FTP Test following Build Me Up

Hi, I’m coming towards the end of the Build Me Up Training Plan which I’ve really enjoyed (if that’s the word!), having been challenged but definitely rewarded in terms of how I feel my overall fitness has improved. I’ve been pretty faithful, only having missed a few workouts mid-plan because of half-term.

The end of the Training Plan involves a FTP Test - the 20 minute variety. My question is, by how much should I expect my FTP to have improved? Or in other words, what should I aim for during the test? The thing is, I’ve never done a ‘traditional’ FTP test. To start the training plan, I did a step / stage test which I think gave me a pretty accurate benchmark (206 w) but what should I aim for in the final test. 10%? 5%?

I know this is impossible to answer precisely without knowing specifics about my fitness, riding ability etc, but I wondered if anyone knew a sort of theoretical improvement the training plan aims to deliver and that I could aim for during the final FTP test?

Any tips will be gratefully received


I would break the FTP test down into 5 minute blocks. I would do the first 5 minutes at your current FTP + 5% remembering that FTP is calculated as 95% of the 20 minute test. This should be very doable as all you’re doing is riding at a target power that you have proven you can do. Assuming you got through these 5 minutes ok I would then go say 5% / 10 watts harder. Next 5 minutes bump it up again if you got through comfortably. If you found it hard then maintain the same power all the way to the end.

Alternatively do another ramp test. Personally I don’t do the 20 minute tests any more. Ramp tests are easier mentally to get through.

Hope this helps.

Hi Nigel,

Many thanks for your reply and yes, this sounds like a really good structured approach. I’ll give it a go - even if only to say I’ve done at least one 20 minute test!!

Thanks again