The Power Training Revolution, with Hunter Allen

We speak with Hunter Allen and Dr. Andy Coggan, pioneers of the use of power meters in cycling.

This episode is all about power. We are lucky to have Hunter Allen, a veteran coach who, as our main guest; along with Dr. Andrew Coggan, wrote the original book on training with power in 2006: “Training and Racing with a Power Meter.” In this episode, we’ll also hear from Dean Golich, a head coach at Carmichael Training Systems who has worked for years with world champion and WorldTour-caliber cyclists.

Episode Transcript

 

00:00

Welcome to fast all the news podcast everything you need to know to run.

 

Chris Case  00:12

Hello and welcome to another episode of Fast Talk. I’m Chris case managing editor of velonews joined as always by my affable and intelligent co host, Coach Trevor Connor. Today, it’s all about power. First, we’ll touch upon the history of power, and how it has fundamentally changed the sport of cycling, and, more importantly, how we train one of the use of power first appear, who were the first to use it, and how did the pioneers of power go from scratching their heads over what 300 watts meant today, with the many sophisticated metrics we take for granted like TSS, FTP, and performance management charts. We’re lucky to have as our main guest, someone who has been at the center of training with power since its inception, Hunter Allen, a veteran coach, who along with Dr. Andrew Coggan wrote the original book on training with power, way back in 2006. That book has now been translated into 20 different languages and has recently started selling throughout Asia. Some of the other topics we’ll touch upon today include a conference in 2000, where the first seminar on training with power was given. This is when all the big names in power first got together, including Hunter, Dr. Coggan, Dean goldrich, Dr. Helen Lim, and Kevin Williams. It is the origin story per se of power and training. Next, we’ll discuss how this group pulled together their expertise to develop ways of analyzing power, and the original power based training software. From there, we’ll move to the pros and cons of training with power versus heart rate. And finally, we’ll touch upon where the next revolutions and training may happen, including virtual racing. In this episode, we’ll also hear from Dean gulledge, who’s now a head coach at Carmichael Training Systems and has worked for years with World Champion and World Tour caliber cyclists for his master’s thesis, he did some of the original research using power meters outside of the lab. So are you ready? You want some power? Let’s make you fast. Hey, Trevor, I heard you ride a bike. Is that true?

 

Trevor Connor  02:25

Sometimes, maybe.

 

Chris Case  02:27

You ever go for runs?

 

Trevor Connor  02:30

Yes. And they’re painfully slow.

 

Chris Case  02:32

I bet they are. I I can only imagine you ever swim?

 

Trevor Connor  02:37

No. No, actually did a triathlon a few years ago and discovered I was faster walking along the bottom of the pool and swimming.

 

Chris Case  02:43

What about sinking? Do you do you ever sink? That was part of rock

 

Trevor Connor  02:48

on the bottom of the pool now, isn’t

 

Chris Case  02:49

it go? Hey, well, it doesn’t matter whether you’re a runner, a cyclist, a swimmer or triathlete, you want to head over to health IQ website. They’re a life insurance company that specializes in healthy, active people like you. They’re able to give us favorable quotes on life insurance. And they have a special website just for fast dock listeners. That’s www dot health iq.com slash Fast Talk. While you’re over there, you can submit race results screen grabs of your Strava or map my run account, or any other proof you have that you are indeed a regular cyclist runner, or fit person. And you’ll get a better quote, it’s pretty awesome.

 

Trevor Connor  03:33

Except I think if I put my runs or my swims up there, they’d be like, this guy’s on his deathbed.

 

Chris Case  03:39

Just put the cycling results up there that I can do.

 

Chris Case  03:51

Welcome to the podcast. Hunter Allen, tell us a little bit about yourself.

 

03:56

Oh, thanks a lot, guys. I’m glad to be here. Hey, you know, it’s been a long journey and a lot of fun. I started training with power back in 1998 99. before there was any of the amazing tools we have. Now, that was incredible in terms of the ability to just understand the data and figure out the data. But we didn’t know we didn’t understand it. We didn’t know exactly what it was. So we spend years and years learning how to understand it developing tools, hit and miss trial and error, all those things to try and figure this data out. But the history of it is has been really exciting all along.

 

Chris Case  04:33

What is your background? personally? How long have you been a coach? How many people have you coached in your life with power that sort of information?

 

04:43

Yeah, you know, I started coaching in 9095. I was a pro on the navigators team, and basically just decided, hey, you know, once I retired from cycling and before then, you know as coaches and local clients, because I didn’t have a coach. And so I wanted to coach and I felt Like, man, I spent two years just hitting Miss and trial and error and making mistakes and wasted two years of my life trying to get to the place where I wanted to be. So I knew that I could really shortcut people’s time and that that period. And so, and then I have, I felt like I had a lot of knowledge on the subject. So I wanted to share it, because at the time, there wasn’t a lot of that knowledge. And, you know, along the way, and again, 98, I believe, 97, maybe it was 97. So So back in 97, a client of mine came to me and he bought a power tap and said, Hey, I got this power tap thing. And it’s like this hub, this really big, gnarly gray hub. Very first one, would you coach me with it? And I was like, Well, I guess I never had a power meter. Set heart monitors forever, but I tried my best shot. And so you know, instantly, he started sending me numbers 300 was 100 was, I had no clue with that, man. Is that hard? Is that good? Is that bad? What does that mean? Though, I went and bought a power tap at the time and started training it, you know, it’s just like, you know what, I’m just gonna train again, I’m just gonna do the old routes that I’ve always done, I’m going to do the hill repeats, I’m going to do all the things they used to do when I was a pro, to so I can understand for myself. And that’s a really critical piece of information for a coach to have, because it’s very hard for people to do it without really having a relationship with it. Then around, it was 99, USA cycling had the very first ever power seminar. In Philadelphia, during the core state championships. They may be called first union or something like that, remember which bank was was sponsoring at the time. But Andy Coggan was there. Dean Gulch was there, Alan was there. They were the three presenters. I went with my athlete, Kevin Williams. And we basically sat in this one room with like, 20 other folks. And listen, these guys talk. And the gist of the talk was, there’s all this stuff we can do with it. But we don’t have the software to do to analyze it to really understand it. And Kevin is a brilliant programmer, and over lunch, he was like, man, I can make this software. I was like, really? He’s like, yeah, I can make the software. I’m like, well, let’s do it. So we started playing around, really, just to make it easier on on me and made a piece of software, he made a piece of software so that we could just, all we wanted to do is basically mark up an interval drag range across of a section of data, and then stop it and say, what’s the average for this interval, this 10 minute section, or five minute or two minute or whatever. And then we build some charts from that, and blah, blah, blah. And all of a sudden, it was around. I mean, really, we messed around with it for a couple years, just really hobby thing. Then we got a little more serious. In 2002, we actually went to power tap, and said, Hey, guys, we’ve got a really cool piece of software, would you be interested in buying it? And so we went up there and made a presentation Wisconsin, and I love these guys, they’re great, but that, you know, at the time, they didn’t really know what they had or didn’t have. And they kind of laughed at us and and you know, we gave him we said, Hey, we’ll sell to you for 100,000 bucks. And they said no, how and we’ll give you a 30 We’re like, now I don’t think so. So we walked away from that deal, one of the best decisions somehow.

