Can’t hit proper MAP during 4DP

Took my 3rd 4DP today. Each ~12 weeks apart.
While FTP, 1min and 5 seconds shows consistent improvement, I keep getting low MAP values (compared to FTP).

To put some context.
FTP 205 and MAP 236 during latest 4DP.
FTP 196 and MAP 221 at July 4DP.
Half Monty done 3-4 weeks ago resulted with FTP 209 and MAP 264(!).
Imagine how disappointed was I went I felt I couldn’t hold the pace during the 5 min effort.

During period between 4DPs I’m doing ~2 trainer sessions / week, focused on MAP.

Any advise would be highly appreciated.

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In HM did you complete or fail the ramp?

Which plan did you complete?

Are you able to complete all 9 Hammers or crush all the dark places?

Did you try a cadence for 100 rpm using a gear combo in level mode that allows you to hold your HM power level for 5 minutes in FF? (Start at 100, then gradually drop down as you get tired keeping you power output the same).

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The 5min effort is the hardest part of the 4DP :grimacing:.
But my adivse also contains a few questions: when doing the 5min on what level is the trainer as well as the bike? I ask because the numbers you’re mentioning is not that high and it leads me to think about the resistance you pedal against. Also, how much do you weigh? If you weigh 45kg then those numbers are quite high but if you come in closer to 100kg then my first question still remains :grimacing:
My second / third question is then: can you maintain the “guideline number” during your effort and what does your HR and cadence look like? I know it’s lots of info but I want to give you a proper answer not just a shot from the hip :+1:.

Thanks for looking into it.

Worth mentioning that the pattern of making great progress at FTP, 1min and 5 sec remains, while MAP remains a great weakness.

Below are answers, as accurate as can be :wink:

“when doing the 5min on what level is the trainer as well as the bike? “

Trainer set to Level 2. Front cog is largest. Can’t really recall the rear.

I kept cadence if 95+ throughout the 5min.

“…how much do you weigh?


“My second / third question is then: can you maintain the “guideline number” during your effort and what does your HR and cadence look like? “

Two minutes into the effort my HR is 169 (LTHR) and gradually increasing till 176.

Cadences is pretty consistent on 95-100 range.

One more thing.

I’m not following a plan, manually DUT to doing 2-3 MTB sessions a week, do can’t commit to a plan.

I squeezing MAP session whenever I can so expected to nail that specific weakness.

With 9-hammers, I manage to complete is exhausted with nothing in the tank.

Getting on a plan will really help - even if you miss workouts due to time. Having a weekly repeated effort interval workout + a workout with 5-12 min intervals will build in your VO2 Max.

I have an idea. (Maybe the coaches could validate?)

Fire up any of the Open workouts

Week 1 - 7 min warm up, 1 min at your HM MAP, 5 min cool down
Week 2 - increase to 2 mins at HM MAP
Week 3 - 3 mins
Week 4 - 4 mins

Just my opinion (and note that I am not a coach and do not know everything): decrease your cadence below 85 or so (whatever is comfortable for the 5 min session) and increase the resistance on the bike to L4 or even L5. You can always play with the gears if it becomes a bit too much. If you spin at a high cadence you’re “burning” your lungs (the lungs are doing most of the work) but if you decrease the cadence then your legs start to work a bit more.

Funny how things work out, look at one of the pinned messages: why does cadence matter. This explains my point to the tee :grimacing:


Yes. This, exactly. I was able to raise my MAP mainly through cadence improvements. I can hold 98rpms for the 5 minute effort - the last minute is the hardest. But if I have any prayer of getting thru the 20 minute effort I have to hold something closer to 85rpms. Definitely helps to practice the ftp effort with different gears and cadences.

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Me on the other hand (& I know that I am going too heavy and I need to fiddle with this) - my avg cadence is always between 58-65 on any given video. My gear ratio on the bike is way too high (48T in the front with a 10 speed mtb cassette at the back). This is on a Kickr Snap 2.

So yes I almost never get my cadence higher than 70 or so. I have found that I have a tendency to revert back to a lower cadence (I think this is from my single speed days).
Maybe I need to drop the 48T in the front down to the 32T and try that for a while. The resistance on the Kickr is way higher than the resistance I had on the Flow so theoretically I can drop the resistance of the bike.

Thanks for pointing it out. This makes total sense when giving a thought into it !
I went through “why does cadence matter” and combined with feedbacks on this post I now feel motivated to give 4DP another shot.
I’ll do it again soon after I take full advantage of the perfect conditions MTB trails are at after the first rain…

Hi @Avner! Yes, it does seem that your MAP relative to your FTP is what we would consider to be relatively low. With that in mind, it’s great to see that you’re adding MAP specific training sessions into your weekly sessions. That being said, it’s important to have some variation in your training - you should not keep repeating the same kind/type of workouts each week without both rest (reducing training volume by 30-50% every 3rd or 4th week), as well as having progression of your training intensity (making the high intensity sessions that you perform more intense, or changing rest, etc.). That’s the main value that we have in our Training Plans - that progression and recovery are critical foundations that our plans are built from. Also, while focusing on your MAP with MAP specific workouts, it’s still important to perform other high intensity sessions like NM and AC specific sessions, as well as FTP specific workouts as part of your indoor sessions. Without knowing the kind of MTB terrain that you’re riding - it’s possible that you might have an overload of the same kind of MAP efforts out on trails as what you’re doing indoors. If so, too much of a good thing is just that - too much. In that respect, adding variation to your indoor sessions is important so be sure to mix things up a bit!


So just took my 4DP earlier this morning.
I took note regarding the above tips on cadence and Level mode increase.
The results are that I have dramatically improved MAP which is no longer a weakness compared to FTP. I kept cadence of 80-85 throughout the five minutes.
With that, FTP also decreased and I’m pretty sure the high effort on 5Min took its toll.
I barely had the legs to complete the 20 min.

The results are (64kg).
NM : 855 to 915
AC : 407 to 390
MAP : 239 to 255 :wink:
FTP: 205 to 192 ;-(


So happy with new MAP values I chose 9 Hammers as 1st session post 4DP with 100% for all 4DP values.
It was a f***ing nightmare from start to end.
Almost bailed at 1,5 and 9th hammers.
At 9th cadence dropped to 50 and I had to stand up the last 90 seconds. It was either that or admit a defeat.
Glad I made it through for Honor, Glory and Victory :wink:


Well done. Happy ending.

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I feel for you! My MAP is relatively high and so 9 Hammers is brutal. No way can I get through it all on 100% target!

Looks like Coach Neal covered it well but this is exactly what i was going to say. If you’re really trying to do a focus on your five minute power, you want to not fall into the trap of only hammering MAP workouts.

Think to the example of rowers and 1600 meter runners. Their events are between 4 and 6 minutes. They do plenty of short, hard, high-quality work, but they spend the vast vast vast majority of their time building the engine.

You don’t have to be like them–the strict periodization elite athletes follow doesn’t necessarily make sense for a recreational athlete–but don’t neglect building your engine, i think it’ll pay off.

edited to add, my personal favorite was always Defender