How do i get to 400w 20 minute threshold? - Page 2
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  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by function
    It's sort of interesting how everyone knows what your ideal weight should be and whether you even desire to be that skinny.

    Thats because its all about w/kg.. At his size getting to 400 watts for 20 minutes would be near impossible and still put him mid pack on the e-wang chart. Add on top of that that he would climb like a anchor and his V02max would suffer greatly.

    Trying to force a square peg into a round hole.....

    Agree that the articles you mention are a good starting place. They will also back up what im saying.

  2. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by wfrogge
    Thats because its all about w/kg.. At his size getting to 400 watts for 20 minutes would be near impossible and still put him mid pack on the e-wang chart. Add on top of that that he would climb like a anchor and his V02max would suffer greatly.

    Agree that the articles you mention are a good starting place. They will also back up what im saying.
    None of the articles say that to increase wattage output you have to lose weight, furthermore 5W/kg for 20minutes is hardly "boat anchor" climbing, it'd be competitive (might not always win but definitely up there) in most cat 1/2 hilly races.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by function
    None of the articles say that to increase wattage output you have to lose weight, furthermore 5W/kg for 20minutes is hardly "boat anchor" climbing, it'd be competitive (might not always win but definitely up there) in most cat 1/2 hilly races.

    Its all about w/kg...... And at his weight it would be easier to drop 20lbs and maintain his current FTP than to hit 400w for 20 minutes... In other words hes barking up the wrong tree.

    Lets say he gets his FTP to 380. That will put him at 4.7 w/kg with no V02max gains. He will still climb like an anchor because those lighter guys that can put out 380 watts for an hour will be working much less going up hills (or even the lighter guys that have a much lower FTP.. They will beat him too). He will get shelled if the race goes uphill for a good amount of time.

    If he can drop 20lbs that would put him at 5.3 w/kg. His V02max will go up and he will have less weight to carry uphill..... He would get the most bang for the buck by dropping the weight (I dont care if its fat or muscle.. weight is weight).
    Last edited by wfrogge; 03-04-2009 at 07:29 AM.

  4. #29
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    Slow day at work, Frogge?
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  5. #30
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    yep..

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by wfrogge
    Its all about w/kg...... And at his weight it would be easier to drop 20lbs and maintain his current FTP than to hit 400w for 20 minutes... In other words hes barking up the wrong tree.

    Lets say he gets his FTP to 380. That will put him at 4.7 w/kg with no V02max gains. He will still climb like an anchor because those lighter guys that can put out 380 watts for an hour will be working much less going up hills (or even the lighter guys that have a much lower FTP.. They will beat him too). He will get shelled if the race goes uphill for a good amount of time.

    If he can drop 20lbs that would put him at 5.3 w/kg. His V02max will go up and he will have less weight to carry uphill..... He would get the most bang for the buck by dropping the weight (I dont care if its fat or muscle.. weight is weight).
    Just curious how many non pro 157 pound riders do you think are out there that have an FTP of 380 watts for an hour? My guess...not that many, which means unless he wants to be a CAT 1/2 or a national level pro he's not going to get shelled with a 4.7 w/kg power out put.

    To stay competitive in most CAT 3 races he's only going to need to put out around 4.1 w/kg - 4.5 w/kg. Good strength with a lot of smarts....goes much farther than great strength and no smarts
    Voting isn't marriage - it's public transport. You are not waiting for "The One" who is absolutely perfect. You are getting on the bus, and if there isn't one going exactly to your destination you don't stay at home and sulk - you take the one going closest to where you want to be!

  7. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by tommyrod74
    Oddly enough, watts are watts. They're not any better or worse indoors or out.

    They're also strangely unaffected by wind drag.

    Now, rolling terrain poses some challenge due to the tendency to mentally ease up on a downhill and work harder on a climb. But if you can average 400 watts for a given time period indoors, you should be able to do it outside.
    Do you have an srm? Watts are not just watts, you can hit 400 watts grinding up a steep hill or doing high rpms on the flats. Both ways hit 400 watts, but use entirely different ways of getting there. Dare i say doing 400 watts up a 14% hill is gonna use more strength, while doing 400 watts on the flats is a combination on strength and aerobic capacity. Its torque x rpm so....steep hill = fewer rpm but greater torque.....flats = higher rpm less torque. My point is that it works your muscles differently even though its still 400 watts.

