Sunday, December 03, 2006

FTP test

Now that I've had my Ergomo power meter for a few weeks, I've become both comfortable with it and confident in what it's telling me. So yesterday I performed my first functional threshold power (FTP) test. I use the term FTP as defined by Andrew Coggan's work: it's the highest average power that you can hold for a 1 hour time trial in a race (which equates to about 103% of your training TT results). It can be estimated by doing a 30 minute time trial in training or by taking 97% of a 30-minute time trial at a race (where motivation is theoretically higher).

I decided to use the 'gold standard' 1-hour test. My average power for a 1 hour TT in training was 231 watts. 231/0.97 = 238, so I'm using that as my FTP now to establish my training zones. (My normalized power was 235 watts for the test interval.) Last February I estimated my FTP at about 210 watts, so it's increased by about 13% in less than a year. I'd like to get it to 250 by mid 2007 (3.6 watts/kg).