Tour of Sufferlandria

GSAstuto

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I'm glad you guys gave your best on this! I dropped early due to b$ excuses and groveldom.. So be it. Anyway - if you found this to be fun (and somewhat useful) then please be prepared for the 'next level'. I've located what I call 'The Spanish Inquisition' . It's a group ride software that lets me hang, rack and quarter the riders altogether as a group. Can't wait?
 

GSAstuto

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@Robert - yes and no ----

1) Cycleops stuff is <most> comfy with the Virtualtrainer (univet) software. Via this, we can organize easily internet races.
2) The Spanish stuff is totally wall garden and is done in-house.

My best effort idea would be to organize based on the Virtualtrainer system as it's quite trainer agnostic and works quite well. The downside is that it requires a <paid> license fee. I'm talking to them now how to do a group membership , a la team, a la freeloader, poacher type of membership.

The nice thing about TdS is that it is basically asynchronous. Just <yeah right> run the stage, upload and compare. I'm looking more towards synchronous events where you need to jump on the line at the right time. Or a hybrid model where you can knock out a 'stage' within time frame then jump on the line for the real deal.

So, imagine ---

1) Within a 3 day window you need to knock out a TT course.
2) At proscribed time - you join the 'race'.

And - we could even make this more hybrid by using local road course segments for the TT. (Aka Strava). I don't want to lose the 'real roads' aspect of racing, if possible. But also allow for increased incentive and fun to compete mano e mano.

What do you think?
 

FarEast

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What do I think?

I think you are trying to reinvent the wheel mate.

Again this is exactly what elite is offering with its software - which not so long ago you said you weren't interested in, but now you are ....great!

If this is purely for your Cafe then you aren't retailing them and thus you could just order a set in from where ever - If you did decide to retail these then you could sell the whole elite range and the "Wired" version that is sold in Japan, and as RIO GRANDE is looking to have the wired version in Japan cleared then it won't be too long before the ANT+ and wireless version can be sold retail.

In fact, having them set up in the cafe might even light a fire under their arses to get these certified.

And why bother with STRAVA? Elite has MY REAL VIDEO so you just go out and record the road you want to race, upload it to the ELITE server - all your customers download the HD video and course profile and you organise a race and inform the time here or there....... simple!

Hell there are already riders in Japan doing this on a Sunday morning!
 

GSAstuto

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@James I'm not reinventing anything. Just presenting more opportunities for riders to do things creatively, fun and pertinent. As for the Elite systems - I'm ALREADY and HAVE BEEN an Elite authorized reseller for more than 3yrs. Just waiting for the Ant+/wireless version to hit the shores! How did I ever say I wasn't interested in their (Elite) software? They still don't offer the core features I believe are required for multi-user inhouse trainers. And only recently I've found something that bridges the gap a bit closer. Besides, last I checked, PowerTap / Cycleops has graciously (more than) provided 8 trainers and 4 wheels for us to use in whatever way we want. Elite = ZERO.
 

Deej

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Thanks for sharing your experiences with the Tour of Sufferlandria, @Musashi13 and @Robert. Bravo for seeing it through to the end. That must have been brutal. Hearing your descriptions, your talk of wattage, FTP, TrainerRoad, and having recently been introduced to training with power at Tim's shop, my curiosity is truly piqued. That is, I want a more systematic way to measure my indoor workouts and track my (hopefully) progress, and it looks your your setups are working well.

I have three Sufferfest videos: Angels, Downward Spiral and, as of two days ago, ISLAGIATT. I watch these while spinning on a set of CycleOps aluminum rollers, with the magnetic resistance set to max. So it gets pretty heavy when I'm in the heavier gears. Because I don't have any power or heart-rate readings to go by, I use speed as my gauge. So, for example, I'll be cruising along at 39kph and will be instructed to ramp up the effort to, say, 8 out of 10. I'll then kick up the speed to something like 41kph, usually by shifting to a heavier gear. At the end of the workout, if I've traveled "farther," I'll know that I put out more power/made a bigger effort. Perhaps this is crudely effective, but it's far from optimal. You guys are operating on a totally different plane, able to parse the heart-rate, power and other data in detail. I know @WhiteGiant has been using TrainerRoad, too, and seemed to enjoy it when I last spoke with him.

