Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 91 total)
  • Operation 5w/kg
  • Premier Icon anagallis_arvensis
    Free Member

    What happened to that guy, did he ever make it?

    I myself have not yet cracked 4 but am getting close.

    Premier Icon joebristol
    Full Member

    On here? Is that the guy in Germany who starts threads occasionally on being more aero etc?

    I can’t even get my head around 5w/kg

    I’ve only just got myself over 3w/kg and I feel like I’ve had it pare my weight right down. Couple more kgs off will be about as low as I can go – would take me to 74kgs which would be the lightest I’ve been since about ages 12. Means I’d have to get my ftp to 375w ish – and at the moment I’m at 231w.

    Premier Icon anagallis_arvensis
    Free Member

    It was this thread, so not the German powerhouse guy.

    Project 5 watts per kg.

    My FTP is currently 275 at 70-71kg so I am pretty close to 4w/kg and then I’ll be able to claim indoor training completed, although I did lose my only Strava KOM this summer so I need to re complete Strava this summer

    Premier Icon onehundredthidiot
    Free Member

    How do you get there? I’m 70kg could go to 68kg but even then it just gives me 3W/kg.
    What do you do to get that up?

    I use wahoo and run and am exercising daily, sometimes recovery rides sometimes yoga.

    Premier Icon markgraylish
    Free Member

    For how long? I’m pretty sure I can manage 5w/kg quite easily (but only for about 10 seconds…!)

    Premier Icon anagallis_arvensis
    Free Member

    For FTP so it’s what 95% of 20 min effort isn’t it?

    How do you get there?

    Pedal like ****!

    Premier Icon thecaptain
    Free Member

    Lots of long steady riding. A small proportion of harder efforts. And decent genetics. I don’t believe I could ever have got to 5 even when younger (especially being the wrong side of 80kg), now I’m over 50 and 4 is a respectable level that in quite pleased with (best ever 20 min is 361W at 4.4).

    Easier way of all is to have dodgy kit of course. Plenty of that to be seen on zwift, though you can’t usually tell until they are high A+ level.

    Premier Icon mashr
    Full Member

    markgraylish
    Free Member

    For how long?

    It was his FTP he was targeting, so technically 1 hour. Good luck with that

    Premier Icon anagallis_arvensis
    Free Member

    best ever 20 min is 361W at 4.4

    Is that best ever 20min or best ever FTP? (95% of best 20mins)

    Either way it’s very impressive!

    Premier Icon continuity
    Full Member

    I don’t think 5w/kg for 20 at a reasonable weight is out of the reach of most amateurs that are interested in it, but if you haven’t come to cycling or training from a background of generally being reasonably fit it could be a longer process.

    My gut tells me (based on varying volume a lot over the last 4-5yrs) you’d probably need to be spending c. 10-15hrs a week though.

    But 5 for 20 isn’t 5 FTP, and even if you managed 5/0.95 for 20 it probably wouldn’t prove you had a true 5 ftp ( often worse than the estimated 5%).

    I’ve hit 5ish for a 20min once (381 @ like 76kg) but there’s not a chance I could do it for an hour, let alone 361 for an hour. I think at 381 for 20 I could probably have pushed 320-330 for an hour. That was on about 8-10/week (plus lifting).

    I gave up and decided I didn’t care but that I’d like 500 for 5mins. I think for most of the racing you do in the UK (short crits and xco) 500 for 5 would win you more races than 5 for an hour.

    Premier Icon jamesoz
    Full Member

    Based on a middle aged man with a beer and kebab habit (me).
    FTP of around 300 (when not injured)
    Weight around 95 kgs

    I imagine losing 25 years, 20 kg and structured training could have got near. Unfortunately I’d have been in the pub and smoking 25 years ago.

    Also IIRC the weight helps with the power, so if I was lighter would it drop power, assuming the same muscle mass? I don’t know.

    Premier Icon continuity
    Full Member

    @jamesoz

    That whole ‘weight=power’ thing assumes that you’re at the lowest sustainable bodyfat and have no superfluous upper body muscle. If tom pidcock loses 5kg, he’s going to lose power (not just because that would probably require him to chop a leg off), but I’m 75kg and I could easily lop 5kg of extraneous weight.

    Premier Icon IHN
    Full Member

    5? I’d be happy consistently holding 2 and a bit. 83kg, a powerhouse FTP of 209 according to a 12-month old ramp test.

