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At what point do you get a power meter?

Last post 11-18-2017 7:15 AM by apwndwest. 31 replies.
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  • 09-25-2017 3:24 PM In reply to

    • Don
    • Top 50 Contributor
    • Joined on 11-24-2014
    • Kansas City, Mo
    • Posts 308

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    That is My motorhome... It has been "freshined up" since COR... This was on the way to the San Juan islands (NW of Seattle) this Past Summer.

    IMG_3066

    2015 COR participant
    2015 S3 Sram Red 11 Speed
    2015 R2 Sram Red 11 Speed
    2013 P5 Dura Ace Di2 11 Speed
    2009 S1 Sram Red 10 speed (sold)
  • 09-25-2017 5:57 PM In reply to

    • apwndwest
    • Top 75 Contributor
    • Joined on 09-11-2014
    • Vancouver, British Columbia
    • Posts 261

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    That's a beauty Don. On your trip you stopped just south of me in Vancouver, BC. I am sure you enjoyed that trip and the riding there.
    2014 R3 (Hills bike)
    2012 Roubaix SL3 (Endurance bike)
  • 10-11-2017 11:26 AM In reply to

    • Teige
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on 07-31-2017
    • Posts 1

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    No need to get one. They are not nearly as accurate from day to day as is claimed. One of the very best tri coaches in the nation based out of Boulder does not permit any of her clients to use them. The rider begins to rely on their perceived power readings, and often does not "push through" during training as needed as soon as they gawk at their "supposed" power reading. One of her pupils just finished 2nd in the worlds for Olympic-Tri in Rotterdam last month in the female 24-28 age group, with no power meter on her tri bike during the race or training. And she won the cycling section of her age group race easily. It's a pure gimmick that people buy because they lack the mental disclipline to train properly so they need a crutch. Next they'll come out with a meter for telling you how tightly you have tightened your cycling shoes and whether your shirt and shorts are an optimal fit, and goofballs will race out to buy those too. Sorry, but any low level amateur buying a power meter is simply someone to be laughed at in my opinion, and I see a good number of them climbing "slowly" and getting passed all the time in the hills around Boulder and Golden, CO. I've lost count of how many of them I have dropped in the past year on my non power metered Cervelo. People can literally be sold anything these days and convinced through marketing, placebo effect, and internet hype that they have to have it, and that it transforms them. LOL
  • 10-11-2017 4:33 PM In reply to

    • Denmae
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on 11-27-2013
    • Barrie, On
    • Posts 11

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    Teige, you sure you're old enough to ride on your own?
    2013 S2
    2014 S3
    2003 SuperProdigy
  • 10-11-2017 5:34 PM In reply to

    • maustin
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 04-06-2010
    • Hobart, TAS
    • Posts 39

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    Wow Teige, you must be fun at parties! Taking a step back from your evangelical hatred of power meters, you do make one valid point; that is, buying a power meter won't make you faster, and it certainly won't make you faster than all the people without power meters. You've actually got to do something with the data. But they have their place for a lot of athletes. Just clearly not you, Teige ;-) I do have to pull you up on the issue of scientific rigour though. A conclusion drawn based on the outcome of a single sample point from one experiment isn't a particularly rigorous conclusion. So, one athlete performed well in a race without a power meter. Sagan uses one, and he's a triple World Champion! About the only useful conclusion I can draw from the example you have provided is that perhaps the athlete concerned needs to spend more time working on her running and swimming, because if she's so much better on the bike than everyone else but is still coming second, her coach needs to rethink her training strategy!! As an aside, I recently got beaten on a famous TdF climb by my mate - I was riding my S3 equipped with a set of ENVE 3.4s (weighs in at about 7.0kg). He was riding a 12.5kg mountain bike and nursing a double fracture to his scapula from about two weeks before. Using Teige's scientific rigour, I believe we should all be dumping our Cervelo's and riding half tonne clunkers if we want to be able to laugh at people as we drop them on a climb!! BTW - neither of us had power meters.
    That's what you get when you suffer - you get results
  • 10-12-2017 1:07 PM In reply to

    • Kronan
    • Top 50 Contributor
    • Joined on 11-15-2012
    • Alberta, Canada
    • Posts 294

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    Teige, I can understand the point of view and know folks who subscribe to the "by feel" method as well. I have my "quasi" / HR based PM as more of an interested observer item as I am far from a star athlete. I am one you will pass left, right and centre on a climb....not because of my power meter, but because of the extra heft I have around my middle (going down, though...my mtb roots taught me a lot, so I use those extra pounds I haul up to descend hard and hair-on-fire fast).

    I don't "need" the PM, but I find it useful overall because I can actually do a little something with the data...even as a non-racing fat guy. If I'm working on getting some pounds off, I get into a plan on the trainer and I try to keep the same sort of target power from my plan (and manage TSS) when I hit the asphalt. I also know that for my long distance rides, including the very hilly charity ride and office mountain ride I do each year, I can get myself into trouble if I go too fast for too long. I don't watch the PM output as a crutch, but rather check it to confirm that I can hold when my legs are saying back off.

    A PM is a tool....if you have it and don't use it, it's not worth much. If you have it and rely too much on it, you can get yourself into trouble (you are not a machine) or it can become a crutch. Use it as part of an overall plan, including listening to your body, and it can be a very useful tool to help you achieve more from your cycling, regardless of the level (weekend warrior to Cat 1 racer...probably not much benefit for the casual types).

