Pacing and IF for everyday riding


I just got a PM (thanks to TR) and just want to have fun with it and record data. My goal isn’t to race or really train outside (i suffer enough on the home trainer), but just to be faster and enjoy cycling without huffing and puffing. I didn’t really need a PM, but I’m a sucker for data…

Anyway, I was wondering if there was a general rule of thumb depending on the length of the ride, in terms of IF ? Regardless of training zones, of course, but just as far as what the body can take.

For example, I know that for a very long ride, I should pace at about 65% FTP. And for a TT, athletes need to push themselves around 92% (maybe those numbers aren’t correct)

My rides are around 83% for 30 miles (i have a 3w/kg ftp), and they tend to go downward after 1hour of cycling. I want to use the PM to push myself further, but without feeling too exhausted or anxious I won’t have the legs to finish. Most of my rides are on the road, pretty flat, with the occasional small climb, and in the 30 to 40 miles range.

Any advice would be apreciated, thanks !

For long rides (3hrs+) I mostly ride to feel. So just hard enough that your breath elevates but not so hard that you feel it in the legs, at least at the start. Pacing to power is more valuable for those 10-60minute efforts where you are over threshold.

I would ignore the numbers and just go ride.

Don’t worry about your legs getting tired. If you’re at 3w/kg you’ll be fine puttering home at 2w/kg

Also don’t discount how much you can recover. Ive done a max 25 minute effort in the first 10 miles of a 60 miles ride and been fine. You need to have some fitness for that of course, but yeah took it easy for a lot of the remaining ride.

To humor your number request tho - I think it’s just easier to look at your power curve than calculate an IF. Just guess the length of time your ride is and it’ll tell you previous avg watts you sustained for that time frame. Tho I pretty much ignore it because once you get to 2,3,4,5 hours it’s pretty variable as I’m not giving full effort for over 1 hr generally.