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wookiebiker
    Just curious how many non pro 157 pound riders do you think are out there that have an FTP of 380 watts for an hour? My guess...not that many, which means unless he wants to be a CAT 1/2 or a national level pro he's not going to get shelled with a 4.7 w/kg power out put.

    To stay competitive in most CAT 3 races he's only going to need to put out around 4.1 w/kg - 4.5 w/kg. Good strength with a lot of smarts....goes much farther than great strength and no smarts


    Dude asked how to get to 400 watts.... Its unrealistic that he will hit that target but I used those numbers as an example of what he was asking for..... 4.1-4.5 w/kg wont do him much good in a hilly race with that extra weight. Not when you will have lighter guys running around (or even less) w/kg with less mass (higher VO2max).... They will smoke him up the hill due to gravity. Unless he does flat races all the time.
    Last edited by wfrogge; 03-04-2009 at 10:48 AM.

  9. #34
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    Why hasn't anyone mentioned that maybe the OP can achieve 400 watts WHILE losing weight? The amount of training required to reach that goal will almost certainly shed at least a bit of weight off of him. It seems like a lot of people in this thread (especially wfrogge) seem to think that power increase and weight loss are mutually exclusive and they certainly are not (IF you train and eat intelligently).

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by wfrogge
    Dude asked how to get to 400 watts.... Its unrealistic that he will hit that target but I used those numbers as an example of what he was asking for..... 4.1-4.5 w/kg wont do him much good in a hilly race with that extra weight. Not when you will have lighter guys running around (or even less) w/kg with less mass (higher VO2max).... They will smoke him up the hill due to gravity. Unless he does flat races all the time.
    Weight for the most part is irrelevant as long as the watts are there. If you have two riders and one is 90kg and puts out 370 w/kg and the other is 65kg and puts out 270 w/kg they are going to climb at roughly the same speed regardless of length because they have very similar power to weight ratios....even though one is 25kg lighter than the other.

    You have basically been saying unless he's putting out over 5 w/kg he's going to get smoked on climbs, which honestly...isn't true unless you are talking about CAT 1/2 or domestic pro level racing. The guy never said what catagory he would be racing in...just that he wanted to get to 400 watts FTP.

    Realistically the OP needs to get into the 330-365 watts at FTP to "not get smoked" on the climbs into the CAT 3 class at his current weight. If he loses weight, then he has to put out less power to reach the same w/kg.

    In most CAT 5, 4, 3 races a racer can more than get by putting out 4.1 w/kg - 4.5 w/kg and not get "smoked" on the climbs regardless of who is around him. He's not likely to win, but he's not going to get "smoked" either...chances are it would put him at mid, to upper mid pack in the CAT 3's.
    Voting isn't marriage - it's public transport. You are not waiting for "The One" who is absolutely perfect. You are getting on the bus, and if there isn't one going exactly to your destination you don't stay at home and sulk - you take the one going closest to where you want to be!

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by chase196126
    Why hasn't anyone mentioned that maybe the OP can achieve 400 watts WHILE losing weight? The amount of training required to reach that goal will almost certainly shed at least a bit of weight off of him. It seems like a lot of people in this thread (especially wfrogge) seem to think that power increase and weight loss are mutually exclusive and they certainly are not (IF you train and eat intelligently).
    I'd agree with both of you here...weight loss and power gain are not mutually exclusive, I for one can attest to that.

    However achieving 400 watts FTP is not easy by any stretch, even for bigger guys. It requires a whole lot of training, and some natural talent on top of that to get to that level. This level of power output is generally only seen in your CAT 1/2 guys or higher and maybe some up and coming lower CAT guys that haven't worked their way through the system, but will quickly.
    Voting isn't marriage - it's public transport. You are not waiting for "The One" who is absolutely perfect. You are getting on the bus, and if there isn't one going exactly to your destination you don't stay at home and sulk - you take the one going closest to where you want to be!

  12. #37
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    Repeat after me.... FTP is not the same as w/kg..... One is absolute and one is relative.


    Increasing w/kg may or MAY NOT (in this case) have anything to do with increasing your FTP. ..... And the chances of the OP hitting 400 watts for a threshold are slim to none. Not knocking the ability of the OP There are pro riders that would kill to have an FTP that high.

