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Pacing for Longer Rides

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Pacing for Longer Rides

Old 06-28-20, 08:45 AM
  #76  
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Originally Posted by rubiksoval View Post
So, what, like in a race or something? How many dozens of examples would you like?

Here's a hard race. Note that my powermeter, ftp, and zones were was all pretty accurate. Zone 6 was 25 minutes and 6 seconds.

Another of my longest and hardest races. Z6 = 19 minutes and 39 seconds.



These were both from national championship races, so suffice to say I was "slaughtered" in ways that I'm not typically slaughtered.

But hey, maybe you just train so much harder.
Deleted graphs to make the post shorter, but holy moly you did 160km in 4 hours and 1hr40 of that was in your recover zone? Incredible!
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Old 06-28-20, 11:36 AM
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Originally Posted by ZHVelo View Post
Deleted graphs to make the post shorter, but holy moly you did 160km in 4 hours and 1hr40 of that was in your recover zone? Incredible!
Well, not that incredible... I was dropped!
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Old 06-28-20, 03:34 PM
  #78  
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Originally Posted by rubiksoval View Post
Your notion of 332 TSS in 3 hours certainly does not mean it's "working well". It's little more than an arbitrary number at this point.

Your numbers are off, simple as that. Trying to justify it as matching up with your perceived notion of fitness and exhaustion is self-fulfilling at best.
I did 351 TSS according to TrainingPeaks over almost 5 hours just today actually. And I was actually pretty shattered after. During the ride it felt surprisingly good, though.

So yes, 332 in 60% of that time - that seems insane.
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Old 06-28-20, 07:44 PM
  #79  
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Originally Posted by rubiksoval View Post
The calculations are only as good as your inputted FTP.

I feel like that's been said multiple times already.

An IF of 1.01 for 3+ hours is like an illuminated billboard sign that says your inputs are off.
I still need some help. I thought my saddle sore was good enough to go out and get some data. I was wrong, but got the data anyway. I did the CTS 8' hard-as-you-can-go FTP test. Couldn't do 2 X 20 because of the sore, don't think the result would have been different. CTS says that their long experience with this test shows that 90% of those watts is about your FTP. Well warmed up, I tried to hold 180 watts on a flat road, averaged 181. My HR was 5 beats over LTHR and I was panting hard the last 90", so I think that was about it. Maybe I could have gone a couple watts harder, but only maybe. Close to blowing up. 90% of that is 163 watts, which is 3 watts more than I was able to do indoors. That's not enough to make much difference in TP's TSS.

I did notice some weird stuff, though. For instance my AeT or VT1, however one wants to label it, is about 85% of that 163w. That seems a little high. I can cruise for a very long time at those watts, but then just 20 watts more and I'm toast. At the upper end, I can slaughter pretty much any club rider within 15 years of my age in sprints or on sprint hills. By always riding with people younger than myself, there being almost no one my age who can keep up with me, I've been forced to do a lot of anaerobic training, I suppose at the expense of aerobic training. Looking at short rides on my single I've done where I felt strong, TP often shows about 100 TSS per saddle hour, just because my anaerobic watts are so high in comparison with my FTP and I use them a lot for short bursts. Any little rise and bam I'm over 150% of FTP without even noticing it, but I can't keep it up - I run out of air. Before the PM I didn't notice it because there's little effect on HR from doing that for short periods. When I'm in shape, my HR comes up quite slowly, much more slowly than my change in breathing rate..

I suppose this is a training effect from riding with HR and shooting for an hour of Z4 HR on every weekend group ride for many years, when as I now see, a lot of that "Z4" was power Z6. Be that as it may, it worked really well for long distance training, where I can ride in the aerobic zones fast enough to stay with much better riders, not in the short run, but in the long run I can keep up. They'll drop me on the climbs, especially the early climbs, but I'll get them back, "them" meaning riders within 15 years of my age. "They say" that training in the upper zones pulls your performance up all the way down the zone ladder. I don't know if that's true, but it seemed to have worked for me.

OTOH, maybe I could have done better by cutting way back on that anaerobic training and instead staying mostly in zone 1 of the 3 zone system, as was mentioned in another thread regarding Ironman training. I don't know. I suppose it would take a lot more volume to get up to the same CTL. I never do 6 hour moderate rides. Doesn't sound like much fun and no one's paying me. I'm addicted to riding fast. Again OTOH, training as I've done has given my aerobic system a lot of depth, just not much height. I don't run out of gas very soon.

