Finished the ramp in half monty (twice)

Coming back from two years of knee injuries and severe COVID ((down to half a working lung at one point).

Ftp before all of the challenges, was about 250w according to wahoo and Garmin and vo2 was 54.

Lab tested after getting the all clear I was about 128w ftp and vo2 was 23.

Set that as my baseline, did half monty and full frontal week long plan.

Followed ftp block, re-did half monty, ftp up to 148, finished the ramp.

Followed criterium plan for 6 weeks, towards the end, I was putting workouts up 116% to get my hr into the right zone.

Re-did half monty at half way point of plan, finished the ramp. It said my ftp was 168w. Garmin said it was 177w.

I’m in the early stages of getting the easy quick results.

Should I redo the half monty again soon with the increased ftp and hope I don’t finish it? Or just keep increasing the % until I hit the zones?

Martin

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How close to max HR were you when you completed the ramp? This happened to me when I switched from a wheel on dumb trainer with virtual power to a smart trainer, I rode all the way to the top of the ramp and my new FTP was more than 25% higher than previously. I was within 5 beats of max HR when I topped out , but reckon I could probably only have done 1 more step at most which would have only made a difference of a couple of % in my new FTP. Basically if the last step was almost all out the results should be good, if not take a couple of days rest and test again.

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@Fezzek , it’s not completely clear from your original post, but you shouldn’t be able to complete all the steps in the ramp in Half Monty. The test is designed for you to fail at some point during the ramp. You need to complete at least the first five steps in the ramp, and then you should reach the point of failure at some stage before the ramp completes in the workout.

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Heart rate was about 138, with a supposed heart rate threshold of 146. I felt I could have done a few more steps on the ramp comfortably as I wasn’t breathing hard at that point.

It also said my threshold heart rate was 136 on this test so it thought I might have been fatigued (I wasn’t).

I know I’m “coming back” from a pretty poor place health wise, I just want to maximize the results for the effort, or more specifically the time.

I feel like if anything my heart rate should be able to sustain about 150 now.

The plan is set to 2 weeks hard, 1 week easy. I might see how I go and increase the % if I am not hitting the zones. I have defender and 9 hammers in the next two weeks to look forward to. If I cope with those, maybe I switch out the zone two ride at the end of the easy week for another go at half monty.

Martin

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This makes me think that you were able to ride all of the steps in the ramp part of the test. That’s not how the test is supposed to work, and will explain why you’re getting some results that are not quite right. I’d suggest increasing your FTP and MAP numbers in the SYSTM profile to be where you think you are now and redo Half Monty - that will give realistic targets for the ramp steps, and should ensure you fail before the end. You need to reach the point of failure before you reach the end of the ramp.

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Yes, that’s exactly it. I completed the ramp to the end 6 weeks ago, and did it again this time, well below what I thought I was capable of.

I feel like my ftp is probably 15-20w higher than it thinks as a result.

Martin

The test has a limited number of steps (15 exactly)if your FTP and MAP are set too low it is entirely possible to “complete” the ramp. In fact someone once posted on the forum asking for help because their ramp had 15 steps of zero watts, turned out this was because their MAP was set to zero.

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I suggest (at least for the next time you do the ramp test) to increase your FTP in your SYSTM settings by 20 W, and set your MAP to about 125% of your FTP. MAP is the critical one for the ramp test as all the ramp step power targets are based on your MAP. Getting the numbers exactly right doesn’t matter as long as you have them in the range where you can do at least five steps of the ramp, and also reach the point of failure before you complete the ramp.

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A somewhat related heart rate question:

If I’m not able to hit the expected HR for a hard interval session, while still hitting the power targets and feeling like I’ve emptied the tank on each one, does that just indicate that I’m running into the danger zone and probably in need of a recovery week?

As an example, I completed Downward Spiral at about 20-30watts higher for each interval than my last time a few months ago, and didn’t feel like I could have gone any harder, but my HR was about 20bpm lower during each interval, and at least 10-15bpm lower than I’d typically expect for my current fitness level.

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That’s an indication of overtraining. One thing you can try is a recovery week and go at it again. If it’s the same, maybe you are better trained and need to retest

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What do you mean by in need of a recovery week? Do you have easy weeks in your training schedule?

Absolutely, a typical cadence might be 3 weeks harder / 1 lighter although that depends on all sorts of things; old git like me with some niggles, I tended to use 2 on / 1 off for general training, but full on all the time is invariably going to be counterproductive.

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Yeah, by recovery week I just meant an easier week with mostly zone 2 workouts and more rest.

I’ve been doing mostly 3:1 or 2:1 schedules, but this happened at not quite the end of week 2, so that’s what I found more curious (as I typically haven’t experienced this kind of HR decrease).

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Quick update.
3 days after my mid plan half monty. I added 7% to the workout to set the FTP to what I felt it should be (and what Garmin says it is). Alternating Tempo was the ride today, 4 blocks at threshold (6 mins) with 4 minute blocks in-between just below threshold.

Even at 107%:
Block 1 - finished 10 bpm below minimum of the zone 3 HR target
Block 2 - finished 4 bpm below Zone 3 minimum target
Block 3 - HR raised up to middle of zone three, but settled to low point of zone 3
Block 4 - HR went to max zone 3, but settled to mid point of zone 3 range.

The watt targets were consistent for each block, but HR increased as fatigue kicked in as time extended.

RPE was 6, in line with the target.

That feels like I could go up to about 10% above the half monty result instead of 7%, but not much higher.

Is that the right way to deal with it? OR just take a couple of days rest, and Half Monty test again?

Martin

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Why do you not just do the 4DP test which is in level mode thereby removing the issue of riding against ‘correct’ numbers?

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I could. But full frontal needs a taper week and I’ve just done a recovery week and I’m now 4 days into my next block.

I’ll stick with adding a % for now. It seems to be working. Just not sure if it’s ideal.

I think you could throw in a Half Monty without disrupting your plan too much. It’s not too strenuous an effort, except for the last minute or two of the ramp.

If you adjust the FTP and MAP numbers by 10% prior to doing Half Monty, you should get decent results from HM. Minimum requirement is completing five ramp steps, and then make sure you reach a failure point before the end of the ramp steps.

It’s also reasonable to just keep adjusting your power numbers - you can either do that prior to each workout, or adjust them manually in your profile until you get a chance to retest.

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After resting a week with a single Zone 2 training session, I came within a few BPM of my expected heart rate on my next hard interval session.

However, after taking the next day off and then attempting another hard interval session, I was only able to get up to around 10BPM lower than two days before.

I hit the workout power targets, but did not feel like I could have gone any harder and was pretty gassed afterwards, so I don’t think it’s an issue of needing to readjust my metrics, but probably just too much accumulated fatigue.

I guess the next thing to try is taking 1.5-2 weeks of recovery with Zone 1/2 workouts and then start a new training block?

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Update…

Did a monster effort on the Friday, had an easy Saturday so did half monty with heavily adjusted ftp and map.

Got about 7 ramps past my fake ftp, and finished the hr constrained part. New ftp is 220w, which is a massive jump.

Map was nowhere near as high as I altered it to, but that’s ok. 9 hammers on Tuesday. Should be fun…

Moral of the story, increase effort for the workout if you aren’t hurting he zones, but retesting with half monty is just as easy

Martin

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