I'm keen to give it a shot, and I think I basically know what I need to get started. But here's a perhaps silly question: Do I need to have the computer (with the TrainerRoad software) in the same room with me when I do the workout? Or will the PowerCal strap communicate with my Mac in the other room? I ask because my wife would never, ever let me use the rollers in the living room, where our desktop Mac is. How do you fellows do it? For what it's worth, I watch my Sufferfest videos on my iPhone.

Any feedback, tips, advice, etc., would be greatly appreciated!

Cheers,

Deej
 

Musashi13

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@Deej my setup is to ride in front of a computer. Either a desktop or a laptop in another room when someone is in the room directly below my usual space. I am not sure what the range of the ANT+ dongle would be but could it be extended by connecting it through a USB extension cable? Maybe so.
I first used Sufferfest on its own but the perceive suffer scale left me spent halfway in. I need the Trainerroad power targets to keep me in the game and not guessing where I should be. I have a PowerCal and though it gives accurate data when you keep a constant input of sustained power it is very unreliable with the kind of workouts Sufferfest expect. In the weeks leading up to the Tour Of Sufferlandria the numbers produced by the virtual power of trainerroad and the numbers coming out of the PowerCal were very similar but try a Sufferfest video and the PowerCal can't keep up with the constant and quickfire changes in tempo and power. If you relied on the PowerCal you would be having a hard time, I expect. The response is slower and the peaks are lower.

Tim is laying on a great service and it is a rare opportunity to try out a variety of setups and systems without the initial cost to the individual and possible mistakes that could be made. Even though I have mine dialed in I will take any chance I get to have a go on what @GSAstuto graciously lays out in Akasaka.
 

Deej

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Good stuff, @Musashi13, thank you. Yeah, you can blow yourself out on the Sufferfest vids for sure, though I think my "kph" method has worked pretty well so far in that respect. But man, I'd love to take the guesswork out of it.

And yes, @GSAstuto's service is massively cool and generous, and I plan on learning a lot from it.

OK, so total noob question: If you aren't using the PowerCal to measure your power, how are you measuring it? The answer is probably blindingly obvious, but I'm a bit slow on the uptake.

Thanks!

Deej
 

Deej

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The Trainerroad Virtual power method.

I am yet to set the numbers against a real power meter but as long as I hit the numbers and keep being able to increase my FTP and therefore raise the numbers I don't see any harm in them being slightly out.
Aha. Nice. Yeah, as long as you have a baseline to work with, I suppose that's all you need.

Cheers!

Deej
 

FarEast

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I would like to point out that the Trainerroad virtual power calculations seem more accurate than the powercal.
 

Deej

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@Musashi13 gave a very good account of how it works, so I have nothing to add to his excellent description, however you do need one important piece of equipment: an indoor trainer compatible with the TrainerRoad software. Both @Musashi13 and I have a Minoura LR760 and these units seem to work quite well. For more info and opinions about indoor trainers, refer to this other thread
Cheers, @Robert. That's an important point. Yeah, I don't think my beloved CycleOps rollers will work with TrainerRoad. A Minoura LR760 may be in my future. But man do I like my rollers.

Just for clarification (and you probably already know this), my "I suppose that's all you need" comment wasn't referring to equipment but rather to the fact that even if the virtual power figures don't exactly match those produced by a real power meter, it doesn't matter as long as you have a baseline figure to gauge your performance against, and you compare virtual apples with virtual apples.

Thanks again!

Deej
 

FarEast

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comment wasn't referring to equipment but rather to the fact that even if the virtual power figures don't exactly match those produced by a real power meter, it doesn't matter as long as you have a baseline figure to gauge your performance against, and you compare virtual apples with virtual apples.
Bingo - this is correct, which is why I said the Virtual Trainer power data is more accurate form of tracking.