    '12 Cervelo S2 (full Chorus, upgraded bars, saddle, wheels and tires)
    '09 Knolly Delirium T (frame up custom)
    '?? Mercury road bike
    '06 Gary Fisher Cake 2DLX (signed frame)
  • 10-22-2017 1:01 PM In reply to

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    Teige:
    No need to get one. They are not nearly as accurate from day to day as is claimed. One of the very best tri coaches in the nation based out of Boulder does not permit any of her clients to use them. The rider begins to rely on their perceived power readings, and often does not "push through" during training as needed as soon as they gawk at their "supposed" power reading. One of her pupils just finished 2nd in the worlds for Olympic-Tri in Rotterdam last month in the female 24-28 age group, with no power meter on her tri bike during the race or training. And she won the cycling section of her age group race easily. It's a pure gimmick that people buy because they lack the mental disclipline to train properly so they need a crutch. Next they'll come out with a meter for telling you how tightly you have tightened your cycling shoes and whether your shirt and shorts are an optimal fit, and goofballs will race out to buy those too. Sorry, but any low level amateur buying a power meter is simply someone to be laughed at in my opinion, and I see a good number of them climbing "slowly" and getting passed all the time in the hills around Boulder and Golden, CO. I've lost count of how many of them I have dropped in the past year on my non power metered Cervelo. People can literally be sold anything these days and convinced through marketing, placebo effect, and internet hype that they have to have it, and that it transforms them. LOL
    This :)
    --------------------------
    Cervelo S2
    Trek Top Fuel 9
  • 10-24-2017 8:51 AM In reply to

    • dmulligan
    • Top 200 Contributor
    • Joined on 10-01-2014
    • Calgary, Canada
    • Posts 94

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    I got my power meter for three main reasons. First and foremost I'm a numbers geek. First run but last justification. Second, like Trex, I was hooked on interval training using virtual power with Trainerroad. I trained in my attached but unrated garage during my first winter of training. The temperature varied from 3 to 14c depending on outside weather. (3c inside my garage meant -20c outside). Anyone who uses a fluid trainer knows that the resistance ramps up the warmer they get so I wanted a power meter to get some consistency in my training. Third was the wind. I absolutely had to pick my boy up from daycare by 6 pm regardless of how windy it got. Here in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies it gets windy. I wanted to know if I was really working as hard as I thought riding into 60km/h headwind or if it just felt harder. Turns out it's both. I don't work quite as hard going into a headwind until i look at my power and see I'm being a whimp. Since then I've used it to improve pacing of hill climbs, time trials and to understand where my weaknesses are and what I need to train more. Based on experience I would tell you that I need to work on climbing most. Based on Training Peaks I need to work on my 5s and 30s critical power most. Looking back at my past few seasons I see that TP is right and my hill climbing depends more on me losing weight than raising my sustained power. Speaking of which The Sufferfests 4DP sounds super interesting. I got a Stages power meter for a Shimano crank. Then I got my R3 and upgraded it's crank to a Shimano 6800 so that I could use my power meter on it too. David
    2009 Kona Jake (Commuter)
    2014 R3 Ultegra
  • 11-09-2017 11:44 AM In reply to

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    I think David has hit the high points, for me it is the brutal reality of the power meter, it is not a factor of how you feel it is simply a matter of fact, 200 watts will always be 200 watts but there are times they sure do feel different.  As David noted my general feeling is that if I settle into a certain pace for a head wind it still feels hard but I will find upon looking at my power meter it is in my head, the power does not correlate with my feeling, typically I should just work harder because I can.  If as the one nay sayer has noted, that power meters are notoriously inconsistent, I would like to suggest that should not be true with most of the products on the market which I would say are quite precise.  It is precision that IMHO is the key and if that is not true then there is no point in owning one, my experience is that the day to day precision is fine.  To reiterate, knowledge is power.... or put another way you only can improve what you measure and there lots of ways to measure, power is one that I personally like.

  • 11-10-2017 12:24 PM In reply to

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    The sensible answer is to train with, in a structured way ideally with a coach or somebody who knows what they're doing regardless if you're racing or recreational riding. Otherwise it's really just an expensive speedometer. The N+1 answer is of course if you can afford it and think it'll make you happy - buy it.
  • 11-11-2017 12:20 AM In reply to

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    A pm doesn't make any bike faster, it can help every rider to get faster individually ..
  • 11-11-2017 1:14 AM In reply to

    • maustin
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 04-06-2010
    • Hobart, TAS
    • Posts 39

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    Well, the point at which I get a power meter is right now! Just bought a SRAM Red Quarq PM for my S3. Looking forward to dropping lots of non-PM equipped riders on my local climbs the moment it's fitted ;-)
    That's what you get when you suffer - you get results
  • 11-11-2017 1:21 AM In reply to

    • Don
    • Top 50 Contributor
    • Joined on 11-24-2014
    • Kansas City, Mo
    • Posts 308

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    maustin:
    Well, the point at which I get a power meter is right now! Just bought a SRAM Red Quarq PM for my S3. Looking forward to dropping lots of non-PM equipped riders on my local climbs the moment it's fitted ;-)
    That is what I have on my S3 and my P5...There great!.. Have a gravel bike I am building and it will have a 4IIII.
    2015 COR participant
    2015 S3 Sram Red 11 Speed
    2015 R2 Sram Red 11 Speed
    2013 P5 Dura Ace Di2 11 Speed
    2009 S1 Sram Red 10 speed (sold)
  • 11-11-2017 3:07 AM In reply to

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    Day 1. Day 1 is when :)
  • 11-11-2017 7:08 AM In reply to

    Re: At what point do you get a power meter?

    Gurk700:
    Day 1. Day 1 is when :)
     

    yes absolutely Day 1 every neo nate child should be given a power meter along with their huggies gift prior to leaving the hospital! we need to get them young while they are still open minded and impressionable to join the power meter cult! ;-)

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