Half Monty results too high

Hello everyone,

So I started the all purpose road program 8 weeks ago, results of 4DP:

FTP: 212
MAP: 249
AC: 409
NM: 939

For the first 5 weeks, trainings were going as expected, they were hard, but I felt I could just complete them. I was very motivated to do the Half monty and was very happy with the results:

FTP: 243
MAP: 301

These results were much higher than what I expected but I was not complaining. Untill I had to start the new week of trainings. I could complete GOAT (without looking at cadence for the second part) but once There is no try or A very dark place came around, I could barely finish it at 90% and had to drop down to 85 for some parts.

This has left me quite demotivated. I don’t look forward anymore to the trainings because I charge myself up mentally every night to be broken down by the power targets set by SF. It feels like I have now lost 2 weeks of training (I’m training for a big climb in May) and worse of mentally than before.

Any advice? Should I just keep training at 85-90% or should I just do the 4DP test again as opposed to the Half Monty?

Thank you in advance!

If you’re that bothered I think I would do the Full Frontal again, I’ve read that the half monty can be skew based upon your rider type. I did the full frontal and then did the half Monty a month later and my ftp jumped 30 points and my map jumped 10. The first week I was struggling then I adjusted. It sounds like it would be worth it to do another FF if nothing else you would be confident in the numbers. But you may want to let your body recover a couple of days before doing that. Obviously that is all on how fast you recover.

I know the feeling. As someone who has sustained effort as my weakness, I’ve pretty much only use FF to test my true values. I can hammer the steps in HM but MAP workouts with intervals longer than 1 minutes, I’m struggling. The great thing about The Sufferfest is lots of options. FF is much more enjoyable than the old Rubber Glove video except for the omelet on rollers during recovery.

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To quote this excellent post from Sir Mac Cassin:

I‘m classified as a Pursuiter and I don‘t trust or train according to Half Monty results. I always „halve“ my gains and feel like it‘s a closer match.

Gimme Full Frontal over Half Monty every day of the week! :blush:

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I’m classified as a Sprinter through 4DP and my FTP through that test was 267. Sessions were laughably easy for me at that setting. Half Monty was 285 ftp and 345 MAP - still too easy, so I train at 295 and 360 which is just right - challenging but never fail a session. It’s individual physiology really - I’m not that fit but have good power and recover quickly. Intervals of 6 minutes or less I can get through, since there’s a minute to recover afterwards - but ask me to hold 295 for even 20 minutes and it’s ambulance territory. They say not to adjust your values manually, but if you are like me and not exactly “amateur racing” cycling fit, just adjust down a bit until you find that sweet spot. FTP is only a number for setting up training zones, as far as I’m concerned anyway. It’s meaningless in the real world for amateurs such as myself.

I just did my second Half Monty last night half way through the 12 week E-Sports training block.
Happy to see that I have gone up around 10% in FTP and MAP with a few points increase in LTHR. This is a mix of an increase in fitness and acceptance of suffering…I also set myself a target for the ramp and gave up when I hit it so probably have more to give in the MAP.
I wasn’t finding the previous sessions easy but they were manageable…I even added 10% to my last Team Scream as I really enjoy that one. It mimics perfectly how E races keep surging… I am pretty worried about what the next few workouts will throw at me…
I’m classed as a sprinter according to my last 4DP with work needed on MAP and FTP
As Tommy above said, I don’t think I have a hope in hell of holding 309+ watts for 20 minutes in a 4DP but I guess we will see in a few weeks

Here are the stats.

@barrygray4 nice work! 31w increase is amazing :+1: I have my mid plan HM coming up on Sunday - like you said, if I get over 305 I shudder to think what the first week of sessions will be like :joy:

@Tommy Thankfully I only have cadence drills tonight but “Fight Club” tomorrow and “The Shovel” on Sunday are likely to destroy me. I have a 40 mile outside ride planned on Saturday too so I think Sunday will be particularly painful. I struggled last time at lower levels on the Shovel.

I have yet to see a post claiming workouts are too easy after HM.

