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  • Paul

what the FTP!!

Here at UCANFITNESS we always start our clients of with a fitness test, the reason is simple if you don't where you are starting from it's very hard to get to where you want to get to. As part of the test especially for cyclists and triathletes an important data marker is the FTP number.

Now while it's likely you’ve probably heard a lot about functional threshold power (FTP) and testing. Perhaps you’ve wondered if it’s something that should matter to you, and if so, why. Here we’ll seek to clear up the reasons behind testing, and tell you how to utilize it properly.

What is FTP and why does it matter? FTP is the maximum power you can sustain for one hour. Think of power at VO2max as your upper limit of aerobic energy production and FTP as the percentage of that limit that you can sustain.

Setting a benchmark FTP will enables us to establish training zones so you can best distribute your training time and work toward improvement.

Should beginners bother testing? It’s actually better to test in the beginning so you can set a true baseline to gauge progress over time. Testing early and often will allow us to fine-tune your training plan so you can see how your body responds to different types of training. Plus, if you have a power meter and never use it to test FTP and don’t use the data to guide and monitor your training, then you really just bought a very pricey basic bike computer!

Can I test without a power meter? You can and many people use heart rate zones to guide their training instead. But heart rate is a subjective response to the work you’re doing, while power shows the objective, actual work you’re doing. Think of it as Heartrate is your imput and Power(Watts) your output. Ideally, your training program will increase the amount of power you can produce for the same heartrate input.

Interested in testing contact us at

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