Robert - it doesn't matter who calibrated your powercal they have been marked by the professional coaching community as offering very little in the way of accurate data that can be used.

I know this because Im a/. a professional coach and B/. have a powercal that I have done extensive testing on and I have an extensive knowledge of training and coaching with power. Even if you set the headunit to give you a 3 or 5sec average the numbers are very wild, not only that, but the very nature of calculating power from heart rate is so unreliable and changes on so many different factors.

Even Cycleops states this in their media.

The PowerCal is not as accurate as a PowerTap and not intended to replace one. Research has shown varying degrees of accuracy based on individuals and types of riding. Accuracy will depend greatly on the individual and type of riding.

PowerCal is more predictable in a steady-state, longer intervals or climbing where constant fluctuations in output are minimized.

So basically it is only able to predict power output at a set steady pace over a longer interval - something you are NOT doing in Sufferfest Videos.

Also there are a whole host of issues with the actual calibration process as well.

For the calibration to actually be beneficial you need to pretty much be in your perfect state to conduct the ramp test (Again I know this as I'm a certified Professional Coach)

You need to be void of any stimulants such as coffee or alcohol etc. as well as being rested for 3 days prior to the ramp test you do - there is more on this but I thought I would give you the basics.

Then you also need to make sure that the Powermeter it's self is 100% calibrated and tuned and this doesn't just include hitting the calibrate button on the head unit as all that does is clear the 'torque' but you also neeed to know if the torque is being read correctly.

But hey if you are happy with that then it's all cool.
 
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FarEast

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Appreciate your opinion FE, however I do not need the most accurate and precise device. You are currently racing and coaching and probably can use the type of accuracy and precision offered by high end power meters. I, on the other hand, am just playing around with toys to make staying healthy and fit a bit more enjoyable. I may splurge eventually on some more expensive device, but for now a PowerCal is more than I need :)
The sad thing is 'R' is that you might as well just add a number between 60 and 150 to your current heart beat and that would roughly be the same as the wattage the powercal gives you. (I'm not joking either)

But there are other more accurate solutions out there that are within the price ranges that are affordable, especially if you currently don't have a head unit. But like I said, if you are happy with some random numbers popping up on your head unit then that's great.
 

GSAstuto

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Hey James - why don't you move your PowerTap / PowerCal discussion onto a separate thread? Perhaps, even a special 'Ask Coach James' thread? Then we can keep to the topic at hand, which was the Tour of Sufferlandria.
 

GSAstuto

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Right , James. So, how were any of my comments in that thread out of context?


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

FarEast

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You basically highjacked a thread about a new option of simulations and videos to basically sell your services/products - it seems to be a common thing here really.
 

GSAstuto

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@James -

1) The tech thread you started is titled "Video trainers and simulators"
2) The posts I contributed are on topic
3) As a paid advertiser and supporter of TCC I am allowed to commercially promote my business and services.

I hope that clarifies any questions or suppositions you might have.
 

FarEast

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Tim;

I could argue the same for points 1/. and 2/. you have made.

My point 3 is that as this is a public forum and as that my posts meet the criteria you have made in 1 & 2 and are in fact factual based and not pseudo-science or make believe then I am able to post.
 

FarEast

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You see Robert, that's the problem with not reading a post properly - I don't call you sad, I'm referring to the powercal, it could have potentially been a great bit of kit if they had add one additional piece of data gathering.

But hey as my grandfather once said "If the Cap fits, wear it". He's much older than you, and by your logic can obviously teach you a thing or two as well..... but he doesn't know you so he won't.

so what have I learned today..... 1/. If you pay someone on a forums to advertise you can do and say what ever you like even if it's non-sense 2/. It doesn't matter how educated you are if someone is older than you they automatically know more than you.

Thank You TCC for a wonderful education. This is why I stick around.