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Old 06-28-20, 11:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
I still need some help. I thought my saddle sore was good enough to go out and get some data. I was wrong, but got the data anyway. I did the CTS 8' hard-as-you-can-go FTP test. Couldn't do 2 X 20 because of the sore, don't think the result would have been different. CTS says that their long experience with this test shows that 90% of those watts is about your FTP. Well warmed up, I tried to hold 180 watts on a flat road, averaged 181. My HR was 5 beats over LTHR and I was panting hard the last 90", so I think that was about it. Maybe I could have gone a couple watts harder, but only maybe. Close to blowing up. 90% of that is 163 watts, which is 3 watts more than I was able to do indoors. That's not enough to make much difference in TP's TSS.
This is definitely weird. I agree with Rubiksoval that an IF of 1.01 for 3 hours is, pretty much by definition, incorrect.

However, given what you describe about your anaerobic power, the 2x8' all-out efforts should actually overstate your FTP a bit as you will be helped in each interval by your anaerobic engine. That would, in effect, actually make the corrected IF of your rides even higher.

The only thing i can think of is that the FTP test is somehow flawed - how or why, i cant say. Were you holding more or less constant watts throughout the effort or did your wattage drop over the course of the 8'? Alternatively, could you be spinning too much (which elevates your HR more, but may not always the optimal power output)?
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Old 06-29-20, 01:19 AM
  #81  
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
I still need some help. I thought my saddle sore was good enough to go out and get some data. I was wrong, but got the data anyway. I did the CTS 8' hard-as-you-can-go FTP test. Couldn't do 2 X 20 because of the sore, don't think the result would have been different. CTS says that their long experience with this test shows that 90% of those watts is about your FTP. Well warmed up, I tried to hold 180 watts on a flat road, averaged 181. My HR was 5 beats over LTHR and I was panting hard the last 90", so I think that was about it. Maybe I could have gone a couple watts harder, but only maybe. Close to blowing up. 90% of that is 163 watts, which is 3 watts more than I was able to do indoors. That's not enough to make much difference in TP's TSS.

I did notice some weird stuff, though. For instance my AeT or VT1, however one wants to label it, is about 85% of that 163w. That seems a little high. I can cruise for a very long time at those watts, but then just 20 watts more and I'm toast. At the upper end, I can slaughter pretty much any club rider within 15 years of my age in sprints or on sprint hills. By always riding with people younger than myself, there being almost no one my age who can keep up with me, I've been forced to do a lot of anaerobic training, I suppose at the expense of aerobic training. Looking at short rides on my single I've done where I felt strong, TP often shows about 100 TSS per saddle hour, just because my anaerobic watts are so high in comparison with my FTP and I use them a lot for short bursts. Any little rise and bam I'm over 150% of FTP without even noticing it, but I can't keep it up - I run out of air. Before the PM I didn't notice it because there's little effect on HR from doing that for short periods. When I'm in shape, my HR comes up quite slowly, much more slowly than my change in breathing rate..

I suppose this is a training effect from riding with HR and shooting for an hour of Z4 HR on every weekend group ride for many years, when as I now see, a lot of that "Z4" was power Z6. Be that as it may, it worked really well for long distance training, where I can ride in the aerobic zones fast enough to stay with much better riders, not in the short run, but in the long run I can keep up. They'll drop me on the climbs, especially the early climbs, but I'll get them back, "them" meaning riders within 15 years of my age. "They say" that training in the upper zones pulls your performance up all the way down the zone ladder. I don't know if that's true, but it seemed to have worked for me.

OTOH, maybe I could have done better by cutting way back on that anaerobic training and instead staying mostly in zone 1 of the 3 zone system, as was mentioned in another thread regarding Ironman training. I don't know. I suppose it would take a lot more volume to get up to the same CTL. I never do 6 hour moderate rides. Doesn't sound like much fun and no one's paying me. I'm addicted to riding fast. Again OTOH, training as I've done has given my aerobic system a lot of depth, just not much height. I don't run out of gas very soon.

