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  • TrainerRoad – STW approved sessions
  • Premier Icon Kryton57
    Full Member

    Christ.

    I’ve got a cold, so what better to continue on-plan with Foerster – 25x50s on/off at 125% for the uninitiated.

    I’ve got a new reason to push myself and that I did, for the first time ending curled up on the Kitchen floor at the end not quite knowing where I was feeling very peculiar indeed… 😯

    Premier Icon Haze
    Free Member

    Marion tonight, 3 x 12.

    Promised myself I’d try and ride outdoors as much as possible this winter as I’m sure reliance on the turbo was at least partly the reason I had such a slow start last season.

    Still, good to get a session in once in a while and TrainerRoad is still doing it for me.

    Premier Icon mrblobby
    Free Member

    Another custom TR session here, a couple of hours of z2 with a 40 min tempo block. It’s all been long steady tempo and sweet spot blocks for November. Been doing as much of it outdoors as weather and circumstances allow. Trying to avoid the mistakes of last winter where I made some good turbo gains that didn’t really carry over to the road. So getting a decent balance between outdoor and turbo, and doing pretty much all turbo in position. Early days but reckon it’s going ok so far.

    Premier Icon sweaman2
    Free Member

    Sweajnr is doing his best impersonation of a bio hazard and so keeler needle has been postponed and replaced with Baxter.

    Premier Icon howsyourdad1
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    I’m enjoying TR at the moment. Doing sweet spot base instead of traditional this year and much prefer it . Although after first six weeks I do really feel I need a rest week . Which was nice

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Full Member

    Each to thier own mrblobby but i dont know how you cope with 2 hours z2. Equally though my outdorr rides – of which there have been few – with the club ive made a point of doing hard turns on the front to simulate threshold or easier at tempo duringbthe ride. Im also pacing the climbs much better this year as ive finally got over the “pain doesnt mean the end of my ride” mental barrier.

    Premier Icon gray
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    I’ve done a few sweet spot workouts this week. Trying to get Powermatch working (Powertap hub, Vortex Smart turbo) but it simply doesn’t work properly. I’ve been trying to figure out the underlying algorithm so that I can figure out how to drive it so that it works most of the time. Sometimes it works well for an interval, other times it just craps out. At the moment I think I’ll have to just disable it, and just use the Powertap to keep tabs on the Vortex calibration / thermal drift and to record accurate data.

    It’s a real shame – I presume that Powermatch must work better than this on e.g. a Kickr, but I would have thought that my situation was most typical of people who want to use Powermatch. If you have an accurate measure of power, and a means to electronically control resistance then a fairly cheap wheel-on trainer should in theory give all of the control of a more expensive trainer. Could just be that my Vortex is a dud, but aside from drift it works pretty well if I disconnect the Powertap from TR. So I’m pretty sure that it’s a software issue. I simply don’t have the time to learn how to write software to do ANT+ stuff otherwise I’d have a go.

    Premier Icon mrblobby
    Free Member

    Annoying that. How does it crap out? Raise it with TR support as it’s the app that’s doing the power match. They are usually pretty good.

    Each to thier own mrblobby but i dont know how you cope with 2 hours z2.

    Netflix and a low boredom threshold 🙂 Also working on something specific which helps. I messed it up a bit last year, see if it works better this year.

    Premier Icon fifeandy
    Free Member

    Each to thier own mrblobby but i dont know how you cope with 2 hours z2.

    Indeed, i’m impressed. I managed as much as 2hrs Z2 on the trainer once and it was like some sort of mental torture technique.
    Due to start some structured training again 5th Dec, but can’t say i’m overly motivated for it yet (still didn’t even find a target event for 2017 that’s really exciting me).

    Premier Icon ferrals
    Free Member

    i dont know how you cope with 2 hours z2

    I think my lack of a controlled and long enough base period this year is whats given me my fatigue / illness issues in the last 6 weeks. So starting in January I’m going to be doing a lot of that, films are definately the way to go.

    Premier Icon gray
    Full Member

    Annoying that. How does it crap out? Raise it with TR support as it’s the app that’s doing the power match. They are usually pretty good.

    Well, it craps out in a number of ways. Most commonly by basically not responding properly to a requested power change as I go from a rest period into an interval.

