Cadence....discuss

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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby brentono » Fri Aug 20, 2010 12:18 pm

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by BNA » Fri Aug 20, 2010 2:28 pm

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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby mikesbytes » Fri Aug 20, 2010 2:28 pm

foo on patrol wrote:So you're a rider for all occasions. :D


That's actually true, I'm a good all rounder :D but I don't excel at anything :(
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby brentono » Fri Aug 20, 2010 2:44 pm

Eddy Merckx was a good all rounder, which earned him the title "simply the greatest rider of all time" 8)
(He had no weaknesses - he was the strongest time trialist and climber in the world,
and could outsprint all but a few rivals.)
Keep working at it, excellence takes time. :wink:
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby foo on patrol » Fri Aug 20, 2010 4:41 pm

mikesbytes wrote:
foo on patrol wrote:So you're a rider for all occasions. :D


That's actually true, I'm a good all rounder :D but I don't excel at anything :(


That's where your wrong Mike!!! :wink:

You need to capitalise on all of those things to your advantage. :idea:

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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby Chuck » Sat Aug 21, 2010 11:25 am

brentono wrote:Fast twitch dominant 8)
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Is this brentono ?? or should that be This is Brenton :idea:
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby ando » Tue Aug 24, 2010 12:16 am

30 years ago (ouch!) no one seemed to use the word 'cadence'. The word was 'rhythm'. I was taught to concentrate on getting 'into a good rhythm', and in my experience that made a big difference. I think the availability of so much technology is great; I have a bike computer with cadence; but before we had all this information I think one was more senstive to how they felt on any given ride. I generally find that the cadence is a bit of a general guide and indicator, but that's about it. More important is my intuitive 'gut feel' for how I am going on the day. I still think 'rhythm' and feel my way along, rather than thinking 'cadence' and worry too much about numbers. Feel free to disagree, but that's my two cents worth.
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Tue Aug 24, 2010 7:40 am

ando wrote:I still think 'rhythm' and feel my way along, rather than thinking 'cadence' and worry too much about numbers.

As someone who probably gets under the skin of numbers more than most, I think this is pretty sensible way to describe it.

And as far as numbers go, some are more important than others. Cadence, per se, is not that big a deal. It's only when it is known along with forces or torques that it becomes of any real value/interest/use.
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby PortableDave » Tue Aug 24, 2010 3:08 pm

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:And as far as numbers go, some are more important than others. Cadence, per se, is not that big a deal. It's only when it is known along with forces or torques that it becomes of any real value/interest/use.


As far as "live" stat goes would you consider it pointless to have the number displayed on your speedo whilst riding?
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Tue Aug 24, 2010 5:06 pm

PortableDave wrote:
Alex Simmons/RST wrote:And as far as numbers go, some are more important than others. Cadence, per se, is not that big a deal. It's only when it is known along with forces or torques that it becomes of any real value/interest/use.


As far as "live" stat goes would you consider it pointless to have the number displayed on your speedo whilst riding?

It's as helpful as just displaying the torque numbers.

Point being - now you know your cadence. Now what? It's not like it's a measure of fitness or performance.

There are some situations where it can be helpful - for instance on an indoor trainer if you have a repeatable resistance curve, then you can use cadence/gear as a guide to intensity (if your speed reading is from the front wheel which of course isn't moving). IOW a (rough) proxy for power.
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby brentono » Sun Aug 29, 2010 4:04 pm

Ando was totally correct...
ando wrote:The word was 'rhythm'. I was taught to concentrate on getting 'into a good rhythm'

And that's where the shorter cranks, lower gears-fixed, and also rollers can help you gain 'rhythm'. :wink:
Alex Simmons/RST wrote:(if your speed reading is from the front wheel which of course isn't moving)

Can be, on the rollers. :)
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby one_damo » Wed Sep 01, 2010 5:46 pm

Hmm, I used to value cadence figures while riding. Since my cadence transmitter battery died a couple of weeks ago, my strength and stamina has improved notably. yes, i'm jumping from the cadence ship. All about rhythm. I would now say, "live" cadence figures muddy my mental state while riding (too much information) and make it harder for me to find a rhythm.
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby Strange Rover » Wed Sep 01, 2010 8:49 pm

Im the opposite...over this last week I have been looking at my cadence data with my power and heart rate data and changed how I approached my group ride this morning.

