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I rarely perform FTP test, mainly because they don't fall into my ride plans (at this part of season, esp with bike commuting and MTB riding).

After 8 weeks of riding (6 days a week), and integrating many tempo intervals sessions, i can see how power and corresponding HR is falling into place.

Yesterday's session was 4X15' tempo intervals (7 out of 10 RPE) and it's pretty obvious to me where my FTP is: between 260-270 watts (at 165.5 pounds).

That's good enough for me. For me, it's more important to keep riding lots.
 

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I do the Coggan FTP test every 6 weeks or so during the offseason. 5' blowout, 20' test on the trainer. At this point I rarely test though since I'm on the road and (like Poncharelli) it doesn't fit into my plans. I also have a pretty good feeling of where my power is at though.

Also, I don't really think it matters what test you do as long as you're consistently doing the same one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Cool, thanks. I just started training with power so I guess I don't yet have the feel for it that develops over time.
 

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As skibum says, that 20 minute is a good test (w/ blowout). 95% of that 20-min average estimates FTP.

I also do a Conconi method which goes like this:
1. Spin on your trainer at an easy pace (make sure you have a good fan on you).
2. Spin for 2 minutes at current level.
3. Ask yourself, "is this pace sustainable for an hour?"
4. If answer yes, click up a gear, and go back to step 2. If answer no, then this power level is probably slightly higher than FTP.

That's another way for rough estimate.

It's probably better to do the Conconi method first (since it's easier), then use the Conconi estimate as a target for the 20 minute method. do them on different days.
 

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I do a more simple one.
I go for a 60min tempo after a good warmup and try to hold the power level. If I see that the power is constant then that's your rough FTP.
IF the power starts falling in the 2nd half of the workout with HR being constant then I use the lower figure +5% as a directional number.

Strangely for me the power increases in the 2nd half of the workout so perhaps I need to focus more on the warmup. Currently my estimate is somewhere in the 340w and i'm at 190lb.
I'm not sure if this is my max as my crappy trainer allows me only for tempo rides in the HR zone 3.
 
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