Hi V Room,
I noticed this post a while ago and was waiting until I had finished the course to pass judgement on it. I have made a few comments on the zwift-riders facebook that weren’t well received by some who claim to know it all (but they themselves are not fast.
A bit of history, once upon a time I was an A-grade club rider
, held a national licence, but was essentially just an also ran who was quick enough to race at a national level but was never ever going to be a contender to win anything, my weight was 76kg and bodyfat sub 10%, with an estimated ftp of 347w.
I gave up cycling 5 years ago, I have done a little mountain biking for fun but scoffed at the idea of training, my weight ballooned out to 97kg.
I tested my ftp before the training block at 211 watts, I was dry reaching for this effort, it was sickening for an untrained individual to take on one of these tests but with my background I knew what was required of it.
I sorted my diet, cut out all alcohol, calorie counted, took on ~100g of protein per day and periodized carbohydrates. I preworkout with Beta-alanine and citrulline-malate, post workout with 4:1 carb:pro shake, I also took on 3 grams of fish oil and 6 grams of CLA oil.
After a week I had to manually increase my ftp by 20 watts, the first sign was the warm ups were not getting me warm … this happened around every 5 days or so in smaller 5-10 watt increments until the end of week 4 by which time I had manually set ftp to 260 and was expecting to get maybe around 270 watts out of my legs.
This course was tough, there is a ride every single day if you do the endurance rides, I found them too much and treated endurance day as a rest day, ding the workouts in the Evening after work I found my legs heavy the next morning, climbing stairs induced a gentle sting and I felt in myself that I was approaching the point where over-reaching becomes over-training. I knew this, and kept a record of my morning weights, bodyfat % and water content on a set of tanita scales, if I dropped more than a kilo a week I had screwed up, more than 0.2kg a day and that weight could only be from depleted muscle glycogen.
On the FTP test at the end I dug deep and absolutely buried myself, it sucked from about a minute in until a minute after, but my results came in … over the 4 weeks I droped my bodyweight from 97kg to 93kg, with a corrosponding decrease in bodyfat percentage which showed it was only fat and I hadn’t catabolized muscle, perfect … my power 300 watts ftp, this exported to trainer road at 299 so there must be a slighly different metric there.
4 weeks from untrained
211w to 300w ftp
97kg to 93kg
2.19w/kg to 3.22w/kg
Is it a good program? Absolutely yes, but it’s hard without rest days, that lack of rest days is a huge trap and you will have to be very careful to listen to what your body is telling you if you want the best results.