@Silje great post. Results are interesting but not surprising, considering their training and racing goals. Looks like they used the Critical Power (CP) protocol to determine their power curve and capacity above aerobic and anaerobic threshold and VO2 Max. I know they claim that the VO2 tests are within 3% of a Lab result, but I am skeptical that a 2.5 min all-out effort will be that close. A VO2 Max of above 90 is BIG and very few people have that. Lab testing is the Gold Standard and the only precise test for VO2 Max. On the other hand, a CP test is actually quite accurate when compared to other power tests for determining “threshold”.
The main takeaway here aside from the technical stuff is that these Zwift racers produce more intense efforts (threshold and above-threshold), relatively speaking, and as such use more glycogen. That makes sense because the races are sorter and more intense. Pros that participate in long and multi-day long events rely more on endurance and use more fat as fuel. Although, remember, we all use both fat and glycogen, just in various degrees and the pros on the road deplete their glycogen just as much- but they rely and use more fat from lower intensities. Note that they compare the racers with Pro-Continental Teams and not World Tour Teams.
Lastly, they call the study a “Metabolic Profile”, but a true metabolic profile can only be achieved in the Lab, with several protocols in place, including fasting.
Here is a good article explaining how to calculate Critical Power:
I will do a separate post on this, as I think it’s very interesting and I like CP more than using FTP. I will also share my power curve as an example. I have a bigger capacity above Critical Power, but I don’t believe I have a high VO2 Max (I never got tested).
Here is a more technical article: