Call me behind times I guess because I have never heard of power training or watt or whatever. Can anyone let me in on a good website to research this or a good book or something?
Training with watts is a realtively new thing. Lance pretty much popularized the whole deal. The idea is to figure out how much in the way of watts you can pump out for a given distance. Its more solid than heart rate, less subject to variables. If you can pump out 230 watts for 60 miles, that wattage is uneffected by terrain and environmental conditions like cold.
Its great for training, the downside is the cost. Power meters are NOT cheap. At all. HRMs and cadence will do for me! Not QUITE as effective, but it still works.
Read my blog, dude. I'm all about the power. [url]http://crackheadfe.blogspot.com[/url].
If you look, I reviewed the book, "Training and Racing with a Power Meter." Which I highly recommend you buy if you are at all seriously interested in the topic or in perhaps buying a power meter. My most recent post shows how I've improved my biking utilizing the power meter.
Another good place to ask about or peek is [url]http://cruciblefitness.com[/url], go to the forum, General Discussion. We are all huge power geeks there. Another place is [url]http://www.cyclingpeakssoftware.com[/url].
Kona, how is the power meter used for everyday biking (streets)? I understand it's application to the dreaded trainer where energy can be linearly applied to obtain benefits, but when we apply the power meter to regular every day biking, say for weekend long rides or traffic use, how would we be able to gauge/see improvements in the long run and use this method of measurement effectively? Apart from just telling us how much wattage we are producing during biking, street/road biking amongst cars is a lot of stop and go with power starts and avoidance of cars etc., you get the pic. I see it as being difficult to gauge performance benefits during training workouts off the trainer. For races it would be effective in monitoring the watts produced vs HR for maintaining aerobic power cause it's a closed course w no interuptions but on the street this can be difficult to gauge for benefits. Triguy98 makes sense to me. What is your view on this? Have you used it on the streets with training programs? Has it worked?
Commuting is not "training" except to maintain your aerobic fitness. 1) I wouldn't ride a good bike to do it and 2) while the time can "count" towards your training and will have an impact on your recovery, it is an imperfect way to measure one's cycling fitness.
That being said, I do all my training rides with power. I do workouts much like I posted to my blog on long rides, and I have a route I can follow from home, where basically the warmup is "admin" stuff, and then I get to an area where I can really focus without much stopping and starting. Unless you make an effort to ride in such areas for your "quality" rides, you won't get too much out of a powermeter. Of course, the corollary is that you won't get much out of your training, period.
But even on an organized ride, let's say with rest stops, or a race rehearsal ride, where you inevitably need to stop and refuel, you just stop the meter and start recording again when you get back going on the bike. It's all good.
You are training for a time trial, right? So to maximize the impact of your training, you need to find places to ride that have a time trial-ish character to them. Or you adjust your interval work to maximize the distance you can cover without stopping.
Most power-targeted rides will have characteristics such as ride X minutes at Y% of your FT (functional threshold). If you can't ride X minutes continuously, then you have to fudge so that you get as close to the ride goal as possible.
So if in a long ride I need to do 2x30' HIM watts with 5' rest, then I make sure I'm riding somewhere where I can pretty much ride 30' without stopping. I have places to do that. Granted, sometimes it's a loop that I ride multiple times, but it works. And then the power data is meaningful.
This is no different than if a coach told you to run at different intensities and you are running on roads where there are stoplights. You make adjustments so that you get as close to the true spirit of the intended training session as possible.
This is one reason that normally "in season" (coming soon), that I will only do 1 ride on weekdays, and then I do (2) back-to-back long rides on the weekends. The weekday ride will be shorter and more focused on shorter intervals (I use my really local 3.2 mile loop for these), whereas for the longer rides I can get out of town to an area where I can hammer for at least 30' at a time. In this way, I am getting quality data for ALL my rides, and this is invaluable to monitoring my cycling fitness. I will continue to do an FT test ride every 4 weeks or so to gauge where I am, and I've done these outdoors for the past 2 years so I know they work!
It's the price I am willing to pay for quality training.
Hope this answers your questions.
Common sense, right?
Thanks for the explanation.
Couple articles i stumbled across
Here are a few more articles talking about power:
Here's also an interesting article on pacing:
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