    It quite often does this:

    Where it takes 2 minutes to creep up to the requested power. I believe that this is the length of time that it takes for their internal ‘model’ for the relationship between requested power and delivered power to catch up (I suspect a filter, so whilst it is updating regularly, it is effectively updating some averages using a kernel of around 2 minutes).

    Sometimes I think that the internal model is completely screwed by the end of the rest interval, because in the gear that I’m pushing, the requested power is simply too low for the Vortex to deliver, so TR effectively asks for lower and lower resistance levels and its scaling factors drift further and further. This makes me think that TR is using requested power vs powermeter power for its model rather than trainer-reported-power vs powermeter power.

    Lately I’ve been changing down and trying to nail the rest interval power to combat this, and it helps, but not always (this one isn’t too bad really, but not ideal):

    Today I did some out of the saddle drills. That screwed it up completely, and it just wouldn’t get back on track until I tried all sorts – flicking to slope mode and back to Erg, pausing and recalibrating the Vortex, changing gears about:

    I have no explanation for this one this morning:

    – to get this back on track I fiddled with gears, possibly did another spindown (can’t remember – did about 5 spindowns today). The first section of the interval (nice rise, but plateaued too low, then started drifting down instead of up) was all in the same gear and cadence as I was using when I finished the rest interval.

    I think my best plan is to disable Powermatch but leave the Powertap paired. With a warm spindown on the Vortex it won’t be a million miles out, but I can bump the intensity of the workout up or down to bring it into line. Won’t help with the within-interval thermal drift that I get on the Vortex though (this is about 10% drift during a sweet spot 5 minute interval).

    I have had a conversation with TR tech support about this back in June. They were nice and helpful as always, but weren’t able to offer anything that fixed it.

    Premier Icon mrblobby
    Free Member

    Gray, puzzling that. TBH I’m not sure I’d bother with erg mode for those sorts of intervals. I can see managing transitions from one level of resistance to another being a bit of a pain and it difficult to get the ramp right. Accelerating up through the gears to the right power seems a much more natural thing to do.

    Does it work any better if you let the Vortex take care of it all?

    I think my lack of a controlled and long enough base period this year is whats given me my fatigue / illness issues in the last 6 weeks. So starting in January I’m going to be doing a lot of that, films are definately the way to go.

    Well I had quite a patchy end to the season then some time off. So October and November I’ve mostly spent just getting lots of steady z2/z3 and long tempo block work in building up a reasonable CTL before upping the intensity a bit for late December and Jan. I would have failed miserably had I tried launching into that in October.

    I’m quite use to long turbo sessions now. Find some mindless action TV series on netflix and watch episode after episode (doing Arrow at the moment which fits the bill nicely.) Time goes pretty quick. Don’t need to think about what I’m going to watch for next turbo session either, just pick up where I left off.

    Premier Icon gray
    Full Member

    Gray, puzzling that. TBH I’m not sure I’d bother with erg mode for those sorts of intervals. I can see managing transitions from one level of resistance to another being a bit of a pain and it difficult to get the ramp right. Accelerating up through the gears to the right power seems a much more natural thing to do.

    Does it work any better if you let the Vortex take care of it all?

    I love Erg mode, when it works. It’s great just concentrating on maintaining a cadence, or doing whatever drills you want, and not worrying about hitting a power target, not changing gear etc.

    If I just let the Vortex take care of it all then it invariably functions perfectly, in the sense that the Vortex-reported power tracks the desired profile, and the resistance changes as I would expect (ramps are softened slightly so that the increase is over a couple of seconds rather than instantaneous. The Vortex doesn’t lock up like some do (I gather, where you can get into a low cadence, very high resistance situation and find it hard to get out of because it’s too hard to produce enough torque to get back into a sensible cadence range).

    The downside to just using the Vortex, though, is that it is really very temperature dependant. If I do a spindown at the end of a decent interval (i.e. once it’s up to temperature) then it will be in the right ballpark for subsequent efforts at the same intensity. It drifts within intervals though, and out by varying amounts depending on the intensity (and hence tyre / unit temperatures) of other intervals.

    e.g. a test run from May:

    Zoomed in:

    Bit less than 10% drift over the interval, so maybe I should just ignore it, bit it just seems a bit crap when the intervals are supposed to be targeting quite specific %FTP. I suppose it helps to encourage fast cadences though – faster spin = warmer bits = easier actual effort for a given specified effort…

    About this time last year I was just using the Vortex. I was also just doing spindowns right at the start of each session (I figured that if the calibration was a bit out then it didn’t matter since I was looking for improvements not absolutely accurate watts, so I was just looking to cater for changes in tyre pressure etc.). However, as winter drew in, the difference between cold and warm increased, so the miscalibration steadily increased as the season grew colder. This was responsible for a good chunk of my FTP improvements last year! Of course, that effect can easily be removed by just doing a spindown once warm (or indeed only every few sessions, when warm).

