"Compliance" during interval training


Nov 29, 2012
[SIZE= medium]What zones you choose to train in depend on what adaptations you hope to make with training. The crux of most training programs is increasing your functional threshold power. [/SIZE]
[SIZE= medium]A lot of research has been conducted to determine what kinds of adaptations are made at different training intensities. The adaptations needed to increase your threshold can be made by training at or around 56-105% of your FTP. As a result, you can think of this as one big zone. However there are benefits and drawbacks to training at either extreme of this zone. [/SIZE]
[SIZE= medium]If you choose to train at lower intensities you will impose less physiological stress on your body which means you have to train longer to get the same adaptations that you would at a higher intensity. Though you have to spend less time training at higher intensities to get the adaptations you want, it does impose more strain on your body. [/SIZE]
[SIZE= medium]Ideally you want to train in a zone that allows you to make the greatest amount of adaptations for the least amount of physiological strain. Some people have termed this type of training as sweet spot training. This is a zone found to be around 88-93% of your FTP. Some resources offer a broader or narrower range than this, but from a practical standpoint doing intervals close to but below 95% of your threshold can provide a potent training stimulus.[/SIZE]
[SIZE= medium]This goes back to your question about zone compliance. As you get closer to training at or above your FTP you increase the physiological strain on your body at an exponential rate. In other words, the adaptations you make at or around 95-105% of your FTP are not worth strain you put on your body. You can make the same adaptions training at a slightly lower percentage of your FTP for a fraction of the strain. That being said, any amount of time you spend training at or above 95% of your FTP is time spent putting unnecessary strain on your body. [/SIZE]