The Workout Instructions are very useful, but they are also a useful distraction from the suffering . However, I wonder if they can be improved.
To set the scene, I find that immediately after the intense part of the interval, I am busy, eg, gear changing, sometimes both chain wheel and cassette, grabbing a drink, moping my brow. So, my attention in those first few seconds is no longer on the screen, rather on me and my bike.
However, it is often, but not always, that first few seconds is when the actual instruction is displayed, but only for a few seconds. What follows is often interesting and useful explanation but lacks meaning without the instruction that presumably preceded it. It feels to me like the type of thing a coach would be talking about while the trainees are doing those things, rather than written instructions requiring the trainee’s attention on the screen. The solution, which I have built to my own custom workouts is to, either have a 5-10 second pause at the beginning of the rest, or display that first instruction for longer.
The second point is setting up your gearing for what is to follow. It seems to me the best time to do that is during the warm up. Definitely not during the intervals and rest breaks. As an example, I did ‘Kingsbury’, a 1-hour threshold workout of 5 sets of 5min at threshold with 4min rest. In the 4th set, we are recommended to raise our cadence, to test how that feels at threshold, the explanation being that for many high cadence is less fatiguing at threshold. I tried to do just that, but it involved a lot of fiddling with gear changing, ie, both chain wheel and cassette, only to revert back to the previous setting, by which time I was way of target and getting increasingly pissed off, and that effectively ruined the remainder of the workout. The extra cadence recommendation was vague, was the target shifting from 90 to 94, 100, 110? I couldn’t find a small say 5% ratio change. The solution is using the warmup which is often 10 minutes with changing intensity, use that to forewarn the rider of what will come during the session and the need, in this case, to increase cadence to a target at threshold, hence figuring out the gearing well in advance.
Do others have ideas about improving the instructions?