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Increases in FTP limited by VO2max?

Old 11-07-20, 09:09 PM
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Wattsup
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Increases in FTP limited by VO2max?

So Trainerroad has the Ramp Test to estimate your FTP. Your best minute's power on the ramp is considered your MAP, Maximum Aerobic Power, and the app assumes that your FTP is 75% of your MAP. So here's the thing. If MAP is equivalent to VO2max, then I do know that VO2max is not particularly easy to increase with training, assuming you're already a fairly well-trained cyclist. So if I've pretty much hit the ceiling on my Vo2 max, how can I increase my FTP? First thing that occurs to me is that 75% relationship between FTP and MAP can possibly change, but is that it? Is that the only way I can increase my FTP?
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Old 11-07-20, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Wattsup View Post
So Trainerroad has the Ramp Test to estimate your FTP. Your best minute's power on the ramp is considered your MAP, Maximum Aerobic Power, and the app assumes that your FTP is 75% of your MAP. So here's the thing. If MAP is equivalent to VO2max, then I do know that VO2max is not particularly easy to increase with training, assuming you're already a fairly well-trained cyclist. So if I've pretty much hit the ceiling on my Vo2 max, how can I increase my FTP? First thing that occurs to me is that 75% relationship between FTP and MAP can possibly change, but is that it? Is that the only way I can increase my FTP?
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Old 11-08-20, 10:41 AM
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You Anaerobic Threshold is a percentage of VO2max. It is this percentage you are attempting to raise.


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Old 11-08-20, 01:37 PM
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Try 6 grams of Citrulline Malate 30 minutes before.
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Old 11-08-20, 06:49 PM
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I guess I wasn't clear about my question. I'll try to clarify. Do we have the ability to significantly improve our FTP? Hold that question for a moment. Apparently our FTP is a function of our MAP, Maximum Aerobic performance, as measure by a step test. Trainerroad uses a step test, the Ramp test to calculate, or estimate your FTP. The software uses your best one minute average power, (aka, your MAP) and multiplies by .75. FTP = .75 x MAP. So....your FTP is a function of your MAP. So it seems that in order to raise one's FTP, one needs to raise one's MAP. But....it's my understanding that your MAP is dependent on your VO2max, a one-to-one relationship. Since it's known that VO2max is difficult to increase if one is a trained cyclist, how then does one have the ability to raise one's FTP very much? Is our potential to raise FTP limited to how much we can raise our VO2max, and if not, where's the fault in my logic?
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Old 11-08-20, 07:02 PM
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One of the TR coaches says to do 2 weeks of VO2max training before build phase. There isn't a vo2max plan, but there are a couple of proposed plans in their forum.
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Old 11-08-20, 07:19 PM
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
One of the TR coaches says to do 2 weeks of VO2max training before build phase. There isn't a vo2max plan, but there are a couple of proposed plans in their forum.

Yes, but to what end? How much can one raise their VO2 max in two weeks? One quickly reaches diminishing returns when training Vo2 max. A 3% increase is big.
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Old 11-08-20, 08:14 PM
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FTP is useful in limited scenarios to most low level racers. Rarely do you go all out alone for an hour.

IMHO, unless you NEED hour power....focus on 8min and less and let ftp fall where it may.

If you DO need hour long power.....as much sweet spot as you can handle. Then periodically do a short week with some pursuits or something else more intense.

I did that to try for a 25mi TT personal best, worked well. Broke an hour first try. Bagged a 10mi pr also by a whole 2mph faster than last year.
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Old 11-08-20, 09:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Wattsup View Post
First thing that occurs to me is that 75% relationship between FTP and MAP can possibly change, but is that it?
The 75% estimate is just that - an estimate - which may apply to some, but not others. One of the big arguments made by The Sufferfest's 4DP system/test was that every cyclist is different - some can do FTP x1.4, some can do only FTP x 1.2, etc - which is why they make it a point to test FTP and MAP separately, instead of basing one off the other.
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Old 11-09-20, 08:32 AM
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FTP and VO2 max are not really related. MAP can vary greatly depending on the testing protocol.
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Old 11-09-20, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by topflightpro View Post
FTP and VO2 max are not really related. MAP can vary greatly depending on the testing protocol.
How can that be, if Trainneroad's Ramp test for determining FTP is completely dependent on the relationship between VO2max/MAP and FTP?
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Old 11-09-20, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by atwl77 View Post
The 75% estimate is just that - an estimate - which may apply to some, but not others. One of the big arguments made by The Sufferfest's 4DP system/test was that every cyclist is different - some can do FTP x1.4, some can do only FTP x 1.2, etc - which is why they make it a point to test FTP and MAP separately, instead of basing one off the other.

I understand that the 75% is just an estimate. But the assumption is still that FTP is a function of MAP. The details of that function might differ somewhat from person to person, but the question remains: Is our ability to raise FTP strictly limited by our ability to raise our MAP?
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Old 11-09-20, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Wattsup View Post
Is our ability to raise FTP strictly limited by our ability to raise our MAP?
I'm just guessing, but I don't think so. Reason I say that is because some people are better at shorter bursts in power while others are better at sustaining it over longer periods of time as in the case of a FTP test.
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Old 11-09-20, 10:34 AM
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The whole FTP testing thing is a whole rabbit hole with multiple threads/arguments on places like the trainerroad forum. It's an interesting question and maybe one you could submit to their ask a coach podcast to answer. It's likely that it's pretty hard to actually truly max out on your vo2 training. Although there is a ceiling for folks, it is trainable and I'm not sure if most folks can actually attain their own ceiling.