    If his current weight is mostly muscle as he thinks than dropping that weight will not lower his FTP that much thus making his w/kg numbers rise. Also his VO2max (broken record) would go up because of several reasons.. one being he would have less mass to fuel with oxygen rich blood... This would drive up his FTP thus pushing his w/kg numbers up while also giving him a higher top end.

    It dosent matter what CAT the OP is racing in if he is where he needs to be (no sandbagging lower CATs). My comparison was him at his current weight with a 20 min power of 400 (1 hour power of 380) going against other cyclists that would be lighter by 20lbs with the same or even lower FTP. Even if these lighter riders had a 20-30 watt LOWER FTP than the OP they would beat him in any hilly road race or TT... How is that???? 1. Gravity pulling him down. 2. Those lighter riders would have a higher w/kg even with a lower FTP.


    As I and others have stated hitting 400 watts for an FTP is a pipe dream for us mortals. The OP should not be concerned with FTP as much as getting his w/kg up.... Losing body weight is the first step.

    The powermeter is not a speedometer!

  13. #38
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    Wfrogge,

    No disrespect, but what you are arguing is pretty redundant... Obviously if the OP's weight goes down he will climb better.

    On another note, what VO2 level (in theory) would be required to hit a 20 minute power of 400 watts?

  14. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by chase196126
    Wfrogge,

    No disrespect, but what you are arguing is pretty redundant... Obviously if the OP's weight goes down he will climb better.

    On another note, what VO2 level (in theory) would be required to hit a 20 minute power of 400 watts?
    I was addressing the "why" as to him climbing better with a lower weight. Most in this thread are hung up on FTP when that if anything will go down with weight loss.

    VO2max and power are not connected like that...



    OP you may want to ask your question here.
    http://www.cyclingforums.com/f88-power-training.html
    Last edited by wfrogge; 03-04-2009 at 12:06 PM.

  15. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by wfrogge
    I was addressing the "why" as to him climbing better with a lower weight. Most in this thread are hung up on FTP when that if anything will go down with weight loss.

    VO2max and power are not connected like that...
    Not sure why you are hung up on the idea that dropping weight means a loss in power as well. If you work out/ride more, especially with a plan in mind...you tend to put on more power while at the same time losing weight.

    Dropping power while dropping weight generally happens because you are losing muscle and thus starving yourself to do so.

    As far as the FTP discussion....The basic idea of FTP is the amount of power you can put out for 1 hour. Take that number and divide it by your weight and you get your w/kg for 1 hour...which is the general measuring stick to building workouts around. That's why the FTP has been brought up more.

    However, the reality is that for most races FTP is somewhat useless unless you are competing in 40K ITT's or are in races with some seriously long climbs. Most if not all races I participate in have lots of 1, 5, 10 minute climbs...sometimes 20-25 minute climbs but anything approaching an hour is pretty rare.

    So aside from setting up a training program a 1 hour FTP is not the best gage of how one will do in a race. However, it's being used a lot because the OP wanted to know how to reach 400 watts for 20 minutes....which would put his hour FTP in the 360'ish range.
    Voting isn't marriage - it's public transport. You are not waiting for "The One" who is absolutely perfect. You are getting on the bus, and if there isn't one going exactly to your destination you don't stay at home and sulk - you take the one going closest to where you want to be!

  16. #41
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    Ive got to get out of this thread.....


    Most riders will lose a few watts off their FTP when dropping significant weight. Plenty of threads on the google wattage forum, cyclingforms.com, etc to back this up. Reason being is when you lose weight you cannot "target" an area or type (fat vs muscle) to lose so some muscle will go. Also if he's cutting, his calorie intake will be down. Damn hard to run a good FTP test when you are running a calorie deficit. Also riding more dosent = putting on more power. Too generic of a statement to hold any truth.

    I dropped around 20 this past winter and lost 10 or so watts from my FTP. I have since gained that back and then some now that I have adjusted and increased my calorie intake.

  17. #42
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    wfrogge, yes, blindly following weight loss tends to end up in power loss. You're so focused on trying to prove yourself right that you've forgotten the OP's original question. soulfly_nyc, i suggest just ignoring this forum in general and reading up on FTP increasing workouts you'll get more relevant answers.
    Last edited by function; 03-05-2009 at 10:38 AM.

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by wfrogge
    Ive got to get out of this thread.....


