FTP update on free ride is it possible?

hey Folks,
perhaps a stupid question (sorry), im wondering if i could setup a free ride with a constant 10% higher FTP (of my current one) for 20 minutes and let Zwift update (or not) my ftp.
or is it better to do a 20 min FTP test also considering the same principle (10% higher FTP).?

Just put in the extra effort on a free ride and if Zwift senses an increase in FTP then it will automatically update it at the end of the ride

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That approach may yield a slightly higher result than you could achieve in an actual 20 minute FTP test, which starts out with some hard efforts, a bit of rest, and then the 20 minute segment, but you could do that in a free ride as well.

eheeh, thats what im always trying. im almost finishing the FTP builder plan and did a race yesterday pushing a lot ,but no FTP increase :stuck_out_tongue:

Thanks Paul, this FTP test makes more sense. I believe i misunderstood when i was reading about it.
i remember even watching a video when someone sugested to more or less know your FTP and try to push what you can do for 20 min.
the one you showed here, its structured, increasing slightly and having a ERG mode.
i remember checking and the information was that the 20min shouldnt be used with ERG mode (which in a free ride makes total sense).

In the FTP test workout, the warmup part is done in ERG mode, and then in the 20 minute segment ERG mode is disabled and you do whatever you can sustain.

If you want to do something more like an FTP test in a race, consider doing a time trial event where the distance is roughly what you estimate you could do in 20 minutes. Do the warmup portion in the starting pen.

maan, i overlooked the thing again. i thought the warm up was already part of the test…
damn, just the warm up will fry me :stuck_out_tongue:
ok, then it fits with the information i had it before. the problem i think with that free ride is that (IMHO) you can fry to quickly pushing too much and not even being able to finish it, or, pusihng to little, just to be sure you can finish…does this make sense?

Yes it takes practice to pace a 20 minute maximum effort properly. That’s one of the reasons to use the ramp test - it’s much harder to screw up the test.

I believe the answer is yes you can set up a workout at 10% greater than your FTP and IF you complete it then Zwift will almost certainly update your FTP.

But a few possible pointers:

As Paul has suggested a free ride for 20 minutes without the proper FTP test protocol power segments before the 20min actual test results in an inaccurate FTP figure. Although this is pretty much, I think, what Zwift does by taking your 20 min race best x 0.95 to calculate an FTP. Is this what Zwift did on your best race where you did 252w for 20 mins? Is your FTP now around 235-240w?

If you really want to do a 20 minute ride but want to be paced rather than pace yourself then I would suggest you set a workout with a 20 minute segment BUT set the power at exactly your FTP (edit: multiplied by 1.053, I forgot it’s a 20 minute test). Start the ride and after 2 or 3 minutes up the bias by 1%. If after 2-3 minutes more yiu still feel ok you can increase bias again by 1%. And carry on adding 1% bias as you keep feeling stronger. I find it mentally easier to be adding bias than having to reduce.

good point Ian, and yes, my ftp was updated after a race to 237W.
one thing i still dont get it about this: is this 20min power a real power that i sustained for 20 min or an extrapolation of the critical power curve?
it seems that my ftp is overestimated, becuase if i keep the 237W for 10, 20 min, i dont think i could hold it for 1 full hour and this is what FTP is about it right?

Hi @Gledison_Fonseca, in addition to the great support provided in this thread; you can find more information on this Zwift Support Article on how to manually Adjusting Your FTP. and how the FTP works.


If you go to zwift.com. Then go to your profile. All of your power numbers are there.
5, 12, 15, 20, 30, and 40 minute. Your best power numbers in the last 90 day. Take a calculator and figure out what ever you want from there.