 

08:32

And then that’s when we really got serious and we launched cycling peak software August I believe the fourth 2003. And really, you know, we again, we didn’t know we’re gonna sell 100 copies, 10 copies, you know what, we’re going to thousand copies, I had no idea. And in all of a sudden it just instantly, you know, everybody on the wattage forum, that’s really where we were all hanging out on this forum. Everybody on the watch forum bought it they became all of our super loyal clients and such. And then Dirk Friel and gear Fisher and Joe Friel had a training Bible calm. And they came along and said, Hey, you know, you guys have all the analytics and the desktop stuff. We’ve got the coaching tools and the web stuff. What if we come together and combine forces? And so I think it was around 2005. We took cycling big software and training Bible became training peaks. And so Kevin and I became owners of training peaks at that time. And yeah, that was a big, big watershed moment there.

 

Trevor Connor  09:37

You talked about that conference in 1999. And I’ve had several people tell me about that conference. And it just seems like you you had this really fortuitous, perfect mix of people where you had experienced coaches like you and Dean, who saw the potential of this power meter. You knew what you wanted it to show you. You had some physiology Just like Dr. Coggan, who could go and try to figure out how to make this power, physiological, and then you had the computer program, right? Who could actually figured out how to do all this? It seems like you just had this this perfect storm of the right people at that conference. Yeah,

 

10:17

yeah. Yeah, it was definitely a pretty neat thing. And you know, of course, nobody really knew. And you never know. And what happens for me is things and, but at the same time, it was Kevin, that, hey, you know, we really should go to this. It’s in Philadelphia, let’s go. And so I said, let’s go. And we went up there. And we just went, and again, it was it was super, you know, we were just a, he and I were riveted and everybody was riveted. We’re all trying to figure it out. And having Coggan there. And then Alan Lim talked a lot about the athletes he was working with in Boulder. And out of all of them, really, Dean had the most experience with elite athletes, because he had been using SRM since 92, I think, yeah, when he was working on the national team. And so he had had a lot, he’s seen a lot of power data. But again, he was using the SRM software, which had no ability to aggregate the data, like, couldn’t figure out if this person was actually getting better, unless you, okay, wrote down the numbers on a spreadsheet, and then, you know, plotted them on a spreadsheet kind of thing.

 

Trevor Connor  11:28

What are the people at that conference, and a key pioneer in those early days of power meters was Dean gulledge. He shared with us his memories of those early days. And please forget the sound quality, like any good coach Dean’s always on the move. And we caught up with him while he was coaching some of his riders at the track.

 

11:45

Maybe it was formalized to the public, the 2000, I guess it was 2000 concept funding so long ago, I don’t remember. But basically, that was when a lot of the data was formalized of how we were measuring or analyze, and see what we are looking at. And so Dr. Coggan was doing a lot of the physiological side of it, I actually had the data where a lot of people didn’t have the high level of data to, I guess, really understand the demands of the sport, because up until that point, we never had a direct measure of the sport, we only had heart rate and some lacking measures, but you never knew what the true power demands on this was. So in 1994, I started as a physiologist for the US cycling team. So basically, Chris Carmichael had purchased the SRM from Louis sugar. And he called me like two weeks before he hired me and said, Listen, I have these srms, I guess they measure power. He didn’t really know what they’re all about just being some of the proteins have used them for a couple of years prior to that. So I drove down, I was in university, and I went down to Colorado Springs, and he handed me in for frm. And said, oh, by the way, tomorrow, you’re leaving for the Tour de Pon at that time. And you should probably have these on the guys by four of them, so you know what you’re going to do? Wow. So I don’t have very much sympathy for the grad students. And I think it’s because of that day, because I literally had a two day drive to learn how to download the power meters, how to set them up. And they were in DOS at that time. They had their own computer that came with them. And it was a das computer. So I had to go back and understand DOS and start setting them up and reading the manuals. And the manuals were transcribed from German. So they are translated from a German, a German person who knew English translated or not a person who is fluent in both. So I mean, I was driving across country that one of them can just sit in the passenger seat. And at that time, the batteries lasted, I don’t know, 30 minutes on a computer. So then I tried to charge it, got there, put them on. It didn’t work in the rain at that time. So there’s a couple days, but I got a lot of great data. And that was the first so that we’re going to do my master’s thesis of writing the demands of the cycling race. So that’s kind of how it started for me in 1994. So then, once I had all that data for the next couple of years, I did a tour of Austria, I did a number of things and correlated all the data we had been taking this power like lactate and heart rates and all that and then I realized none of those really correlated production profiles, and that’s what I presented at the 2000 comments.

 

Trevor Connor  14:36

Okay, so how Didn’t they correlate?

 

14:38

So there were so many variables letter was temperature fatigue, and on and on and on. They weren’t a one to one measure that if the power went up, your heart rate went off or lactate went up with power. Sometimes I get an inverse relationship, you know, five days into a stage race and some people would get stronger totalize as they went into To what we would consider the 16 skin. So say we’re five days into attendees surgeries is actually performing better, but all the indices are fatiguing going on. But then that changed the whole training to be measuring all those, I guess metabolic profiles without measuring the actual power mechanical work profile for that,

 

Trevor Connor  15:23

at that time, how are you looking at power? Were you seeing this as a tool that was going to revolutionize training? Or were you just scratching your head saying I can’t explain all these relationships, how we’re using it?

 

15:36

Well, there’s a couple of things kind of my first priority is I needed to measure the demands of the store to know how to train for it. Because in a lab, you’re always measured, he measured watts or kilojoules or so we’re in the lab, and we were converted, or we’re already trained on those terminologies in that work. But out in the field, no one was measuring it. So you had to try to correlate it. So right away, when I did that, then I knew what the demands of the sport were, and then have a trainer. So we still use a lot of the same physiological principles, but we could prescribe the work rates much better. There’s no guesswork now. So we didn’t have to guess whether you were cheated out a few years of training to to level or whatever the instance, was, when the 200 loss and 200 watts uphill, downhill, tailwind. hedlin knew what the actual demands of the champions event were, and what the demands of the race event were. So that it was a godsend for me,

 

Trevor Connor  16:32

let’s get back to hunter and some of the first key metrics they developed from all that data that he had been collected.