Basically last week I got dropped after riding 5min at 290W np and then 8 1/2 minutes cruising followed by 9min at 293W np. Cadence during thse efforts was about 105.

This week changed my cadence and didnt get dropped. At the same points in the ride I produced 5min at 311W np then 10 minutes cruising followed by 12 minutes at 306W np. Cadence during these efforts was about 98.

So at my natural self selected cadence (of 105 rpm) over the 2 efforts managed about 290W for 14 minutes and at my delibrately forced new cadence (of 98) I managed almost 310W for 17minutes over 2 efforts and still had more to give.

I guess in both rides I never looked at the computer to check my cadence...this was done post ride. But on hte ride this morning I basically made the decision to push a harder gear to make my legs hurt more. So with this approach I seem to have way more power for the same heart rate.

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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby Xplora » Sat Feb 26, 2011 12:05 am

I've started trying to get some cadence happening in my commutes. I have a feeling I've been powerhousing at 60-80rpm since I've started last year, now I'm looking at trying to get my rate up. Saw a site that reckoned competitive cyclists do 80-120, Lance did 110, so I'm trying to cycle along to songs I remember from Sepultura and Slayer (roughly 220bpm each. Aka 110rpm) Makes it much easier to focus on a pace.

Having a big problem though. I've been feeling physically ill afterwards, barely able to get water down when I get home. Is the lactic acid killing me? Will I adapt and naturally HFTU? I'm only 30, but I haven't exercised heaps since I was 20!
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Cadence....discuss

Postby caffeine » Sat Feb 26, 2011 8:42 am

I have the same issue, long time since exercise and very unfit.
I simply can't keep 100+ up for any distance.
I'm slowly getting there, when I first jumped on a month ago I span at 60. Now I'm trying to kick at the 80 mark.
Will take a while before I can push it.
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby zero » Sat Feb 26, 2011 2:22 pm

Xplora wrote:I've started trying to get some cadence happening in my commutes. I have a feeling I've been powerhousing at 60-80rpm since I've started last year, now I'm looking at trying to get my rate up. Saw a site that reckoned competitive cyclists do 80-120, Lance did 110, so I'm trying to cycle along to songs I remember from Sepultura and Slayer (roughly 220bpm each. Aka 110rpm) Makes it much easier to focus on a pace.

Having a big problem though. I've been feeling physically ill afterwards, barely able to get water down when I get home. Is the lactic acid killing me? Will I adapt and naturally HFTU? I'm only 30, but I haven't exercised heaps since I was 20!


It depends on whether you just rode with a higher cadence and the same pedal pressure and same gearing (ie faster - greater power output), or whether you changed your gearing/pedal pressure suitably to keep your overall effort level and speed roughly similar. Your physical symptoms sound like you were riding faster and getting more out of yourself, which may ultimately be what you want but you'll pay for it if its too far ahead of your actual fitness right now.

I also wouldn't obsess about cadence. Mine is usually 95-105 - the average might still be below 90 over a whole ride due to periods of rolling - and appears faster than most riders I see, and I don't get knee problems, and I can ride hard enough to run out of breath altogether. It goes up past 120 or so when attempting to sprint, and on a few magical downhills when I've run out of gears, I've run up to 160 still producing some pressure on the pedal.
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby Xplora » Sat Feb 26, 2011 8:05 pm

Zero, if I'm trying to ride fast I generally go as fast as I physically can while ensuring I am not ruined for the climbs (the run between Dundas and Parra isn't long or steep, but if you flog yourself down the hills it makes those short climbs so much less effective). This normally means selecting 4 or 5 on the big gear instead of 2 or 3. I've changed the gearing to 5 or 6, and on the 12-26 cassette (I think) that gives me a ton more spins (20-25% more in fact!). Means I don't fade up the climbs at all (obviously) and I'm probably maintaining a similar or quicker speed. I think that is the problem. The body is just drilling up those hills when it really should be saying "chillax"
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Feb 27, 2011 10:47 am

Xplora wrote:Is the lactic acid killing me?

No. Lactate is in fact a fuel source and an important part of our metabolism. It is not the cause of fatigue.
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby twizzle » Tue Mar 01, 2011 1:04 pm

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:
Xplora wrote:Is the lactic acid killing me?