    Premier Icon mrblobby
    Free Member

    Is odd that. I wonder how the protocol works? TR probably says “give me 200 watts” to the turbo, then waits a bit and sees what the PM is reporting, then tries to tweak the turbo up or down (e.g. 201…wait… 202…wait.. 203… wait… etc.) so that the power generated is actually 200 watts. I can see how it might take a while to arrive at the correct power, especially if there is a bit of a discrepancy.

    I’d still rather use a real PM and turn off erg. 10% is huge. Say you’re targeting a long threshold session @ 300W. You could be 270 or 330, so way too easy or far too hard.

    Premier Icon gray
    Full Member

    I initially thought (based on one interpretation of the TR description of it) that essentially TR monitors the relationship between powermeter data and turbo data, and just periodically (every 10 seconds or so) sends an actual calibration message to the turbo. If that were the case, the turbo’s broadcast power would roughly match the powermeter’s transmissions though, which it really definitely doesn’t (I’ve checked by doing a spindown when cold so that the turbo’s calibration is way out, and the way out-ness persists, so TR are not recalibrating the Vortex.

    Instead I think it continuously (ish) calculates an offset, and applies that offset to its requests to the Vortex for a specific resistance (in watts). So if TR concludes that the Vortex is reading 20 watts low, then when TR wants 200 watts, then TR will ask the Vortex for 220. They don’t want that offset to bounce around all over the shop though (with noise or genuine spikiness in either data source), so I think that they calculate the offset frequently, but apply an offset that is roughly the average of the last 2 minutes’ worth of offsets. I can see why you’d want to calculate the offset between requested and delivered, but in low wattage scenarios with the Vortex, that’s not going to work. Instead it would be better to use Vortex-reported power vs power meter power, and just deal with the noisiness with a bit of robust signal processing.

    I could well be completely wrong – what I see isn’t entirely consistent. And of course my Vortex could be playing up as well, for all I know.

    As I said, I’d like to have a play with writing stuff and testing it myself, but it would take ages and I’d still want to use the TR workouts and training plans (and am not interested in ripping off their workouts).

    I agree that 10% is too much. In theory I could use the workout intensity modificatatron to manually bump up or down some % within an interval, but that seems like way too much faff to me – defeats the point of using Erg mode (might as well muck about with gears instead).

    Premier Icon mrblobby
    Free Member

    Still plugging away at TR here. Still mostly long steady variations on Kennedy Peak. Though did push on a bit during a session the other night as a little leg tester and got a pretty pleasing new 10 minute medal as part of a longer effort 8) Was at a power that would have been the 8 min test power for my current FTP and didn’t feel maxed out so it’s probably a little on the low side right now. Should really man up and do a proper 20 min test.

    Got a new smart turbo on order too so I might finally have to give Zwift a go. Think some Zwift racing might be a good way to stretch the legs a bit 🙂 Any other trainer roaders flirting with Zwift?

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Full Member

    No, I got bored and thank for the reminder to cancel my subscription.

    Premier Icon mrblobby
    Free Member

    What you doing now then Kryton?

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Full Member

    Bored with Zwift not TR.

    Thanks to Mrs K organising 3 weeks of Santa orientated activity I’m in a period of limbo where its difficult get out on the bike. I did 45k of Turbo last week. :|. I guess this is now my rest period and I’ll have to work over Christmas week to get back on track.

    I’m also demotivated to go out on the wretched machine during these cold evenings, not helped by her purchase of a Christmas Beer advent calendar. I’m currently weighing up tonights option in my head, temp shows 0.5…

    Premier Icon crosshair
    Free Member

    Bored of Zwift = bored with life Kryton, just as well end it all now 😀 😉

    Sent via my iPad whilst Zwifting

    Premier Icon mrblobby
    Free Member

    Bored with Zwift not TR.

