Lots of good questions! Thanks for helping me solve this physiological mystery.
Trainer is the Elite Direto II (sorry, Suzie!), which is pretty accurate and I do calibrate it.
Here are my recent results. Please don’t laugh! I’m coming off of an 18 month hiatus due to a botched back surgery and subsequent deep body infection, so I am indeed somewhat bionic, but not in a good way. I’m just glad to be back on the bike!
NM: 1025 / AC: 450 / MAP: 270 (was really >300) / FF FTP: 190 (Ramp test put me at 221)
I am 6 foot, 80kg. All of that puts me at “untrained” on the performance charts. Sigh.
Pacing on FTP is probably OK, with some very minor (4-5W) very late fade accompanied by snot slinging and whimpering, a few F-bombs thrown in, and wide-eyed looks of shock from my kids. I feel like I dig deep and leave nothing on the table. I did find a whole new max HR this time, well above what I thought was possible without actual death. I used to think my “go blind, 3 second hold” HR was 180, yet I averaged 186 BPM for the entire MAP test. I am 49 years old. That HR is more in line with a 35 year old. It wasn’t as much fun as it sounds. At least the ticker seems to be good.
Bike fit/comfort is good - I’ve been RETUL fit. Cooling is decent with good A/C system and a fan, but obviously not as good as outside, though I do live in Texas, so arguably it’s much cooler inside!
I’ve been cycling for a good 10-12 years I’d guess, and raced a little. I’ve always been more of a ‘power’ athlete than endurance (basketball, baseball, Crossfit…golf?), but did middling to fine in endurance-ish events, like punchy 100k road races. No podium finishes in that discipline, but no DNF’s either. I did, however, truly suck at crit racing. According to my new MAP, I’d dominate a 5-minute crit, though!
I don’t think I an overheating. I do feel like I’m giving it everything I’ve got on the 5-minute portion and really, really needed that recovery time. Maybe I’m going too deep on that portion and emptying the tank so that it costs me during the 20-minute portion. To wit, HR averaged 186 during MAP and about 176 on FTP. If I had to pick which one hurt more, I’d say the 5’, but the 20’ just seemed to hurt longer. I found neither particularly pleasant. I had a teeny tiny bit left in the tank at the end of MAP and could have probably had enough for a brief and feeble kick sprint at the end if it were an actual race. Luckily, it wasn’t. However, I was truly cooked at the end of the 20’, though. In fact, I gave serious consideration to calling the whole thing off at the midway point of the 20’ but talked myself into not nullifying what I figured was probably an improved AC & MAP. I eased back a few watts and got to my LTHR and that seems to do the trick. Yes, that sounds like a pacing issue, but it didn’t feel like it was a big wattage drop and I finished at the same power as when I made that small adjustment. It felt more like just finding the right power and cadence. But maybe that’s called proper pacing.
As to cadence, I’m naturally around 90 so more pressure on the cardio system, less on the legs. For me, any trouble I run into on long or fast rides is never the legs, it’s always the lungs.
All of that being said, it’s still a mystery. I didn’t crack in the FTP, and maybe could have gained a couple of MAP watts. I did feel like vomiting at the end, though, and immediately decided that I could use a long, long break from structure before I take yet another 4DP test. I need some fun.