Powering Up
Cycling Plus|October 2017

We head to the Porsche Human Performance Lab at Silverstone race track to get to grips with power training

John Whitney

Porsche is well versed in horsepower, but it’s far better known for tuning car engines than human ones. Yet tucked away in its ‘Experience Centre’ at Silverstone, where excitable car enthusiasts prepare to tear round a purpose-built race track in souped-up sports cars, you’ll find its Human Performance Lab, where clients are put through their paces aboard the resident Wattbike.

I’d been training with a Wattbike in our office garage all summer, using training zones devised from a 20-minute threshold test. It’s an effective solution, but comes up short compared to Porsche’s lab-based offering. In the home test you pedal as hard as you can for 20 minutes and subtract 5 per cent from your average wattage, which gives you an estimated Functional Threshold Power, or FTP – the power you can notionally sustain for between 45 and 60 minutes. With this figure you can work out training zones, and by riding within each zone you can work at increasing your endurance and delaying fatigue. To get true power zones, blood lactate should be directly measured, and it’s in labs like Porsche’s where it’s possible to do so. Under the watchful eye of its resident sports scientist Eliot Challifour, a former pro triathlete who coaches, among others, McLaren F1 driver Stoffel Vandoorne in his physical training, I was able to do just this.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM CYCLING PLUSView All

Rose X-Lite Team 8810 ETAP

£4595.47 > A blooming lovely lightweight ride

2 mins read
Cycling Plus
January 2018

Real Rider

Jaco Van Gass lost his arm in a devastating blast while serving in Afghanistan. Cycling proved to be his salvation...

2 mins read
Cycling Plus
January 2018

Life Cycle- Many Happy Returns

Car-free bike rides can be a gift, believes Rob Ainsley

3 mins read
Cycling Plus
January 2018

Ned Boulting Foreign Affairs

AS WINTER HITS HOME, NED PINES FOR HIS SUMMERS IN FRANCE

3 mins read
Cycling Plus
January 2018

Enduring Advice

We’ve been offering advice for the last 25 years, and a look back through the archives reveals the top tips that have stood the test of time.

10+ mins read
Cycling Plus
April 2017

Cobbled Together

The pavé of Paris-Roubaix isn’t on our doorstep but with a vast array of cobbles – and velodromes – across Britain, a DIY job is possible ...

9 mins read
Cycling Plus
April 2017

Real Rider

 Cycling was the prescribed remedy for 17-year-old Thomas Goodall, who’s had epilepsy since he was five

2 mins read
Cycling Plus
October 2017

Ned Boulting- Body Matters

TO WIN RACES THE PROS NEED TO BE IN PEAK PHYSICAL CONDITION, SAYS NED

3 mins read
Cycling Plus
October 2017

Powering Up

We head to the Porsche Human Performance Lab at Silverstone race track to get to grips with power training

4 mins read
Cycling Plus
October 2017

Straight Outta Brompton

The mass manufacture of bicycles in the UK has almost been consigned to history. But in one corner of west London, Britain’s biggest bike builder has just upped capacity to cope with demand. Welcome to the fold…

8 mins read
Cycling Plus
March 2017
RELATED STORIES

PORSCHE'S TOP SECRET SUPERCAR

The GT3 Touring is an absolute monster—in 911 clothing.

2 mins read
Men's Journal
November - December 2021

Flat Sixes

Fanatical artisans

5 mins read
Flying
December 2021

SPACEX LAUNCHES 53 STARLINK SATELLITES INTO ORBIT

SpaceX expanded its constellation of low Earth orbit satellites last Saturday (13) with the launch of 53 Starlink satellites from Florida.

1 min read
AppleMagazine
November 19, 2021

STREAMING SOUNDBARS

Enhance your cinema experience, and upgrade audio streaming at home with these smart soundbars

6 mins read
Mac Life
December 2021

ULTRA-MOBILE COMPUTERS & YOU

From subnotebooks to Ultra Mobile PCs, these machines have come and gone over the years. John Knight asks if we are about to see their return.

10+ mins read
Maximum PC
December 2021

Togo Showed The World A Better Way To Do Stimulus

When lockdowns deprived millions of their livelihoods, even the poorest countries found new ways to send their people cash. Could this presage a new relationship between government and citizens?

10+ mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
November 15, 2021

Are Boeing and Airbus Flying Into a Bubble?

They’re launching freighters just as competition from retrofitted jets and cargo space on passenger planes is heating up

6 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
November 15, 2021

YOUR GUIDE TO GIVING

Take a closer look at whether you’re getting the most bang for your donated bucks.

10 mins read
Kiplinger's Personal Finance
December 2021

Porsche to race on $45/gallon eFuel from direct air carbon capture.

Technologue

3 mins read
Motor Trend
December 2021

SPATIAL AUDIO RELATIONS

Ears-on with Apple Music’s new Atmos offerings

10+ mins read
Sound & Vision
October - November 2021