60km TT Power Question

Hello TR Community,

If you were going for a 60km time trial effort, what power zone would you target?

Thank you

60km TT --> 1.5 hours? --> Sweet Spot. Wright Peak is 3x30 @ 90-92% but has 5-minute breaks between each set.

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High zone 3/85% looks like the mark ill try for then

60K TT would probably have an intensity factor of .95 - .98, so you might want to look at something harder than Wright Peak, such as Galena+2 or Mount Goode+2. Although almost certainly you would work up to that through Wright Peak.

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I have completed several 50 mile (80km) TTs and usually hit an IF of between 0.88 and 0.92… could probably squeeze a bit more out for 60km so may be between the 0.90 to 0.95 range so you are looking at the higher end of sweetspot.

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Depends on terrain.

If flat, sweetspot to start, rising to threshold at half way.

If undulating, I would push on hills, bit easier on the flats…use bestbikesplit.com if that’s the case.


I suppose it depends on your confidence in your numbers. I’ve never done a 60km but I’ve done a few 25 miles (40km) and I’ll end up with a ride that transitions through zone 3 then 4 to 5. It’ll end up roughly 50/50 z3/4 and to be honest I probably bounce between high z3 and low z4; then realise Ive too much left in tank (never felt that way 20mins ago) go into high z4, through to z5. My mates who trounce me will do it mostly in Z4 :+1: Z3 is my confidence area, ideally I’d like to confidently hold Z4; my figures suggest I could but I am not confident :joy:

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Thank you

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No experience myself in knowing the difference as I’ve never tried and this is very small sample size from a Fast Talk podcast test with Sepp Kuss. They mentioned there’s more time gained by using the extra watts on flatter (relative to the overall profile) sections versus pushing harder on steeper sections. Naturally I thought your approach was more correct until I heard their podcast about it. You, or anyone else for that matter, have refuting evidence?

Someday I’d like to do a TT so curious on the better approach is all. Where I live now it won’t be a flat TT.

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@mowens88 what is the terrain like, is at an out and back course, what time do you target?
Also, have you considered using best bike split?

“New Science of Climbing” was the episode, IIRC.

TT’ing is about not going slow - drag is proportional to the square of velocity, which means that to go 5kph faster on a hill when climbing at 10kph may require 75W (depending on climbing speed). To go 5 kph faster when already doing 40kph would require an extra 100W…or something like that (illustrative calcs just to outline the point).

That’s true if you’re talking about a sustained climb, but for a rolling course with speeds consistently 20mph+, aerodynamics and momentum play a much larger factor. If you’re hitting punchy hills less than 2-3 mins, you can maintain a lot of speed by pushing harder for 30 seconds and carrying that speed up and over top of the hill. For the aero piece, it’s a lot harder to gain speed on flats at TT speeds of 30mph. With that much drag, it may take another 30W to gain 1mph. However, on a false flat with slower speeds (20mph), you might only need to push 15W to overcome air resistance.

I used to do a bit like that, push hard uphills, recover a little on downhill (not on the flat though). I found quite good gains though by keeping the power more stable (hard but not extra hard uphill and maintaining it downhill) and my friends who completely trounce me hold a more stable power still :+1:

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I understand the theory part of this conversation, I deal in theory on a daily basis for work but reality always trumps it :wink:

I suppose a more in depth analysis would need to be done although the WI IM front runners that had power files available (and I looked for) always tended to look more like what @HLaB mentioned. Ultimately would need to see if pinning it for 2 minutes up a hill is faster overall than the same effort for 2 minutes on a flatter section, whatever that may entail.

This is a very short snippet of what my memory recalls from the podcast being better to do…sure there’s a lot more to it. I don’t hunt KOMs often enough that I really paid particularly good attention to the podcast.

Edit: the WI IM course is a rolling hill one, not as steep of climbs where I live in Wisconsin but far from flat as say a majority of Florida.

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