Bike computer fields for endurance rides

I really want to try the whole “make easy days easy” thing with my endurance rides. My FTP and speeds have dropped with some time off the bike, so I’ve been a bit discouraged but need to get back in the saddle!!

What fields (I have a Garmin) would you recommend for long easy rides? I think seeing a low speed would prompt me to ride harder and defeat the purpose So I’d probably hide that! I’m thinking time, distance, 3 sec power, average power,NP and maybe IF? I’m not really sure so I’d love some input!!

I do time, watts (3s) and average watts, cadence, and heart rate. Speed / distance fall in line, but I’ll take distance over speed. I’m more interested in time v power usually.


Default Workout Comparison

Keep it simple. Load an easy workout and use the default workout screen.


How do you get this fancy graphic display?

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If you’re purely after LSD, I’d say HR, 3 sec Pwr, Cadence, time and distance. Set goals on those as appropriate.


My default screen has speed, distance, 3s power, time, HR, and cadence.

There is a way to do screen captures natively on a Garmin Edge but you have to plug it into a computer to download the image = PITA.

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Go with the ones you suggested and give it a try. It’ll only take a few rides for you to figure out which metrics you actually use.

Bit of an aside (and anathema to the “dedicated to making you a faster cyclist” tagline), but I never add speed to any of my screens as it seems a rather pointless metric. It really doesn’t tell you anything about your performance. If I’m going into a headwind, I’ll be going slower than with a tailwind for the same effort. Same with hills. And if you’re racing, the speed number doesn’t tell you if you’re going faster or slower than your competitor. The only time I’ve ever thought about my current speed is when I’m hurtling down a long steep hill, but I probably shouldn’t be looking at my computer at that moment anyway.


I certainly don’t want to hijack or derail the thread, but we’re 5 reply posts in and nearly everyone has cadence up on the screen. Do you make it an “actionable” field? Do you actively try to change your cadence based on what you read?


Garmin 530 or 830 or 1030 will show that fancy workout screen by default, when you load and run a workout.

Workouts can come from the Garmin Mobile app, or TrainerRoad, or TrainingPeaks, or …

Which Garmin do you have?


Yes. There is a strategy to cadence. For me, anything above 90 is an acceleration, then I park around 70-80ish to hold power.


I do. I use it to keep the legs fresh. I have a bad knee that prefers high cadence.


I use speed for group rides. When it’s my turn to pull, speed ensures I don’t surge or drop the pace. Otherwise, I find it useless as well. I do like it on downhills just for the thrill of it though.


If you live in an area with a lot of traffic lights, maintaining average power in Z2 might force you into Z3.

3s power and maybe HR are all you really need.

Speed is inconsequential. Take it or leave it. Most people don’t chase speed as a number. They chase the guy/gal dangling in front of them.


Good point…I guess I just revealed how often I pull on group rides!


Speed for me on a long JRA helps me do a mental calc on when I’ll be home.

If I am competing, I shut it off. It is what it is. No different than auto / moto racing… speedometers aren’t a thing. Usually it’s lower than what I think, I’m inclined to burn a candle worrying about it.


Thanks! I have the 1030 but I never load workouts. I do my intervals the old fashioned way with the lap button :slight_smile:
Jealous of the fancy screen now though!

Power Zone/IF, HR, and cadence. I’m known to go a little harder than I should chasing watts, so hiding explicit power numbers makes me target effort rather than getting sucked into trying to push the numbers up. I also hide distance/ride time because it stops me from checking it every 3 minutes (I’m impatient haha)

Personally I find keeping my cadence higher has positive effects on how I fatigue over longer rides. Also run off the bike fairly frequently.


So does the 520.

As for the original question: speed (because I use the same screen to ride with others and speed is useful when you do pacelines), cadence (because I do drills once in a while), HR (because), and 10s power.

I have a Garman 530, might be a dumb question but I can’t figure out how to get the workout screen to show 3 second average power, Instead mine shows lap power average on the workout screen. Any help is good help thank you