Comments?
It sounds like you are a speedster. I am a speedster. Raced on the track and hated races more than 15 laps. I have done 20 minute and 8 minute ftp tests and find that, for me, the 8 minute overestimates compared to the 20 minute test. My peak watts graph starts high but drops fast. The eight minute test allowed me to put up big numbers because by the time I start seriously dropping, the interval is almost over. For me, I find the ramp test works best to give a more realistic number for me.
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Old 06-29-20, 06:35 AM
  #82  
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Ditto on using HR monitor......
Ride Zone-2 (Zone-5 system.....70-75% MHR)......keep out of higher zones for most of your ride.
You will need a decent HR monitor.
I went with an IGPS Sport GPS Bike computer, and bought a Garmin-compatible HR strap. Less than $100 all in.
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Old 06-29-20, 09:10 AM
  #83  
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Originally Posted by guadzilla View Post
This is definitely weird. I agree with Rubiksoval that an IF of 1.01 for 3 hours is, pretty much by definition, incorrect.

However, given what you describe about your anaerobic power, the 2x8' all-out efforts should actually overstate your FTP a bit as you will be helped in each interval by your anaerobic engine. That would, in effect, actually make the corrected IF of your rides even higher.

The only thing i can think of is that the FTP test is somehow flawed - how or why, i cant say. Were you holding more or less constant watts throughout the effort or did your wattage drop over the course of the 8'? Alternatively, could you be spinning too much (which elevates your HR more, but may not always the optimal power output)?
Thank you for you input. Actually I pushed it harder near the end when I could see I had a little left and wasn't going to blow up - always an issue with these short tests. Blowing up at 8' = perfect, but hard to do exactly, blow up early and the test is ruined.. I can hold constant watts on my rollers, but not on the road. Watts varied from low 200s down to maybe 165. I kept it as steady as I could. It was windy.
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Old 06-29-20, 09:11 AM
  #84  
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Originally Posted by colnago62 View Post
It sounds like you are a speedster. I am a speedster. Raced on the track and hated races more than 15 laps. I have done 20 minute and 8 minute ftp tests and find that, for me, the 8 minute overestimates compared to the 20 minute test. My peak watts graph starts high but drops fast. The eight minute test allowed me to put up big numbers because by the time I start seriously dropping, the interval is almost over. For me, I find the ramp test works best to give a more realistic number for me.
Thanks. How does one do a ramp test outside a lab?
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Old 06-29-20, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
Thanks. How does one do a ramp test outside a lab?
Zwift and possibly TrainerRoad have it setup as part of their testing options. If you have a velodrome close to you, that could also work.
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Old 06-29-20, 10:21 AM
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Originally Posted by colnago62 View Post
Zwift and possibly TrainerRoad have it setup as part of their testing options. If you have a velodrome close to you, that could also work.
Don't have either of those, just my resistance rollers. What's the protocol?
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Old 06-29-20, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
Don't have either of those, just my resistance rollers. What's the protocol?
I don’t know the calculations because Zwift does that automatically, but the idea is to measure the amount of time the rider can hold their highest watts. I think it goes in 10-20 watt increases every minute until exhaustion.
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Old 06-29-20, 08:58 PM
  #88  
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I doubt rollers can do ramp tests reliably, the idea is that the smart trainer increases resistance in steps until you absolutely cannot push the pedals any more, then take approx. 75% of that max power as your FTP. So you need something that can increase resistance consistently, and at the same time hit a point where the resistance is too hard for you to push the pedals.

Unfortunately ramp tests can be inaccurate too. The standard Zwift ramp test starts at 100W, then increases by +20W every minute. The power ramps up too fast, and too steeply - for people with very good anaerobic power (or "speedsters", as @colnago62 alludes to), a lot of that initial burst of power contributes to the test, allowing them to quickly hit high amounts of power with this test (and therefore overestimates their FTP value).

Zwift has introduced an alternative ramp test for "light riders", though I have not seen or tried that one to see how that works.

TrainnerRoad's ramp test, from online reading, adjusts the starting watts and the ramp rate according to a percentage of the rider's current FTP, so supposedly is more accurate.

