Power Training

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Power Training

Postby colafreak » Fri Mar 13, 2009 9:12 am

For those who use power training, just wondering what your thoughts are on the stationary units in Gyms?

There are units that give out power figures and I was wondering about their accuracy/usefulness?
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by BNA » Fri Mar 13, 2009 9:57 am

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Re: Power Training

Postby sogood » Fri Mar 13, 2009 9:57 am

colafreak wrote:For those who use power training, just wondering what your thoughts are on the stationary units in Gyms?

There are units that give out power figures and I was wondering about their accuracy/usefulness?

The essence of power training isn't about buying a power meter but the principle of it ie. Train at a specific power output. So on that basis, I use those stationay bikes in my training regime.

The accuracy of the absolute wattage reading isn't so important as repeatability and consistency. After all, you are not going to win a race by comparing power meter readings but by how your legs worked on the day. The nice thing about a stationary bike is that you can set a power level and grind at it without rest for defined periods of time eg. 20mins and repeat. That's really the best way to induce adaptation per Power Training philosophy. And for your own benefit, you can monitor your progress as long as you stay on the same stationary bike.

PS. Supposedly those stationary bikes can be calibrated. No ideas how but I have heard our service technician talking about getting it calibrated.
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Postby colafreak » Fri Mar 13, 2009 11:37 am

You're right I guess, the number doesn't really matter.

Might be a good option for calibrating and testing and stuff, i.e. comparing stabilised heart rate at different power outputs etc. to help when training on the road.

Also, it might be a good way to reliably measure progress.



Just had this thought actually when reading that other thread on power/weight and different categories. I was trying to think of a suitable hill of steady gradient that I could do the same test on.
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Re: Power Training

Postby RobRollin » Fri Mar 13, 2009 11:53 am

colafreak wrote:For those who use power training, just wondering what your thoughts are on the stationary units in Gyms?



Stationary bikes at the gym are a good way of learning how to spin. Take a couple of spin classes and your technique should improve. Mine certainly did and so did my cadence.
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Re: Power Training

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Fri Mar 13, 2009 1:20 pm

sogood wrote:
colafreak wrote:For those who use power training, just wondering what your thoughts are on the stationary units in Gyms?

There are units that give out power figures and I was wondering about their accuracy/usefulness?

The essence of power training isn't about buying a power meter but the principle of it ie. Train at a specific power output. So on that basis, I use those stationay bikes in my training regime.

The accuracy of the absolute wattage reading isn't so important as repeatability and consistency. After all, you are not going to win a race by comparing power meter readings but by how your legs worked on the day. The nice thing about a stationary bike is that you can set a power level and grind at it without rest for defined periods of time eg. 20mins and repeat. That's really the best way to induce adaptation per Power Training philosophy. And for your own benefit, you can monitor your progress as long as you stay on the same stationary bike.

PS. Supposedly those stationary bikes can be calibrated. No ideas how but I have heard our service technician talking about getting it calibrated.

I would suggest that what you outline (training to a power level) is a useful element of training and is what I would call training by power, but that is really just a sub-set of the principles of training with power.
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Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Fri Mar 13, 2009 1:25 pm

colafreak wrote:You're right I guess, the number doesn't really matter.

Might be a good option for calibrating and testing and stuff, i.e. comparing stabilised heart rate at different power outputs etc. to help when training on the road.

Also, it might be a good way to reliably measure progress.



Just had this thought actually when reading that other thread on power/weight and different categories. I was trying to think of a suitable hill of steady gradient that I could do the same test on.
Sogood is right, provided you know the machine is consistent in its reading of power/resistance curve, then using the same one can give you a good idea of whether you are making improvements relative to yourself.

But they are notoriously inaccurate, so using one to assess absolute wattage capability would be kidding yourself.

One problem with HR-power relationship though is it tends to be far more stable and repeatable on an indoor ergo/lab type arrangement than when you get outdoors, where the relationship is less clear.
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Postby sogood » Fri Mar 13, 2009 1:47 pm

colafreak wrote:Might be a good option for calibrating and testing and stuff, i.e. comparing stabilised heart rate at different power outputs etc. to help when training on the road.

Too much error and hence not worthwhile.

If you want to use HR, then why not just do HRM (and train the heart). As has been pointed out many times, despite the same power level, HR can be influenced by many other environmental and physiological factors. Being locked up in a windless gym is one that can easily add a few beats to your HR per any given power output.
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Re: Power Training

Postby sogood » Fri Mar 13, 2009 1:53 pm

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:I would suggest that what you outline (training to a power level) is a useful element of training and is what I would call training by power, but that is really just a sub-set of the principles of training with power.

No disagreement there. After all, that's a limitation set by the equipment.
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Re: Power Training

Postby Deanj » Wed Apr 01, 2009 5:18 pm

Is there a table that shows recommended power levels for certain levels of cyclists. I've seen the one for max efforts 1s, 5s, FT etc but just wondered if there were others for endurance levels etc?
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Re: Power Training

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Wed Apr 01, 2009 8:58 pm

Deanj wrote:Is there a table that shows recommended power levels for certain levels of cyclists. I've seen the one for max efforts 1s, 5s, FT etc but just wondered if there were others for endurance levels etc?
Normally endurance power levels/ranges are quoted in terms of a given fraction of an anchor power value, such as 1-hour TT power (FTP) or Maximal Aerobic Power (MAP).

So power training levels based on FTP are seen here:
http://home.trainingpeaks.com/articles/ ... evels.aspx

and those based on MAP here:
http://www.cyclecoach.com/index.php?opt ... Itemid=112

the latter link provides a graphic I created showing the power levels based on FTP & MAP together, so you can see the relationship between them as well as the physiological adaptations attained from training at those levels (in the right volumes). In reality, training adaptations are not discrete per level, it is a continuum.
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Re: Power Training

Postby Deanj » Thu Apr 02, 2009 5:58 am

Cheers.

Got the powertap finally built up this week and just wondered how I was getting on powerwise while in my certain HR zones.
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Re: Power Training

Postby Rockford » Thu Apr 02, 2009 7:03 am

What I never understand is all the importance put on getting a bike fit that's right for you, and then people just jump on an exercise bike in the gym, adjust the seat a bit and then push themselves harder like never before.
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Re: Power Training

Postby sogood » Thu Apr 02, 2009 7:51 am

Rockford wrote:What I never understand is all the importance put on getting a bike fit that's right for you, and then people just jump on an exercise bike in the gym, adjust the seat a bit and then push themselves harder like never before.

You have not seen the adjustability of some of the quality exercise bikes.

In any case, I don't do 3-4 hours rides on an exercise bike. 30mins and a bit more is all I can handle. Further, as long as the saddle position is right, one doesn't need to be aero on a stationary bike. :lol:
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Re: Power Training

Postby toolonglegs » Thu Apr 09, 2009 5:23 pm

Hey Dean...thought you might be interested...although I am sure you have seen it already.
http://www.saris.com/athletes/PermaLink ... c883c.aspx
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Re: Power Training

Postby Deanj » Thu Apr 09, 2009 8:42 pm

Got the email today but it always takes me a few days to get round to reading it, looks like I've got a good bit of work to do :wink:

Interesting to see how the power changes/varies from the start to the finish with the crazy starts. Would be good to have one to see how you go over a 100km race.
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