GCN Aerobic Endurance what RPE?

Did this workout after work yesterday and was confused by the targets, RPE being called out in the video was 8/10, which I would equate with a threshold FTP effort, however the power target was just 90% FTP and HR zone 4. Through the first interval I started by following the power target but HR was only just at the top end of Z3 and started to fall as the cadence reduced so I went up to 95%FTP. At the end of the first interval I felt very fresh and decided to push harder and averaged just over 100%FTP during the second interval and was still able to meet the power target for the last 1 minute burst.

I’m in the final week of a 4wk MAP building block, my last FF was on February 18th. All the other workouts have been really demanding but this one felt just too easy compared to the prompts from the video presenter? I set a 20minute badass power record during the second interval despite my average HR being10bpm less than LTHR, can’t believe that I have got that much fitter in less than 4 weeks!

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First off, congratulations on the new power record.

I have done the workout a couple of times, and I found it pretty stiff. My take on it was to stick to the power, and that the higher than anticipated RPE was due to the fact that it was rare that I was pedaling at a comfortable cadence, which made it feel more difficult. If you found it easier than expected, I would take that as a sign of improvement.


I think you are ready to power-up!

I did this workout recently on fresh FF numbers and found it pretty tough going, like the guys in the video. I completed it on target power and cadence, but didn’t have a lot of headroom. It definitely felt like a serious threshold effort and the cadence targets made it quite uncomfortable at times.


I think FTP is 7.5 on the RPE scale. So if they say 8 RPE, you should be a few watts above your FTP.

But, RPE is all about listening to your body, not watts per se.


Thanks. I did find holding the high cadence at the end of the second interval hard, I could only get up to about 105rpm even when I tried dropping the power target.

looks like I have an appointment with HM due.

On this particular workout the variable cadence targets (often uncomfortably high for the power output) increase RPE significantly for me even though the intervals are below FTP until right at the end. It was definitely a high 8 for me anyway! It caught me by surprise because I thought it was going to be a relatively comfortable workout. The GCN guys in the video really suffered too! It was looking like one of them might even bail out at one point, but he hung in there!

I had this workout show up in my Couch to Crusher plan and it crushed me! I could not sustain the high RPMs. I thought Couch to Crusher was for beginners. But will have to do some more research on which plan is best for a beginner rider.

Hi folks.

I’d memory serves me right this was originally done as two FTP blocks and then the effort was pulled back to whatever it is now.

I remember doing it at the start and ‘enjoying’ 21njns at bang on threshold … and of course only getting a few minutes through the second block.

It changed soon after but (if I remember right) the video was already made so there was a wee mismatch between the video and the expected power

First of all, FTP is only 7.5 RPE at the beginning of the FTP max efforts! (e.g. on Full Frontal). Pretty sure I’m touching 11 RPE by the end.
Just did this GCN video on fresh FF numbers and was finding it ‘hard’ but not quite as tough as the guys on the video (it looked hot there though which makes huge difference). My Heart rate often top end or over suggested zone which I think is better indication, I find those RPEs generally tough to gauge anyway.
At the end the GCN guys recommend having recovery day after it… Sufferfest eRacing plan has got me doing shovel tomorrow (?!). Makes sense maybe if the GCN vid was originally recorded at 100% FTP


@WillD I think they have lights in the room for filming and it makes it very hot - would not want to be there! Overall that workout is tough - different cadences at just below FTP. You definitely need to keep cool and keep drinking. I set my power record for the hour.

I found this tough, the descending cadences were OK but speeding up again was a monster. I would imagine your perceived effort would revolve around your favourite cadences. For me, a 100 cadence at power and HR zone 1 would give me a HR of Z2 .Going up to 110+ my perceived effort would go from Z1 to about Z4

@alchurch Agreed - I tend to favor higher cadences and struggle a bit more on lower cadence. Power Station is the schedule workout today for me - should be fun!

Can anyone suggest a close alternative session to this one?

App says this is 5/5 stars for MAP focus and 4/5 for FTP. Doesn’t really feel like a MAP focussed workout.

Reason why…I restarted a plan after week 1. Most sessions changed but this was common to both. I don’t really want to do it again one week later!

Norway has a similar MAP/FTP blend as well as IF/TSS. Thoughts??

Edit: doing Norway. :smiley:

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GCN aerobic endurance is 2 sustained efforts over 20 mins each at 90% FTP. I’d suggest Hell Hath No Fury at 95% would be the most comparable, or maybe Defender. These don’t have same varying cadences, but the core targets are in the same ballpark.

Norway is a pretty different, but variety is good to keep it all fresh!


I think that would have been virtually impossible to achieve with the variable cadence targets! I have now completed it twice at its current 90% FTP level and I was right at my limit by the end on both occasions. The first interval is not too bad, but that second interval with rising cadence is seriously tough! I think adding another 10% power would finish me off in the second interval!


Think yourself lucky, my Hilly GF plan had me doing Nine Hammers the next day!