The Sufferfest's ramp test, called the Half Monty, also adjusts its baseline based on your FTP and, if I remember correctly, has a longer duration per step. In addition to that, there is a 20-minute interval section after the ramp test which is not as hard as a full FTP test, but feels more like a tempo test, to fine-tune the FTP and lactate heart rate obtained from the ramp test.

But ramp tests aside, some FTP test protocols start off with a 5-minute hard interval effort after warm-up specifically to drain out your anaerobic reserves, before doing the 20-minute FTP test proper. This supposedly ensures that you are fully relying on your aerobic capacity for the test, rather than having that extra boost of "speedster" power tainting the FTP test. Not sure if this principle can be applied to the shorter 8-minute test though.

However, I don't think a standard FTP test will resolve the issue being discussed here and a ramp test would be more appropriate. The FTP test can be easily fooled by pacing issues and any other variability going on (and going by the discussion here, I believe the issue to be @Carbonfiberboy's FTP being underestimated, rather than overestimated?). A good ramp test would completely eliminate those issues altogether, just keep turning those pedals until you absolutely can't turn them anymore.

Edit: One last edit. One (perhaps viable) alternative to FTP testing, is having a Garmin watch or Edge cycling computer auto-calculate for you. You need a power meter and a chest strap heart rate for this, and just go out and do your usual (hard) rides. I don't know how many rides it takes before it comes up with an estimate, but the values it has given me is pretty close to what I get when testing FTP.

Last edited by atwl77; 06-29-20 at 09:15 PM.
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Old 06-29-20, 10:40 PM
  #89  
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Originally Posted by atwl77 View Post
I doubt rollers can do ramp tests reliably, the idea is that the smart trainer increases resistance in steps until you absolutely cannot push the pedals any more, then take approx. 75% of that max power as your FTP. So you need something that can increase resistance consistently, and at the same time hit a point where the resistance is too hard for you to push the pedals.

Unfortunately ramp tests can be inaccurate too. The standard Zwift ramp test starts at 100W, then increases by +20W every minute. The power ramps up too fast, and too steeply - for people with very good anaerobic power (or "speedsters", as @colnago62 alludes to), a lot of that initial burst of power contributes to the test, allowing them to quickly hit high amounts of power with this test (and therefore overestimates their FTP value).

Zwift has introduced an alternative ramp test for "light riders", though I have not seen or tried that one to see how that works.

TrainnerRoad's ramp test, from online reading, adjusts the starting watts and the ramp rate according to a percentage of the rider's current FTP, so supposedly is more accurate.

The Sufferfest's ramp test, called the Half Monty, also adjusts its baseline based on your FTP and, if I remember correctly, has a longer duration per step. In addition to that, there is a 20-minute interval section after the ramp test which is not as hard as a full FTP test, but feels more like a tempo test, to fine-tune the FTP and lactate heart rate obtained from the ramp test.

But ramp tests aside, some FTP test protocols start off with a 5-minute hard interval effort after warm-up specifically to drain out your anaerobic reserves, before doing the 20-minute FTP test proper. This supposedly ensures that you are fully relying on your aerobic capacity for the test, rather than having that extra boost of "speedster" power tainting the FTP test. Not sure if this principle can be applied to the shorter 8-minute test though.

However, I don't think a standard FTP test will resolve the issue being discussed here and a ramp test would be more appropriate. The FTP test can be easily fooled by pacing issues and any other variability going on (and going by the discussion here, I believe the issue to be @Carbonfiberboy's FTP being underestimated, rather than overestimated?). A good ramp test would completely eliminate those issues altogether, just keep turning those pedals until you absolutely can't turn them anymore.

Edit: One last edit. One (perhaps viable) alternative to FTP testing, is having a Garmin watch or Edge cycling computer auto-calculate for you. You need a power meter and a chest strap heart rate for this, and just go out and do your usual (hard) rides. I don't know how many rides it takes before it comes up with an estimate, but the values it has given me is pretty close to what I get when testing FTP.
All the various ways of testing ftp have a level of inaccuracy. They are all an approximation, even an hour long test, has variables that effect accuracy, like motivation. I believe everyone needs to find the one that works best for the type of person and rider that they are. I knew the 8 minute wasn’t good for me because I would struggle when doing VO2 type work. The numbers were too high for me. I struggled with motivation on the 20 minute test and found the ramp test giving me pretty good results. The VO2 Max work is doable, but I feel like dying on each one, which about where that type of work needs to be.
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Old 06-30-20, 11:34 AM
  #90  
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I've done TR and Zwift ramp tests, the Sufferfest 4DP test, and had Garmin autocalculate FTP. The Garmin estimate, as far as I can tell, just took my best 20 min avg power during a longer ride, so I consider it much more arbitrary.