 

16:38

Now, it was really, it was a really interesting time. Because I mean, it was, again, there were a lot of people trying to figure it out. And everybody kind of knew something was there. But there was no way to really visualize the data. And that’s really what Kevin and I did with cycling peaks was built away to, to, to not only just look at a single file, but then see what happens over time, like, you know, is your best five minutes getting better is your best woman and getting better. And so that was this, this real revolution of like how, you know, we can track all these changes over time. And at the same time, Coggan, you know, after the presentation, you know, that he did in 2000, or 99 I came or what year was but, you know, I’d stayed in touch with him. And I kind of been pinging him and emailing him back and forth. And hey, you know, can you come on and help us a little bit of the software, etc, we’re trying to make something from it, you know, my vision back in 2002, maybe or so was to eventually get to a place where you can period eyes, your entire training from your training stress score. So that was the whole goal was to get to this place of, well, we know the work that we can do we know how many watts we know how many seconds you can hold it, we know all these things. So we should be able to actually periodize buy that and come at it from that place. And so I said, Hey, Andy, I need a score, I need a way to score every ride. And I know that we can do this, because you know, we’re getting this data, we know exactly what his median score. So he goes away. And two weeks later, he calls up and says Eureka got it,

 

Chris Case  18:22

you know,

 

18:24

in true scientific fashion. You know, he said, hey, it’s take me a while to think about this. But at the same time, everybody understands what it’s like to do a 40 kilometer time trial. Everybody knows what it’s like to be at your threshold for that period of time. And it’s generally known that if you can do it for an hour, like you’ve done a pretty good time, and that’s a goal for most cyclists, as they get started is to get under 40 k for an hour. So let’s just make that the gold standard, that you know, you score 100 points in our and that’s, that’s going to be what we call your threshold power is going to be what you can do on the limit for that hour. And you get 100 points. So it takes the thing that we were struggling with, you know, for that forehead TSS was kilojoules, and a lot of coaches were prescribing workouts by kilojoules go and do this many kilojoules of work and do this many kilojoules of work, etc. But the problem with kilojoules is that it doesn’t take into account intensity. So it’s like, Okay, well, my grandma, you know, who’s at, she can do a 3000 kilojoule ride, it may take her a day and a half, right, but she still did the same work. Whereas for me to go out and do a three 3000 kilojoule rod, you know, I got to drill it for five hours, in very different intensity. when when when he when he established Hey, this is the FTP is going to be this hour. If we go at 80% of that then hey, you know, this is your intensity factor, point eight or whatever. And that was then then we put the intensity factor inside the formula to create training stress score. So now you’ve got time, you’ve got intensity in there, you’ve got your wattage in there, all this stuff combined, came up with this nice little number two be training stress score. So all along the way you realized, and this is partly really what Andy’s gotten more recognition for in the scientific world, the access physiology world is normalized power, because he invented normalized power along the way to take into account the ups and downs. Okay, I did 300 watts for 30 seconds, 10 seconds, I go downhill, then I go through hundred watts for 30 seconds and 10 seconds downhill, etc. What did your body really feel like? And that was all along the way, it was the normalized power. But that’s really how that vision came about was out of this necessity to say, well, gosh, I want a periodized coach from this number and get it from there. Finally, it’s taken, whatever 1012 years to get to that place where we’re there now.

 

Trevor Connor  21:06

And going back to the the science side of it, you’re seeing studies come out now that give Dr. Coggins credit for this. What was really revolutionary was that he took power, which is an external measure. So it tells you how hard you’re going. But it doesn’t really tell you how hard your body’s going. So meaning of a rider’s putting out 400 watts, we don’t know if they’re at sub threshold, or if they’re absolutely killing themselves. But from what I’ve seen, Dr. Coggan took this external measure and figured out a way to internalize it to say, here’s what’s going on in the body. And my understanding is, this was based on banisters, trimpe concept which used heart rate to try to estimate the stress and strain on the body and get some sort of estimate of, here’s how hard a workout was. So he took that and normalized power is actually, I don’t think we need to go into the formula, but he uses a 32nd averaging, because that’s about how long the heart rate responds and lactate response, and really try to make power physiological to say, Here’s internally what it’s doing to your body.

 

22:19

Yeah, yeah. You know, and it’s so interesting, because the body has, that 30 seconds is such a weird thing, right? Because there’s so many things that happen to our body that have these 30 seconds, half lives, you know, or, or respond 30 seconds, and it’s like, lactate has a 32nd half life. And so all of a sudden, heart rate responds, and then 30 seconds, and then there’s other things happen in your body in 30 seconds, like, the the universe or the Creator, whatever you want to call it, you know, gave us a 30 seconds to just breathe. And then go. But yeah, and that’s exactly it. So it was based on really sound science. And it also helped with that bridge, because heart rate really was the thing, right? I mean, I you know, I started with a, I had one of the first downloadable polar heart monitors and downloaded all my data back in the 80s. and stuff and those things came out and, and trying to figure out, well, how does this bridge across at the time, you know, when power started getting getting more and more popular, there were a lot of folks where I’m burning my heart rate monitor. You know, you know, they’re, they’re having, like, you know, showing stuff burning their heart monitors, I’m never using it again, you know, it’s like, we have power now. But to me, You nailed it on the head there. somebody sends me a power file. And it’s like, 200 watts, and he goes 200 watts straight across, and there’s no heart rate data. I don’t know, did they go hard? Are they going easy? I have no idea. But then if they send me a power file, 200 watts, it goes straight across, and then their heart rate goes to 180. And it’s 188 goes straight across as well. Like, you know, they’re probably at their threshold. Yeah, they’re going hard. Yeah. So for me, you know, heart rate is what I call the intensity of your intention. And that really, you know, has been what I’ve talked about for years and years, you know, the intensity of your intention, how hard Are you trying? It is what it is mean, it is, you know, is just how fast your heart’s pumping. But at the same time, it’s like, wow, that that makes a big difference when we see it. So I’m, I still have all my athletes, here’s our heart monitors, I still use heart monitor. I think it’s an incredible channel that you still have to use along with cadence and speed and GPS and all these other things.

 

Trevor Connor  24:45

Yeah, I’m the same. I don’t think you can see the full picture of the athlete without both a heart rate strap and a power meter and every athlete I coach when they tell me I don’t use a heart rate strap. I say put that on. Yeah, because I can see how Hard, you’re going on an absolute scale with power. But that doesn’t tell me how your body’s responding. And you need both to really see it. But I think the other interesting thing that you touched on and I think this was the other, if you want to call it a solution, or really nice solution that you and Dr. Coggan found was that use of FTP? Because again, had to figure out that way to how do you take an external measure like power and and correlate it to an internal measure, like heart rate, and the one thing that you can measure with both is threshold. And you can also measure with lactate. So if you use that FTP as a kind of a Rosetta Stone, you can translate power to match up with your heart rate zones. And and you can you can then use it to show which physiological energy systems are using and what are the right zones to target the system.

 

25:56

Right. And that was to me, that’s, that’s also then brought about the next step of it. Yes, his heart rate is impacted by so many different things. As you know, caffeine, how will you slapped how humid it is? All kinds of things, how tired you are, you know, it doesn’t give you the knowledge that I am I training in the right zone? Am I training correctly? Or should I stop training? And so when power came along, and all of a sudden, it was like, Oh, this is almost like a guarantee, right? If you ride between 91 and 105% of your FTP, you’re improving your lactate threshold, you’re improving this energy system. And it’s like, it’s almost a guarantee like it is happening. And so when you when you go above it, it’s like, Okay, well, 106 220, now you’re actually working on the vo to max your ability to transfer that oxygen into the blood, get it through all those systems and get it in, get it through the heart and back out into the arteries. And so it was kind of like this guarantee. And not only that is, you know, you knew that you were training that zone, but then it has this time component to it. So it’s like, Well, okay, how long do I have to train at this intensity in order to get a benefit from it. And that was when we started to put time constraints around it and say, well, gosh, you know, vo two Max is generally between three and eight minutes. And so well, if you train between three and eight minutes, and you’re between 106 120% of your FTP, then you’re training intense enough to elicit a response, and you’re training long enough to elicit that adaptation that you want. And so that was kind of the the guarantee of like, well, this is really, I’m training effectively now. And that then took it the next step, because then then all of a sudden, it was like, Well, how many intervals should I do? And I was always the big question, right? It was like, Well, my buddy, Chris, he’s doing 10 Hill repeats, today, I’m gonna do 15. I wouldn’t do more than him. But he didn’t really know like, maybe that day, you should just stay at home, you know, or maybe you should just do five, because you’re tired. You did a hard workout the day before. But if you had a baseline of understanding of how many watts you could do, and you know, you’ve done in the past, and then Okay, why I did five and average 300 watts on each one. And then I did 60 to 90 and 70 to 80. And also did eight I did 270 is like well, now you’re not actually even training intensely enough to create a response. So now you’ve exhausted that system, and it’s time to go home. So it became this really very convenient way to assure you that you’re training the most effectively.

