MY FTP What is it? What alters it? How to interpret it? How can you use it to your advantage?
What is it? What alters it? How to interpret it? How can you use it to your advantage?
Currently we all talk about FTP, and say it is the only true measurement variable for cyclists. This is not true, since we would be leaving aside physical capacities such as recovery, anaerobic capacity, tolerance to fatigue, including other important metrics like FRC. But it is true that it is a relatively simple concept to understand and very useful especially for amateur cyclists. For which in this blog we will seek to define it, clarify certain aspects, and shed some light on how to use this number in the best way.
The functional threshold power, better known by its acronym in English FTP (functional threshold power) is a theoretical value that ESTIMATES the watts that we can maintain continuously for one hour. This is calculated from an equation applied to a performance test done in field or indoor trainer. Currently it has been reconsidered the amount of time we can hold this wattage, it’s been said that it will vary between 40 minutes and 60 min, depending on the type of the cyclist. Its closer to 40 minutes for the most explosive riders and closer to the hour for the most resistant riders. This value has been shown to have a close relationship with VT2 (ventilatory threshold 2) and with MSSL (maximum stable state of lactate).
Here comes the first aspect to consider, FTP is a variable number, which will be influenced by internal and external factors, so it will be normal for both my threshold and my training zones to change a few watts up or down depending on the conditions in which we find ourselves
External factors which affect FTP:
How do I take advantage of my FTP?
How do I efficiently use my FTP to perform a PR (personal record) on strava?
As we can see, although the difference in both cases is 1km/h between the speeds of both, the
lower the speed, the greater the difference in time between both cyclists.
By Pablo Pulido
Methodological director at threshold experst sas.