Zwift Insider couch to Cat C (now cat B)

Has anyone been reading about the guy on Zwift going from the couch (120kg) to a cat c in 6 weeks, and now aiming for cat B in an additional 6 weeks? That’s 3.2w/kg minimum so he’ll have to have an FTP of about 320w (an increase of about 100w) and have lost 20kg in 12 weeks.

On Strava, Boone (the zwift insider guy) has been doing about 55km a week. I’ve been doing a lot more than that (sticking to the plan), and on the ToS week, I did over 320km.

I’ve made a lot of progress, but it is a little disconcerting to see this sort of thing. I have a friend who is about a 319w FTP, weighs about 75kg, and he got there over a two year period. I’ve seen his rides/effort, and his numbers were gradual and undertandable.

Am I missing something in the Zwift Insider article?

Is this marketing BS? Genetics? Me not working hard enough?

Martin

It looks legit to me. The guy is obviously naturally quite strong but had clearly let himself go before starting to train. He seems quite committed to the training but he will find it increasingly difficult to keep making massive gains.

On my own personal journey I went from cat C to Cat B over several months and then started to plateau. I found it relatively easy to get from 3 to 3.5 W/kg, but I’ve had to work seriously hard to get to 3.6 W/kg. My target is 4 W/kg and I’m not expecting to get there any time soon, if at all! I’ve increased my FTP by around 30-40W over the last 12 months, but I was quite fit when I started and not overweight. Had I been on the couch it could easily have been more like 100W gain. My last 12 week training block gave me +10W FTP which was hard earned.

What Peteski said.

Also dont forget that some of us are high responders, exactly same training stimulus will not give same results for different people. There are also some so unlucky to see no training benefit at all (no responders). Some people will gain 100W, some 50 and others 25 - all in range of normal. With that in mind I’ve seen a youtube where Dylan Johnson mentioned it is expected to gain about 50 watts a year and than half of that next year and so on.

To give you some perspective - I went from 2.5 w/kg to 3.5 w/kg FTP in about 6 weeks and it took me another 4 months to hit 3.9 w/kg (gaining 2 kg weight). You will always see huge beginers gains when coming off the couch :slight_smile: I gained 60ish watts over last 7 or 8 months and it seems like I;m on a plateau now.

Previously I would have described myself as a fast responder to exercise and getting to 300w was my ambitious 12 month Mt Sufferlandria and I wasn’t at all confident I could get there, but thought if I put my head down and work consistently hard for a year I’ll get there, or at least close but feel much fitter regardless.

Ah well, good on him for doing so well. Maybe I need to head on over to Zwift and do a few races to boost my FTP!

Martin

I would say he’s doing amazing despite following Zwift training plans lol. bad zwift workouts xD

Zwift racing can be quite motivating. I often dig out power PRs in the heat of battle! But it is also easy to over-train if you get too carried away. As I’m training primarily for big outdoor Gran Fondo/Sportive events I focus more on my training plan and use Zwift for longer group rides over the winter and in bad weather. I find Zwift works well with SUF if you plan your rides accordingly i.e. sub in equivalent Zwift rides to the open SUF sessions etc.

I think the key to long term fitness is a consistent, sustainable training regime. Smashing yourself for big short term gains only takes you so far. It can eventually lead to burnout and loss of motivation. This guy could easily end up back on the couch again if that happens. Same goes for rapid weight loss plans. They are usually unsustainable long term.

So my advice would be to just keep chipping away and in the long term you will probably see better results without risk of slipping back into Couchlandria!

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