Your FTP improvements

Right on, good luck with the rest of your training block.

FTP history - update:

Oct 15, 2019 - 195W
Nov 27, 2019 - 213W
Jan 28, 2020 - 226W
Feb 27, 2020 - 241W
Mar 26, 2020 - 246W
Apr 22, 2020 - 251W

Most recent virtual race (May 2):
20m - 261W
1hr - 246W

Happy with the progress, and happy with having the most recent FTP test numbers confirmed by today’s performance. Weight has stayed fairly steady at 63kg most days, with high being 64 and low 62. My original goal was to hit 4W/kg by cross season in September. Seems I accomplished that a few months early! Now I’m optimistic I can hit 270-275W by Sept 12, which is cross opener. That’s an average gain of 5W/month, which I’ve managed in March and April.

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6% increase today :fearful:. 222-236. Brings me to 3.5 w/kg. I’m stoked. I’ve been having trouble increasing my FTP the past year. Feels good. Now on to some more gainz!

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Good job! Your excitement is contagious. I’m jacked to go train.

Plans Completed:

MVSSB
MVSPB
MVSPB
MV/HV/SPB
HVSPB

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You can lose weight and gain watts at the same time!

Everyone is at a different place in their journey, so this applies to my scenario, but maybe not everyone, particularly those that are already either very lean or already near their limits, but I think many on here are in the same boat as me since I consider myself to be average. If you have body composition opportunities, you can definitely cut the right weight and maintain enough caloric intake not to see your improvements halt while losing weight.

I’m in my second year of training with Trainerroad. First year was relatively hard gains. Started with an ramp test score of 238, but felt I was stronger than that based on other information so started with an FTP of 250. Trained last year on a low volume plan and saw okay gains and was at 265 watts and ready for another test to perhaps go higher, but ended up with a medical issue that ended the season. My weight at the time in the low 180 lbs (83kg) to roughtly 3.2 watts per. I am roughly 6’ 1" so pretty average build at the time. I’m also 40 years old, in case you were wondering.

On October 14th 2019, started a new program. Set FTP to 250 watts manually. Was gaining weight due to bad habits and holidays so started roughly the same weight, but got up to 190.8 lbs (86.5kg) in late November. On January 24th started changing my diet and increasing my volume. I ramped my volume up to about 10 hours a week (up from 7 hours) and got extremely disciplined with training, not missing a single planned day of riding during this block. I’ve lost over 20 lbs in 3.5 months and today I hit 300 watts, just a hair away from 4 w/kg! My key take aways are not too novel. First key is consistency. Second, more volume. And third is to manage your intensity so that you do enough zone 2 and don’t trash yourself in between your workouts.

Tuesday, Oct 15, 2019 250 183.5 lbs 3.00 w/kg
Friday, Nov 29, 2019 265 190.8 lbs
Tuesday, Jan 14, 2020 274 188.3 lbs
Thursday, Feb 13, 2020 282 183 lbs
Monday, Mar 16, 2020 290 178.6 lbs
Tuesday, May 5, 2020 301 168.5 lbs 3.94 w/kg

A couple of final notes. I went from 290 to 301 doing SSB I. So you don’t have to do intensity to gain. My diet has slipped lately during lockdown and I eat basically what I want, but still losing weight. We’ve been walking 5-6 miles a day to keep my 3 year old active the last month or so. Not sure if that helped my test today, but definitely has done nothing to hurt the freshness I feel on rides.

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You sir, are a lean 6 footer.

I’ll play along, as much for my own self-analysis, even though I don’t keep terribly accurate weight records.

6-3" late 30s now.

