Your FTP improvements


Well, as reported in this thread earlier – I started using TrainerRoad on 8/31 with a ramp test FTP of 271 after my “A” race of the year.

Today, 6 weeks later, after completing a modified* low-volume ‘Short Power Build’ program, I ramp tested at 280 - my highest FTP ever at 3.53 w/kg

My last race of the year is next Saturday, and then I’ll be moving into ‘Sweet Spot Base’ and my off season program, which will include structured training for the first time. I’m hopeful to get to an FTP of 300, and be approaching 4w/KG by my first ‘B’ race of next year in early April. We’ll see.

At 79kg, and getting only a 3% FTP increase over this past 6 weeks of really hard training makes me feel like I’m pushing up against a genetic limit. I’ve never been a natural endurance athlete.

*Modified = since I was beginning short power build 6 weeks before an event, and the program is 8 weeks with a recovery week at week 4…I skipped the recovery week, added two more weeks of intensity and am using the recovery week as a taper for my race next Saturday. I also chose Low Volume and added in mid-intensity outside rides on the weekend - so my TSS was mostly at the mid-volume level.

Looking forward to my race next week, and then back down to the salt mine :grimacing:


I owe huge thanks to Coach Chad and the TR team for the ways in which I have been able to improve over the past year. I started using TR in October 2017 with an FTP of 286 at 79kg bodyweight; exactly one year on, I just achieved an FTP of 393 at under 75kg. That’s a progress from 3.6 w/kg (though without testing experience) to 5.2 w/kg in one year. Even allowing for the fact that the Kickr’s pwoermeter may read as much as 10% high (consistently of course), as some have suggested here, TR has helped me to outperform the ambitious goals that I set in January.

I had started cycling seriously early in 2017, coming from a competitive running background, and trained hard though in a rather unstructured way through that summer. In early October our first son was born and I soon realised that my days of time-demanding outdoor training were over. I invested in a smart trainer and started following the TR plans. The first few months were busy at work and sleep-deprived at home, so I stuck with low-volume sweet spot base, which was good enough to raise my FTP to 310. Then I was able to increase the training in spring, bringing my FTP to 344 in May. The biggest difference, apart from added outdoor volume over the summer, has been following the Criterium Specialty Plan over the past eight weeks, which have made much higher wattage feel tolerable and enabled me to hold 414w for the 20 minutes of the traditional FTP test (Ramp test 2 days ago suggested an FTP of 384w). Now I look forward to start racing soon. Thanks TR team for your outstanding products!


Wow, that’s truly impressive. Even more so with the newborn baby on board, congratulations!


Show off. :dizzy_face:



Congrats on your improvement! Interestingly I also started this year on Jan 28th at 5’9" and 170 lbs. I now also just hit 242 watts @ 164 lbs. The only difference is my first FTP test put me at 137 watts.

My training progrseeion went as follows:

January 28th: started Sweet Spot Base I Low Volume (137 watts)

March 12th: Started Sweet Spot Base I Mid Volume (169 watts)

April 24th: Started Sweet Spot Base II Mid Volume (193 watts)

June 3rd: Completed Sweet Spot Base II Mid Volume but ran into some light injuries. I took the month of June mostly off just doing light spins like petit or bald knob a few times a week.

July 3rd: Started Sweet Spot Base I Mid Volume (204 watts). Still managed a higher FTP despite the month off.

August 21st: Started General Build Mid Volume (215 watts)
after 4 weeks reevaluated at 228 watts

October 16th: Started Rolling Road Race Mid Volume (242 watts)


Congrats!!! That’s huge! I messed up the training cycle overall and just about skipped SSB II after I had already started Sustained Power Build. I went back and completed a few weeks of General Build, suffered from poor recovery and felt stagnant in my training. I attributed it to a slight change in my diet as I stopped eating as many healthy carbs and tried to incorporate more protein into my diet. Started the century plan and about half way through, I started to dial my nutrition back in and was feeling great. As I neared the end of the plan, I mentally began to degrade so I adjusted my training since I was nearing my A event (century ride with 5k of climbing). I felt that I tapered well, and tried to get some quality sleep along the way. I carb loaded 2 days prior and felt great on the day of the event. I have 3 recovery rides planned this week and will take two weeks off the bike. Next year I going to better plan my training to better match the demands of the family life.


Keen to hear what people’s views are on this- what would be reasonable target FTP increase for the winter indoor season?

34 year old.
Currently 92kg - 6 ft 2
Was 101kg in May this year. Typically put weight on over winter as have never cycled right through.
Last couple of summers I’ve cycled on average 2-3 times per week 20m - 55m range.
This year - no cycling from Aug -mid sept.
A few cycles late Sept
Ramp test and commenced SSB mid vol 1 Tuesday 2 Oct. FTP result 234. Looking back, and having a done a few deep sessions, I felt like I could have hung on another 30 seconds.
followed plan ok with a couple of skipped workouts as legs were sore. Bike fit adjustment and rest has sorted.
Able to do all workouts so far and they feel right - I.e very tough but doable with will power.

History is rugby at school, a lot of weight lifting in those days and some running (never that fast - like best ever 5k 21 mins or so) and some cycling in twenties but very sporadic.
No kids so putting the times into following the plan is easier for me than others.

So the question - what do people think would be a reasonable expectation for FTP increase?