No. Lactate is in fact a fuel source and an important part of our metabolism. It is not the cause of fatigue.


I thought excess lactate inhibited energy production at the cell level. Yes, no?
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby Xplora » Sun Mar 06, 2011 11:54 am

If it's not lactic acid that is the problem, then it is the burning lead sensation in my legs that I get from overusing the "power" rather than "speed" cadences. A lot of people call that lactic acid buildup.

Either way, I've been getting better results with the higher cadences, but I'm not impressed with the dramatic increase in sweat and heartrate. Hopefully my impending move to Seven Hills (doubling the commute) will help that. :)
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby foo on patrol » Sun Mar 06, 2011 5:52 pm

Well Xplora, if you don't condition your legs and body to a higher rate of effort, then you are not going to improve the level of fitness required, for longer, faster, harder and more sustained periods. :wink:
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby ft_critical » Tue Mar 22, 2011 3:01 pm

The undead thread.

I heard Mr., Magnus Backstead (sp) say, during a long race they try to spin as much as possible to save themselves. Eventually, they end up grinding a bit more when they get tired. Paraphrased. He also said they do a lot of leg speed work.

So it doesn't sound to me like cadence is a red-herring. It is part of the whole picture, power, speed, cadence, lung capacity etc. But if the pros give it attention why don't we think it worthy. My question is...

Is higher cadence more efficient? e.g., pushing out the same watts at higher cadence vs lower cadence.

My less important question is, with training can you increase your cadence (let's assume on the trainer) for the same heart rate? (I am not thinking heart training, more efficiency gain allows this adaptation.)
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Tue Mar 22, 2011 4:23 pm

ft_critical wrote:So it doesn't sound to me like cadence is a red-herring. It is part of the whole picture, power, speed, cadence, lung capacity etc. But if the pros give it attention why don't we think it worthy.

Because power is what matters (physiologically speaking).

ft_critical wrote:Is higher cadence more efficient? e.g., pushing out the same watts at higher cadence vs lower cadence.

No, it's a pretty well established fact of dozens of studies that higher cadences are less efficient than lower ones at same power. But really, efficiency is a red herring too, since it's effectiveness that we are interested in. When racing, we are not all that concerned with efficiency, what we want is power when it matters. In a drag race I couldn't care less about fuel economy.

ft_critical wrote:My less important question is, with training can you increase your cadence (let's assume on the trainer) for the same heart rate? (I am not thinking heart training, more efficiency gain allows this adaptation.)

Of course, it's called improving your fitness. Being able to sustain same power for less effort or more power for same effort. Typically the fitter one becomes, the higher the cadence they tend to ride at.

But it's not a gain in efficiency that is doing this (efficiency is pretty much a fixed thing once you've got to the level of a reasonably trained club rider). To change/lift efficiency requires enormous volumes of riding over many many years (like a Pro rider would do). Even then it may not change and it may (or may not) surprise you to learn that on average, pro riders are no more or less efficient than well trained club racers.

It's pretty much an inherit trait and is the least trainable of the three elements that determine your sustainable aerobic power (the others being VO2max and the % of VO2max you can sustain at threshold - with the latter being the most trainable of the three).
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby mikesbytes » Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:32 pm

Slightly off topic, I was at a workshop on the weekend for an indoor spin program, not the one I teach but another. The presenter was arguing against high cadences, stating that a significant % of participants had excessive bounce at higher cadences and recommend a maximum cadence of 120rpm, using higher loads to cater for the lower resistance. The program I use has a maximum cadence of 142rpm and its preset in the routines so I can't change them, but the presenter made some interesting points which can be incorporated.
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Re: Cadence....discuss

Postby brentono » Wed Mar 23, 2011 11:41 am

mikesbytes wrote:stating that a significant % of participants had excessive bounce at higher cadences.

Not if you paticularly train at higher cadences, and make the effort to gain rhythm,
and a smooth pedal action. :wink:

An earlier statement, that I agree with, and it worked for me (as a sprinter)
to endure longer road events (160Km+)

... during a long race they try to spin as much as possible to save themselves.
Eventually, they end up grinding a bit more when they get tired. Paraphrased.
He also said they do a lot of leg speed work.

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