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Friday, 16 September 2016

Eurobike 2016


Here's a three day video wrap of my recent visit to Eurobike in Germany. I was primarily there to meet with the trainer manufacturers and discuss their upcoming products, here's the footage of things between meetings and throughout the day. Enjoy! 


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Subscribe to Shane Miller - GPLama on YouTube


Subscribe to Shane Miller - GPLama on YouTube

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Smart Trainer Mains Power Usage


Some stats from mains power (W) for the three smart trainers I currently own.

- Wahoo Kickr
- Tacx Neo
- Elite QUBO Digital Smart B+


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Wednesday, 17 August 2016

2016 Sunbuild Top End Gran Fondo




Last Sunday we were a part of the largest ever cycling event held in the Northern Territory - 580 riders. Video highlights on the Top End GranFondo Facebook page here.

Also, preliminary results are online here.

Thank you and well done on to Darwin Cycling Club, Pedals NT, and Epic Events and Marketing.


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LOTS more Darwin videos up on my YouTube channel - HERE

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

How to do a STEP TEST on ZWIFT p/b HPTek

Thanks to Dr Stephen Lane from HPTek.com.au for taking us through the step test procedure he's put 100s of athletes through over the years.


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Below is how you can perform this test yourself using Zwift to calculate your MAP and an estimate of your FTP. This is an excellent task to complete prior to doing your 20 minute FTP test.





1. Download this ZWIFT workout file. Right click and save it to your /Documents/Zwift/Workouts folder.

2. Open Zwift and go to SELET WORKOUT (or press 'E' when in the program) and select this workout.





3. Set your FTP to 100W *IMPORTANT*



4. Start the workout and proceed through the 25W steps......



5. As per the video. Record the following information

- Final Completed Stage:___________
- Uncompleted Stage:___________
- Duration of Uncompleted Stage:___________

Example:
- Final Completed Stage: 375W
- Uncompleted Stage: 400W
- Duration of Uncompleted Stage: 120seconds


6. Calculate your MAP with the figures from No.5.

- 120 seconds completed / 150 seconds steps = 0.8
- 0.8 * 25W (increments) = 20W
- Final completed stage + % of uncompleted = 375+20 = 395W


7. Calculate your estimated FTP

- 82.5% of MAP = 395W * 0.825 = 325.8W ESTIMATED FTP


8. Calculate your estimated 20minute FTP value

- 105% of your FTP = 325.8 * 1.05 = 342W


342W is the number this athlete should attempt to hold for their 20 minute FTP test.

Flipping this around - 95% of this figure gives you ~325W and should validate the step test and/or your 20 minute power test, which ever order you did them.

Now keep training, repeat, and check your progress!


Wednesday, 20 July 2016

TACX Neo Road Feel - The Game Changer


The industry is taking note of how their indoor trainers are being used in more immersive environments with VR or game/simulation software.

Wahoo recently released a firmware for the ageing Kickr to bring it up to speed regarding its response to how we're riding it in the new virtual world (specifically acceleration power calculations). After Neo user feedback Tacx also recently updated the Neo for better sprint performance.

With these updates, there's always a chance the next update just might be a game changer ......

This is one. Literally!






Pros:

  • ANT+ and BlueTooth - We're all good there.
  • A more immersive experience - There's some "WOW" factor there, even for people who've used smart trainers for years. 
  • Something to push against, to fight against, something to wake you up from the norm.
  • That rough to smooth 'arhhhhh my butt' feeling after a rough section. Indoors.. who'd have thought that was possible indoors? 
  • Ability for different training modes: Isokinetic and Isotonic - I'll discuss those in another video.
  • Support from Tacx themselves, Zwift, FullGaz, Kinomap, etc..... 


Cons: 

  • Only active during pedal stroke, so dead-spots and coasting are not 'road feel'. That's a limitation of the units, it isn't shaking the ground! 
  • Will it shake Neo too much and cause hardware problems? Unlikely, but time will tell.
  • Customer support may be inundated with - "It rattles....HELP!".... Well yes, yes it does! :)



Future Application:

  • Mario Kart style banana throw... rider in front or behind rides on ICE! Or cobbles! 
  • Training modes 



Summary

  • Is it a game changer? YES. It changes the experience of the game - and THAT's COOL!
  • Could the Kickr do this? Technically I'm not sure. That unit is ageing, ageing well, but still ageing. Also possible issues with the belt and how it measures power.



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