Your FTP improvements

I’m 54, and will be 55 this year.

I tested ftp 169 off a ramp test in Dec 19. Some of this will be as I’d just switched to recumbent from road bike. I felt mostly leg limited. It does take a while for the legs to adapt.

I followed a polarised program, two Vo2 max workouts a week. The rest low intensity. About 10 hours a week ride time. By July 20 my ftp off a ramp test was 252W.

I’ve been in maintenance mode since then as no events going on and didn’t want to burn out. I haven’t done a ftp test since July. I did try one of my VO2 max sessions at the July 20 intensities in Dec 20 and was able to complete it, but my HR hit 95% of max by end of third set. Normally it’d hit 91-93% by end of third set.

So I reckon I’m still in touching distance. I plan to do a ramp test tomorrow if I feel fresh enough. This winter I’ve kept the work up to try and maintain where I got to, rather than start again each year. Maintenance for me means one high intensity Vo2 max session a week.

In about a week I plan to start a build again. Not expecting same gains as last year. But hopefully beginning from a much higher starting ftp.

I currently weigh 72kg if that helps you compute W/kg for comparison.


I’m 51. Started off the couch 09/28/20 with an FTP of 147 doing a LV plan with very few extra rides until recently. Last ramp test was 01/19/21 @ 226W. 6’4" 232lbs so I should have some room to grow that FTP even being 50+…next ramp test is in a couple weeks, expecting another good sized bump based on how my workouts have felt and my NP/IF during a 73mi gravel race I completed yesterday. Noob gains and all that but it’s working for me.


Vo2 Test today. I’m still waiting for the final analysis but looks like I may have added about 20 watts to my FTP doing LV base and power-build since January.


I think unless you have been at your peak and put in serious work in the past there’s always room to improve as you age. Yes, genetic potential declines as you age. But who knows where that ceiling is? You may still be well below it.

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Am 54. I joined TR in November as all the cyclocross races that I trained towards were cancelled. So no of the couch gains.
Using plan builder and is now in build.
Ramp test results


Good steady movement there.

Have been a TrainerRoad user for 2 years now and just had my best base phase.

Did the LV SSB plan, just finished SSB2, and added in some extra endurance / recovery rides and the occasional extra Zwift race. Some weeks I swapped out one of the prescribed workouts for a race to keep at 3 high intensity sessions per week. Also sometimes swapped out the 90min workout for a longer endurance ride. Otherwise I have stayed consistent to the plan.

Saw FTP rise from 261W to 279W (tested this morning). 3.95W/kg to 4.23. This is the highest FTP I have ever recorded since starting cycling properly 3 years ago.

Just about to go into LV sustained power build - in past years I have made the mistake of going to mid volume for the build phase, burning out and then having to drop back to LV.

Really happy with the solid progression I have made with TR.

Date Plan FTP W/kg
April 20th, 2020 Initial Test 208W 2.2W/kg
June 2nd, 2020 Completed Sweet Spot Base MV1 224W 2.46W/kg
July 15th, 2020 Completed Sweet Spot Base MV2 240W 2.74W/kg
August 11th, 2020 Midway Sustained Power Build MV 244W 2.83W/kg
September 9th, 2020 Completed Sustained Power Build MV 249W 3.04W/kg
November 9th, 2020 Completed 1st half Century MV and Traditional Base MV1 239W 3.03W/kg
December 15th, 2020 Completed Sweet Spot Base MV1 252W 3.21W/kg
February 2nd, 2021 Completed Sweet Spot Base MV2 258W 3.26W/kg
March 2nd, 2021 Midway Sustained Power Build LV + Z2 263W 3.35W/kg

Felt like I needed to back off the intensity a little, so I started with LV build and extra Z2 rides. FTP still increasing and I feel a bit better.

Weight has plateaued for the past 4 months and I can definitely stand to lose some more fat, but I don’t want to push it. My Withings scale says otherwise, but I think my body composition is slowly changing for the better.

