Hey all - welcome to week 1 of Zwift Academy Road. The team at HQ noticed some questions and comments pop up in chat during the Baseline Rides we did with you, so we hope this guide helps address them.
Most Reported Questions by the Community:
Does the Baseline ride function as an FTP test, or do I need to also do one of those first?
The baseline ride does not determine your FTP. If you are unsure whether your FTP is accurate or if you have not set your FTP yet, we recommend taking the ramp test.
Is late join turned on?
There is no late join for these events. You should prepare for your ride by jumping into the event early and making sure everything is in working order.
Should I do the Baseline Ride in ERG mode?
The baseline ride is not a workout, and thus should not be done in ERG mode.
Is drafting turned on for these events?
The event is set up for no drafting, so don’t worry if you aren’t hanging with a pack. Find a pace that works for you to maximize your efforts. Drafting is turned off so you have consistent environmental factors for both the baseline and finish line rides in order to get more accurate results.
How do I know when to start the segments in the Baseline Rides?
If you are riding the Advanced Baseline ride, you will arrive at the segments at this point during the ride:
- Short Segment: 2.6 km / 1.6 mi
- Medium Segment: 11.9 km / 7.4 mi
- Long Segment: 21.7 km / 13.5 mi
If you are riding the Standard Baseline ride, you will arrive at the segments at this point during the ride:
- Medium Segment: 4.3 km / 2.6 mi
- Short Segment: 16.8 km / 10.2 mi
- Long Segment: 21.3 km / 13.2 mi
Do I need to stay with the group on the Baseline Ride/What if I can’t?
The event is set up for no drafting, so don’t worry if you aren’t hanging with a pack. Find a pace that works for you to maximize your efforts - this means going hard during the segments, but recovering in between.
What is the Baseline Ride measuring?
The baseline ride is determining how you perform within the three different energy systems: sprint (or phosphocreatine), anaerobic, and aerobic. By the end of Zwift Academy, you should be able to determine what type of cyclist you are based on what energy system you excel in.
How does the baseline ride impact the rest of my ZA workouts?
The goal of the baseline ride is to get a gauge on what your fitness level is prior to starting your Zwift Academy workouts and provide a comparison point for the Finish Line ride.
How can I tell what my strengths/opportunities for improvement are based on my baseline ride effort?
Strengths/opportunities for improvement are unable to be determined by baseline rides alone. Only after going through Zwift Academy and completing your finish line ride will you be able to get a greater understanding of what your various segment efforts mean and how you can use this data to continue your training. Be on the lookout for a blog post which will go into greater detail coming soon.
Is this a race?
This is not a race. The goal is to give it your best effort for each of the three segments! At the start and in-between the segments, use this time to recover by taking these sections easy. This will ensure you maximize your efforts and get the best results.
Where do segments begin and end?
The segment start point is indicated by a flashing beacon on the right side of the road and a flashing dotted line on the ground. The segment finishing point is indicated by a Zwift Academy Arch.
SEGMENT START INDICATORS (highlighted in red):
SEGMENT FINISH INDICATOR (highlighted in red):
Does the event end at an arch?
After the final segment, the ride will continue on for a little longer, but you can spin easy until you reach the finish (seen in the image below).