Cycling Training Tips

Review: Training and Racing with a Power Meter

Training and Racing with a Power Meter is written by Hunter Allen and Andrew Coggan as an introduction to power meter training and analyzing. The book provides a comprehensive guide to using power meters for both training and racing. It is easy-to-read language throughout the book, and if you already know a thing or two about using a power meter, you will finish this book fast.

The authors begin by explaining the basic principles behind power meters and how they can be used to measure a cyclist’s performance. They then provide detailed information on how to use this data to create effective training plans that target specific areas of weakness. There is a detailed description of the different power meters on the market, helping you decide which power meter is the right for you. I think this presentation is objective and quite useful for beginners. Thus, there are some pages you might skip if you already own a power meter. There is also a short intro to the main advantages of using a power meter. I agree with most of the words in these chapters.

There are some examples of workouts you can do with a power meter. The testing procedure to make a power profile and training programs are different from the ones I prefer, but it would be boring if all coaches ended up with the same training programs. There are some sound basic principles in these programs, and just like all other programs, they should be modified individually. The book also includes advice on how to use power data during races, including pacing strategies and tactics for attacking or responding to attacks from other riders. This can be particularly useful for time trialists or road racers who are looking to improve their results in competition. The significant advantage is that it clearly shows beginners how to train with a power meter and underlines the importance of post-training and post-race analysis.

The authors work closely together with TrainingPeaks, which means that most analyzing refers to features in this software. This is logic, but sometimes the book looks more like a different manual to the software. When you look beside this, there is an excellent description of the features that TrainingPeaks offers.

If we should try to sum this up, here are five actionable insights from “Training and Racing with a Power Meter” by Hunter Allen and Andrew Coggan:

  1. Determine your functional threshold power (FTP). FTP is the maximum power you can sustain for one hour and is used as a benchmark for setting training zones. By knowing your FTP, you can tailor your training to improve your weaknesses and build on your strengths.
  2. Use power-based training zones. Power-based training zones allow you to train at specific intensities that target different aspects of fitness. This helps ensure that you are making progress towards your goals in a structured and efficient way.
  3. Incorporate interval training into your workouts. Interval training involves alternating periods of high-intensity effort with periods of rest or lower intensity effort. This type of training can help improve both aerobic and anaerobic capacity.
  4. Analyze your data regularly to track progress and adjust your training plan accordingly. Regularly analyzing performance data such as power output, heart rate, and speed can help identify areas where you need to improve and make adjustments to your training plan.
  5. Fuel properly during long rides or races using a nutrition plan based on power output. Using a nutrition plan based on power output can help ensure that you are consuming enough calories and nutrients to sustain performance during long rides or races while avoiding stomach issues or bonking.

By incorporating these insights from “Training and Racing with a Power Meter” into your own cycling routine, you can take steps towards becoming a more effective cyclist who trains smarter, not just harder.

This is a great introductory book about training and racing with a power meter for beginners. It is also an excellent book for coaches who haven’t had the pleasure to work with athletes using SRM Cranks or PowerTaps, but want to know what power meter training is all about. This book shows you why power meters are popular and gives you the initial tools to get started racing and training with a power meter. Overall, Racing and Training with a Power Meter is an essential resource for any serious cyclist who wants to take their training and racing performance to the next level. With its practical advice and expert insights into power-based training methods, this book offers readers the tools they need to achieve their cycling goals.

You can purchase the book at Amazon .

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