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The Sufferfest says its new ‘Half Monty’ test gives a more accurate FTP reading than any other ramp test

The 55-minute test includes just one maximal ramp test and is 'more approachable' for new riders.

The 55-minute test helps determine Functional Threshold Power, Maximal Aerobic Power, and Lactate Threshold Heart Rate

The new test is based around one maximal ramp test and one 20-minute sub-maximal steady effort which The Sufferfest claims calculates “your FTP to a much higher degree of accuracy than any other ramp test out there.” The Half Monty is aimed at newer riders that are getting started with structured plans but they also say that the test can be a useful mid-training plan measure of progress.

Half_Monty_Screenshot_1024x1024

Training platform, The Sufferfest, already has a rather comprehensive fitness test, their ‘Full Frontal 4DP’ testing protocol. The test includes 4 maximal efforts and is designed to give you a complete picture of your performance potential on the bike while the data that you produce in the test is used to tailor workouts from their app to your abilities.

Review: The Sufferfest Indoor Training App

That all sounds good, but the Full Frontal test does take a fair chunk of time and the effort might be too much for some riders to take on in one go. It seems that The Sufferfest has recognised this, developing the new Half Monty test “to give athletes a less-demanding testing protocol.”

To do this, The Sufferfest say that they’ve dropped the tests for Neuromuscular Power and Anaerobic Capacity from the Full Frontal. This means that the Half Monty “is less physically and psychologically demanding” which The Sufferfest suggests “makes training with 4DP more accessible to athletes who are new to structured training.”

The Sufferfest releases lockdown training plans

Wondering what 4DP is? The Sufferfest says that is stands for “Four-Dimensional Power”. This “uses four key performance metrics - Neuromuscular Power, Maximal Aerobic Power, Functional Threshold Power, and Anaerobic Capacity to determine your rider type, identify your strengths and weaknesses, and create your comprehensive 4DP profile.”

The Half Monty test measures those training parameters which they say will “allow for more accurate goal-setting and personalisation within The Sufferfest’s workouts and training programs.”

Test designer and coach Neal Henderson, says that the “Half Monty represents a leap forward in fitness testing”. The Sufferfest also believes that this test could become the industry standard as “this new test represents several advantages over existing ramp tests”.

The Sufferfest says that the new test is also adaptive, “gauging athletes’ progress during the test and providing personalised, real-time feedback to ensure that results are as accurate as possible”. They also suggest that the test “allows for more accurate performance measurements and more precise measurement during the testing protocol” without the need for a smart trainer.

One of us is going to have to pick the short straw and try it out…

For more info head over to thesufferfest.com

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12 comments

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check12 | 3 years ago
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Maybe just ride for an hour? Outside, in the nice weather, especially as there's less traffic.

surprised no one has called out the sufferfest for the "full frontal" name? ya'll gone right wing overnight or something? 

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fukawitribe replied to check12 | 3 years ago
3 likes
check12 wrote:

Maybe just ride for an hour? Outside, in the nice weather, especially as there's less traffic.

Maybe because it's far more repeatable inside, and i'm not entirely sure of the wisdom of people doing maximal efforts outside where they may have to interact with others. Go for a nice ride outside after perhaps, or before or both.

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Secret_squirrel replied to fukawitribe | 3 years ago
2 likes

Exactly.  plus I'd hazzard a guess that more Sufferfest users have turbo's with power meters than bikes with them... 

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check12 replied to Secret_squirrel | 3 years ago
0 likes

Bit of forward planning and buying a power meter that fits to a bike that you can use inside and outside is a better plan.

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Secret_squirrel replied to check12 | 3 years ago
0 likes

Not really.   The full benefit with all these apps is with a fully smart trainer with an ERG mode.   AFAIK there isnt a fully smart trainer that doesn't have a integrated power meter.

You can of course use a non or half-smart Turbo that just sends telemetery and/or a seperate power meter but the experience isnt the same as you dont get that instant fine tuning of effort.

Think of them as taking a huge amount of "admin" out of training using power as a measure.

 

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OnTheRopes replied to check12 | 3 years ago
2 likes
check12 wrote:

Bit of forward planning and buying a power meter that fits to a bike that you can use inside and outside is a better plan.

No I don't think so, I have done both inside and out and the problem with outside, which I prefer is that you need a stretch of road that will allow you to do the test unhindered, no traffic lights, no junctions, no downhill sections at all, flat or slightly uphill all the way, no traffic getting in the way etc. It can be surprising ly difficult to find such a stretch of road.

Then consider repeatability factoring in wind and comparing one test with another and inside wins.

However, your FTP result will be different inside to outside so some experts suggest you should do them for each scenario.

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Secret_squirrel | 3 years ago
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Interesting choice from The Sufferfest.  Especially as I did the Full Frontal yesterday.    Not sure it takes any more or less time than this Half Monty with just a difference of 5 mins to take it.

The Sufferfest does recommend a prep plan of a week of training before the Full Frontal (which I did) but if you are planning to ride almost every day anyway I personally dont see it as a big deal.

There is nothing stopping you just diving into the Full Frontal though.  The Full Frontal made a very small difference to my estimated FTP I was using (<5%). Bigger differences to some of the other 4DP scores though.

It was a hard session, but only marginally worse than a couple of other workouts available on the Sufferfest I have done.  (Relative noob still though).

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McVittees replied to Secret_squirrel | 3 years ago
1 like

A five percent ftp difference is not an insubstantial ammount.  With a 300w ftp thats 15w...which is a big ammount to be under or over esrtimating.

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Secret_squirrel replied to McVittees | 3 years ago
1 like

Kinda depends.  As an absolute number yes, real world probably less so.  My ftp is a tad lower than that  1 so the correspondng gain is less.  SUF also say they their measure from the full frontal at least tends to be slightly lower than other ftp measures.

The absolute number is less important than a set of consistent measures over time using the same test conditions.   Unless bragging rights are involved  4

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McVittees replied to Secret_squirrel | 3 years ago
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Secret_squirrel wrote:

My ftp is a tad lower than that  1

So is mine!  4

Secret_squirrel wrote:

The absolute number is less important than a set of consistent measures over time using the same test conditions.   Unless bragging rights are involved  4

Absolutely!

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jacknorell replied to Secret_squirrel | 3 years ago
0 likes

If you didn't basically fall off the bike at the end you left some in the tank. Ie your FTP is higher and your sessions are now undertraining you

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EddyBerckx | 3 years ago
3 likes

Bearing in mind the normal ftp test (and it's variations) is usually hated by all but the most serious amateur racer it's no wonder the 4DP test has been rejected so much by less hardcore riders (I assume, I have no doubt it's an excellent test though).

This test seems a bit more like it...though isn't the main point to show how high your ftp is regardless of accuracy?  10

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