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2020 Micro: Tmax / Pmax Protocol - Matt McNamara


Matthew McNamara

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6 Weeks

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Plan Description

Here is something new for you! This is a World Tour proven protocol to get some nice gains in your top end fitness. Pmax is akin to your VO2max, but think of it more as a long sustained VERY HARD effort. Often we use 5min as a proxy for VO2max, this helps further refine your values via a graded exercise test to start, then we take that value and have you see how long you can sustain it (that's the Tmax) component. From there you follow a very straight forward 2x per week Tmax workout in concert with some aerobic endurance and sweet spot work on weekends. Weekly hours range from 6.5 - 11 over the 6 weeks you'll be working.

This program is applicable for road, mountain, cyclocross, gravel or track - we all need a better Pmax!! :)


Average Weekly Breakdown

Workouts Weekly Average Longest Workout
9:01 hrs 4:00 hrs
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Workouts Per Week Weekly Average Longest Workout
9:01 hrs 4:00 hrs
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Training Load By Week

This plan works best with the following fitness devices:

  • Power Meter

All supported devices

Matt McNamara

Sterling Sports Group

So, You're thinking of hiring a coach but how do you begin to sort the wheat from the chaff? Well, I think street cred and experience matters. I've been developing as a coach for over 25 years thru competition, education and experience. I coach both power and heart rate, incorporate your life into your training plan, and put a lot of focus on skills and tactical development instead of just power numbers and HIT.

Sample Day 1

Fast Pedaling Drills 1.0

W/U: Fast pedalng out of the gate, alternating with some more force/muscle work efforts. Pay attention to the cadence recs for every phase!

#1 - 2min @ 70-85% FTP and 75-85rpm (force) with 1min rest between at 90-100rpm

#2 - 30 seconds On/Off at 100-110% and 40-50% FTP

#3 - 45 second step up efforts at 100-115% FTP with 30s easy between efforts.

Sample Day 2

Graded Exercise Test - 2W/Kg/min - 70Kg


Work: Starts at ~40% FTP and rises at a 20W/Kg/min ramp rate - effective VO2 estimate from final 2min average power - which is what we want.

Sample Day 3

Spin - Level 1

W/U: N/A

Work - 30min spin - break into smaller blocks of varying cadence and gear choices. Never over a 5 on RPE!!

Sample Day 4

Testing Tmax

W/U: 15-20min of moderate pedaling to warm up the body. In the last 5-10min of your warm up knock off 2 - 3 30 second FULL GAS openers with 3min rest between each. Goal is to open the legs and lungs for the test.

#1 - Pedaling at moderate intensity for 1 minute, then click your "interval" to start the test. Be sure you are able to see the "Interval Average Watts" view of the effort. You want to hold the average of your graded exercise test (+/- 5watts is fine) for as LONG AS YOU CAN! Most riders will last for between 4 and 8 minutes - so give a FULL GAS effort. When done click the interval timer again so you can find it easily.

#2 - Cool down post test for 3-5min and then do 5 x 30s fast pedaling efforts at low resistance to help clear the legs, resting at least 30s between each spin up.1

Sample Day 6

Weekend Endurance

W/U: 20-30min of easy riding at 90-100rpm with a couple of fast pedaling openers

Work: Goal is 1500-2000KJ of quality aerobic work. Climbing is fine if you can keep your heart rate at least 10 beats below your Lactate Threshold HR.

Sample Day 7

Sweet Spot Level 1a

W/U: Two quick/hard 1min openers at FTP during 20min warm up.

2 x 20's at 85-88% FTP - solid tempo pacing, good cadence

Sample Day 8

Spin - Level 1

W/U: N/A

Work - 30min spin - break into smaller blocks of varying cadence and gear choices. Never over a 5 on RPE!!

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