But I have trained and raced many thousand km on road and never felt the need to know what cadence I'm riding at to improve my efficiency/fitness speed. Steph
I don't want to hijack this thread so maybe this is best answered in a new thread in the training section, but I am interested in how you measured your efficiency and how you assessed your improvements without what I assume was the use of HRM/Cadence measures etc. From what I have seen from the professionals they seem to use all the technology they can.
At my fittest I was nowhere near professional status just an early 30s serious amateur riding B grade women in major events (like the Canberra Tour) and finishing mid field.
Most of the year my training consisted of riding with regular training bunches around Canberra and races on and off road. When I had a particular event to prepare for "properly" I worked off HRM data using the principles in Neil Craig's book "Scientific Heart Rate Training". Given most of my usual training had plenty of volume I would presume it covered phase 1+2 and put in six weeks of phase 3 then 4.
General training with the HRM I set it to monitor time below/in/above E2 but intensity sessions in phase 3+4 and on race day I set it to monitor below/in/above E3.
Monitoring of fitness is done using HRM data and time for a 30km time trial.