I have never heard of anyone doing 20 Minutes out of the saddle, but Alberto Contador.
Don’t your hands get numb?
Have you seriously done a 20 minute power test standing the entire (most of the time?)
Of course you can produce more power standing. Ultimately, you can make more use of your full body and also your full weight.
This usually (for anyone but you and Contador) comes at the cost of fatigue.
Riding out of the saddle is pretty inefficient of multiple levels.
Firstly, you will be higher and shorter, which in turn means your A (frontal area) is larger and therefore your CdA higher. That is really bad on the flat or descent and becomes less of a penalty the slower you go, ie the steeper the road.
There is a GCN video where Ollie bridgewood attempts to ride up the Colle del Reis (from Sa Colobra) in sub 30 minutes, and aero coach has estimated the penalty from riding the entire climb out of the saddle at 7 to 9 watts. That’s a 7% climb, and an average speed of just under 20kph.
The bigger penalty however is likely the physiological inefficiency. You can utilize your entire bodyweight to produce power, but it also weighs down on hands, arms, feet and legs. Also, you utilizing more muscles will likely be more wasteful than staying seated and spin at a high cadence.
It is not crazy to think, that on anything that isn’t a out and out hill climb of something like Monte Zoncolan, that you will be better off when seated for most of the time putting out 320W, and only get out of the saddle for the steepest bits or for some relief (that’s what I use it for most of the time).
This is a big word that doesn’t give us much of an indication of how this is compared to your rb position.
A 10% power drop from RB to TT, especially if you aren’t used to training in the position, isn’t necessarily crazy.
Besides training in the position more frequently, things that might help you is looking at opening up your hip angle. A to narrow hip angle is often a cause of discomfort and low power.
Means to do that:
- higher saddle
- saddle more forward
- shorter cranks
- shoes/ cleat/ pedal interface with less stack
- higher front end.
Especially the last point is often frowned upon because only a low front end is aero.
If you look at most current TT set ups, saddle to arm cup drop will be minimal.
Not only does it help cyclists to get more power out, but also, to get their head lower relative to their shoulders, which creates a faster overall shape.
This is what a 4cm taller front end has done to my position.
The latter is more efficient (as tested) and has me push a good 10W more.