The IM CDA profile course was quite different than what I had been riding, and after previewing the course I had to adjust my plan and expectations accordingly. I tend to try to keep my power as consistent as possible, which means riding uphill easy and pushing on the downhill portions. Looking at the grades on the hills and talking to friends who had ridden them in practice, it was apparent that keeping my power under 220 wasn’t going to be possible. Also, with the curves associated with the downhill portions, I wasn’t going to be able to push on the ride down. This meant I’d be doing more push and recovery, as opposed to maintaining constant power levels.
One of the Garmin options on the Edge 500 (and a new option in the 310XT as part of a recent upgrade) is the ability to not count the zeros as part of your power average calculation. Realizing I’d be coasting down a lot of the hills, I chose to disable zero calculations, to give me a better view of what my legs were seeing so I didn’t have the tendency to see a low power value and feel compelled to try to increase my average power.
Going in to the race, I had intended on trying to get my average power (without zeros) at around 165 watts. I’ve found that when I transfer my ride to TrainingPeaks, it adds the zeros back and I typically see a drop in power of around 3 to 5 watts on the overall average. Looking at the hills and the likely stress on my legs, I thought low 160’s would probably be a good target.
For comparison, I’ve included my race data as well as my 6/5 training ride (relatively flat course) and my 5/15 CompuTrainer ride on the CDA course:
|6/5 Trail||5/15 CT CDA||6/26 IM CDA|