 

Trevor Connor  28:56

So you know, I was very glad to hear you say that you also have your athletes wear a heart rate strap, that’s certainly one of my my personal biases. That’s where I think both can be very useful. Because if you go out and you try to do those intervals at your set wattage and your heart rates, 10 beats below words would normally be at that’s a good sign that you’re fatigued. My personal feeling is looking at both the power and the heart rate and how they interact and sometimes give you the most valuable information.

 

29:26

Right, right. Let me give an example. I had a client training for masters nationals has been a few years ago now. And you know, he was training really, really hard and his normal threshold heart rate would be around 170 374. His threshold power at the time was around 340 watts and he was training in that last phase of his build cycle before he rested for nationals. And so it was coming down to the last week that third week before like kind of a taper week and then our rescue And then taper we kind of do before nationals. And you know, big weekend Saturday, Sunday calls me up on Monday, man, I’m really tired. I know you got me down for motor pacing Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, I don’t know if I can do it, like, well go out and see what you can do. You can hit the the wattage is they don’t want you to hit then keep training. So he goes out, he calls me up afterwards. And we look at this power file. And he’s right at 350 350 560 watts. And his heart rate now is like at 165. So it’s down almost 10 beats, but he’s doing interval after interval at the wattage it higher than his normal FTP. And so he’s like, I’m still pretty tired. Like, dude, you’re hitting the water, just go again tomorrow, goes out the next day. And now his heart rate doesn’t get over 160 263 but now he’s hitting same thing. 360-363-7373 74 at the last interval he does, he’s brought about a motorcycle even, you know, motor pacing. And then he’s like, dude, I’m pretty tired. Like, dude, you’re hitting his like, it’s okay, you’re still getting benefit here. You’re still training, do it again, does the next day he can get his heart rate or 160. But he is nailing his animals. 365-360-7373 75 and then it’s like, he comes back and I’m like, boom, you did it. You know, perfect. Now let’s rest. And you know, if he had just been going by heart before, he wouldn’t have even done those three days. And those were three really critical days. Because then after taper and Alaska, he cracked like 385 at masters nationals. Wow. So so that’s one of those things that you kind of have to remember is like, Okay, if you’re heading the lodges, you’re still doing, you’re still improving or you’re still you’re still stressing that system.

 

Trevor Connor  31:49

Now, so that’s really interesting because I read a study about three months ago that talked about the difference between overtraining and overreaching. overreaching can actually be beneficial. overtraining is not beneficial. That’s where you need to stop or you’re gonna burn out. And they said in both you can see that heart rate depression, but they said the difference between overreaching and overtraining is overreaching. You can still hit the numbers, you can still do the workout at the same intensity where overtraining you can. And in the study, when they had subjects who are overreaching over trained and had both take a two week rest the overreach subjects saw a bump in their phone, the overtrained subjects didn’t.

 

32:30

Right. Yeah, that’s a great point, you know, and my second book with Dr. Steven Chung, cutting edge cycling, you know, we talked a lot about that he wrote a great chapter on that. And he defined it really well call it functional overreaching, FLR. And that’s what we want, right? Because then that’s where you’re training harder than normal. You’re getting, you’re doing more than normal, you’re getting better. So functional overreaching is when you’re training hard, and your bodies adapt, then there’s non functional overreaching. That’s when you’re still training hard. But now you’re in this kind of slight downhill spiral. Right, you still do it, but you’re now getting more and more fatigued. And if you do too much a non functional overreaching, that can lead to overtraining syndrome. So OTS and overtraining syndrome is like, that’s when you gotta like take a month, two months, three months, six months, a year off. And a lot of times, we’ll even see injuries happen during that phase, my knees messed up, or my back is messed up. And that’s overtraining syndrome. And so we’re always in this place of functional overreaching. Okay, keep going, keep going, keep going. And how do we identify non functional overreaching, and then say, Stop, right? And that’s really coming back to that power meter piece of it, where it brings us all around and says, Oh, well, look, Hey, your numbers are going down progressively. You’ve had a tremendous bout of training over the last two months, and you haven’t really gotten any better even with a three or four day rest. So now it’s like, you’re definitely a nonfunctional reaching state. We’ve got to rescue for a solid week, maybe even 10 days, and then boom, your body adapts come back, stronger, blah, blah, all that stuff.

 

Trevor Connor  34:17

That’s fantastic. And yeah, that’s, that’s one of the one of those really powerful uses of power that you just couldn’t see any other way, though. I guess in the olden days, way we would do it is something like go and do Hill repeats, and you’d have a start and finish point and you try to hit the same times that you can see so much more with the power.

 

34:36

Right, right. Right.

 

34:37

Yeah, absolutely. That’s so true. So true.

 

Trevor Connor  34:40

So what was the initial response? So you’re talking about 2003, you now have this software out? How did people respond to this? What were people really receptive? Were they using it the right way? Or were people still trying to figure out what what did you notice?

 

34:57

Well, and and from that time, You know, 2007 through 10, or 11, everybody was very excited about it, because they knew it was the next thing, it was revolutionary at that point, it got enough momentum, that it was really revolutionary. And in 2006, we also released the second version of who we are sorry, we changed it from cycling peaks, well, I guess it was still cycling peaks in 2006, we still named cycling peaks 2006. And then 2009, we released the third version of it. And that’s when we changed it to who actually and then we had the second edition of training racer, the power meter came out in 2009, which contained the performance manager chart. And that was the next leg, wow, because all of a sudden, it took all of your training, stress score, put it in what we call chronic training, load, how much of this and which is a, you know, an exponentially weighted average over 42 days, meaning that your TSS that you that you created on day 42. So 42 days ago is weighted less than the stuff that you created this weekend. And that was then that next piece of my vision of like, oh, how do we periodize this whole thing. And then we had the performance manager chart that that came out from, from, again, another formula that was that came out back in 75, but didn’t have the software to do it. So but once that happened, once the performance manager chart came out, and I wrote up articles on it, and got it out there, then people were were like, wow, I can just look at my performance manager chart. I can just collect data. I don’t even have to do anything, but go ride my bike and get a training stress score for every ride. And then I know I know how fatigued I am. I know if I’m gonna can possibly have a peak pretty soon. How rested? I am. That’s when it became very, very exciting. People really want it on the boat at that point.

