November 24, 2021 at 12:48 pm #15412ChopStickParticipant
I’ve just bought and applied the level 3 FTP 20km Boost plan. I’m new to 80/20 training, and wanted to give something different a go. My main goal next year is a 600km ride and as such I’m looking at the >160km Gran Fondo plan, but wanted something to use for the rest of the off season.
Having not used the 80/20 zones before , I assume that a recent accurate field test is probably a sensible thing to do, but having spent the last few weeks in the gym working on strength it’s a while since I’ve done one. The plan doesn’t seem to have a field test scheduled, so my query is when am I best doing the field test? And if I do it when the plan is active, which workout would I be best to replace? I’m planning on starting the plan next Monday.
Many thanks, plan looks very interesting!November 24, 2021 at 12:59 pm #15413David WardenKeymaster
Thanks for using our plans! You’ll find instructions for the protocols and frequency of testing in our documents Getting Started with 80/20 Training and Intensity Guidelines for Cycling at https://www.8020endurance.com/resources/, but I’ve included the relevant section on frequency below for your convenience:
“Keeping Your Zones Current
As your fitness level changes, you will need to adjust your zones to keep them current. Many athletes like to update their zones on a regular schedule. If you wish to do so, choose a preferred testing method and repeat it during every second recovery week beginning with the first recovery week of your plan. Note that recovery weeks fall every third week in all of our cycling plans. Thus, if you elect to perform scheduled testing, you will test in Week 6, Week 12, etc. some but not all of our Cycling Plans include scheduled threshold tests in these weeks. If your plan doesn’t include scheduled threshold tests and you want to insert them, the least disruptive way to do so is to perform them in place of the most challenging workout of the relevant week that features efforts in Zone 3 or higher.
Also note that if you are an intermediate- or advanced-level cyclist and you use heart rate as your primary intensity metric, you probably don’t need to update your zones very often. This is because LTHR doesn’t change a lot with changes in fitness once you’re past the beginner (or starting-over) phase. What you will find as you gain fitness is that you produce more power at the same heart rates. Indeed, one simple way to update your pace or power zones is to do a test where you ride at your current known LTHR and identify the corresponding power, then plug this number into the appropriate calculator. For example, if you know that your LTHR is consistently stable at 160 BPM but you notice that you’re producing more watts at any given HR lately, do a ride where you lock into a heart rate of 160 BPM and note the corresponding power. Say your power is 250 watts at this HR. This, then, is your approximate FTP. It’s best to do this particular test within the context of a scheduled ride that targets Zone 3.”
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