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Trainerroad assessment

kleinstrokerkleinstroker Posts: 2,133
Now the good weather is with us again, I'm guessing that many of us will be pushing aside the turbo trainers until the winter, and was wondering how much benefit Trainerroad brought to those that used it regularly?

I think it would be a good idea to see if there is a consensus about how effective TR has been, so if you can vote and make a little post describing your training regime using TR, and will you be signing up again this coming winter.

For the record I improved by about 12 FTP, although I only managed to complete Base training 1, what with all the breaks from training i had to take because of holidays, illness and working away from home. I'm still happy I signed up as otherwise I would be far less fit than I am now

Cheers

How much has Trainer Road improved your performance? 23 votes

I'm less fit than before the winter
4% 1 vote
I have kept the same fitness level as before
4% 1 vote
0 - 15 FTP improvement
21% 5 votes
16 - 30 FTP improvement
26% 6 votes
31 - 50 FTP improvement
21% 5 votes
50 - 70 FTP improvement
8% 2 votes
More than 70 FTP improvement
13% 3 votes

Posts

  • markp80markp80 Posts: 444
    Good idea for a thread!

    OK, I started with TR back in September last year (about a month after I started road cycling). I've now done the Intermediate Base I and II plans, and I'm half way through the Intermediate Build I. I've had a few short breaks with holidays and the odd cold etc, plus I threw in the Tour of Sufferlandria.

    As a beginner, my initial FTP was a rather poor 163. I last tested about 6 weeks ago and it's now 211, a 30% improvement. More importantly, since I started I've lost about 20lbs, so my FTP/kg has changed from 1.63 to 2.33 which I think is a great improvement. My initial goal once I'd seen what this was all about was to reach 200W and get to 2.0FTP/kg, which I've now easily achieved.

    Coincidentally with this thread, you might be surprised to hear that in all that time between September and now, last night was the first time I've been out for a proper ride. I did a 14 mile course last night, which I had previously done half a dozen times last year. I had all the old ride data from Strava, and was amazed to see my average speed for this route had gone from a best of 14mph to over 16mph. Now, to you pros on here, 16mph may not seem like much of an average speed for a ride of an hour, but to me, in comparison to my previous efforts, that was riding like the wind! I reckon I could have gone quicker as well, I was trying to limit HR and have an easy ride.

    So I've been delighted with the improvements TR has given me.
    FTP 163 -> 211
    FTP/kg 1.63 -> 2.33
    (KK Road Machine)

    Cheers,
    markP
    Boardman Road Comp - OK, I went to Halfords
    Tibia plateau fracture - the rehab continues!
  • homercleshomercles Posts: 499
    I've been using it in conjunction with Sufferfest videos and have definitely seen improvements, though I'm yet to get around to measuring my FTP a second time. But I've noticed the benefits in other areas - segment times on Strava (which I rarely, if ever, aim at during rides), interval abilities when riding with friends, making sustained efforts, etc. I think having proper targets alongside the Sufferfest vids has really been it for me - RPE scales are all well and good but the problem I had is that some days a 7/10 effort might be a good one and on other days not so good. With the numbers there's no hiding.
  • kevin69kevin69 Posts: 87
    I've followed the hour long workouts from the plans (2 hrs a week), but done group rides at weekends

    Results:
    October: 243W
    Base I
    December: 256W
    Base II
    February: 289W

    Since then i've worked through most of Build I and not tested yet,
    but don't feel there has been much improvement, maybe even a small drop in ftp.

    I preferred the Base plan to the Build one so i think i'll do the E3 power builder next rather than Build II

    I did the october result after starting cycling again following a few weeks off after an accident with a car,
    so the result may be a little on the low side, and i did a lot of cycling in jan/feb which helped with the big boost
    then.
  • markp80markp80 Posts: 444
    kevin69 wrote:
    Since then i've worked through most of Build I and not tested yet,
    but don't feel there has been much improvement, maybe even a small drop in ftp.
    I felt similar to this a few weeks into Build II, but I wonder if it's because this plan actually just ramps up the intensity?
    homercies wrote:
    I think having proper targets alongside the Sufferfest vids has really been it for me - RPE scales are all well and good but the problem I had is that some days a 7/10 effort might be a good one and on other days not so good. With the numbers there's no hiding.
    I agree with that.

    MarkP
    Boardman Road Comp - OK, I went to Halfords
    Tibia plateau fracture - the rehab continues!
  • kevin69kevin69 Posts: 87
    markp80 wrote:
    kevin69 wrote:
    Since then i've worked through most of Build I and not tested yet,
    but don't feel there has been much improvement, maybe even a small drop in ftp.
    I felt similar to this a few weeks into Build II, but I wonder if it's because this plan actually just ramps up the intensity?