    The racing sounds interesting, but I really can’t see the appeal of long Zwift sessions, I think it would be boring too, but then I’ve not tried it.

    Christmas Beer advent calendar.

    Who knew there was such a thing.

    . I guess this is now my rest period and I’ll have to work over Christmas week to get back on track.

    Just in time for the Festive 500 🙂

    Premier Icon crosshair
    Free Member

    One of my team buddies on Zwift did a 270mile 24hr session for WBR !!!!! Raised over $3000.

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Full Member

    Not for racing snakes 😐

    I’m not sure I’ve missed the point of zwift. I get the workouts of course although I don’t want to deviate from my TR plan which is showing well on the road, and I’m now back to my all time high FTP.

    Otherwise it seems either riding around in circles, or a race which doesnt suit my training time. Add to that I’ve got variable wi fi in the shed and its TR all the way.

    I keep telling myself the 2 weeks of limited riding / training I’m having is better than the chest infections of 2 years ago.

    Anyway, its about to be week 8 of Build 1, 3 week of more Build by repeating weeks 6,7 & 8 then Speciality XCO in January.

    I’m doing a 40 mins vets CX over Christmas – on an pan flat golf course using my MTB 😆

    Premier Icon mrblobby
    Free Member

    Otherwise it seems either riding around in circles, or a race which doesnt suit my training time. Add to that I’ve got variable wi fi in the shed and its TR all the way.

    That’s the way I see it. Could be a nice complement to TR though if the racing with a smart turbo better simulates the variability in real riding though which is something you miss doing TR work.

    I’m doing a 40 mins vets CX over Christmas – on an pan flat golf course using my MTB

    Ooh like the sound of that. Where is it?

    Premier Icon crosshair
    Free Member

    I think Zwift is best considered as a place rather than a thing. A dry, varied, traffic free training Loop of ultra consistent, headwind devoid roads.
    Better still, there’s 500-1500 others kicking around to play with.
    I think Watopia alone has 75km of different routes.

    It’s best on a big tv in the dark with a powerful fan.

    Once they launch a VR headset, I may never leave the house again 😀

    Sorry- I’ll go back to the correct thread 😀

    Premier Icon fifeandy
    Free Member

    @kryton and blobby, you are not alone, that is also the way i see zwift.

    Premier Icon crosshair
    Free Member

    I guess you guys are just more disciplined. I don’t even use workout mode on Zwift- targeting wattages on graphs is about as far away from what I love about cycling as you can get.
    At least Zwift tricks you into thinking you’re moving and going somewhere.

    (I’m not dissing TR btw, I’ve never tried it.)

    I’ve managed 270hrs cycling this year, way above any other year and that’s 70% Zwift. For me, I saw the potential for racing straight away and that was what hooked me. It only took one Mano v Mano battle up the Richmond worlds course climbs during a race, for me to fall head over heels with it! It was as pure as any Gorrick or CX battle I’ve ever had.

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Full Member

    Mojo back! Ok so it was only Mount Field, and I didn’t realise I entered rest week maybe then explaining why i felt so low last week. But it felt good, I practised some standing transitions and stayed comfortably on power. It’s cold out here though, if your want to see a semi naked middle aged man steaming away in a fog feel free…

    Lol, I video’d my session for body movement and position, I also spent a few minutes aero. Looks as though I need a stronger core.

    Premier Icon mrblobby
    Free Member

    What has been seen cannot be unseen 🙁

    😉

    Ok so it was only Mount Field, and I didn’t realise I entered rest week maybe then explaining why i felt so low last week

    Hate the last few rides of a hard block before a rest week. Even a steady z2 ride can have you on your knees.

    Premier Icon gray
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    What has been seen cannot be unseen

    Hmm, I’ve opened it in another tab but not looked yet. I can’t stop myself. Sorry, future me!

    Premier Icon gray
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    Wow, that was steamy. I’m just heading out to the turbo shed. See you on the other side!

    Premier Icon Kryton57
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    Lol, the clue was in the text, you didn’t have to click on the link.

    Ooh like the sound of that. Where is it?

    Beastway Yulecross, Lewisham 27th December 11:40 Vets. Mayby a bit far East for you? Apparantly it’ll be up on BC any day now.