 

Trevor Connor  37:07

Yeah, and I’ll actually admit to you, I think my response when I first saw the performance management chart was similar to, to a lot of other people have just looking at and go and now that that can’t be that’s pretty cheesy, because there’s no way you can just create a graph of your performance level. And I will admit to you my first couple years watching it, I kind of wanted to prove it wrong. And I just every time I was on a peak every time I was on good form there it was on the chart, and I kept having to go Yeah, this is actually kind of kind of getting me and so it was it was very interesting for me to research this a few years later and discover this is really based on good 20 years of scientific research by by people like Bannister and Calvert who are really trying to find a way to measure this and I do find it very Indra is so sorry, the this research is called system model. Right. And I do find it very interesting that the newest research on system modeling is actually kind of come full circle and they’ve started using yours and Dr. Coggins, performance management chart. I’ve actually seen screenshots of your performance management chart in the research.

 

38:23

No kidding.

 

Trevor Connor  38:24

Yep. So there was a an I’ll put this reference, we always put our references up when we put up the podcast, but I’ll put the reference up. I think it was a study. Yeah. So it was a study in 2014, called monitoring training load to understand fatigue and athletes that was published in sports medicine. And there is literally a screenshot of your performance management chart in their study.

 

38:47

That’s awesome. That’s so cool. That is so cool. That’s cool. You know, and that’s, I think that’s what is, you know, been really fun. It’s been a lot of hard work, guys.

 

38:58

I mean, don’t,

 

38:58

don’t Don’t, don’t think it hadn’t, over the years been a lot of fun at the same time, but it’s been to see that kind of thing happened, see all these other bits and you know, paths that people have taken in used it. It’s been really, really fun.

 

Chris Case  39:24

Hey, Trevor, have you heard of this life insurance thing? They have that up in Canada?

 

Trevor Connor  39:29

Chris, we are not that backwards. We do have insurance up in Canada. Just the other week I rolled my dog sled over to the insurance place to get my insurance. Thank you very much. Oh, nice. It

 

Chris Case  39:39

must be snowing up there, huh?

 

Trevor Connor  39:41

Oh, no. Yeah, that summer. We only have three feet on the ground.

 

Chris Case  39:45

Gotcha. Well, you put the wheels on the dog sled goes anywhere really?

 

39:49

Exactly. Cool.

 

Chris Case  39:50

Well, hey,

 

Trevor Connor  39:51

those were the worst candidate jokes. I’m now making fun of myself. So Chris, tell us about health IQ

 

Chris Case  40:00

Health IQ is this life insurance company that specializes in healthy active people like cyclists, runners, swimmers, triathletes, they’re able to give us our sled runners. Yeah, I think that might qualify. So they’re able to give us favorable rates on life insurance. And they have a special website just for fast dock listeners, www dot health iq.com slash Fast Talk, head over there. Submit race results, screengrabs of Strava map, my run account, map, my dog sled ride, whatever you’ve got any proof that you are indeed a regular cyclist, and you’ll get a better quote on your life insurance all through health IQ.

 

40:50

And the other craziest thing that happened and a lot of people don’t understand this, either, is that this was a trickle up technology. So think of, you know, I’m a huge Formula One fan. I love car racing in Formula One. And that’s one of the biggest trickle down technologies we have in you see that, okay, things that happen in Formula One cars, you know, 10 years later, you know, all of a sudden you got paddle shifters and regular cars, you know, you’ve got sequential gearboxes, you’ve got all these different suspension system, all this stuff trickles down from the top racing place. Well, our meters went the opposite way. In 2000 2003 2004 2005, there were thousands of cat bores and cat fives and cat threes and masters routers that knew more about training power than any pro did.

 

Trevor Connor  41:47

I was gonna ask did it did it come from the pros, it didn’t come from from the Masters

 

41:50

athletes. It came from all these beginner racers and masters racers who wanted to get better and had to disposable income to buy one. And they bought them figured out and got on the forums. And in 2006, Andy and I published the first edition of training racing power meter, bought our book, read everything they could read about it. And they started doing really, really well. And then they started telling their local pros, hey, you should really get a power meter, at least he’s really making a lot faster. And at the same time, Lee at SRM he started to to really get into sponsoring the top guys, even though they didn’t really know what they were doing what they were looking at, you would seeing them you know, look, there’s somebody who’s going to ask harmonics by in the magazines stuff. And then it kept moving up. Okay, cat fours, having cat threes, having cat twos having cat one’s hat, um, and then this cat was started turning pro, and then all sudden, that became Whoa, gosh, I camera What year was it was probably 2000. Maybe it was 2009 or something 2010 when I opened up, like velonews. And every pitcher, every pro in there had a power meter on their bike. And I was like that that’s the first time right? Every single pro had of harmony on the bike. And now it’s like now it’s really ubiquitous. And then from there, it then became trivial now. Because then else and you only saw pros with power meters and their bikes then people started talking about wattage in when you hear Pros will be interviewed and coaches who coached work with pros and teams talked about power and wattage and FTP. So then the new routers coming into it after 2010 they kind of came in as Oh, it was more of a trickle down thing, but actually it was the opposite history of it.

 

Chris Case  43:52

I can understand why pros may have been resistant at first because they tend to be pretty dogmatic in their thinking sometimes. I’m just curious why is it only reaching Japan and China while I can under maybe understand China, they haven’t had much of a cycling culture until recent times and But why? Why have people been maybe more resistant to this training philosophy and the science behind it?

 

44:19

Like you said, cyclists are very dogmatic and they are very much in the Oh, what you call it not old school but just resistant to change, you know, people they’re just resistant to change. And I think that’s it’s a very unique cyclists or unique group of people we are gonna have to admit it. And to I think that’s also for me, I love numbers. You know, I’m I got sres and all my statistics classes and all math and stuff even though I didn’t major name that stuff in college, but I love that piece of it. And so for me having numbers and data, while I’m doing the sport that I love Love that padded this great new layer it like, made this, you know, it refreshed my enthusiasm for the sport, because of something new to learn, right? It was something exciting that I mean, I could, I could I could understand my body better and predict things and do all this stuff. And so I think for other people, that’s definitely not the case. And it becomes this like, Oh, I’m slave to the numbers. Oh, you know, I’ve lost the freedom of going for a bike ride and just the wind in my hair and I’m just gonna, you know, I’m riding I’m gonna ride until I get tired. around. Oh, and so some of that freedom I think has has for some people, like, you know, I’m a slave to this number. And, and quite frankly, it doesn’t work for those kind of people. I remember I had a client a very, very talented woman endurance athletes. She won the la ruta, Conquistadores mountain bike race, trans outs, all kinds of stuff. Very, very good. And we got a power meter on her bike, she would, you know, called, she called me up after like, I don’t know, a month or so and had this big, hard workout and just in tears, you know, just crying just like almost Oh, my God, you know, did her dog died and something happened. I’m like, open avenues. And she’s like, like, calm

 

46:19

down, calm

 

46:19

down. What’s wrong? What’s wrong as like,

 

46:23

I couldn’t do the workout. And like,

 

46:27

I was worth 290 watts for 30 minutes. And not only did 188 and it was like, Oh, my God, tears, right? Because she was wanting to make nail it. Right? Every single one. And that was what that was her personality. So I literally had her husband and like, Okay, look, dude, you’re gonna take over her power meter. And just tape over it. So basically, I just came up with words to describe the training and said, hey, go this hard. And this heart and this are so that she still got the workouts in, he got the power meter off her bike when it came in, downloaded it, and emailed me. So I can see what

 

47:11

was going on. That’s great.

