. Then evaluate consistency and gains and decide to repeat or move to HV and SSB 2.

This imo would be a more reliable and beneficial way to gain on your FTP.

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