    Most riders will lose a few watts off their FTP when dropping significant weight. Plenty of threads on the google wattage forum, cyclingforms.com, etc to back this up. Reason being is when you lose weight you cannot "target" an area or type (fat vs muscle) to lose so some muscle will go. Also if he's cutting, his calorie intake will be down. Damn hard to run a good FTP test when you are running a calorie deficit. Also riding more dosent = putting on more power. Too generic of a statement to hold any truth.

    I dropped around 20 this past winter and lost 10 or so watts from my FTP. I have since gained that back and then some now that I have adjusted and increased my calorie intake.
    Last year, I ran a very high caloric negative (around -1500 calories a day) to drop 50 pounds in just a bit over 4 months...however, during that time I added approximately 60 watts to my FTP. Basically I went from averaging just under 23.7 mph for a flat 10 mile ITT....to averaging 25.5 mph for a hilly 20 mile ITT during that time.

    It can be done, has been done and just takes a structured routine and discipline to do.
    Voting isn't marriage - it's public transport. You are not waiting for "The One" who is absolutely perfect. You are getting on the bus, and if there isn't one going exactly to your destination you don't stay at home and sulk - you take the one going closest to where you want to be!

  19. #44

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    I think Floyd Landis reportedly has an ftp of around 400w. Our OP gets on trainer does 278w for 60min, and starts thinkin whats another 100w. well the diff is avg joe cat 3 pack fodder and pro tour level. so yea..that goal is maybe a little unrealistic and thats why so many people here are all riled up over your post.

  20. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by kenyonCycleist
    Do you have an srm? Watts are not just watts, you can hit 400 watts grinding up a steep hill or doing high rpms on the flats. Both ways hit 400 watts, but use entirely different ways of getting there. Dare i say doing 400 watts up a 14% hill is gonna use more strength, while doing 400 watts on the flats is a combination on strength and aerobic capacity. Its torque x rpm so....steep hill = fewer rpm but greater torque.....flats = higher rpm less torque. My point is that it works your muscles differently even though its still 400 watts.
    So someone who's better adapted to spinning might have more difficulty hitting the wattage target on a hill. Doesn't mean they can't produce the watts on the hill, just that they need to spin like on the flats to do so.

    So keep cadence constant. Since it's torque X RPM, if watts are constant, and cadence is constant... so is torque.

    What you're really saying is that you can achieve 400 watts in any number of ways, with differing torque and RPM values. Thank you, Algebra 1.

    Watts are still watts. If you can produce it indoors, you can produce it outdoors (it might take more focus, but the physical ability is obviously there- or you'd never measure 400 watts indoors, either).

  21. #46
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    Tommyrod74: you're right, but I tend to disagree with your first sentance. "So someone who's better adapted to spinning might have more difficulty hitting the wattage target on a hill." If you can hit that wattage, it doesn't matter if you are on a hill or the flats. Like you said, watts are watts. In fact, I'd give the edge to the "spinner" since average pedal force is less (according to AC.com) the spinner should theoretically be able to maintain it longer ceteris peribus in virtue of a more balanced muscular effort compared to a big gear masher .

  22. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quixote
    Tommyrod74: you're right, but I tend to disagree with your first sentance. "So someone who's better adapted to spinning might have more difficulty hitting the wattage target on a hill." If you can hit that wattage, it doesn't matter if you are on a hill or the flats. Like you said, watts are watts. In fact, I'd give the edge to the "spinner" since average pedal force is less (according to AC.com) the spinner should theoretically be able to maintain it longer ceteris peribus in virtue of a more balanced muscular effort compared to a big gear masher .
    Yeah, I meant that was the other poster's argument. I was saying that even if that were the case, spinning (as the theoretical rider is used to doing) would circumvent the issue.

    So we agree after all. Ceteris paribus? Didn't see that coming

  23. #48
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    Yeah, any excuse to throw around the Latin.

  24. #49
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    The OP asks two questions:

    "How do i get to 400w 20 minute threshold?"

    "Should I spend more time with weights?"

    The short answer is to get a coach and do what he says.

    The long answer is that 400w for 20 minutes is exceptional no matter what your weight. Chances are that unless you're a tremendously gifted athlete you'll never reach that goal...and weights are a waste of time for building long-interval power on the bike.

  25. #50
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    i'd like to see the OP's V02max numbers from a lab to get an idea of his genetic potential.

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