 

Trevor Connor  47:14

You know, it’s, it’s interesting, because I’ve, with a lot of the top pros that I’ve interviewed over the years, I’ve heard a similar theme that and I am going to say all athletes, these numbers are very powerful and very useful. But to be your best as a cyclist, you do need to learn the field. And what I what I’ve heard consistently with all top pros, is they’re very good at knowing the field of cycling. So when they’re at threshold, they know what threshold feels like when they’re doing that that hard five minute video to max power, they know what that feels like. And I will always say your top time trial is in the world, numbers are useful. But if you covered up their screen, they could still do pretty close to their best time trial just by the feel of it. And I had noticed with some of the older pros that I talked to who grew up before power meters, even when heart rate straps weren’t that common. They said exactly what you just said, which is they didn’t like a number telling them what to do. And actually, we we a couple months ago interviewed Ned over and he almost sound fearful of a power meter because he’s like, I don’t want to see those numbers. I just don’t want the numbers affecting my workouts.

 

48:23

Right? Right. And that’s, I mean, that’s an important recognition. If you’re that person, and you’re gonna be depressed by the numbers, because you’re not having a good day, then maybe power meter is not for you. But you also have to go into it and realize, like, Hey, you know what, this is life, man, you have bad days, you have good days, you have amazing days, it’s life, it’s the same thing on the bike, you know, you’re gonna go out there and some days, you’re gonna feel like a million bucks, and you’re gonna kill it. And other days, you’re gonna kind of feel Hey, you know, some days, you’re gonna be like, Oh my gosh, my legs felt like lead. I’m I suck, I’m terrible, right? And that’s just the way it is. You just have to go into it. For me, it’s an attitude of knowing that and be like, hey, look, you know what, I’ve got these things I need to do, I gotta do four times 10 minutes, they all got to be around 350 watts. If I can nail those four things at 350 watts. That’s my main goal for the day, whether I felt like crap or not, doesn’t really matter. Now, if I go out and the first one is 330 and I’m like struggling at 330 and I can’t even do it, then I know I shouldn’t do the workout. So for me and for the most of us athletes that I work with and all that we work with their peaks coaching group, that gives us confidence because then it’s like, Hey, you know, just turn around, go home, you know, go home, just stop, right? You’re not you’re not fresh enough to get the training and you need to have it. So it takes that ability to, to have that perspective, so to speak.

 

Trevor Connor  50:00

Unfortunately, the other thing is, the thing no software is ever going to fix is that day where you go out and your power meter battery is running low or you forget to calibrate and you’re seeing absolutely horrible numbers are the best numbers you’ve ever seen in your life. And sorry, those aren’t actually your numbers.

 

50:18

Yeah, that’s a really bad day. And I have to tell that to an athlete, that they’re really proud of it. And they’re like, oh, man, sorry, but a proper meter, you forgot this zero power meter. Yeah, that’s always

 

Trevor Connor  50:36

cool to also noticed that not everyone was excited about using power meters. He shared with us his thoughts on both why that was and why he felt this was not a tool to pass up.

 

50:46

And so then I could actually tell the coaches, because my job was to analyze the data. Like he said, you were doing this, you’re not doing that you’re doing this. And here it is. And the coaching was, there was a little bit resistance, because there’s a learning curve with it for the city, ologists and Andy Coggan, and a lot of the others that maybe weren’t talking elite level and coaching, so they didn’t have those barriers to battle against themselves. So a lot of the newer and younger coaches were adapted readily and quickly. And a lot of athletes, the older athletes are slower to change and younger athletes found out right away, if I do this, I get this power. And so that was that part of it. Now, as we get more analytics involved to this day, still people tend to forget that they actually know to a high degree of accuracy, what they’re actually doing. And so everyone underestimates that today.

 

Trevor Connor  51:42

And that’s so that brings me to the second question I want to ask you, and I know the answer is huge. Over the last 20 years, what do you feel are the major ways in which power has revolutionized training and, and coaching?

 

51:58

I think just the accuracy of it, and I don’t think it has changed that much. Because of that you understand the demands of the event. So people take it for granted that this person can climb after 10 days, and the turn of France is 6.2 watts per kilo or six watts per qL, it gets them this, and it’s in within a one or two places, and it’s sort of France, and they understand it, that’s really pretty accurate when you’re talking about the top, you know, one or 2% of the sport. So I don’t think it’s the main principle has changed, I would say the technology and the software, I’ve used those two entities to say we had 2% air, and then we had a version that was about 5% air, and kind of pretty decent conditions, and I’ll be temperature changes. Now we’re to the 1% error less than those same conditions. So what happened was the power meters got more accurate. And then the software got more accurate to know where the error is, and the power meters and where the bad data was coming from spikes, bad readings, and so on. So that answers the power meters, the power meters got better than the software got better. I would say it’s just been a seesaw that, I don’t think the main principle, but I guess we’re pretty lucky that really in SRM created such a good product to start with that. Now we had a good pretty accurate power measuring system. And now we just found out where to take the back data out.

 

Trevor Connor  53:28

So it hasn’t made a major change in the approach that top athletes are taking the training, it sounds like you’re saying it’s just opening up a window to a very accurate window to what’s going on with their training and whether it’s producing the results they’re looking for.

 

53:46

Basically, there’s always been these really smart people whether they’ve been in aerodynamics or altitude training or whatever the physiology physiological side or the metabolic side, there’s always been for mechanical meaning aerodynamic. So now we actually just had the tool that measured the work outcome. So for example, okay, you have power. Now we can take that power and use the aerodynamicists to make to understand so for a quick example is you can go in a wind tunnel, you could have gone in the wind tunnel before you had an SRM and determine what your aerodynamic drag isn’t improving the fact doesn’t necessarily mean you could have produced power. So now we’re just marrying those two things together in a more analytical manner. And even to the local person, you know, small town, coach, small town person in the local series, can do that with some of the aerodynamics and software calculations with the same power meter. So it’s from the higher level on down to the, you know, regional level, you can measure that with the power meter.