    Premier Icon hexhamstu
    Free Member

    I hit 3.48w/kg for a short time and what a time it was! Back down to below 3 after Covid and not much riding for the 3 months after Covid and then over indulgence at christmas. Easy to fall right off.

    Premier Icon DrP
    Full Member

    ooh..now this is interesting,and something to aim for…

    My current weight is 70kg… and an FTP test lst saturday was 312 watts (20min at 328w average)
    It spanked me…but… I wasn’t well slept or rested enough. Don’t get me wrong, it was hard and I rtried hard…but the watt average dropped off towards the end.

    If I dropped to 68kg (i’ve done it before, for my vEveresting) and got the FTP to 340 (yeah right!!!) then that’s 5w/kg..
    Which would mean 20min at 358 watts….

    However…if I dropped to 65kg, and had an FTP of 325 (342 watts average for 20 min) that would ALSO be 5 per kg..

    So which is easier… shedding weight, or gaining power…?? hmmm!!!

    DrP

    Premier Icon anagallis_arvensis
    Free Member

    My current weight is 70kg… and an FTP test lst saturday was 312 watts

    That’s impressive!!
    I find I can do say 3.8w/kg for an hour when racing but can’t raise my FTP over 3.8…. guess I would need to train with intervals etc but that seems the opposite of fun and I ride for fun!

    If I could drop 1kg and raise my FTP by 5 w I’d be at 4w/kg

    Premier Icon thecaptain
    Free Member

    5W/kg is a pretty high elite level and most normal people won’t get there however much training they do. Especially if they are in the large side.

    Premier Icon DrP
    Full Member

    The original thread is pretty interesting reading actually..


    @molgrips
    mentioned “It’s long been told on here that if you are already a reasonable cyclist you can’t lose weight at the same time as increasing power.”
    I would agree, but also PERSONALLY I have dropped to 65kg (about 2015 i think) and felt SUPER STRONG on the bike. However, at that time I didn’t use power data, so maybe I just felt sprightly (though did well at Brighton Big Dog).

    6 years later and approaching 40 it might be a different matter!
    I know I’m pretty light, but I also know with commitment I COULD shed 2-3 kg of back fat (!! vanityP) and keep the muscles..

    Hmmm…
    With my new FTP of 312, I’m planning on redoing the ‘build me up’ workout plan..of course this time the figures to train to will be harder/higher, THUS I SHOULD be aiming for an FTP climb again…

    Should…

    DrP

    Premier Icon Haze
    Full Member

    I think for most of the racing you do in the UK (short crits and xco) 500 for 5 would win you more races than 5 for an hour

    Agree with this, good 5 minute power is probably a better focus if you’re racing.

    Intervals can sometimes be grim but are obviously effective, so if being fit and fast is your idea of fun you need to embrace them!

    Premier Icon tpbiker
    Free Member

    As indicated above, it’s all in the weigh. Far easier to lose 20kg if you are a bit porky than put on 100 watts of power.

    I went from 2.5 w/kg to 4.1w/kg in about 9 months, but my power only rose by about 50 watts in that time. The rest was losing my excess Podge

    You’ll then get to your optimum weight, I lost about 2kg too much and my power started going back down again

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Full Member

    I love the way ftp has evolved into a sort of semi-vanity metric, which disregards the rest of your power profile completely. Personally, and particularly for mountain biking, I’d rather have a middle ground ftp and disproportionately high one minute and five minute numbers plus really good recovery from those and anaerobic sprint efforts.

    I know there’s not a total disconnect and you can potentially have both, but just sitting there on Zwift doing ftp-focussed workouts so you can brag about your ftp figures seems a little myopic. I’m not having a go at anyone, but as my Iron Man riding buddy discovered a few years back, being able to churn along at a constant rate isn’t much use on a mountain bike if three successive, hard, technical kick climbs render you more or less insensible.

    Michael Hutchinson’s book Faster is interesting on this. He’s basically a big diesel engine, which is fine for time trialling, but not so great for anything more varied. In the end ftp is really just a mark to set training levels by, not an aim in itself.

    Premier Icon Hob-Nob
    Free Member

    Definitely not something I could achieve, without living like a monk (nor would I want to, I don’t think).

    One of my riding friends is a bit of a freak, 185cm, 68kg & has an FTP of 308w, which is 4.5w/kg. He does an insane amount of training, and looks like he would snap in a strong breeze, that said he can ride a bike though.

