Question: I have been riding for 2 years and my goal is to finish the 109-mile El Tour de Tucson in less than 5 hours this November. My coach has been prodding me to begin training with power, so I purchased a PowerTap recently. However, the software seems to be lacking. What software you would recommend for power analysis? — Paul D.
Coach Fred Matheny Replies: I’ve used a PowerTap since it was introduced but rarely spend much time on data analysis. I look at average speed and wattage for a regular training ride and look at average wattage for intervals, but that’s about it. For those purposes, the PowerTap software is fine.
If you want an alternative software for power training, you might try Training Peaks.
A word of warning about data analysis when using a power meter: It’s possible to get too analytical and forget about basic training principles. The most important training skill is using perceived exertion to gauge the intensity of your workout. That’s the foundation of any training method.
So as you train by power, remember to tune in to your perceived exertion as well. Soon you’ll be able to guess your intensity within a few watts without looking at the meter. When you can monitor your exertion in this way, you’ll be a complete rider.