 

Chris Case  54:54

Obviously, Hunter, you’re a big proponent of power meters and this method of Training. I’m just curious if you see any limitations to power or what what comes next in terms of bringing it to yet another level? Well, I

 

55:11

think that we launched Wk oh four in 2015. And that became more individualized. And that that really, that was the whole thrust of that software. I’ve since I’m no longer an owner of training peaks, my I sold all my equity in 2014, stayed on through October 2015, to get the software launch and make sure everything was going well. But the whole thrust of that, that software and what it is right now is to be more individualized, because one of the things that we found using Andy’s classic power training levels, is that not everybody fits in those levels perfectly. And we realized it really early on. I mean, it wasn’t like this something that we just discovered. But you know, our vo two max range is 106 220%. We have people who could do five minutes, you know, in that three day minutes, they should only be able to do like around 115% or FTP. They can do like 150% of their FTP for five minutes. So we learn really early on the individual nature of their physiology. And that was one thing we said okay, well, even looking at anaerobic capacity, well, we it’s pretty much from 30 seconds to two minutes. But everybody kind of switches those energy systems at different time durations. And so once we we had better again, better software, Kevin was still genius programming, like off the charts, more computer power, all that jazz, we’re able to really figure out okay, where does where do these switches happen? Where do you go from neuromuscular power to enter Cassie, from anaerobic capacity to kind of being becoming more aerobic and vo two Max, where’s the blend in those two places? And so that’s really what the this next step has been about. From here. It’s going to be I don’t know, it’s hard to say what is the next step? Because we’ve got left and right power, which is amazing. You know, I love to have both left and right power and that’s a whole nother other conversation because you can learn a tremendous amount about that.

 

Trevor Connor  57:21

Now, also notice you’ve jumped on board with Leo mo so the getting the on the road biomechanical analysis? Yeah.

 

57:29

You know, and and that’s, I think those are the kind of things that are really future oriented, I think we’ll see more of Lord devices that are measuring other things like the Leo mo type are measuring, you know, the the leg Angular range, how does your foot move throughout the pedal stroke? What happens with your hips as you pedal? I mean, that device has the potential to be revolutionary. Again, I’ve given them some pretty cool ideas that they really need to, to implement. And if they can implement them, it can be really, really exciting. Because right now, right, it has to be addictive. Right? So and that’s something that that we all think of, right? What happens if you guys came to work this morning, and you left your phone at home? You would have turned around on backing gone and got, right. Right, you’re totally addicted to your phone. And same kind of thing with power meter, right? It’s become an addictive technology, because like, well, gosh, run on our meter every day, if your power meter, I forgot my head unit, like you don’t even want to go for a ride. And and that’s a good thing and a bad thing. But this kind of technology has to be addictive to be really adopted at a really high level. And so that’s, that’s the next step from the Elmo, I think there’s another device that’s going to have breathing rate, respiration rate has got some pretty neat respiration type stuff that’s coming out. I think it has potential actually to replace heart rate. There’s some pretty neat stuff that you can do with respiration rate at at a high sample level, that might even be better than heart rate. So that could be a potential. So I think that we’ll see those things coming out. I think that the integration of them will be the challenge. How do I get all this data into one piece of software, you know, without having to do a lot of work and make it easy on all the athletes are using.

 

Trevor Connor  59:30

So we we experimented with Leo person I actually wrote an article on the in the fall about climbing where we got set coos to go and destroy Chris and I and a couple hill climbs. And we use the Leo mo for that. What I came out of, besides the fact that it gave us a whole wealth of information is if there would be a way to take all this biomechanical data from Leo mo and correlate it with power so you can start sending athletes out and saying okay, if we fix this Your biomechanics, how does that impact your paddle? Right? That that would add a whole element that we’ve never had before?

 

1:00:07

right? Exactly, exactly. And that’s where that’s super exciting technology is that you can start to, again, see what’s happening between the left and right leg and and where is your dead spot. By the way, you guys mean that that whole bello news magazine was awesome. I mean, kudos to you guys. I was so excited when I got that and started reading through that. And I was like, wow, this is excellent. So great job. Cool. Thank you. Appreciate that. That was awesome. But I mean, that and that’s that’s the next thing. Right? I mean, it’s, you know, I think that’s where heart rates were raised revolutionary power meters, revolutionary. Leo, Mo has the potential to be revolutionary. But at the same time, there’s these other pieces in there that become evolutionary. Is there another revolution? You know, I’m sure there is, I would say the next revolution is the virtual thing. I mean, you know, as you guys heard, but, you know, there’s $100,000 right now, for the winter season in real money, racing in Swift. It’s like, Dude, this psychogenic thing that I’m working on with these guys, I mean, this is real money. I mean, when was the last time you went to a bike race at $100,000? Right, so anybody can win. It’s like, Okay, wait, I don’t have to be a pro. I can be a 3.2 watts per kilogram guy, and I could win the $10,000 purse prize, and all of a sudden, you get 10,000 people doing it. So it’s like 10,000 people times 79 bucks. We’re talking huge money here. What happens when the prize is a million dollars. And you see Peter Sagan, racing in zwift, for a million dollar first place prize for an hour and a half. And you have thousands, hundreds of thousands, millions of people watching the live feed on Facebook. And Peter Sagan is there with cameras on him and you got, you know, all the top pros, and they don’t have to split with their teammates.

 

Chris Case  1:02:16

Right? That is common.

 

1:02:18

I mean, that is going to be revolutionary. It’s it’s, it’s it’s going to be interesting road here in the next couple of years.

 

Trevor Connor  1:02:27

I think what I love about that is we’ve been talking about a lot of revolutions that are very scientific and are going to help your training. There’s nothing inherent about swift that you can do better on swift that you can’t do on the road. But it incorporates this really important other side of training that we sometimes forget, which is the social and enjoyment side, this is a tool that allows you to ride with people that you couldn’t ride with before. I’m sitting up in Canada right now with two feet of snow on the ground, and it’s freezing cold. And it frankly allows me to train and you’re not staring at a brick wall that’s actually can make the training enjoyable. The only thing we have to figure out is getting people to actually put their real weight and

 

1:03:09

yeah, yeah. And that’s going to be I mean, that’s going to get figured out, right? I mean, that’s something like this, the CVR thing is they’re going to have doping control at the actual final event, the you know, the engineers from the company, the supplying the trainers are actually going to be there certifying the trainers. And so they’re in line person, right? You got to actually be there, that’s going to be figured out. And I think the weight thing will get figured out, it’s going to the weight thing is going to be a challenge, because what are you going to do? Are you going to have to get on your scale, take a picture of the weight beside a newspaper that shows the date or something?

 

Trevor Connor  1:03:46

I don’t I don’t know the solution.

 

1:03:49

Yeah. That’s, that’s going to be a bit of a challenge. Because it’s like, well, hey, you know, that’s your, your wife’s toes. She had her

 

1:03:57

wife on

 

Trevor Connor  1:04:00

was it was it was funny, and they’ve since taken these down, but I think it was about a year and a half ago, I looked on Strava because they show all the K OEMs from Swift. And pretty much all the CO M’s were held by 100 pound women. Because you have these 200 pound guys who could put out 400 watts, registering with this hundred pound women and just cruising around at seven watts per kilogram. Yeah,

 

1:04:30

I’m confident it’ll be figured out. It’s just going to take some time and, and with with with this as it is, I think that’s the next revolution. And so we’ll see more and more of it as we as we go along. And it may be one of these deals where you have to buy a certified trainer or you have to go to a weigh in, you know, maybe there are certified places like bike shops that have certified scales and you have to go and weigh in and when You want a race, you go and you actually go to that area and you race there. And then that counts. So I mean, I think all this stuff will get figured out.

 

Trevor Connor  1:05:10

And maybe the simple solution is going to the manufacturers of the trainers, and they could potentially build a scale into those. Well, that’s a good idea. That’s because then you’re getting their way while they’re riding. So right, so you can’t get your kid to step on the scale for you.