    I’m a much more slovenly 188cm, 85kg & 275w FTP which puts me at 3.2w/kg, which is fine. I could probably lose 5kg fairly sensibly whilst still being able to lift decent weight in the gym, and fit it round life, a job, a nice beer & dinners out & push it up to ~290w with some training, which would get me up to a whole 3.6w/kg.

    Or I could just carry on as I am & enjoy myself 🙂

    Premier Icon ta11pau1
    Full Member

    There’s the short person advantage too.

    I’m not heavy, I’m tall. 🤣

    At 6ft 3in and 84kg, my current 210w FTP puts me at 2.5w/kg

    If I was 5ft 8in at the same BMI, same 210w FTP, I’d be 69kg and would be at 3.04w/kg.

    Premier Icon anagallis_arvensis
    Free Member

    but just sitting there on Zwift doing ftp-focussed workouts so you can brag about your ftp figures seems a little myopic.

    True and I reckon if I practiced FTP test I could up my figure by about 10-20w. I’ve only ever done 2 tests, the one this week was prompted by me seeing my average Watts on an RGT race (6 laps with 6 Patterberg climbs) was higher than my FTP, so if I could average that figure over 50mins with periodic hard efforts up the climb, I should be able to beat my FTP and sure enough I could. I’d like to increase my 2min type power to hang onto groups longer in races, but TBH I can’t be arsed!

    Premier Icon steve_b77
    Free Member

    5W/kg is a pretty high elite level

    Don’t kid yourself, 5W/kg is top end Junior male level’s of power / Elite female levels, Elite male is a good 0.5 to 0.75 W/kg more, Pro is way beyond that.

    There’s absolutely no point dropping weight if its firstly unsustainable and secondly drops power, yeah if you’re the average MTB rider then loosing weight is going to help, but it’s more about lean muscle mass than actual weight.

    Take a look at Wout for example, he’s frankly massive for a pro road racer at 78kg, but can also drop exceptional wattage bazookas and has a huge FTP, even when he’s in (lighter maybe 74kg) GT shape as Ineos found out last year when he merrily rode away from Bernal.

    I’m on the good side of shit when it comes to racing, best I’ve done in a Zwift Crit is 3.9w/kg average and can sprint at around 10w/kg, not exactly amazing, but I’m considerably better at chugging around for hours on end.

    For reference, on the same calibrated trainer (Elite Direto) my 36kg 9yr old has an FTP of 129W or 3.6w/kg and a 10 second of 548W or 15w/kg, but then again he can also spin along at 110rpm and there’s barely an ounce of fat on him.

    Premier Icon DrP
    Full Member

    @badlywireddog
    I’d kinda agree… especially on a MTB where ‘punch’, burst power, and skill/flow are very important factors too….
    But… If you gotta measure something to work from, it may as WELL be http://FTP..
    It’s recognised, pretty translatable from one system to another..

    For example, doing any workout plan WILL ask for your FTP to base it around.

    Also, (not a facaetious question..) have you done any FTP based programmes?? Zwift etc?

    They are actually pretty good! I used to be a bit cynical, and be of the “Meh..just rid your bike camp”, but actually they DO address lots of different riding factors…
    Say your FTP is 300; a LOT of the programme is based about riding at just below and then just above.. sweet spot training..
    But then you’ll have some sessions getting you to grind out at 70-80 rpm at, say, 275 watts, for 10 minutes…
    Then another will work on 350 watts for 3 minutes, with a 4 min rest, then again at 350 for 3 min…
    Then it’ll get you doing 600 watts for 20 seconds…40 seconds off, 600watts for 20 again…

    They DO mix up the varying components you sepak of…

    But… it all works around the base figure of FTP.

    I’ve benefitted greatly for XC racing as I’ve massively improved my ability to ruddy push it for 2 min (up a climb, for example) then KEEP THE POWER DOWN over the top, whilst actively recovering whilst still giving it some#!

    DrP

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Full Member

    I’ve just started (2 weeks ago) the most training I’ve done in many years, which is 6 workouts a week. My Garmin training was around 300 typically, now it’s currently 1150. And I feel pretty good, but my weight actually went up a bit from its already high post-Christmas number. Just started to come down now. But I feel like a monster on Zwift currently.

    Premier Icon mogrim
    Free Member

    Intervals can sometimes be grim but are obviously effective, so if being fit and fast is your idea of fun you need to embrace them!

    I can’t be the only one on here who actually enjoys doing intervals, right? Right?

    For example, doing any workout plan WILL ask for your FTP to base it around.