As for me, I've kind of skipped any type of testing, I'm historically terrible at the ramp test (I tend to bail early, it's a mental thing) and I tend to do well just adjusting my FTP up 5-10w depending on my success in a phase, since I'm far enough along that I'm not going to experience very large changes. Just this past week I started SSB1 HV at 300 after being at 295 for a while and after a couple of workouts I adjusted to 305. I survived the first week doing this, so we'll see if it sticks!
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Old 11-09-20, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Wattsup View Post
I understand that the 75% is just an estimate. But the assumption is still that FTP is a function of MAP. The details of that function might differ somewhat from person to person, but the question remains: Is our ability to raise FTP strictly limited by our ability to raise our MAP?
If you really want to understand the relationships there is a good book....
power Meter Handbook by Joe Friel. Velopress

If you want to determine just how much of an estimate a ramp test is..... go and try to ride your ramp tested FTP for an hour.
I know I can’t get anywhere near that number, but I’m working on it with my coach.

I have an ERG file I use for my ramp testing. So same exact test every time. The results do show me improving but I’ve learnt that with wheels on the road the number I can actually achieve will differ.

oh and the book will also show you how to determine your efficiency. You’ll be able to track your power increasing for a given heart rate.

point is, that vO2 may be pretty stable but there are many gains to be had even with that limitation in place.

all the best

Barry

Edit: I’ve been surprised by using a coach. Some of it is counter intuitive.
l’ve burnt more fat in the last 4-5 weeks than the last 6 months, despite the rides being easier in effort.
The book has helped me understand why.

Last edited by Barry2; 11-09-20 at 10:44 AM.
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Old 11-09-20, 11:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Wattsup View Post
How can that be, if Trainneroad's Ramp test for determining FTP is completely dependent on the relationship between VO2max/MAP and FTP?
The ramp test is for estimating FTP, not determining FTP. On top of that, FTP is wishy-washy anyway.
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Old 11-09-20, 12:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Wattsup View Post
But the assumption is still that FTP is a function of MAP.
It's very simple, your assumption that FTP is a function of MAP alone is wrong. Changes in MAP may or may not be reflected in FTP and vice versa. Also there is no constant proportionality in changes between the two.
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Old 11-09-20, 12:49 PM
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Shouldn't this be in Training and Nutrition?
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Old 11-09-20, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by caloso View Post
Shouldn't this be in Training and Nutrition?
Nope......
but thanks for the admin advise
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Old 11-10-20, 04:48 AM
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
It's very simple, your assumption that FTP is a function of MAP alone is wrong. Changes in MAP may or may not be reflected in FTP and vice versa. Also there is no constant proportionality in changes between the two.
So Trainerroad's Ramp test is nothing more than a short workout for those rushed for time?
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Old 11-10-20, 06:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Wattsup View Post
So Trainerroad's Ramp test is nothing more than a short workout for those rushed for time?
It's a quick way to estimate FTP for those that find other methods too hurty.
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Old 11-10-20, 07:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Wattsup View Post
So Trainerroad's Ramp test is nothing more than a short workout for those rushed for time?
I never said that. The Trainerroad test is an excellent way to estimate MAP and knowing MAP can be very useful. In general though, you cant determine two unknowns from one data point.
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Old 11-10-20, 09:12 AM
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Ramp tests will give you A measure of MAP. But different testing protocols, i.e. the ramp duration and starting power, can result in different MAPs for the same VO2 max. The variation in MAP can be as much as 25%. Shorter ramps will result in a greater MAP than longer ramps (e.g. 30s vs 60s) The VO2 max, however, does not change.

There's a lot of science to this. If you want to learn more, Empirical Cycling covers it in many of their podcasts: https://www.empiricalcycling.com/podcast-episodes

A 20-min test may be a better barometer for FTP (many people, including the guys at Empirical Cycling, disagree with this.) The big problem with the 20-min test is that many people do not do it correctly. They fail to do the 1-min and 5-min all-out efforts to burn off anaerobic power before doing their 20-min test.

Last edited by topflightpro; 11-10-20 at 09:18 AM.
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Old 11-10-20, 09:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Wattsup View Post
...I do know that VO2max is not particularly easy to increase with training, assuming you're already a fairly well-trained cyclist. So if I've pretty much hit the ceiling on my Vo2 max, how can I increase my FTP?
The very short answer is that (as you mentioned) vo2 max is anywhere from difficult to physiologically impossible to increase, but lactate threshold (LT) is highly trainable. LT is often expressed as a % of vo2 max, with a higher value generally indicating that you are better trained, and able to utilize more of your potential power over a given period of time. Of course, the response to HIIT sessions designed to increase your LT varies. Some people will not improve much at all, while pro athletes will see incredible gains, but most of us are somewhere in the middle. It's also important to know that more HIIT != better; the quality of what you do, and recovering well is what matters most.
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Old 11-10-20, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Wattsup View Post
So Trainerroad's Ramp test is nothing more than a short workout for those rushed for time?
Or those (like me) that are inexperienced at pacing a longer test.

I was doing the 20min, but could not get consistent or reliable results.
Using an ERG controlled ramp fixed that for me.

Barry
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