June 18, 2020 at 1:22 pm #8068
Hi there, please can someone help? I’ve just finished a Zwift FTP test to check on how the training is going and my result was disappointingly lower than it was back in March. Since joining and starting a 80/20 plan in January this year, this is the most consistent period of training I’ve done in many years and I’m really enjoying it, so I would have expected it to go up if anything?
JonJune 18, 2020 at 5:40 pm #8069David WardenKeymaster
After 3 months of 80/20 training, I would expect your FTP to be higher.
This kind of issue can be a bugger to figure out. Can we start by having you send me/share your March FTP workout file and your most recent file, preferable shared via TrainingPeaks. I’ll then analyze both.
DavidJune 19, 2020 at 1:34 am #8071
Hey David, thanks for getting back to me, I’m quite new to TP (only since joining you guys) how do I share the files with you please?
jonJune 19, 2020 at 2:46 am #8072
I’ve sent an email with links to my TP accountJune 19, 2020 at 6:05 pm #8074David WardenKeymaster
Thanks for giving me permission to post your results and my analysis on the forums.
I believe I’ve identified the reason(s) for the recent poor FTP test. Below are the data points from the 3 tests, in order of 20-min NP, HR, Cadence, Speed, total ascent over the TT, Peak 2-min, and NP before the test started.
Jan 242w 162bpm 90rpm 22.4mph 0ft 282w (BEFORE TT Started) 203w
Mar 260w 167bpm 88rpm 23.7mph 0ft 274 (FINAL 2 min of TT) 175w
June 236w 167bpm 80rpm 6.02mph 891ft 296w (BEFORE TT started) 212w
I believe your latest test was an outlier for the following reasons:
1. June is not the same test as Jan and March, it was on a completely different course with significant elevation gain ~900ft over the 20-min test). Sure, that should not “matter” as a watt is a watt. But, we are relying on Zwift to compensate properly. Also, who’s to say that you are an equal cyclist in hills and flats? Hills could just be a weakness of yours right now. The only way to ensure a proper test, particularly when comparing one test to another, is if we remove as many variables as possible. Use the same flat course next time.
2. June rpm was 80 vs. March best of 90. That’s the hills again, but that 80rpm will wear you out fast. Stay near 90 for the best result.
3. Peak 2 min of the March test was 274 and that was the final 2 minutes of the test. Perfect! June test had a peak of a crazy 296 BEFORE you even started the test during the warmup. You went anaerobic before your TT even started, game over. I’m not crazy about the Zwift protocol of 5 minutes of hard before you even start the test, but at least keep that 5 minutes at low Zone 3, or better yet, skip it altogether.
4. Total NP before the 20-minute TT in the March test was 175, and 212 in the June test. That 40 watts higher in the warmup is huge, take it easier next time.
5. Pacing was great in the March test, terrible in the Jan and June tests. See the trend line in the images below (not included in this post, but sent to Munkey by e-mail). You stayed perfectly steady in the March test, and just fell apart in June. You did not start out too hard on the June test, but the total factors of #1-4 above set you up for a poor performance.
6. The “false start” test the day before certainly played a role. That was 10 minute at FTP AND you started the first 2.5 minutes of that test at 294w. It’s probably the smallest factor in all this, but played a part.
I recommend wait and test again during the next rest week. Don’t rush off and try it again, give youself a complete cycle and the end of a rest week to try again, incorporating this feedback into that next test. Additionally, start off at 270 for the first 5 min, and only then start to increase power slightly over the final 15.
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