Smart Trainers, RPE and holding power in "dumb mode" (trainer not in ERG mode)

I started indoor training (And training with trainer road) in August 2019. So far I would say that my progress has been better then expected (FTP of 180 to 242 while dropping ~ 6 lbs). I recently started running my trainer road workout and using Zwift as a backdrop to stair at. During this process I had some issues with using my trainer in “smart mode - ERG mode” (Got if figured out now), but I learned that when the trainer is not setting the resistance for me, my power output is all over the place.

Any suggestions on how to learn to lock in different power outputs or RPE levels when training in “Dumb mode” or riding on zwift?

Thanks in advance for any advice!

Practice makes perfect.

Also, I’ve noticed that if you do some ‘kick and pulls’ you’re going to see your power levels out.

Even if you do those kick and pull drills during regular ERG rides where power is consistent, you’ll see that you can do the kick and pull more naturally when you ride.

Makes sense! Would you recommend switching to all the work out not being in ERG mode until I get it down? Just doing specific styles of work out not in ERG mode or perhaps just 1 work out a week?

Thanks for the reply

Honestly, I’m not sure how much you should be doing it. I’d probably not worry about it so much, you don’t need to really have such a flat line like the trainer when you’re riding on your own.

I think it’s one of those things that the more you do it, the better you get.