11/16/2015 300 ~ 190lbs [3.48w/kg]
07/23/2016 296 ~ 185lbs [3.52 w/kg]
01/28/2017 311 ~184lbs [3.72 w/kg]
07/12/2017 296 (literally no saved weight data, probably 185-190)
05/02/2018 287 (literally no saved weight data, probably 202-2??)
12/08/2018 286 @ 200lbs [3.15 w/kg]
02/08/2019 287 @ 196lbs [3.22 w/kg]
06/16/2019 296 @ 197lbs [3.31 w/kg]
08/11/2019 304 @ 189 lbs (water weight, maybe? less summer lifting?) [3.5w/kg]
10/21/2019 311 @ 190 lbs, probably close to true weight [3.6 w/k]

Covid shutdowns: Joined TR and decided to stick with the 20 minute test protocol for now, and do Ramps for comparison.

03/23/2020 297 @ 194lbs [3.37w/kg] (slow February, a minor medical issue, boot camp style weight-room stuff)
03/24/2020 284 @ 194 [3.22 /kg] felt fine, but sure, there could have been some fatigue from previous day’s test

Completed SSBLV plan with a good number of outdoor commutes, kids & townie rides etc thrown in. 43 total April hours on any kind of bike, no time with weights (shuttered gyms).

05/01/2020 - 315 @ 191lbs [3.6 wkg] - Ramp test on Thursday of a “recovery week” after a rest day (393 weekly total TSS)
05/04/2020 - 325 @ 191 [3.73 w/kg] 20 minute test on Monday at the end of the recovery week , immediately following my 30 minute/22TSS PM commute, and with a 100 minute 58 TSS outdoor free ride on Sunday.

If I get through this build phase well, I might jump to mid-volume SSB for a little added sweetspot structure, b/c the SSLVBase1 was really not taxing at all, even will all my added commute rides and low intensity volume builders on the trainer thrown in and a + variant here and there.

Shooting for some semblance of a cross season but who knows, maybe I’ll just have a 23 minute commute instead of a 28 minute commute… or 23 or so more watts of FTP puts me right at 4, so that’s the goal between now and July. We’ll see when I plateau and hope to manage to ride a bunch.

Deeper background:
I started riding after a foot issue prevented me from continuing to train for half marathons and marathons, a BQ attempt was in the making 12 years ago when I started having foot issues around 40-50 miles a week in a big week and 178lbs +/-.

I usually have access to a gym at work and have spent some time working on overall strength with 5x5 type stuff. Main goal is to carry myself with a modicum of strength at 6-3.

Picked up a cross bike and a road bike prior to having children, now I have three children and 5 bikes.

I’ve done some of the Strava/Carmichael plans here and there, but don’t really stick with them, partly because they’re only a month long and there’s always an excuse that will interrupt next month’s plan…

Aug 2017-Aug 2018 was the only truly unhealthy weight gain - we moved 200 miles and my job didn’t, so I was couch surfing and camping at my job for a year. Lots of bad diet, little exercise, comparatively.

In August of 2018 I finally transferred and spent a lot of time in the gym at the office so I wasn’t worried about numbers on the scale, which stayed over 200 for quite a while, but it was a composition change (and heavy object moving performance gain). Some rides, but nothing consistent until January of 2019 when I put in 29 hours, 28 in Feb, really low-volume March (16hours) and April (9hours) due to other life events, ticking upwards in May, up to 42 hours in August of 2019. Still mostly unstructured outdoor rides in good weather, knowing that my low-hanging fruit can be solved by simply riding more.

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I’ll play. 36 year old male with a 10 year background in tri (and was a runner prior to that). Topped out averaging 14-17 total trainer hours per week for a two month period leading up to an Ironman in 2017. Had my best FTP at this point (320). FTP hovered in the 300-310 range for the past two seasons.

Had an Achilles injury and took 2 months off (only aqua-jogging and lifting). After it healed I decided to spend 2019/2020 season just biking

298 (3.79 w/kg) started riding ~10 days prior so not completely off the couch
SSB LV1 + extra 120 min endurance ride/week
316 (3.99 w/kg)
SSB MV2
324 (4.07 w/kg)
Sustained Power Build MV Part 1
328 (4.16 w/kg)
Sustained Power Build MV Part 2
331 (4.2 w/kg)
SSB MV1 + extra 60min endurance ride/week
337 (4.29 w/kg)
SSB MV2 + extra 60min endurance ride/week
343 (4.4 w/kg)

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I am so looking forward to this level of volume some day. Even though I’m going on 43, I’d love to see just where the limit is… will probably coincide with IM training as well.