    Systm doesn’t, at least not exactly. Their 4DP test includes 15 second and 5 min power, too. And they then use that to calibrate the workouts. Whether they’re any more effective… no idea. Then there’s also the point that while the 5min power might be what wins you the race, if you need to ride at 100% of FTP just to be competitive at the sprint you’re stuffed. Another rider who’s been cruising round at 90% is going to be a whole load fresher.

    Premier Icon BadlyWiredDog
    Full Member

    Also, (not a facaetious question..) have you done any FTP based programmes?? Zwift etc?

    Yes, lots, but not on Zwift. My point isn’t that ftp is a useless metric, it isn’t, but it’s basically there as a training baseline and just improving it in isolation is a bit like being great at, say, maths. Ideally you also want to be able to read and write and have a level of common sense and emotional intelligence etc.

    The 4DP measurement that Sufferfest / Wahoo SYSTM uses makes a lot more sense as it measures 20 minute, 5 minute, 1 minute and, erm, I think, 7 second sprint power rather than using ftp as a baseline to set the other levels for workouts. Of course if your power levels are in perfectly in proportion, then just using ftp is fine, but if, say, you have a disproportionately higher five minute power, then potentially setting MAP interval levels using FTP is actually going to set your targets too low.

    I’m not saying ftp is useless, but – and this isn’t exactly an original thought – it’s just a part of your overall power profile or whatever you want to call it. I’m a bit hyper-aware of this atm as after almost 18 months off the bike thanks to long covid and around five months back, my ftp is now 248 watts – without any structured training – so down about 50 watts on what it was, but my top end is still trashed and disproportionately low and trust me, I can feel it. I’m pretty good on steady stuff, but still struggling with short, hard efforts.

    If I trained simply to increase ftp – sweet spots, which are actually below ftp, not the same as over/unders etc – nothing would change ort at least it wouldn’t be an effective way of increasing five minute or one minute power. Indeed if I then tried to use my increased ftp to set power targets for shorter intervals, it would potentially make those targets quite unrealistically high.

    None of this really matters, but ftp is just part of a much bigger picture not an aim in itself. It’s a bit like max torque and power figures for a car engine, they tell you a bit, but not necessarily how it will drive in the real world.

    Edit: sorry, I suspect we sort of agree, but I’m feeling argumentative 🙂

    Premier Icon DrP
    Full Member

    The 4DP measurement that Sufferfest / Wahoo SYSTM uses makes a lot more sense as it measures 20 minute, 5 minute, 1 minute and, erm, I think, 7 second sprint power rather than using ftp as a baseline to set the other levels for workouts. Of course if your power levels are in perfectly in proportion, then just using ftp is fine, but if, say, you have a disproportionately higher five minute power, then potentially setting MAP interval levels using FTP is actually going to set your targets too low.

    I’d agree with this…
    (also, yup..got over/unders confused with sweetspot!)
    I think my power curve starts off lower than you’d expect (for my FTP), drops rapidly, then flattens out around teh 5 min mark…
    I.e My max sprint power is usually 2.5 ish times my FTP… no way will i routinely hit, let alone sustain, 1000w. Again, my 20 second power is probably waaaay down from what would be expected from my FTP. But i could, with relative ease, hold my FTP for 5-10 minutes really.

    Thus I imagine a 4dp programme would suit me better. But..I pay for and like zwift, so meh!!!!

    DrP

    EDIT

    Edit: sorry, I suspect we sort of agree, but I’m feeling argumentative 🙂

    Ha..no worries… I’m in the midst of messaging my Ex about actually helping out with our isolating daughter this week… so I feel a ‘zen like calm’ at the mo..otherwise I loose my shizzle!!!

    Premier Icon benman
    Free Member

    I used to like the Sufferfest 4DP thing, as it tailored all areas of the workouts to suit.

    Zwift just seems to base all of its metrics on percentages of the FTP, so if you have a relatively high 20min figure compared to 10 seconds, the sprint wattage required is insane.

    At the end of the day, its just a number to see if you are getting stronger on the turbo or not. Doesn’t equate well to outdoor power figures in my experience.

    Back to the OP, I’m above 4k/w FTP but 5 is never gonna happen…

    Premier Icon mrlebowski
    Free Member

    I find that the only reliable way to test FTP is to take an average of 3 different tests.

    I do a 20 min FTP – tends to be the lowest.
    A 2×8 min FTP – tends to be the highest.
    A ramp test (Suf Half Monty) – tends to be in the middle.

