So I have had this problem with tabatas for a couple of years. I trained my FTP for so long that I was not getting any higher. My xc racing suffered because of this.
So as I got into the xc intervals plan again this year I again was struggling to do the tabatas. I do them on a trainer so that I can stay focused on hitting 170% by using the dreaded ERG mode. No cheating there. This year I decided to change the plan around so that I can keep doing these until I am able to finish 2 sets of 4min. Its been a struggle, and the suffering is almost unbearable but the payoffs are really starting to show…finally. Despite many failed attempts at completing the 3x3min version I have managed to get it done. The 4min version is a work in progress.
Now, the awesome thing is is that I am putting out more 1,5 and 10min power than ever before as well as my FTP. This is a great thing. Had my best Sea Otter as a Cat 1 racer and am enjoying the new found speed. All this and still not able to complete the full sets of tabatas consistantly.
I guess I will continue to suffer until I can accomplish these.
I do have 1 question after reading another post here on tabatas. In the xc intervals plan it says to do them at 170% for the 20sec on portion. Once I get to the 40sec on version is it still 170% like the plan states, or 150% as was mentioned on the other post I read.
Again thanks for putting up with this long winded post, but I am a firm beleiver in tabatas thats for sure.