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Split the difference on the numbers and see how you fare.

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I’m classified as a Pursuiter. My MAP scores are about the same between FF and HM which both show that my MAP has improved about 30-40w in a year. However, my FTP value in HM is typically 20-30w higher than what I can get in FF. My FTP according to FF has stayed almost exactly level, while HM shows that I’ve improved.

I don’t know which is correct.

However, before using SUF, I was mostly training longer steady-state rides for Sprint triathlons on rolling terrain, so I’m not surprised that SUF has improved my MAP power. I figure that my FTP score is probably somewhere in the middle. :man_shrugging:

@emacdoug Sir Evan - which results do you train to for FTP? Have you tried training to your HM results? Which induces the ‘right’ amount of suffering?

I would say somewhere in between. I took 2 months off for the holidays and I can feel the loss of fitness. In late January I did another HM as I was just coming back and my FTP was down 10w, but that still put it almost 20w over my previous FTP from FF that I did back in Oct before I took my time off. So I am currently using those old FF results and that feels about right. So if after 2 months of de-training my old in-shape FF results still feel okay, then it probably means my real FTP should be somewhere in between my FF and HM results. I’m doing another FF this weekend, so it will be interesting to see my results.

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Well… today’s results are both expected… and unexpected.

My NM went UP 28w. Woohoo! This was unexpected. I put this down mostly to technique. Usually I feel like I’m in the wrong gear or I peak too early. This time I started my spin up a second or two early and felt like I peaked at the right time. I think with some work I can hit over 1,200w.

My MAP went down 20w. I expected this and was not surprised. Last time I was around 98rpms almost the entire time. This time I could not hold the high cadence and had to battle between gears.

My AC went down 25w. I started out feeling good, but then time slowed down. And then slowed down some more. I pooped out with 2 or 3 seconds left. Last time I fought hard all the way til the end. I didn’t have as much fight in me this time.

My FTP… well… It went up 2w based on my previous FF results, which is probably the best comparison, tho it’s down almost 20w compared to my last HM. But I’m sure if I do an HM next week it would be back up 20w as per my usual. My MAP probably would be, too. I had a hard time finding a good gear, and bounced back and forth a few times, but I didn’t poop out in the middle like I did last time. Tho my son did come in and distract me for a few minutes with questions around the 11 minute mark. Then I realized I was dropping my power and peaked for the last 3-4 minutes. So maybe without distractions I could’ve hit 232. Lol.
image

Funnily enough, my profile changed from Pursuiter to Sprinter. This is humorous to me based on how I prefer to ride (my favorite workout is ISLTA), but makes sense based on my numbers. Essentially, everything dropped except for my NM, because I took 2 months off. If I work on my endurance, again, all my numbers should come back up, in theory and I should be back to a Pursuiter.

But, overall, I think my biggest takeaway is that I found the biggest difference between FF and HM is Level mode v ERG mode. I have a hard time finding the right level and gearing in FF. Today I eventually decided that 85rpms would have felt the best during the 20 min effort, but my gearing only allowed me 80 or 90+. 85 was in the middle and required too much power. Same with my 5 minute effort. I couldn’t hold 98rpms this time, but could’ve held 90-95. But I couldn’t match that at the right power. However, in ERG mode in HM, gearing isn’t important. I can just ride at a cadence that feels right on the ramp portion until I pop. And then in the constrained section it’s easier to pick a gear that I can hold when it’s not an all out effort. FF in level mode doesn’t allow for that. It’s hard to hold cadence at the right power when I’m right on the edge of failure the whole time. If I did FF in erg mode at a chosen power I could likely push another 10w or more. I’m not sure how to reconcile that other than to say I think my true Numbers are likely closer to what I get in HM even if they may be a little too high. I know that even tho my FF numbers are pretty accurate, I could likely do a little more if I didn’t have to worry about bouncing around on the edge in between gears. I did a TT on Z*** on Monday and I averaged 263w for 15 minutes in erg mode. Anyway…

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Try to change the LVL mode to find your best Power-Cadence combination.

