I know everybody has to deal with dropouts here and there, but I had a question how people deal with it mentally within a workout. I’ve been having a lot of dropouts lately and it really throws off my rhythm and has derailed some workouts. Today I did Clark, which has a 12 second at 200%, then settles into 6:30 at 90-94%. I had 2 big dropouts, one was going into the 200% interval, I lost my trainer connection. So I had to get off, unplug my ANT+ dongle and replug it back in. I was able to rewind the workout and feet back into it but it threw off my rhythm. The second time was at the end of the SS interval, and it stayed at SS and wouldn’t go back down to recovery. This it took around 5 minutes off the bike to get it fixed and connected again, having to switch over to Bluetooth. This time really killed me and I just about gave up and quit. I was so frustrated and cursing out every piece of equipment I had. I am happy that I finished the workout, but got me thinking. How do you guys deal with this? Anything to try to get back on track?
TL;DR - Connection dropouts throw off my rhythm and kill my workout. How do you guys get back on track and finish the workout strong?
Switch to Bluetooth. I’ve written off ANT+ due to incessant connection dropouts. My Powertap P1 pedals are sitting in a drawer for that very reason (right pedal loses connection to the left 10X per ride).
Barring that, do you listen to music while you train? I used to, but it became a crutch. Any sort of hiccups in the playlist would throw off my rhythm, so I stopped doing that. Now I just watch rambling Youtube videos and I’m much less susceptible to any sort of distractions.
I find them really frustrating. Almost ride ending. I know it sounds very minor compared to exploding tyres etc but it has in the past made me consider quitting the workout.
I would simply suggest doing a few easy rides to try and establish what is causing the dropouts. Is there another ‘Bluetooth producer’ that is confusing the signal you want to receive? Do you need to bring things a bit closer? I think there is a ‘dongle extender cable’ , basically a really long USB lead so you could put the dongle very close (in the past I have wrapped it through my handlebar, round the top tube and have the dongle dangling ( just below my saddle so it’s as close as possible.
Maybe check all the batteries in your sensors? TR does a pretty good job at showing if the battery level is getting low, look on the connections page.
Apart from that, let me know if you figure out a mental trick. Apart from convincing yourself that you’re getting extra work so extra benefit so you need extra calories (yum). Good luck!
Yea, one of the reasons I switched to ANT+ was the Bluetooth connections seemed to be interfering with each other. I have a BT mouse and keyboard, and with BT headphones, I was having problems with everything running together. Another reason was trying to use Zwift and TR together, so one was on BT and the other on ANT+. Sometimes it worked great, others not so much. I was using my iPad for Zwift, so it got the BT and TR got ANT+ with my laptop. I’ve since given up doing that so I can probably try going back to BT. I guess I’ll go back over to BT and see how it goes. I don’t wear headphones anymore so that’s 1 less device.
Edit: Another thing I just thought of. When I did Zwift over ANT+ to my computer, and TR over BT on my phone, it worked really well because if the ANT+ dropped out, it wasn’t of much significance because Zwift wasn’t controlling anything, just reading. So I didn’t care. I can try that again.
Mentally it’s pretty hard. Just remind yourself that just because you’re not collecting data doesn’t suddenly mean your workout is any less valuable. Your own body is the only place where the work needs to be “recorded.”
Also try preparing for a dropout by paying attention to how a particular power output feels (while you’re getting the data) and try to get back there without looking at the watts. You’ll get better over time.
Yea, I wish this was the case actually, but it’s the other way around. I’m collecting data, but the workout is changed. I’m using Assioma pedals as my PM, with power match to control the trainer. And it’s the trainer that always drops out. So I still get the data, but I get locked in at a specific resistance. I use the small ring, and even shifting to my lowest gear still puts me well above the recovery valley. Which is why I hop off to fix it.
In the past, I’d get so frustrated that I’d quit. I’ve gotten better. Today I cursed my devices and pretty much said “F&$# you workout! You’re not going to beat me today.” And pretty much completed the workout out of spite. This was the heart of my question. What techniques people were using to get back on the bike and finish out.
I’m often tempted to bin off the smart trainer and just use a dumb trainer. It’s not just when the trainer connection gets lost, its also the stress of never knowing in advance if you can do ypur workout, or if you’ll have problems. Think I have issues in about every other workout.
Don’t think I haven’t thought of that myself. I travel with rollers (Feedback Sports Omnium) and it’s not a bad setup. I thought holding SS for long intervals would be difficult but it’s not that bad. It does take a lot of focus though. I like being able to zone out with a smart trainer.
Ooh, I hadn’t contemplated that it would be the trainer (or something in the trainer-control part of things) that would drop out. I’m on a Kurt Kinetic “dumb” trainer grabbing power data off a Stages left crank. When the connection farts, I can still hurt.
I don’t get many dropouts any more, not sure why they stopped, my setup hasn’t change, it might that TR fixed up something to help make it better when they sense it. Anyway, I used to get messed up when it happen in a 150+% interval, hard to get back on track, but I didn’t let it derail the whole ride.
a few days late to this thread. I often use TR on my phone as it’s easy and clean interface. I have a few dropouts now on again in that setup. It doesn’t bother me too much as I know it’s not frequent and not really impacting my overall training benefit. That applies to normal workouts. Unfortunately I had a dropout during a ramp test. I would have been fine if it was midway through the ramp test. But in my case it came 20 seconds into the next to the last ramp. at the point where it’s really hard, it dropped out and I spun out, then it kicked back in and it was like starting from a dead stop in the hardest gear on a steep incline. I think I’ll start using the app on my macbook with ant+ and see if I get dropouts.
+1 here on a dropout in the last couple minutes of last ramp test. Arrgh. In my case trainer resistance just stayed “stuck” at the previous step. I hung in a bit and when it still didn’t move, I bailed.
No previous dropouts that I knew of, but support said they could see a number of short trainer dropouts during the whole ramp, which in retrospect may be why the Direto (Ant + via extended dongle to iMac) wobbles so long and so much (10-30 watts) around target, despite steady cadence and as smooth pedaling as I can manage. Apparently if the Direto drops out in ERG, it stays at the last level.
Like @splash I’m often tempted to go back to the KK “dumb” trainer but now with my 4iiii PM instead of the old virtual power, which was inflated. On the Direto I often switch out of ERG if I need to feel at all in control of the power – and it’s frequently smoother. Always better for intervals less than 90 sec or so. Does anyone here do their ramp test in resistance mode instead of ERG and just shift their way through it?
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