Torque're doing it wrong

So think I had my first “failed” effort today, and not sure why. For those in the ToS recovery plan, I did the GCN Torque Monster for the first time today. Reading the prep on the workout, and all of the power vs. cadence discussions, I did the GCNTM workout in level mode, trying to match power targets.

The workout felt…too easy, and I’m not sure why? Ran it at 100%, and my HR% and RPE’s were nowhere near specified targets. And clearly I wasn’t working NEARLY as hard as the presenters.

My last FF was mid-January, before I started prepping and completing the 2021 ToS. While I expect a bump on my next effort this weekend, I find it hard to believe I could’ve made such significant gains in 7 weeks that this morning’s GCNTM would be “easy”.

Some other things I noticed was presenters kept pushing max effort on the surges, which my profile clearly wasn’t requiring. I also noted their leg speed in the slow grinds was way more than 60rpm, which was posted in the workout. The only time I was up to their level of RPE was in the last couple of intervals where I just ignored the profile, jumped onto my big ring, and hit the 60rpm grind, where my power #'s were 2-3x what the workout specified.

So am I just supposed to ignore the profile and go with the presenters when they say “max effort”? As stated, I’m knocking out another FF this weekend, so expect to see improved numbers for future workouts, but not gonna lie - I’m confused. Feel like I cheated my suffering this morning; waiting for the Sufferlandrian Police to come knocking.

On a FF side note: is it a good or bad thing that all of my “Badass Power Records” are from my FF?



Hi there,

I did Torque Monster for the first time today, like you in level mode, though I had quite a different experience - my HR went higher than I have seen it for some time. As the instructions were to do it in level mode, I ignored the power targets, and tried to follow what the presenters were telling me/ RPE. It would be interesting to do it again, as I did find it quite challenging to pick the appropriate level for the various efforts, due to the different cadences of some efforts. For what it is worth, I would guess that I was only slightly over the targets for the 30 second efforts, but the 20 second max efforts where I was trying to increase the cadence I would have significantly exceeded the targets, and those were the ones that hurt.

Best of luck with your upcoming FF.

I did it for the first time today too. I used erg mode and just hit the prescribed power and cadence. I slowed my cadence before each interval and ramped up to 60rpm as fast as I could. It felt easy in the moment. I hardly broke a sweat. My heart rate never got above Z2. I can feel it in my legs a little now though.

I wonder what Full Frontal this weekend will bring.

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Exactly this. I only got above Z2 in the last couple of reps when I just went for it on the big ring. I also found myself just dropping off so I could ramp back up to 60rpm on the earlier intervals.

I’m going to assume I will see 20%+ improvement on the FF this weekend. :wink:

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20% sounds good to me!

I had a similar experience with this. I set my Kickr to level mode and found that it was difficult to get to the required power target at 60 rpm, even on the big ring and second smallest cog on my cassette. One issue was that the level was set at 1; perhaps a higher resistance setting might have fixed that. I also found that if I stuck to the assigned power target in the AC and MAP intervals that I did not seem to be suffering nearly as much as the people in the video. In the end, I chucked the power target and just used a big gear at 70 rpm cadence. This generated the appropriate amount of suffering and emission of Sufferlandrian Holy Water.

FF will certainly be interesting. I started on the All-Purpose Road program after doing my first FF in early December. This yielded an FTP about 10% lower than what I had been getting from riding outside, apparently quite common. HM in mid-January upped the FTP and MAP by 10%. The All-Purpose Road program would have ended with a FF on the day that the ToS ended. I substituted the ToS prep plan for the last two weeks of the All-Purpose Road and delayed the FF by a couple of weeks. So the big question will be whether I will see another significant bump in FTP or if I already plateaued by the time of the HM .

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I too found this workout easy if you stick to their numbers. This led me to just push hard and ignore the target power. I thought I would share my thoughts on why it is happening.

First, we are coming off the TOS and if you have not done FF in a while (like me) our numbers are off.

Second, it is an example of the superiority of a 4DP based workout. Based off the numbers I was being asked to do it seemed like my yellow and orange, MAP and AC, efforts were based off a percentage of FTP instead of my 4DP numbers. I think it was done to match the presenter’s dialogue. Since I have a modest FTP (~195) the changes in raw power were lower than the presenters, despite doing the same percentage change. Had the MAP and AC been set to 4DP number I suspect the workout would be much more on target.


Agree with the comments here, felt like an easy one. Targets seemed vastly different to what the presenters were doing. I just kept to the targets of power and cadence, HR into the low end of Z3 during the later set of 60rpm targets, lowering to Z2 in recovery.
Didn’t try harder than targets as I’m doing FF this weekend too to see if it has changed much after ToS.

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I’ve only done a few of the GCN videos but I notice I never seem to be suffering as much as the presenters.

I’m terrible at level mode and can never steadily match power targets so I just went has hard as I could for the intervals. Even then it didn’t really feel too difficult.