Every test I've taken has agreed within single digit watts on my FTP when they were taken around the same time (only training for a few years so I'm still improving my FTP) and the subsequent zones have felt right afterward. Interestingly the Sufferfest said my best relative power type was 5-min, so I am at least somewhat more anerobic-inclined, but that didn't result in an overestimate of my threshold, since I find long duration sweetspot intervals tough but doable, whereas when I'm above FTP all physiological signs show that I'm going into the red.

Before I got a smart trainer, I did all my indoor tests on rollers using magnetic resistance and a fork stand. At sub 300W I could still manage at 100 rpm. It was annoying to try to hit the power targets, so I thought I was wasting effort and not hitting the best numbers possible, but switching to a Kickr in Erg mode didn't lead to any big improvement.

I haven't tried the Zwift ramp test lite version, but my wife did one using a free Zwift trial and the results looked reasonably close to what I'd estimate from watching her training rides.
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Old 06-30-20, 12:08 PM
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Originally Posted by surak View Post
I've done TR and Zwift ramp tests, the Sufferfest 4DP test, and had Garmin autocalculate FTP. The Garmin estimate, as far as I can tell, just took my best 20 min avg power during a longer ride, so I consider it much more arbitrary.
.
I think Coggen in his book talks about using a riders best 20 minute average during a ride to determine ftp. The most important thing is to use the same system consistently. Eventually a rider will figure out what they have to do to get their best numbers.
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Old 06-30-20, 12:14 PM
  #92  
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Originally Posted by surak View Post
Interestingly the Sufferfest said my best relative power type was 5-min, so I am at least somewhat more anerobic-inclined, but that didn't result in an overestimate of my threshold.
You are an enduro. Good five minute power is inline with events like the pursuit and Madison. Speedster stuff is like sprints, kilo and keirin. They are events that are finished in the time span of a minute.
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Old 06-30-20, 12:25 PM
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Originally Posted by colnago62 View Post
I think Coggen in his book talks about using a riders best 20 minute average during a ride to determine ftp. The most important thing is to use the same system consistently. Eventually a rider will figure out what they have to do to get their best numbers.
​​​​​​It's arbitrary because without a semblance of a protocol, Garmin misses many confounding factors like the fact that I wasn't riding to exhaustion. Those 20 minutes were during a climb that happened to take me about that long, but with 2 more hours of riding ahead. Another indication of its arbitrariness: none of my outdoor rides are what I would consider useful for estimating FTP, and Garmin only ever managed to find that one ride to produce an estimate.
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Old 06-30-20, 02:14 PM
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Longer rides for me are 2.5 hours with 3 hours being the maximum. I rather go to Fiesta Island and ride a fast 20k time trial or do structured training than grind for hours.

I like to ride high z2 low z3 constant power with more emphasis on z3 for longer endurance rides. I like to go fast and z2 power just does not have enough speed for my taste and z1 is a waste of time other than for warmup and cool down. And if I am feeling good, I will through in some z4 threshold efforts to spice things up.

I try to hold constant power per a schedule and I do not ride to a speed unless I am doing team time trial with a partner where holding speed for a given wind and terrain situation is important.

I like to negative split my endurance rides and finish with more power than I start with and generally ride solo or with a training partner.
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Old 06-30-20, 02:17 PM
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From atwi77's post, it sounds like these ramp tests are variations on the Conconi test, which is simple to do on any equipment as long as one has a PM and an HRM. I've done those and found they can be quite accurate, but don't produce results particularly different from other tests using power, though the Conconi also produces a figure for LTHR, which I think is valuable. On long rides, I go more by HR than by power because HR tells more about one's physical condition, which becomes one's primary interest rather than speed. On a climb, if HR stays steady at one's best long climb power, one is doing all the right things. See: https://www.researchgate.net/publica...flection_point