Kudos to you on your improvement - really impressive!

Exactly 6 months into TrainerRoad. Really happy with my results so far. I’ve been averaging about a +4% gain with each completed block, and up almost 41 watts overall since I started. Had one spot where I kind of stalled early in this year, had a bit of work travel to contend with and just wasn’t as compliant to my plan as I should have been. I back-adjusted my prior FTPs based on the difference between my virtual power readings and my Favero Assioma duos so that all the #s are apples-to-apples.

Hope to get up to 300 watts this year, and I think I can do it.

6MTR

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Sometimes takes a bit of looking back to realise you’re improving. Had a look over last 2yrs:
Mostly SSB, general build, rolling road race @ ~65kg

Things which make a difference - consistency, volume,proper recovery, and focusing on power over weight.

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What is Dynamo? I don’t see it in the workout library. Custom workout?

that was a race (pulled in from strava)

Just completed Base 1 - Jumped from 195 to 203. Small victories… But I have to say outdoors I’ve bested some of my old PRs on Strava, so hey, I think I’m moving in the right direction.

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wow… excelent gains! congratulations… could you share the training programs you followed ?

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Yep I can. Note that the second SSBMVII was not a full season. I also had a two week period in Jan when I traveled and was sick right after, and a one week period in Feb where I traveled.

  • SSBLVI
  • SSBMVII
  • Travel + sick 2 weeks
  • SSBMVII (shortened time 4 weeks I think)
  • Travel 1 week (include about 6-7hrs outdoor riding)
  • General Build
  • just finished week 3 of SSBMVII

I’ve increased my volume over the last 4 weeks, and now average 9-10hrs/week. Modifications to the TR plan include a Monday and Friday ride of 1-1:30 in Z2, adding 30 mins to Tue/Wed/Thu rides, and swapping Saturday ride for a 1-1:30 local virtual race (averaging close to 1IF) and then topping up to get to 1:30 if race is shorter. I can feel the fatigue a bit, but overall body adjusted to the load pretty well. I do plan on inserting a recovery week next week before moving to week 4 of SSBMVII.

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Very nice. thanks for sharing.

I just started SSBMVI and planning to do SSBMVII right after.

I will have a half distance tri in 6 weeks after the finish date of the SSBMVII so i’m still deciding if i do sort of 6 weeks build on Sustained Power or Half Distance, of course with some tweaks aiming towards the race.

If the race is canceled due to COVID still (very likely) i will go to General Build or Sustained Power (still deciding) after the SSBMVII.

Currently @ 210w FTP / 69kg… really need to improve on that… hope it works. i’m confident.

It will absolutely work. The key is consistency - other than being sick, I don’t think I missed more than 2-3 workouts in the entire time. Over the last 4-6 weeks I’ve started switching things up a bit as mentioned, but still try to follow Tuesday/Thursday/Sunday at bare minimum, and add volume or change the workout structure elsewhere. So far I’ve saved my recovery days (Monday, Wednesday, Friday) for outdoor rides, though now that I have a power meter (just waiting on a new brake so it fits), I’ll be incorporating more actual outdoor workouts.

6% after SPBMV

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End of SSB1 LV turning into MV by the middle of the block. 3 months of nothing on the bike leading into SSB. 200 to 221 watts in the ramp test on about 5 hrs sleep. 10.5% gain in 6 weeks.
If only it didn’t take 3 months of losing all my bike fitness to make those sort of gains. :man_facepalming:

Edit: The good bike has lived on the trainer for the past six months with very little maintenance. After doing a quick inspection and comparison between PM and Neo2 I should get a free 3% bump if I replace my chain and clean things up. Hurrah for free watts! :grinning:

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