I’ll point out that I know it is irrelevant really and that if I do the work the results will come along just nicely. I’m just wondering if it’s more likely to be a 25 lift or a 50 etc? It gives me an idea of what I could possibly aim for as w/kg next year. I know I could lose further weight - say down to 85 kg if I keep diet tight for next 5/6 months.

Plan on doing either mid vol 2 or high vol 1 next and will work through to a build plan too.



Given this is your first time dealing with structured training I would expect a rather substantial increase. Obviously a lot of this will be as a result of increasing work capacity but a not insubstantial amount will come from learning how to evaluate and just how far you can bury yourself.

We tend to grossly underestimate our abilities but I’ve found that if you just trust coach Chad that the workout is doable you will be able to finish it. You will amaze yourself.

With that being said I would not be surprised to see a 40 watt or more improvement for you this winter. This is based solely on my own experiences and a gut feeling so take it with a grain of salt.

I also would suggest you make it through a full Base, Build , Specialty cycle at mid volume before you make the decision to jump to high volume. Make no mistake mid volume is already a quite heavy training load. High volume is a very substantial work load and without much experience with structured training like this it is very easy to dig yourself into an over training hole that can be very difficult to get out of. Mid volume is more than enough for a newbie to see huge gains.

Good luck with your winter season! I hope to see a future post from you with some huge gains.


I definitely hear you. Sticking with the plan as closely as possible while managing life stuff has been the biggest challenge for my TrainerRoad journey this year. The second biggest has been nutrition!

When June rolled around I was pretty shot physically and mentally. In addition to basically taking that month off from riding I worked on my diet. I finally feel like I’ve nailed it and its made an enormous difference. I just feel so much better on and off the bike and I’ve been able to handle heavier and heavier training loads no problem.

good luck with your next season!



Good to get a gut from someone. I had thought that somewhere around that increase is not unacheivable.

Ok will take a long hard look at next training plan to make sure I’m doing the best thing. My thinking was because of the length of time I have over winter I would do this SSB mid 1 and then ‘progress’ to an increased load by doing the high vol, then on to a build phase with speciality timed to end to conincide with the coming of the better weather and outside riding.


Curious to see this research. Can you provide the references?

Definitely an issue for me as lifelong athlete with a fairly high training volume for years.


Man that is absolutely killer and really inspiring because we have some very similar numbers. Great work!


@mcneese.chad keen to hear your thoughts if you’ve a few mins. My full post is half a dozen replies further up.


Don’t do this. Unless you have multiple seasons of riding and know that you can handle the workout of SSB high volume, you are going to probably get discouraged by that plan.

It’s very difficult to tell depending on individual response. A “normal” range for a 6 week cycle of SSB is somewhere between 3-5 percent if I am remembering correctly. That being said, many people fall outside this range.

So if you were at 234 starting SSB 1, you are looking at 241-245 after SSB1, 248-257 after SSB2, 255-270 after Build with speciality being a crapshoot since its specificity rather than aimed at building ftp.


Wow. Just wow! This is inspirational – before picking up cycling about 5 years ago, beginning training/racing about 2 years ago, and starting TR about 2 months ago – I’m at and FTP of 280 and 3.53 w/kg, up from 271 with just 6 weeks on TR.

You and I are about the same size, and I feel like I have this quixotic goal of 4w/Kg - which will land me at 310 - 320 FTP depending on weight. I don’t have a glorious endurance past like you, so I wouldn’t think that 5w/Kg is ever a possibility for me (I’m also in my mid-40s) BUT, I do feel for those athletes like us in the 75-80kg range, 4w/kg is a pretty tough get. I’m currently 79kg and MAYBE could get down to 76/77kg…any lower and I’d start to look too skinny.

Yours is an really inspirational/encouraging progression. Congrats to you and have fun riding off the front!


225 to 299 in a year. You will be Nate’s poster boy.
Really good improvements. As you say, probably no massive improvements coming your way but getting to 310 could be possible


Very good to hear, I posted this in order to inspire others and to thank the TR crew for helping me to hit my target. Once you lose a kg or two you are only looking at a 10% increase to achieve your FTP goal, so given that you have started on TR quite recently and are also doing strength work to support your training I think that’s not at all quixotic. Enjoy the process!


@jonbar123, I don’t think I have enough experience seeing other’s improvements to make anything more than a pure guess. That said, if you intend to drop weight along the way, I think maybe a 15-25% increase could be possible. Since you have not done much for training recently, I expect that you might have room to grow.

Do be careful about taking on too much volume. You need the ability to do the work AND recovery appropriate for it. I’d think you are safer to start with mid-vol, and add some TSS fillers if you think you can handle more.

That jump from Mid to High Vol us HUGE. I wish they offered a Mid-High Volume that was a more appropriate stepping stone. As it stands, I run Mid and choose longer or higher intensity versions of the given workouts when I think I can handle a bit more. But again, do so with attention to how you react.


I pity the cat 4/5s that have to race against you. Granted they wont see you as you will lap the field solo.


Hi I am similar to yourself, last year winter training I tried zwift (which is a great tool for racing etc) but I’ve now in the mindset to properly try trainer road on structured plans to hopefully see improvements. 5 weeks ago I started SSB low level 1 with a given FTP of 198, I’m at 64kg so I hope I can improve greatly by April.

I would like to ask for everyone that made great gains other than following the plan, did you take supplements etc creatine or anything else. I take recovery SiS after my workouts but not sure if that is enough