 

1:05:28

Right, right. Well, you know, and that’s all power meter is right. I mean, it’s scale. I mean, you can get your weight off your power meter. They’re not programmed to do that. But you could, you could certainly just zero it and just stand with your feet level on it and get your weight. That’s a great idea.

 

Trevor Connor  1:05:45

So let me see if I can, I can summarize all this this history and and the various revolutions that happen along the way. But it really seems like that conference in 1999 was was really a pivotal point where you just had all the right people in a room together. And it sounds like the first step was coming up with some sort of software that allowed you to analyze this data, and start looking for trends. The next revolution was for Dr. Coggan. And you to figure out a way to take this external measure, and make it physiological, have it show what’s going on internally in the body, which, which to me, you can’t under emphasize the importance of that, because you can’t really use it as an effective training tool until they can show what’s happening with the individual. And that’s your normalized power, your TSS, your intensity factor. And right at the center of that was FTP is FTP was your Rosetta Stone that allowed you to translate between the internal and the external. Sounds like the the next big revolution was that ability to see the long term trends. So we’re really talking about your performance management chart here. And I know we haven’t really touched on that at all. But we have actually covered the performance management chart in a past podcast if anybody wants to, to hear a little more about that. And like I said, I ate a lot of crow on that one, because I thought it was a cheesy looking graph. And I now tell my athletes all the time, I am amazed how accurate it is, and how well it gets somebody’s performance level. And it shows what’s going on with them. And it sounds like you’re saying now the the revolution that’s incur occurring is this individualization. So we’re FTP was critical as this Rosetta Stone. Now we’re looking at multiple markers of the individuals so really seen are individualizing the their different energy systems and what sort of power they can put out at those different energy systems. There. There’s a curve that you invented for that, that Forgive me. Thank you power duration curve, I always forget the name of that. And I don’t know why. So that’s kind of the current revolution. And then you’re saying the next revolution is both his virtual side and potentially integration. So bringing in biomechanical tools and multiple other metrics that that can all correlate, is that a fairly good summary of how this is all progressed?

 

1:08:14

Got it. Absolutely done on the spot? Yeah, it’s, it’s pretty amazing. It really is. And it’s a it has been incredible to see it over all these years, and how people have adopted it at different levels and how people come into it. And again, just boggles my mind to think that you know, all these new people who’ve never had power meters and gotten into cycling in the year two, and then now they have power meter and all these different power meter companies and just continues to blow me away at how ubiquitous has become and that that I think has been really exciting. And we’ve just started work on our third edition of training and racing the power meter. Andy and I are starting to work on that. And, you know, we’ve got all this new individualisation type information that we’re going to put in that we’re getting rid of our power tools chapter because there’s so many power meters out there now. And they change daily, it seems like there’s just better resources on the internet for that. So we’re just getting rid of that chapter. And we’ll make room for some of the new things that have come out. So this time next year, we’ll be talking about the third edition and have that baby in print.

 

Trevor Connor  1:09:24

Would love to do that if you’re willing to join us?

 

Chris Case  1:09:27

Absolutely. Well, now that we’ve discussed the the history and talked about a number of revolutions in ways people can train through power, maybe we’ll turn it over to hunter first and have him address how people can take all of this information in this fascinating discussion and apply it to their own training.

 

1:09:49

One of the greatest things about having a power meter is it’s relatively simple, right? So it’s, it’s as deep as you want to go but also very simple. So stick it on your bike, go out, start capturing data. Then go do some testing, you got to find out what your FTP is, the best one is go for an hour do an hour FTP time trial, if you can do that 20 minutes, you know, 5% plus or minus is probably going to be pretty close, then you need to find your strengths and weaknesses, we call it the power profile, came out with it back in 2003, five seconds, Sprint, one minutes, all effort and a five minute VSU max effort, then you know your strengths and weaknesses. From there, at that point, continue to collect more data, start training through your training zones that are defined by that FTP. So use the training zones, you can use the Coggan classic levels, or the individualized levels that are in Wk, four either way. And then then that way, you know, you’re training effectively, you’re not wasting your time. And when we start to pull all that together, start looking at your performance manager chart to see hey, when am I having a peak? When did I have peak numbers? how tired? Am I? How long can I sustain hard training? What is the ramp rate of our chronic training, load lots of different individual metrics in there. And finally, don’t ever forget that you’re training to the demands of the event, right. So whatever your event is, you know, if you are a single speed 24 hour mountain bike racer that only races in Arizona, then you should define those demands and train to those demands. Okay, so and that’s part of figuring that out. So you got to get the data from one of those events, and then you analyze it, and then you go and train and try and simulate that as best as you can. So we’re always coming back to that where the demands the event, and how I train best for the demands of the event, going and playing a bunch of ice hockey in Arizona is not going to make you a better 24 hour mountain bike solo rider. Okay, so you got to train the demands the event. And that’s really it, you know, putting all those things together is is what the basic principles of power training are. Excellent,

 

1:12:02

Trevor.

 

Trevor Connor  1:12:02

So I think I really have one take home, but it’s a little complicated. So for anybody who has been listening to our podcast from the beginning, you know that I’ve traditionally very much been a heart rate guy. And I will always admit, when I feel I need to eat some crow. And while I am still a heart rate guy, I think it’s very important. I’ve certainly had to eat some, some crow on power. And I did that as I learned more and more about the the history of power and the tools for power, and learn that you and Dr. Coggins and Dean and Kevin and all these people who are involved in the beginning, figured out how to take this external measure and have it show our physiology. And to me that makes it a really valuable tool. So my take homes are, I know, we all love to see what’s your best, one minute you put out what’s the best five minute what’s the best 20 minute you put out, that’s fun to look at. And it’s motivating when you see those numbers go up. But remember, there is more to these tools than that. And ultimately, what you want to be doing is seeing what’s physiologically going on in you looking at your top 20 minute power is great. But the more important thing is, what is the true power that you’re putting out at threshold, and then be able to train at that power so that you’re targeting that energy system. So always remember, when you are training, ultimately what you’re trying to do is affect your physiology and don’t lose sight of that. And so the second part of my take home is I think the you get the most value in in using both. So have the power have the heart rate and look at the relationship of the two that’s going to give you the most valuable information and and I love to enter that you’ve talked about really what’s UCB in the future as the integration is even pulling in even more metrics, like the biomechanical side so you can get this complete picture of the athlete. So that’s think that’s, that’s my big takeaway.

 

Chris Case  1:14:05

Great, excellent. That was another episode of Fast Talk. As always, we love your feedback. Email us at Webb letters at competitor group.com Subscribe to Fast Talk on iTunes, Stitcher, SoundCloud and Google Play. Be sure to leave us a rating and a comment. While you’re there. Check out our sister podcast developer news podcast which covers news about the week in cycling. Become a fan of Fast Talk on facebook@facebook.com slash velonews and on twitter@twitter.com slash velonews. Fast talk is a joint production between velonews and Connor coaching. The thoughts and opinions expressed on Fast Talk are those of the individual for Trevor Connor hunter Alan Dean goldrich Chris case thanks for listening

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