Your Personalised Training Zones
Training zones refer to the intensity you train at. Heart rate is very often used to express training intensity and is usually combined with specifying running speed, or power output for cyclists. A number of training zones can be identified, for example, using lactate data training zones are commonly set as low intensity training (zone 1), moderate-high intensity training (zone 2), and interval training (zone 3), but the number of zones can be expanded if necessary.
Power meters are common sights at races and training events. These devices provide an excellent insight into exactly how much power you are able to transmit to the pedals, providing a truly individual insight into your ability and performance. To gain most benefit from your power meter, you need to generate accurate baseline data, such as is determined from a Functional threshold Power (FTP) test. You can then determine race strategy, pacing, and tactics based on the thresholds of your FTP performance. Regular assessments of your FTP are essential in measuring improved performance. There are number of training zones associated with your FTP data, and we will provide details of how to use your power meter to identify the following:
- Zone 1 - Active Recovery = < 55% of FTP
- Zone 2 - Endurance = 56-75% of FTP
- Zone 3 - Tempo = 76-90% of FTP
- Zone 4 - Lactate Threshold = 91-105% of FTP
- Zone 5 - VO2 Max = 106-120% of FTP
- Zone 6 - Anaerobic Capacity = 121-150% of FTP
- Zone 7 - Neuromuscular Power = maximum effort
Hence, for training to be effective, the intensity you train at needs to be appropriate for your goal. This could be to improve, for example, race pace, functional threshold power or maximal oxygen uptake. Re-assessment after a period of training allows changes in performance to be checked, training zones to be monitored, and training intensity recommendations to be adjusted accordingly.