    Yes, it never fails to amaze me how few miles you do yet how wearing the end of a turbo block is. My biggest problem wss I has a cold and I didn’t look forward – if I’d have realised last week that a rest week was coming I may have been slightly more motivated.

    Premier Icon mrblobby
    Free Member

    Gray, had meant to ask how it was going with the back injury. Back riding outdoors again?

    Premier Icon gray
    Full Member

    Yeah, off and on. Had a good spell of slowly getting back into it over the summer. Even rode to work and back again on bike to work day (just over 50 miles each way) with no ill effects. Then went backwards for a bit in the autumn – just ached a lot of the time. Seem to be over that now though. At the moment I seem to feel better if I have been riding than not. I’ve been doing a bit on the turbo over the last few weeks. Planning to start Sweet Spot Base properly next week, and mix in some outdoor stuff as I did last year. Feeling optimistic!

    Only downside is that I’m probably having surgery to whip out the scaffolding early next year (had a CT this week, waiting to get results). Should be straightforward and a fairly quick recovery, but they will be cutting through my back muscles and interfering with my spine so it’s likely to be a bit sore at least. I’m expecting it to be a blip though, and am planning a road biking trip to somewhere warm in the spring!

    Premier Icon mrblobby
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    Good stuff 🙂 Get that biking holiday booked.

    Premier Icon teamslug
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    So after finally getting rid of a Uti thats made me feel like crap since I came back from the States over a month ago I have started sweet spot training. Did 8 minutes FTP and result is higher than 2 years ago when I finished training. Coming off the back of a good year it looks like I’ve held my base fitness well. Back on trainer road after using Zwift last year with my Tacx Vortex and its the first time I’ve used an erg trainer( I was on virtual power on a tacx flow last time). I like the erg. Swapped road bike for singlespeed 29er after 8 minute test and apart from the really big 5 second peaks on Ebetts its been really good. Got my mojo back for it. Would have stayed on Zwift but dont like being told where to ride. I didnt like the Ride London course and got bored of it pretty quickly. I love the watopia course and have read that its going to be extended this month. Never really got bored of it and did 55 miles in one go last year. Feeling I need something more specific as I’m getting older (50 in Jan) and hoping that I can go thru all 3 stages of trainer road. Targetted events arent until June and then later into year. Enjoy reading how you are all getting on. A couple of questions if anyone has an opinion.( i’m sure someone does this is the STW forum) I have the opportunity to commute to work and back if I want.(13 miles of relatively flat trail in total). Should I do it and then go on trainer road in the evening or will the commute just be dead miles?. I am lucky enough to only work alternate weeks so once my lad has gone to school I have 6 hours to myself. I love going out riding on my own but how do I integrate this into my training. I spoke to Jason Miles a couple of months ago and his words of wisdom were that as you get older you have to learn to train smart, I’m conscious of not building up fatique by doing too many dead miles. Last year through Zwift and outdoor riding I was regularly doing 350-400 miles a month up to Mayhem in June. Was really pleased with how I did there so do I just keep doing same or will trainer road be a better option. Any thoughts. Thanks

    Premier Icon sweaman2
    Free Member

    My thoughts.

    I’d commute but take it easy. I’d look at something like the mid volume workout and decide if any of the lower intensity workouts could be done on the commute. Trainerroad for the intensity workouts and then commute for active recovery and the like. Maybe even us a HR monitor to keep enthusiasm in check.

    I hate commuting by car or public transport and so the mental aspect of being able to cycle would be a big factor.

    Premier Icon gray
    Full Member

    FTP test for me this morning. First one with a proper power meter. Didn’t pace it brilliantly, but it will do for now. Apparently my music woke my wife (I was in the shed, thought it wasn’t *that* loud). Will have to bear that in mind for next time otherwise I won’t be popular with her or the neighbours! Having The Prodigy screaming at you is good for motivation though, I find.

    Premier Icon Kryton57
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    Smack my Bitch up? Maybe the volume isnt the issue… 😉

    Premier Icon Garry_Lager
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    Liking run the jewels on the FTP playlist atm, angry music, give you an extra 10W.

    Have a bit of power meter envy right now, virtual power is all over the gaff. Was crawling off VO2 max stuff like Kaiser in September, couldn’t finish it. Got a few CX races under the belt and I’m now crushing it nae bother, hr barely touching threshold. Don’t feel like there should be anything like that difference. Guess a FTP test is in order.

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