This article is to give you “The Power” that can be found within a cycling power meter.
Whether we use a power meter or not in our cycling we can learn a lot about what the data tells us. To focus on the data itself is the error; the data is simply a reflection of you and the sum of your performance / fitness variables for that effort or training session. The key is to understand why your power outputs are up or down, what factors affect it and how the relationship of power to heart rate is crucial to understanding. Read on to get your golden keys to understanding where the true power is….
First of all it is important to note that any power data is irrelevant without duration and longer duration aerobic energy system efforts are better understood when considered with heart rate. After all:
power = energy / time or watts = joules / second
What this means is it is not just how much power or energy we can produce but it is over what duration. A great example is the track running 100m dash. The runner who wins is able to expend the most relative energy (to size / drag and mass) over that duration. This lends the ultimate hint to where the power is.