    My 2×8 is highest as I’ve (apparently a good AC proportionately to my FTP), but I really suffer with extended high tempo stuff. Find that just brutal..

    Its a fun week!

    Premier Icon schmiken
    Full Member

    I have a slightly fanciful goal of trying to get to 5 W/kg this year. I went from 3.5 W/kg at the start of last year up to 4.25 as I currently stand. 73kg and FTP of 310. (This is measured both inside on the turbo and outside using the same powermeter – both come out within 4W of each other). I reckon I can get my weight back down to 71/72 kg, which means raising FTP to around 355W, which will be hard but doable.
    My slightly more realistic goal is 4.5 W/kg at 73 and 330W.

    I’m following a training programme on Trainerroad (low volume) and then adding in two gym workouts and lots of extra Z2 work on the road. I generally do somewhere in the region of 10-12 hours weekly.

    I would definitely agree with FTP not being the be-all and end-all. Once my base phase ends, I spend a considerable amount of time working on repeatability of hard efforts as I feel that being able to do 400W efforts again and again is what benefits me in XC racing. I’d still like a big FTP though, as it makes everything feel a little bit easier!

    Premier Icon mrlebowski
    Free Member

    I would definitely agree with FTP not being the be-all and end-all. Once my base phase ends, I spend a considerable amount of time working on repeatability of hard efforts as I feel that being able to do 400W efforts again and again is what benefits me in XC racing. I’d still like a big FTP though, as it makes everything feel a little bit easier!

    I’d go along with this.

    Team lap events I like as I can give it the beans safe in the knowledge I’ve got plenty go time to recover.

    Premier Icon tpbiker
    Free Member

    Depends entirely on the cycling you do as to whether ftp is a good indicator of performance

    I worked on my ftp as I wanted to compete in tt’ing. Granted w/kg isn’t massively relevant on a flat tt but ftp absolutely is. In fact it and your aero cda literally define how fast you’ll go

    But conversely I then rocked up to a mtb event, looked at all the ‘fat’ mtb’ers on the start line next to me, and had a little chuckle to myself. Before literally dying a painful death on the many short sharp climbs that required efforts far over ftp that I’d simply not practiced for.

    I’d say ftp is far more relevant on a road bike than a mtb, however unless the race finishes on a fairly long climb, you won’t win much without numerous other strings to your bow

    Premier Icon jacobyte
    Free Member

    Targeted workouts based on 4DP on Sufferfest / SYSTM have massively improved my mtb ability. I used to do triathlons, so it was all steady-rate FTP based. But over the past 12 months, whilst my FTP has only gone up by 8%, my 5-minute and 1-minute power have gone up over 20%, with a transformation in recovery from hard efforts, which means I can now do short sharp offroad climbs and keep going at the top, ready for another one.

    Premier Icon Haze
    Full Member

    @mogrim

    I can’t be the only one on here who actually enjoys doing intervals, right? Right?

    I enjoy them too, just need to dig in sometimes and remember why I’m doing them!

    Premier Icon Haze
    Full Member

    I’ve been using WKO5 which models FTP from your power duration curve, you need to keep feeding good data into the curve with periodic short, medium and long tests.

    Garbage in, garbage out.

    Workout intensity based off iLevels which are generated from the curve and much like the 4DP thing they’re personal rather than some generic percentage of FTP.

    And I couldn’t hit 5wkg either, usually between 4 and 4.3 which I’m happy enough with.

    Premier Icon DrP
    Full Member

    OK… so thinking about it, I might look into, or create, some workouts on Zwift that aim to push up my shorter time power..
    7, 20, and 300sec power….

    I’m lazy..anyone know the names of workouts that do this??

    DrP

    Premier Icon thecaptain
    Free Member

    Don’t kid yourself, 5W/kg is top end Junior male level’s of power / Elite female levels, Elite male is a good 0.5 to 0.75 W/kg more, Pro is way beyond that.

    Not sure where you’re getting your numbers from but the UCI pro in my zwift team comes in at 5.1, sure there are some with better numbers, but the enthusiasts who didn’t quite make it are a good level down. The strongest women I know on zwift, which means national titles and records for IRL riding, are also at or under under 5. Juniors can have good W/kg due to being super light but unless you remain a skinny midget into adulthood, you’re not going to stay that way.

    I did mean “elite amateur” when I wrote elite, not absolute world beating. There’s simply no way that an average guy is ever going to get there. We can’t all just get to pro level in cycling by willpower any more than we would in athletics or golf.

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