Hey all. I love the plans and the workouts, but I am puzzled by what’s happening. Toward the end of the year I did the Winter Intensity plan and got a big bump in FTP and CTL. Then I started SST 1 and my CTL started to fade despite working out at the higher FTP. Now in SST2 and CTL is -12 last 90 days. I’m Happily cranking along at the new FTP, layering in other workouts around the program to keep volume up. My goal is to improve my fitness for April/May start of season.
So, should I worry about CTL as a measurement of fitness? Am I in the “wrong” plan to see CTL improvement?
Welcome @ted.kerkam if you have set your FTP higher your TSS’s will be lower on a day-to-day basis and therefore have less an impact on your CTL.
It could also have been you had your FTP set too low in the previous plan and therefore artificially achieved higher TSS’s and drove your CTL higher than you actually did.
Could be a combo of both. Double check … BUT on the bright side your FTP went up which is the goal, so nice work!
Thanks Coach Frank! That seems to match what feels like happened. I’m a little fuzzy on why a FTP increase would result in lower TSS scores. But that’s what I’m seeing. Thanks so much for the response!
@ted.kerkam If your FTP was too low when you did the Wintertime intensity plan, then your TSS was artificially elevated as it appeared that you were doing more work than you were. If it is set to the correct FTP now, then you are achieving the correct TSS’s but it may be less than what you were doing in the same workout before resetting your FTP because your power output during workouts now in relation to your new, higher FTP is lower. Does that make sense?
Also, the wintertime intensity was designed to be followed along (or after) SS parts 2 and 3. SS part 1 is lower intensity with a huge focus on aerobic endurance and not VO2/threshold work. As you continue to progress through your SS plans, your CTL should start to come back to normal and increase slowly. Can’t slam on the intensity all the way until may because you will peak at the wrong time… or worse, risk overtraining yourself. As Coach Frank likes to say… trust the plan!
P.S. Congrats on FtFPing and bumping up that FTP!!
What is your A race(s) you are targeting this season?
Using a weightlifting analogy, if you can max bench press 150x10(FTP), then doing that would be high stress (High TSS), but if you can do 200x10(FTP) and do a set of 150x10, then that would be low stress.
So if you tell TPeaks an FTP that is too low (tell it you can do 150x10 max, but really you can do 200x10 max) in Settings-Zones-Power, then it will assess your workout stress as higher than actual.
If the coaches are correct and you had your FTP set too low for your previous blocks, you can recalculate previous workouts with a different FTP in TPeaks if you want to get a better picture of your current CTL.
That totally makes sense, Lacey and Frank. I got a relatively huge FTP bump when I tested at the end of the Winter program (11%), so maybe I was sandbagging heading into the Winter Intensity program. Goes to show the importance of testing!
Many, many thanks to you and Coach Frank for jumping on this question so quickly, thoroughly and compassionately. So great- really made me feel good about building a relationship with Fascat!
My A race for the season is a MTB metric century race in July. In the near term there are a number of B events starting with a century ride in May. And the inevitable “lets see who got fat over the winter” group ride
Thank you! Re-calculating the CTL is a great idea- if only to see what it would have looked like in different scenarios. Appreciate the thought!
Glad we were able to help. We have a lot of athletes on our training plans, but we seek to do our very best to ensure you all know we are invested in your success and this forum is a crucial part of that.
Not sure what your plans are for after SS part 2, but I would advise following it up with SS part 3 and the SS Marathon MTB plan to get you ready for that A race. I’d suggest training through the others, adjusting your plan a bit to allow for adequate rest before them.