IIRC, the Conconi test increases speed by 1 mph/minute, gear is not changed. The warmup protocol I've used for many years is 20 minutes at a Z2 pace, 90" at 120%, 3.5 minutes Z2, repeat that interval and recovery, go at it at 30'.
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Old 06-30-20, 04:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
From atwi77's post, it sounds like these ramp tests are variations on the Conconi test, which is simple to do on any equipment as long as one has a PM and an HRM. I've done those and found they can be quite accurate, but don't produce results particularly different from other tests using power, though the Conconi also produces a figure for LTHR, which I think is valuable. On long rides, I go more by HR than by power because HR tells more about one's physical condition, which becomes one's primary interest rather than speed. On a climb, if HR stays steady at one's best long climb power, one is doing all the right things. See: https://www.researchgate.net/publica...flection_point

IIRC, the Conconi test increases speed by 1 mph/minute, gear is not changed. The warmup protocol I've used for many years is 20 minutes at a Z2 pace, 90" at 120%, 3.5 minutes Z2, repeat that interval and recovery, go at it at 30'.
I believe you are correct. They replaced power instead of heart rate and do the calculations for you.
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Old 06-30-20, 04:31 PM
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Originally Posted by surak View Post
​​​​​​It's arbitrary because without a semblance of a protocol, Garmin misses many confounding factors like the fact that I wasn't riding to exhaustion. Those 20 minutes were during a climb that happened to take me about that long, but with 2 more hours of riding ahead. Another indication of its arbitrariness: none of my outdoor rides are what I would consider useful for estimating FTP, and Garmin only ever managed to find that one ride to produce an estimate.
It picks the best 20 minute block of time you have done. It doesn’t know if that was assisted or not or other factors. It is a good place to start, however. As I said previously, a rider should find which type of test gives them their best numbers stick with it for most consistent results.
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Old 06-30-20, 04:57 PM
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Originally Posted by colnago62 View Post
It picks the best 20 minute block of time you have done. It doesn’t know if that was assisted or not or other factors. It is a good place to start, however. As I said previously, a rider should find which type of test gives them their best numbers stick with it for most consistent results.
Except the context is getting an accurate estimate of FTP, wherein it's already been noted that a 20-min block is difficult to pace properly in the best of conditions. Garmin's automagical calculation is anything but, and definitely not useful for getting a better estimate than what carbonfiberboy has done, for example. It basically "works" only if one just happens to ride their hardest for just the right length of time. Which for me hasn't happened in over a year, even as I've trained and improved my FTP significantly.
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Old 06-30-20, 07:41 PM
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Originally Posted by surak View Post
Except the context is getting an accurate estimate of FTP, wherein it's already been noted that a 20-min block is difficult to pace properly in the best of conditions. Garmin's automagical calculation is anything but, and definitely not useful for getting a better estimate than what carbonfiberboy has done, for example. It basically "works" only if one just happens to ride their hardest for just the right length of time. Which for me hasn't happened in over a year, even as I've trained and improved my FTP significantly.
Correct, it doesn’t work for you. Think, however about somebody who does a weekly time trail series or does competitive hill climbs. A rider like that is regularly pushing up against the bumpers. Lots of the current software like TrainingPeaks will show you you best 20 in addition to other significant times.
Have you read this book yet? https://wish4book.com/education/1141...d-edition.html The the use of best 20 minute power is a suggestion from this book.

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Old 06-30-20, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by colnago62 View Post
Correct, it doesn’t work for you. Think, however about somebody who does a weekly time trail series or does competitive hill climbs. A rider like that is regularly pushing up against the bumpers. Lots of the current software like TrainingPeaks will show you you best 20 in addition to other significant times.
Have you read this book yet? https://wish4book.com/education/1141...d-edition.html The the use of best 20 minute power is a suggestion from this book.
It seems that you misunderstand me when I say the Garmin FTP estimate is arbitrary. I have no issue with the theory of usingbest 20 min power to approximate FTP. But I wouldn't give someone a Garmin and tell them it has a feature that can estimate their FTP if they JRA without any ride protocol. That estimate is completely dependent on them riding under the right conditions to produce their best 20 min power, which is by definition arbitrary (seriously, look it up). And for anyone who doesn't have an idea of how to pace a 20 min full on effort (serious time trialists and hill climb specialists fit this description, not), it's either worthless or worse.
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