For example, if on a specific gear and LVL3 you are at 90rpm and you want to drop to 85, change to LVL4.
It may not be as simple as that, but you have to try and find your preferred combinations.

It is also better to do all these experiments before your next FF, so that you do not lose time.

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I think you came out of FF pretty strong.
Especially considering you telling on several occasions that your last few months haven’t been the best. :muscle:

Do you hope/expect to see a bigger change over the next couple of month?

The re-classification from Pursuiter to Sprinter is exactly what happened to me, too, yesterday.

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@lapingv755 Agreed - this is how I approached it during my test and I prefer it over shifting.

I do not struggle with HM but struggle mightily with FF. Ironically, FTP numbers after last HM were spot on but MAP numbers felt about 20-30W too high based on subsequent workouts and FF yesterday confirmed this. Slightly disappointed that some numbers went down (while Ftp went up) from last FF in September but that was at the end of a strong outdoor weekend season with structured training during the week.

Also interesting that I was able to hold shorter MAP efforts with brief recovery rather than the longer MAP efforts. Reverse is true with FTP efforts.

I think one thing we forget is that we can change the level in between tests. Last time when I nailed my highest 5 min effort I was on level 3. But then I couldn’t get comfortable with my 20 min effort. This time I was on level 2 and couldn’t get comfy for my 5 min but felt okay for the 20. So, maybe next time I will start on 3 then switch to 2 for the 20 min effort.

After the long layoff I was easing my way back in. I think the TOS definitely helped push the lower levels of my fitness back up, but my overall endurance for the hard stuff isn’t back yet which is why my 5 and 1 minute efforts suffered. Plus, the whole erg v level mode thing. Will be interesting once I do my next HM. Maybe I’ll do one the end of next week just so I can compare.

My ftp hasn’t budged much in a year, despite doing a lot of endurance work, but my AC and MAP were both consistently increasing. Since they are what dropped, I think I’ll keep focusing on my MAP and AC to bring them back up, see if I can raise my ceiling some more and maybe pull my FTP from the top instead of pushing up from the bottom. And then throwing in some long rides when I can. Maybe I really am more of a MAP/AC rider and not that much of a Diesel engine.

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As promised, I did a new HM today, exactly a week after doing FF. After FF last Saturday, I took off Sunday I took the day off.
Monday I did a short Time Trial effort (9:30).
Tuesday I took the day off.
Wednesday I did ISLTA at 100% with a 10 minute recovery spin.
Thursday I did Open 40 as a recovery ride, but with a few short efforts thrown in to get the blood moving.
Friday I did Igniter and Recharger and 15 minutes of Cadence Builds (2 builds).

The plan was to have a short hard effort on Monday and a longer hard effort on Wed with a lot of recovery and rest in between. I don’t know if I had quite as much rest as I wanted, tho, as my legs were on the tired side this morning. My brain was also a little on the tired side this morning, as well, and honestly, I thought my new FF numbers were pretty accurate, so I didn’t want to upset the apple cart with too strong an effort, today. That did play a small part.

So, here are my results (compared to my previous results):
image

I stopped about halfway through my last ramp step. The effort was really starting to hurt. I don’t know if I had another full 35 seconds left in me, so I can’t say I would’ve made it through the rest of that step, but I can say I definitely stopped on the early side. Normally I would’ve fought on until I couldn’t physically pedal, but I stopped partially because I was on the tired side, and partially because frankly I know I always get higher MAP and FTP scores in HM and I felt my current numbers was pretty accurate and I didn’t want my number to get too out of hand. Otherwise I would’ve likely pushed on for another 15-20 seconds, tho not likely all the way to the end of the step.

I could tell I wasn’t where I was back in December because I didn’t get quite as high up the ramp, and because my cadence was lower. My cadence I had for my MAP efforts at the end of last year was around 96-98. But, today I was around 90-94.

My numbers aren’t that far off from my HM effort back in December. The biggest difference is my LTHR. That largely reflects my relative dip in fitness as well as not feeling as fresh.

Anyway… I won’t talk this to death, any more. :slight_smile:

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