Indoor Power Levels

Discussion in 'Power Training' started by jcm01, Jan 30, 2014.

  1. jcm01

    jcm01 New Member

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    Hi guys. Quick power question...I have noticed that I seem to produce less power indoors vs. my outside rides. Have others noticed this as well? Is it all mental (meaning I just need to harden-up and push harder) or is there a reason that it is harder to produce the same power indoors. Lastly, should I adjust my power levels? For example, if I typically do 2x20s at 250W when outside, should I still shoot for 250W indoors, or bring this down slightly? Thanks in advance for any feedback.
     
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  2. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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  3. jcm01

    jcm01 New Member

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    Thanks Felt, appreciate it! That link was a wealth of info. and addressed all of my questions and then some. Wow...a lot to consider here. Thanks again
     
  4. Felt_Rider

    Felt_Rider Active Member

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    First, I just want to point out this is my opinion so take for what's it worth and also note that I am a recreational level cyclist so add that to my opinion as well.

    I struggled with this same question to the same dilemma when I first started using a power meter to guide training. What should I do and it is crazy that some were suggesting that I setup two athletes within WKO. One for outdoor power and one for indoor power, but that simply did not add up to me at all since I wanted all my data to be compiled into the same PMC so that I had a closer idea of stress levels.

    Going over Alex's points

    Cooling - I am always amazed by how much impact this makes. I absolutely hate being cold and I really hate having cold air blowing on me, but what a difference it makes. I typically do my first 10 minute warm up without the fans at a lower wattage and seems to be a struggle, but the moment I turn the fans on everything just bumps up into my L4 zones as if something magical happens. Crazy how much impact it has.

    Inertial Load, Motivation and Adaption have all evolved for me as well. Cooling is still my #1 challenge. Even in a cold room with cold air blowing on me to the point I am chilled that once I get into L4 my skin might be chilled, but I get overheated and the power output becomes a challenge. Lately I've been doing 20 minute intervals just to cool off a bit and then hit the next intervals. On days where I go longer duration like 40's or 60 minutes my AP will drop mainly due to heat and I miss my target goal. But I still hold to what Alex said, "alls you can do is alls you can do." And my slogan I've been using when I don't hit my targets, "this still gets better results than sitting on the couch."
     
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  5. jcm01

    jcm01 New Member

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    Good stuff Felt. Yea, at one point I too considered having different athlete profiles (for a slightly different reason however), but like you said, it would mess up the PMC and all your power charts. As for cooling, I am usually pretty good about opening the window and turning on my industrial fan. And I don't think motivation is too much the issue. But his points about inertial load and adaption (especially adaption) were very enlightening. I think I have heard the adaption one before but had forgotten about it. I plan to spend more time training indoors. It just makes interval work so much more effective. I will see what happens as I go forward. But yesterday for example, I did some sweet spot work and was definitely at a lower wattage than what I do outdoors. But I'm not really beating myself up about it...I worked hard and yes..."alls you can do is alls you can do." Also, I can tell the way my legs feel this morning that I got a nice workout in...always nice to hit your power levels but I will keep working and see what happens going forward. Thanks again.
     
  6. Bigpikle

    Bigpikle New Member

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    I'm finding a double issue as indoors I lose about 20w but when I switch to my TT bike I lose more again due to the position. Intervals I'd do at 280-290 on the road are 240-245 on the TT bike indoors. As I've switched to mostly indoor training I've simply changed my FTP in GC so the PMC stays accurate and am also living the "all you can do..." mindset.
     
  7. jcm01

    jcm01 New Member

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    I hear you 100% on this change...but it does leave me thinking. This assumes that it's physically (for lack of a better word) more difficult to produce power indoors (due to adaptation, fit on the TT bike, inertial load, etc.) and therefore, the 'training effect' of doing 240-245 indoors is the same as when you do 280-290 outdoors. Which it very well may be. In fact I hope it is because I too seem to produce less power indoors. But I can also see someone saying "power is power" and since you are capable of doing 280-290 intervals, doing 240-245 intervals indoors, regardless of the reason for the decline, won't produce the same training effect and therefore deserves a lower TSS score. Alex's article above doesn't really get into this - at least not that I could tell. Thoughts?
     
  8. Bigpikle

    Bigpikle New Member

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    Its a topic covered over and over again and I spent far too long over-thinking what I was going to do....

    I have come to the conclusion that as my HR during indoor TT bike sessions hits the levels I only see during races, that I should go with a changed FTP now my training is mostly indoors. I ponder the same quiestion about 'power is power' but given my no1 priority for the first half of the year is TT'ing and I want as much TT bike time as possible, I'm going to go for specificity and track related to that.

    Right now my outdoor rides are typically just long L2 rides and I dont bother to swap my PM over to that bike each time, so I use a TSS score estimated on my outdoor road FTP eg I know I get about 50-60 TSS/hr on my local flat routes when I'm just riding fairly easy and steady. That gives me the accuracy I need for the PM right now as my focus isnt really TSS at the moment but time at SST/L4 to drive FTP development.
     
  9. jcm01

    jcm01 New Member

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    Good stuff BP, sounds like you have it pretty well figured out. As for as it being a topic covered over and over again...what can I say...I'm new here [​IMG] ...and trying to learn!
     
  10. Bigpikle

    Bigpikle New Member

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    I didnt mean it as a dig to you, but rather that all the forums and cycling websites all seem to have different perspectives on the indoor-outdoor conundrum...
     
  11. smaryka

    smaryka Member

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    Not just indoor/outdoor but there are loads of people who e.g., put out higher watts climbing a hill (me) and lower watts riding at high speed in a tailwind (also me), for the same HR. Or other various different inertia situations. Using HR is good but I think what's even better is adapting to the situation as needed and improving your watts doing that. I don't give myself less TSS for extended hill climbs or more TSS for 30mph TTs, even if the effort is the same for the two. I just try to train such that I bring those two values closer together, if that's what I need to do to perform better in my races.

    However unless you're planning to race on the turbo, it's probably not that great to be so turbo-adapted that that's where you put out your best watts. Just long-winded way of saying that "all's you can do is all's you can do" is probably the best solution here.
     
  12. jcm01

    jcm01 New Member

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    BP - of course. I have enjoyed reading your posts here. Thanks and keep it up.

    Smaryka - you hit the nail on the head here for me. Power on climbs is much easier for me than power on the flats. So much so that if I'm doing an interval and the road turns up, I look forward to it getting a bit easier. Therefore, I have sometimes wondered if this means I should increase the wattage on the hills until my HR and/or RPE matches what it is on the flats. Very similar to the indoors/outdoors situation. But I agree with your summary...not only am I probably over thinking it, but my goal should just be to try to bring the values together.
     
  13. Bigpikle

    Bigpikle New Member

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    give me a flat road and big 'ol headwind and I'll bang out my best wattage :D
     
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