Finding "correct" wattage for TT

Discussion in 'Power Training' started by giannip, Apr 19, 2011.

  1. JibberJim

    JibberJim Member

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    Personally I wouldn't dream of pacing the effort on a power number, it seems this second race of the day - and unless the OP has very good knowledge of how that race, and that recovery will have impacted his power then picking a number is more of a lottery on blowing up as just riding it on feel after getting some decent experience. Also as it's a time period that is rarely done, you probably don't have a whole lot of data, and it's potentially very sensitive to conditions - prologues are often point to point and the difference between a tail wind and a head wind could be over a minute difference to your time.

    For me - I went in to an 11 minute TT, with little idea of what I could do - 340w for 22minutes, 400w for 6 minutes were the only really testing sides. It was an undulating course and I paced it on RPE - hitting the uphills harder the downhills, my first 20seconds up a hill and to get up to speed were 700 watts, holding back to threshold there would've not helped my time I'm pretty sure, the next 3minutes on the flat was 380, 80 seconds at 420 up a hill. 2minutes at 310 downhill (some zero in here as I spun out the gear I had and just tucked) 1:50 at 400 uphill. 90 seconds at 310 downhill, and 80 seconds at 410 to finish on the flat. An overall 380 average. It was a good workout (didn't get me anywhere near the money though) But I spend very little time riding either to a power number - I had no idea 380 was achievable, and there's certainly no time to hold back in such a short event.

    I think the most important advice to the OP is to work on position and equipment, particularly if the stage race rules say road bikes only (as is common) as you can make big improvements on your normal comfortable road race set up for a 10 minute effort.
     


  2. giannip

    giannip New Member

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    The course is an out leg only.

    Start with a 500m slight downhill, then you're doing 60km/hr+ on a steepish downhill, until you hit the first of 2 drags, finishing off with a short downhill, then a km straight & 300m drag to the finish.

    Winning time usually around the 7min 20s mark.

    Average speed of last year's winner 57km/hr av.

    The wind is typically from the back and slightly from the side. If you're in contention you're using either a 55 or 56.

    That's why I'm conservatively aiming for around 8min (7:40+ I'm really hoping for).

    I'm basing it on my current form and the results of team mates from last year's race.

    Unlike them though, I will be riding a road bike with TT bars only & not a full TT bike, so 8min might be more realistic.

    I'm basing my wattage on previous efforts so that I don't blow BUT my performance in training with my team mates suggest higher is possible.

    I was not going to bother too much with the TT until the guy who finished in 7min 40s last year suggested I "give it a go" due to my form.

    I'm quite confident I can hold 330+

    No, Old Guy, I don't assume anything. I look at my power files to make my decisions based on previous performance.

    I don't see the point in lying to myself or others about my power figures. I also believe that by asking people questions, I will always come away with some useful information.

    The 320 mark is the only RECENT, concrete evidence I have & therefore why I am using it as a starting point and asking these questions.

    These figures are form 1 year ago and since then I've dropped 4kg (65kg) and upped FTP.

    The last time I did that TT was in 2007 when I had just started using the PM. I had forgotten to zero it before the TT but the time was 9:14 AP 332 / NP 342, which is why I don't trust the power figures 100% & asking questions. Back then, my FTP was set to 250, 50+w lower than now.

    Apologies for not adding this latest info sooner but the non zero PT was causing me doubt :)
     
  3. JibberJim

    JibberJim Member

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    I'd test the TT bars on your road bike to see if they really help - often you'll not see much aero improvement over what you can hold on a straight road bike, you gain comfort - but comfort doesn't matter on an 8 minute event, if will on a longer one. It depends on your position of course, and how low stack your bars and clip-ons are, but I think it's worth checking.
     
  4. giannip

    giannip New Member

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    Thanks Jim

    Tried them out yesterday ( /img/vbsmilies/smilies/biggrin.gif ).

    Did my 40min Tempo + a few short / hard effortson them and felt fine and comfy. I didn't change my road bike setup at all, because as you say, it's only 8min.

    I'll be using them for the next 2 days on and off during spins but after yesterday I'm quite happy to use them.
     
  5. JibberJim

    JibberJim Member

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    What I meant is are you sure you're actually faster with the tribars on? I know I'm not for such a short TT.
     
  6. acoggan

    acoggan Member

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    I did once mistakenly get credited with a 50:18 on a course that actually took me 53 min and change to cover. It didn't really matter since I would have won regardless (or so the promoter argued when declining to correct the results once I learned of the error a couple of days later), but it certainly must have created quite the buzz at the awards ceremony (I had to leave before results were posted).

    Anyway, no secret to, or about, my CdA, which (to paraphrase Smith Barney) was "earned" the old-fashioned way, i.e., by combining good genes with a lot of hard work...
     
  7. giannip

    giannip New Member

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    Yes, I believe so. It seemed as if I could generate the power easier. I'm not sure if that makes sense at all!

    Anyway, I'm actually looking forward to using them and that has to help in SOME way :)
     
  8. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I sure did my share of assumptions which I see were way off based on Giannip's recent post. So one way course, typically tailwinds and historical sub 8 minute finishing times. So guilty as charged on the Ass-U-Me charges and my estimates are too conservative.

    Bottom line, pace to finish strong but don't hold back too long at the start.

    Good luck Giannip,
    -Dave
     
  9. giannip

    giannip New Member

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    Thanks a million all. The more discussion the better and if there were any assumptions it was due to lack of info on my part... /img/vbsmilies/smilies/rolleyes.gif

    Thank you for the good wishes and will let you know how it went.

    Gianni
     
  10. An old Guy

    An old Guy Member

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    It appears you know what you are are doing. I hope you do well.
     
  11. giannip

    giannip New Member

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    Thanks
     
  12. giannip

    giannip New Member

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    Thank you
     
  13. giannip

    giannip New Member

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    double post...sorry
     
  14. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    Nothing wrong with the old-fashioned ways. It's good to hear what folks like yourself are doing to go so fast as efficiently as you do and nice to know that you don't need obscene amounts of power to produce great results. Inspiring really... makes me want to pull the ol' TT bike out even if it does have round steel tubes (for now).

    "It's only 8 minutes." Tell that to a prologue guy or a pursuiter - they'll tell you that's a lifetime. Gains that can be had can be significant.

    In addition to just riding around on them, you might want to check them out at 60+km/hr in gusty winds using the intended gear ratios. Trying to get 340watts down through the pedals via a Dinnerplate sized chainring x11 at speed could prove "interesting". You don't want to have to leave that aero tuck at speed but you do want a big enough gear to take full advantage of those hills.
     
  15. giannip

    giannip New Member

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    Yep, I did some fast efforts on sweeping bends etc during training.
     
  16. giannip

    giannip New Member

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    So, after all that thinking and planning, things came unstuck half way through the 1st stage. Crashed and totaled my bike.........Cest la vie
     
  17. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Bummer, I hope you came out of it in decent shape.
     
  18. giannip

    giannip New Member

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    Yep. I managed to get a lot of speed off, before falling. Just a small bit of road rash on the legs and back.

    I think someone must have landed on my frame as the seat tube is cracked all the way around... Riding the last 40km on a 1990s Cadex with wrong pedals was character building :)

    Time for go back to a steel bike I think!

    p.s. Winning time for the TT was 7:06

    Training partners did it between 7:26 & 8:02
     
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