This FTP Test was the culmination of 2.5 months of training (October 15th – December 30th). I started this build off with an FTP test on October 15th. I measured power with two devices: a CompuTrainer and a Quarq Cinco Saturn power meter. On October 15th I warmed up for 20 minutes (and ran the CompuTrainer calibration software) and then held the highest wattage I could possibly hold for 20 minutes straight, then cooled down for 10 minutes. According to the CompuTrainer I held 408w, and according to the Quarq I held 416w. Here is the graph of the data from the CompuTrainer, followed by the data from the Quarq:
This time round I did the same procedure. I aired up both tires to 120 psi. I then warmed up for 20 minutes and during this time I ran the CompuTrainer calibration software. Last time I had the Rolling Resistance Calibration at 3.10. This time I had it at 2.94. One change I made this time was that I also calibrated the Quarq (following the manufacturer’s procedure). Additionally, I measured heart rate and cadence via the Quarq this time.
Admittedly, I was unsure how I would fare. As mentioned in a previous post, I have been recuperating from a minor injury in my right knee. It was starting to feel a bit better on Saturday, so I decided to go through with the test. On Wednesday I was seriously considering postponing it. As well, this build did not go to plan as well as I would have liked. During the Vo2Max focus phase I missed several workouts due to not acknowledging my weaknesses and planning accordingly. Additionally, during the Lactate Threshold phase, I missed several workouts due to technological malfunction, blown tires, and injury. That being said, I was mentally preparing myself for the event that I did not improve, or even testing lower than last time.
This time round was more painful than last time. Perhaps it was because I did so little biking in the week leading up to the test that I felt out of rhythm. Regardless, I ended up averaging 417w according to the CompuTrainer, and 430w according to the Quarq. Last time, the disagreement between the Quarq and CompuTrainer was only 8w, this time it was 13w. But, when adding the manufacturer’s error rating together between the two instruments, this falls well inside of the potential for error (+/- 2% and +/- 2% = +/- 4%; @400w = +/-16w). Another factor that could have led to this increase is that I calibrated the Quarq this time round, which I did not do last time. Here is a graph of the CompuTrainer data, followed by a graph of the Quarq data:
I am quite pleased with the results. For training purposes, I will take the lower of the two to be the actual value of the test, so 417w. This gives me an FTP of 396.15w. I weighed in at 160.6 lbs, so 73 kg, thus I have an FTP of 5.43 w/kg.This means that all of my training zones for the next build will go up about 9w. Here is a graph of my new training zones that I will use in my build up to the U.S. Pro Championship:
Additionally, my girlfriend Erin got me a cool new mountable camera to use for training, technical, and blogging purposes. I took this as a good opportunity to put it to use and filmed the entire FTP test. If you want to see what bad cycling technique looks like, watch this video (Disclaimer: You may laugh out loud when you hear me moaning and groaning between 12 and 17 minutes):