So onto the first proper workout, “Ebbetts”, I’ll let coach Chad give you the reasons:
Ebbetts is 4×8-minute intervals between 88-94% FTP with 5-second high-power tags between 150-180% FTP. 4-minute recoveries separate the intervals.
Ebbetts’ primary goal is to improve your ability to sustain pretty high levels of your FTP for longer periods of time, i.e. increased muscular endurance.
Additionally, you can achieve increases in glycogen storage capacity, fat utilization, and your capacity for more intense workouts later on.
Ebbetts also aims to increase your ability to generate a lot of power in a very short period of time via increases in how much muscle you can activate as well as how quickly you can do it.
I started this session by swapping out my TACX skewer for a new Cycleops one, this seemed to keep my turbo trainer from moving around as much, I did still have the feeling of leaning over, but given my past position / saddle issues I’m not going down that alley again! It was fine in the end once I’d moved the turbo a bit, think it’s all in the head anyway.
So Ebbetts then, 4 x 8 minute efforts at sweetspot with ramp ups of power every few minutes. Good lord!! Pre workout I necked a gel, after the warm up I dealt with the first interval nicely, then the second before necking another gel, it felt hard going and I was feeling a bit tired (session started after 7pm) so the gel was needed.
ERG mode – lack thereof
My set up at home is pretty basic, no fancy screens, no fancy trainer, just a Cycleops Jet Fluid Pro 2 (dumb) trainer and my Stages power meter. I then pair Trainer Road with my iphone and off I go.
ERG mode essentially controls the power you put out (you still have to pedal!), a trainer without ERG mode, well the power regulation is all on you. I prefer this to ERG (admittedly ERG is great for other packages like Zwift or anything where climbs and simulating gradient changes are needed), the only challenge is that sometimes you often end up going over the wattage required. Having said that I can see a case for both methods though.
For me though, this can add fatigue a bit quicker but as long as you are within 5-10 watts then it should do you no harm, it does take some concentration though, which no doubt adds to the cognitive stress that you’re under. Remember that your brain burns glucose, yes, even mine.
The final laps
The 3rd interval was a bit up and down but to be honest I prefer having the power tags as it breaks it up and you then only have to focus on 2 minutes at a time, anyone can do that. I do however need to work on my cadence, I naturally start going slower on the turbo but as long as it’s 80+ I can work on it.
4th and last interval dispatched, I gave the final power tag some real effort and then began my recovery with 5 minutes cool down and then after a quick shower I tucked into a chicken dinner I’d prepared beforehand.
A solid session under my belt, nice to complete it without too much trouble which is also a good indicator that the FTP test and the values it gave me are accurate.
Next Workout: Kaweah (tough one)