Full Frontal 20 minute section

To break up the 20 minutes, does anyone mix up their cadence during this part of the test? I used to just keep it as consistent as I could but recently tried going to a harder gear and slowing my cadence like I’m climbing. I will do 5 minutes at around 90-95, switch gears and try around 80 for another 5 minutes. It does help me to keep my power up but I feel like I am cheating a bit. Do you think that there is a benefit to keeping the same cadence and gear the whole 20 minutes?


Not specifically planned but there is often a slower cadence section in mine. It’s not thought out though - simply a need to change things dep on how I feel on the day.

1 Like

Hey @eapatrick ,
Not cheating at all. You recruit more muscle fibers at the low cadence but sometimes that can feel like a break…do whatever works for you. A good workout to try is GCN Aerobic Endurance Ride. It’ll give you a feel for how your RPE changes with different cadences at the same power.



Less so in the 20mins but I have tried that in FF’s 5min MAP section. At 3.30 in, 30 seconds of high torque and low rpm gave my lungs a quick breather (pun intended) before attacking the last minute.

I don’t know if I really outperformed how I would have done otherwise, but the mental aspect felt helpful. Particularly because I saw it as only a 3.30 effort, a quick “rest”, then a final blast.

1 Like

I do a HM 4 days before to to establish a suggested 20 min power for the FF. I choose my gearing and level such that ~90 rpm results in the suggest power. I then try to maintain over 90 rpm (92-95) as best as I can for the full 20 minutes so that I’m maintaining more than the suggested power. By the end I’m in agony.

1 Like

Yes, even with a close ratio cassette ( 8spd 12-25 goes from 8.6% difference in ratio at the big end to 15.3% at the small end) I find that my optimum cadence is right between 2 gears. I aim for the power in my last Half Monty and if the gear results in a cadence that starts pushing my HR above my cTHR I change down to lower the cadence and keep the HR under control and then switch back again every 5 minutes or so. My 20m average cadence have been

Nov 2020 88rpm (83min-93max)
Feb 2021 84rpm (75min-95max)
Feb 2022 81rpm (76min-98max)
May 2021 86rpm (79min-91max)

1 Like

Thanks everyone, I really appreciate the responses. I haven’t done Half Monty in a long time but am curious to see how it would compare. I agree about the mental aspect. It helps me block off the 20 minutes into smaller pieces. Interesting though that I am more inclined to go to a harder gear, slow my cadence, but haven’t yet tried the opposite direction. I’ll give that a shot next time.

For me, I have always been been able to find a combination of Level and gear that gets me very close to my desired cadence at a target power.