Recommended Power for FTP test warm up

Good day all,

New here & new rider since June’20, yup part of the new revolution! I’ve been riding/training via HR but have really only been doing any type of training since late November since we’ve been forced to ride inside here in Toronto due to weather. I’ve been primarily doing 10-12hrs/wk in Zone 2 on the rollers. Just got a power meter 2 weeks ago so I figure with almost 3months of base under me it only made sense to step up to a more structured format. That being said I’ve signed up for the 18 week SS program which I begin this week. Excited to get going so I’ve been reading over the workout sessions as well as all the notes. I’ve done a search through the forums but unable to find the answer. My question is I notice in the warm up for the FTP test as well as the workouts there’s already targeted power zones, when warming up for the FTP test should I adhere to those power zones even though we don’t know my FTP? And secondly, the workouts following the FTP are those warm up power targets a representation of a percentage and will change once I get my FTP and HR and will automatically adjust once I input in to TrainingPeaks?


Hi Gavin!

So since you do not have a properly set FTP the best thing to do is go off of feel for the warm up for the FTP test. Basically just doing some zone 2, a little zone 3 and then some full gas efforts in where power doesn’t matter.

As soon as you complete your test put your new power FTP into TrainingPeaks. Then each workout that follows will use that number when determine power targets in the workouts. So nothing else will need to be updated.

However remember if you are using Zwift or your Garmin / Wahoo you will want to update your FTP in those as well!

Awesome thank you.

What’s your thoughts on this warm up I’ve been using for before the FTP test?
British Cycling Warm Up


You can do what works best for you. Everyone is a little different. I know if I just did high cadence and 6 second burst I would feel as warmed up as if I did some tempo effort and 30 second burst.

You just have to be ready to go full gas for 20 minutes. You don’t want to load up in the first 1 - 2 minutes like you would if you didn’t get a proper warm up. You want to be ready.

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I always wonder, are these full gas efforts, maximal? The reason I ask is that some FTP tests have a 5 minute full gas effort before the FTP test to trim the anaerobic contributions. For me, that would take me out for a long while, more than a 10 minute recovery, if it’s a true maximal effort for peak power (i.e., hard enough to almost puke and see stars) vs some range in the 110-130% FTP range. I understand the 20 minute is maximal, though, as that’s the intent.

I normally go above Z4 but not that hard.

Best thing to do is not over think it and just go hard. But with that said you don’t want to be doing like a KOM effort where you are laying in a ditch afterwards as you are completely gassed. Anaerobic efforts such as these start at 130% of FTP.

The actual 20 minutes is as hard as you can go. Use the first 5 minutes to let the effort come up to you. Most will feel like a hero in that first 5 but after that the effort really starts to dig in.