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What is a power meter and why do I need one?

Since you say you're looking to become a triathlete soon it's far too early to be thinking of advanced training aids like power meters. The first few things to do (not necessarily in this order) are ...
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17 votes

Is it possible to burn only ~850 cal. on 1.5h / 20 km fast bike ride?

Since the other answers and comments were discussing only your bike trip, I will tackle on your hike values and show why they are probably incorrect. First of all your activity wasn't a hike, but a ...
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  • 171
16 votes

What is the drag / power lost to a safety flag?

If the pole is a flexible one, you can do the following: Choose a windless day Ride past a second person at a known speed Let the second person take a picture while you pass Repeat immediately in the ...
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15 votes
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Understanding e-bike power/torque

Very quick answer - the torque numbers that are quoted are maximum torque values which do not correspond to maximum power. Power = torque × rotational speed, so, at slow speeds the motor unit can ...
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12 votes

Analysis of Stages high-speed data

The raw pedal force or torque data are difficult to work with but you can extract some information from them. First, note that Stages mounts the strain gages (or gauges) permanently to the crank, so ...
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12 votes

Is it possible to burn only ~850 cal. on 1.5h / 20 km fast bike ride?

The bicycling calories sound about right (maybe a bit too high, but assuming a relatively bad bicycle and higher moving speed between breaks it could work). I think it’s your walking calories which ...
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12 votes

Is there publicly available data on riders' critical and maximum power?

Getting data on professional riders is harder now than it used to be: in the past, teams and riders would sometimes post their data on Strava or in WKO format. I suspect, but do not know, that this ...
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  • 13.5k
12 votes

What applications exist for bicycle power, besides propulsion?

Bicycles are simply a method of generating rotational mechanical movement from biological sources. That rotational energy can be used for anything where a motor would be used. The items below have all ...
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11 votes

What use does a Heart Rate Monitor have if you have a Powermeter?

You can tell when you are knackered. Power indicates your actual output. With a baseline of previous power and HR data, you can establish a model for what you should be able to do. When your ...
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11 votes
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What use does a Heart Rate Monitor have if you have a Powermeter?

There is only one occasion I would consider use of HRM has priority over a power meter (or indeed no monitor at all and simply using perceived exertion), i.e. your doctor or cardiologist has ...
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11 votes
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How to convert calories to watts on Strava rides?

Turning my comment into an answer: Watts in a bicycling context are usually measured (or estimated) as mechanical power at the wheel (or crank). Calories burned are the (estimated) total input energy. ...
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10 votes

How much faster can my commute be if I use a power meter?

With that many interruptions your own performance is unlikely to make much difference to your commute times. Sprinting for the lights, when safe, is much more likely to help. If it's mostly stop signs ...
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9 votes

How do I use my power meter file to improve my time up this steep hill climb tt?

Aside from pacing better, if your cadence drops to 40rpm for too long and you are in your lowest gear at maximal effort for the expected duration, then you could probably use at least a gear 2/3rds or ...
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9 votes

What's the lowest safe cadence on a climb?

Mountain bikers regularly run these low cadences for very short periods, often at much higher power output. The issue with causing damage to knees is more about the duration of the climb and how ...
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  • 39.4k
9 votes

Is the real world experience of riding a light bike understated by physics-based calculators?

The physics model of cycling power and speed has been validated in the real world. Two examples are this and this. The model embedded in Analyticcyling.com's online calculator is based on these two ...
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9 votes
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What is the difference between a speedometer and a power meter in terms of performance measurement?

Can't I just measure my speed and compare it against my last run and see if I've done better? Yes, but it's only directly comparable if the wind (and surface, and traffic ... but particularly wind) ...
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9 votes

What are (a) the source of and (b) the justification (e.g. experimental) for the concept of "normalized power" used in physical endurance training?

My understanding is that high-intensity efforts are disproportionately taxing, and NP is a way of reflecting that. That is, if you went for one ride where you maintained a steady 75% FTP output, and ...
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8 votes

What is a power meter and why do I need one?

They do help with training and racing but they are also very expensive. As you say you are a beginner I imagine increases in fitness/strength (and therefore speed) are going to come fast anyway, even ...
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  • 565
8 votes

Power Output at different Air Densities

The following chart can be found in an interesting article on Training Peaks blog. From this you should be able to adjust your power level occordingly.
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8 votes
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Power Output at different Air Densities

Just coming back to this question as there are a few considerations. The OP only mentioned (barometric) air pressure and not necessarily altitude. I'll start with barometric pressure only and come ...
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8 votes
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Most effective > 200 mile ride training

I did a ride of this length solo in March this year. I designed a route to suit me (not flat, not steep), and intended to be quick (I was aiming for under 21 hours). At 400km it was a tough day, but I ...
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  • 45.3k
8 votes

Garmin watch as a power meter

There may be some confusion with terminology here. A power meter measures power, usually by measuring the strain in some drivetrain component (i.e. how much it flexes when pedaling). You need to ...
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8 votes
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Giant power meter left/right balance

Typically, we don't need to pay too much attention to left/right balance because it's not clear that 50/50 is the optimal balance to aim for. Many of us have a slight imbalance. The advice isn't ...
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7 votes

What's the lowest safe cadence on a climb?

Understand that the concern is not generally things like a muscle or tendon tear that can occur with, eg, extreme weightlifting -- off-road bikers might be susceptible to that sort of injury, but not ...
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7 votes

what power did alex dowsett put out during his hour record?

We cannot know exactly unless Dowsett's team releases it, but we can make a reasonable estimate. The most important unknown is Dowsett's drag area, or CdA, so below I have calculated the power needed ...
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7 votes
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Power to weight, FTP and Terrain Profile

On flat terrain raw power is what is more important than Power to weight ratio. On rolling terrain P/W is important, but the larger rider still has the advantage. On mountainous terrain P/W is the ...
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  • 12.8k
7 votes

Calorie Burn Meter Bicycle

Generally, you attach a bike computer or a power meter to a bicycle to collect statistics, and/or some sensors to yourself. A bike computer measures the revolutions per minute of a wheel, typically ...
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7 votes

What use does a Heart Rate Monitor have if you have a Powermeter?

A heart rate monitor (HRM) measures cardiovascular system effort, while power measures muscular system effort. When averaged over long periods of time the two are typically highly correlated, they ...
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  • 29.8k
7 votes

Low power while maintaining high cadence

64 watts is well within the margin of error of 60w target. Don't be afraid of going to your lowest gear on the trainer. You should be working up to your target cadence, if you can't hold 90 without ...
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7 votes
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What's the difference between power meter and bike computer?

A 'bike computer' is a generic term for everything from a simple wheel sensor giving distance and speed, to an all singing all dancing computer that measure cadence, speed, altitude, heart rate, ...
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