    Perhaps.
    I struggled a lot with the workouts like Tyndall that involved very short, very high intensity intervals
  • shazzzshazzz Posts: 1,071
    I think it's hard to credit TR for any specific FTP improvement. But I have absolutely no doubt that it encouraged me to do more turbo sessions over the winter, and to do them harder than I otherwise would have.
    I haven't used it for a few weeks now, but will probably keep the subs going through the summer as it is cheap and useful to have for occasional use.
  • GiantMikeGiantMike Posts: 3,139
    I think the question is a bit misleading. Yes, measured FTP may have increased, but how much of that was specifically due to TR or TR's workout plans? It sounds like TR provides an impetus to train, but its your own hard work that has reaped the rewards.

    For example, if I paid you £1000 per week to do 3 workouts of 2x20 min intervals at 90%FTP, you'd have improved, but I don't think I could claim any of the credit for your improvement.

    Well done to everybody who has improved, just remember it was you that did it, and you can still improve on the road over the summer.
  • mikeneticmikenetic Posts: 486
    First winter using any form of turbo and formalised training for me. I'm alright at judging sustainable effort though, and I've seen my FTP move from 274 to 294 (weight is about 73Kg) having followed their plan reasonably strictly.

    The results out on the road are interesting, looking at my Strava history I'm taking chunks out of sustained climbing PBs.

    Big thumbs up from me for TR. It certainly gave me a structure to work against, which I would have really struggled with on my own.
  • Hollow-legsHollow-legs Posts: 142
    I been using TR for 6 weeks now ,just finished base 1 ,I retested my FTP using the 8 min test ,i did go a bit easy for this second 8 minute test ,,,i had been feeling very unwell for week or so,so was a bit reserved .
    My FTP increased by 11% from 150 to 161 still low ,but i have done better power wise during some base 1 workouts for 8 and 10 minute intervals..Still happy with the results i was hoping to hit 180 FTP but thats life.

    I went for my second ride outside this year only 30 miles ,i really felt the difference in my riding and effort ,i could sustain higher speeds for longer ,,my cadence everything seemed easier ..more efficient .even in a strong head wind on the way home ,i did slow down to a crawl but i carried on ,adjusted my cadence ,focused on all the drills TR kept telling me to do ,,,relax ,cycle with your knees ,release your grip on the bars ,,,,focus on your cadence ...breath!!

    I rate TR highly ,,,it has made me train harder ,ride my bike more efficiently,,increased my fittness..given me goals to aim for,,something i would not have done on my own just using the turbo!
  • ChrisSAChrisSA Posts: 630
    So due to some resistance level confusion my initial FTP was either 175 W or 220 W. I'm actually assuming 175 W since I retested after about a couple of months and hit 223 W, and the initial training sessions when set to 220 W FTP were brutal. Latest test (March) was 233 W. Due another test.
  • handfulhandful Posts: 918
    I started on an FTP of 167 in late Jan/Feb and I peaked on a test at 247. I did drop this back because I was struggling big time for a bit and I am currently on 230 although some of this gain was due to a turbo change. I would say I've had a realsitic increase of about 50 and I feel ready for a re-test soon :)

    I can't recommend TR enough really, has made a huge difference to my riding on the road and I'm much stronger on the hills. Doesn't feel like it but I am noticably quicker to my friends.
    Vaaru Titanium Sram eTap HRD
    Kuota Kharma Evo Rival 22 - fair weather
    Moda Chord with drop bars and Rival shifters - foul weather
    Intense Spider 29er - mud
  • kleinstrokerkleinstroker Posts: 2,133
    Seems like a lot of people did better than me, I'm glad it worked if you put more into it! Will definitely sign up again next winter too.
  • markp80markp80 Posts: 444
    GiantMike wrote:
    It sounds like TR provides an impetus to train, but its your own hard work that has reaped the rewards.
    Well done to everybody who has improved, just remember it was you that did it, and you can still improve on the road over the summer.
    Good point there Mike, everyone who's improved has done it through their own efforts. As you imply though, I think for me personally it would be fair to say that without the motivation of TR I would never have pushed myself so hard.
    Another personal record on the road for me last week. I did my 14 mile loop with an average speed of 17.1mph, compared to a pre-winter (and pre-TR) best of just over 14mph. Ignoring the actual speed which is obviously course-specific, I'm absolutely delighted with the improvement, and TR has made a great training partner!

    Cheers,
    MarkP
    Boardman Road Comp - OK, I went to Halfords
    Tibia plateau fracture - the rehab continues!
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