Unexpected 4DP result: MAP effort affecting FTP

I just did the Full Monty test and think I over-cooked the MAP part which negatively impacted the FTP part. Consequently I think the relative strengths and 4DP scores may not be valid for my FTP - and are more of a reflection of my weakness in rapidly recovering from very hard efforts than my underlying aerobic fitness. Should I trust the 4DP results or manually adjust the FTP score to ensure I follow a relevant training plan?

I have just joined Sufferfest and did the Full Monty Prep plan to ensure I was reasonably fresh for the Full Monty test.

I went all-in on the NM and MAP tests and did better than expected on both. Eg MAP (442W, 4.56W/kg) vs prior best on Strava power curve of 415W.

I felt spent for the FTP test and could only manage 324W. However in the last 3 weeks I have averaged 349W for 1 hour in a 70 minute race, and tested at 361W in a recent traditional FTP test (379W for 20 min). I probably didn’t/couldn’t push myself hard enough in the Full Monty FTP test as HR was about 5bpm lower than expected too. I had recovered enough by the AC test to do better than I expected in that (649W).

I don’t know whether the 4DP test has highlighted something interesting (ie that I am “exceptional” in MAP and “very good” in AC and NM relative to my FTP). Or that my FTP is actually higher than the 4DP test revealed, and I’m “good” in the other categories relative to FTP, which is what I would have expected. Going into the test, I thought I needed general improvement across all categories with specific focus on recovery from repeat hard efforts. But I’m worried now that the training plans will give me lots of work to do on low-intensity FTP improvement and not really target what I think my weaknesses are.

I guess I could re-do the Full Monty in a few days and hold a bit back in the MAP test or just try to be mentally stronger in the FTP part. Or try the Half Monty in a few days. Or manually adjust the scores a bit.

Thanks for your help.

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Welcome to The Sufferfest @newbie! First off, you’ve put out some very impressive numbers. That being said, with the information that you presented there are a couple of things to consider. First, we have two different fitness tests - Full Frontal (which you did) and Half Monty (which is a ramp, followed by a heart rate constrained 20-minute Tempo effort which is used to calculate FTP).

Your pacing strategy during the 5-minute MAP test could also impact your results beyond just the absolute power that you produced. As you mentioned, you hit nearly 8% higher than your previous 5-minute best power…and that’s a BIG jump! Also, if the first half of the 5-minute effort was even higher and your power faded over the course of the rest of the 5-minutes, you’d likely not be able to recover in time to put out an appropriate FTP power. We’re not firm believers in the 95% of 20-minute power because there’s a lot of variability in actually how far above FTP different riders can push in a fresh 20-minute effort. Based on the 1-hour power that you have produced, though, I would say that bumping up your FTP to that value in the app manually could be appropriate. For more info on pacing Full Frontal, check this article from @Coach.Mac.C out at: https://thesufferfest.com/blogs/training-resources/how-to-get-the-most-out-of-full-frontal

Hope that helps. Happy riding & racing! Neal

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Thanks coach Neal, that’s super helpful. And yes, my power was even higher in the first half of the MAP test and faded a bit in the 2nd half. So this does help explain my difficulty in recovering for the FTP test. I will make the manual adjustment to FTP and be conscious of not going out too crazily hard at the start of the next MAP test! Thanks for taking the time to respond and help. Much appreciated.

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