Date FTP W/kg
12th Jan (start SSB MV 1) 287 3.5
2nd March (start SSB MV2) 299 3.86

Aiming for 4.2 W/kg by the 9th October (following XCO plan) with 4.5 W/kg as a stretch goal.

Currently at 77.5kg, down from 81. Aiming to very slowly lose weight down to 74kg, so an FTP improvement to 333W will get where I’d like to be.

Putting this up to help hold me accountable!


51yr old male, 6’4"…literally off the couch with no fitness after 15 yrs away from cycling.

09/28: 147 113kg 1.3 W/kg
11/10: 190 110kg
12/23 207 108kg
01/19 226 108kg

Rolling Road Race LV1 led me to:
03/04/21 245 102.9kg 2.38 W/kg

One of those tests where I just couldn’t muster the GRRRRRRRRR to keep going when I needed to. In the past I’ve been able to grit it out another 30-45 seconds at that same point…talking myself through 10 seconds at a time, but not tonight. I know I had it in me, but mentally I wasn’t there. Could have broken the 100W gain mark! No worries though, next text in 5 weeks.


You should just strut around the house, exclaiming “33% more fit baby! Feast your eyes on this!!” until she shares your excitement. Trust me. She’ll get “excited” for you if you promise to stop after that goes on a few days.

My home life is very interesting lol :rofl:

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My schedule has been ridiculously chaotic the last couple of years which keeps throwing entire tool boxes, never mind just wrenches, into my training plans.

50yr old male, 10+ years of limited fitness-related activity. I used to be a big CompuTrainer rider back in the late 90s/2000s then got very busy with work / work travel / kids etc.

Date - FTP - weight - w/kg
Nov 2017: FTP 143, 110kg, 1.3
Mar 2018: FTP 200, 95.5kg, 2.1
Jul 2018: FTP 235, 92.1kg, 2.6
Sep 2018: FTP 255 85.6kg, 3.0

My schedule had been a bit sporadic that resulted in limited workout time, so I’ve often found my FTP back down to around 200 or so - and yet it doesn’t take me that long to get it back up to 240-250 again. I’d really really like to take a crack at getting to a w/kg of 3.5, if I can ensure a schedule that fits in one or two more training blocks after I’ve gotten back up to the 250 level or so. Maybe this time.

I love racing on Zwift since it scratches a competitive itch and races don’t a) eat up the entire day b) cost an arm and a leg and c) don’t mean I risk serious injury due to skittish riders (includes myself). So I train to get fitter, and to get faster in Zwift races. I use TR as my plan base, and mix in SUF workouts, Zwift rides and of course Zwift races.

Incidentally, I often do two FTP tests - the SUF’s 4DP test and the TR ramp test. I think they measure slightly different things, and each can provide useful information. Cycling’s an endurance sport, so getting used to getting stuck in for 20 minutes of discomfort is useful training. Certainly the 4DP test is a great workout, if nothing else, usually leaves me toast the next day.

But FWIW, my 20-minute power number from the 4DP test is generally right around what the Ramp Test
comes up with, so in my case it’s another data point that lets me know I’m on the right track.


yeah, but he -started out- at a w/kg of 3! That’s insane…

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This is probably the case when it is worth implementing some fitness into a schedule of kids. Between 7-16 I was a pretty fit - nothing spectacular, and definitely no inclinations into endurance sports but doing all kinds of activities for fun, sometimes a couple of hours per day (swimming, football (or rather soccer if you are over the pond), some mountain biking (around 1000km/yr) and skiing in winter). Then 15 years of no sports at all but some kind of fitness was translated into later life - hence easier start into cycling.

Thought I’d share mine, Just about to finish short power build and go into criterium specialty. Been feeling really strong this last week so I imagine another decent bump in FTP is coming. I started with the mid volume plan, but switched to low volume the beginning of this build. My work is very unpredictable and low volume is very easy to manage and also easy to add in all the fun rides I want.
I’m definitely very happy with the TrainerRoad programs and can’t wait for the AI to make it even better! Thank you @Nate_Pearson and all the staff!