Newbie question here. I just did Mount Field which had some 12 min intervals at 85%. It had optional drills during those intervals, and one of them is practicing climbing out of the saddle. I found it really hard to keep a smooth cadence in ERG mode. It felt like the wasn’t enough resistance, and the pedals would “knock”. Subsequently the power would drop until I slowed the cadence way down. Should I be setting the trainer up in a different mode and shift the gears when I get out of the saddle?
When you’re out of the saddle your cadence is generally a lot lower. Unless you’re super smooth you will knock trying to stand and do the same cadence as if you were seated.
In ERG, just slow your cadence right down to 60/70 and the ERG will adjust resistance accordingly. You can also shift in ERG which just helps the system achieve the same thing but its not necessary.
Alternatively you could run it in resistance mode and use the gearing as you mentioned but it will still factor cadence in too.
You’ll get used to cadence changes and smoothness. Cadence with ERG mode is key.
I have to slow it down more than that. Smoothing out the cadence feels like it is a LOT of wasted energy. My legs feel like they’re doing a wall sit. I know standing is inefficient and takes more energy than sitting, but it doesn’t feel like it does in real life. I just wanted to make sure I’m doing it correctly. It doesn’t feel right. I don’t think it’s doing anything to help real world climbing out of the saddle.
Do heavier riders have this issue? I’m about 190lbs. Standing allows my weight to push down on the pedals. I think in real life I probably stand when I need to generate more power than 85% ftp. Just thinking out loud here…
It needs time to adjust. If you slow down or speed up cadence then it will adjust in a few seconds to match. I agree you’re probably used to standing outside way over 85% FTP but you can also do it for far less with a bit of control.
I’m just a shade lighter than you. A couple things.
Mostly I think it’s just practice getting used to the system. But other things factor in as well. I think you’ll notice less knocking the faster the flywheel is spinning, so shift into a quicker gear; your torque is reduced. The ‘knocking’ is really just from changes on crank speed…this will happen less with higher speed.
I think some of this faded away at higher power. So as your ftp goes up, the greater resistance your legs feel will make knocking less likely. Just as an example…in the same gear/cadence, I bet you’re way less likely to experience this during a VO2 interval than a sweet spot one.
I do intervals of a minute or more. You’re right, it does adjust. When I smooth out the cadence to get rid of the “knocking” sound it feels highly inefficient. Is that how it’s supposed to feel? It just feels like there isn’t enough resistance.
The issue people run into, is that once you’re below a certain wattage relative to your weight, when you stand up, just your body weight generates enough torque to accelerate the trainer flywheel, so you DO actually have to expend additional energy to keep the system from accelerating mid pedalstroke.
- I shift for all my standing efforts in ERG. Small to big ring for my use, but it’s also possible to use 2-4 shifts on the rear cassette. I have it covered in an article I wrote years ago:
I just got annoyed with “waiting” for TR to handle the change when I followed their “slow your cadence to stand” recommendation. Once you sit down, you have to “overpower” to kick cadence back up to normal seated rpm’s. It just felt odd and unnecessary to me. I quickly realized it made more sense to shift up just like I do outside to stand, then reverse it when sitting again.
Ok that makes sense. I guess the real question is should I skip the optional drill until it’s an interval with a watts level that I would stand up in real life?
Easiest solution is just get a 500 watt ftp and drop 50 pounds. Problem will go away, guaranteed
I think it’s personal preferance. I’d see how it goes to start in the hardest gear possible, that might solve it honestly. Barring that…I’d just ride naturally out of the saddle untill the cadence picks up too much, and then sit down. I’ve heard multiple times that in the grand scheme of things, those drills dont really matter if you hit the watt target.
That said, it IS posskble to ride smoothly out of the saddle at any wattage…but you do have to ride differently/less efficiently. Basically sort of sink down into the pedal with your body on down strokes to lessen the force into the pedal, and have the bottom of the pedal stroke rebound your body weight, rather than have it go into the trainer resistance system.
I also shit gears in ERG mode for similar bits and pieces. Although, since getting a Neo2 its much better at reacting to cadence/standing changes.
Man I shit the gears most workouts too
Everyone needs short term goals right?