Not long ago I shared with you a power file from a ride and taught you how to do an analysis. You can read that post here. Being able to decipher a power file is an incredible way to learn about the effect of your profiles on your riders, as well as understand the cause and effect of cadence, resistance, and power on heart rate.
Don’t worry if you don’t have power, you will still learn! As I explained in that first post, whether you have a device to measure power or not, you are still producing power. This exercise will help you understand that wattage is the effort and heart rate is the response to that effort. With this knowledge, you’ll have more insight as you design your own profiles—power meters or not.
Please take a look at these files and take a stab at analysis. Or just ask me questions. You may want to teach this profile one of these days soon, so the more you understand how some riders might respond to it, the better. Take this opportunity to learn!
Here is how this will work. Please look at the two files and write in the comments what you think was taking place, or what caused the changes in power or heart rate. Then next week, I’ll repost these same files with an explanation and answer any questions.
These two files are from the same class, two different riders. Note that the class is actually 60 minutes long, but on the Stages bikes, the data isn’t recorded when it’s on “warm-up” mode. Neither of these riders recorded their warmup, so consider that it’s already been done.
As a reminder, in the files below, the yellow is cadence (RPM), visible on the right axis. The red is heart rate (BPM), also on the right axis. The pink is power (W, for watts) on the left axis. (Tip: Use a straight edge to line up with the corresponding axis to estimate the rpm, bpm, or wattage.)
This is basically how the ride should look, so you will compare rider #2 to this one. This rider’s FTP is 158.
There are 6 intervals. What is the intensity, cadence, and purpose?
- The drops in power are essentially getting off the bike, so ignore these.
This rider’s FTP is about 118. She is 65 years old. It’s pretty obvious that she struggled a bit. Can you guess why?
- These are *supposed* to be recovery!
- What happened in this interval? (hint…look at the power as the cause)
- What happened in this interval? (hint…look at the cadence as the cause)
Here are a few more questions to ask yourself:
- Knowing that rider #2 struggled a bit, how might that impact your coaching in the future?
- If you don’t have the ability to analyze your riders’ workouts like this, how might this knowledge help you when coaching your own riders through an interval class like this?
I’ll be back with the answers next week. Have fun!