Inspired by hiromian's similar thread, I decided to head on over to the Bicycle Speed and Power calculator to find out my wattage output for a certain amount of time. I punched in my best time for a local climb, a 0.8 mile ascent from the Burke/Gilman trail up to where I live, at an average 5.0% grade. My best attempt has seen me take the climb in 3 minutes 52 seconds, or an average 12.8 mph (I seriously felt like I would puke at the end of that one).
The power calculator at http://www.kreuzotter.de/english/espeed.htm approximates that I put out about 280 watts, assuming 0 wind, my 20 lb steel road bike, pedaling at a cadence of 90 rpm. I tried a few other calculators. http://www.mne.psu.edu/lamancusa/Pro.../bikecalc1.htm is more conservative, putting me at 264 watts.
I weigh 138 lbs, and I'm 16 years old. I've never raced before, but I'm in shape and one of the better recreational climbers I know. 138 lbs = 62.6 kg.
280 watts / 62.6 kg = 4.5 watts / kg
264 watts / 62.6 kg = 4.25 watts / kg
Curious to see how I'd stack up, I checked out the 'power profile' chart that's been floating around. http://www.cyclingpeakssoftware.com/...profile_v4.gif Assuming that I could keep this up for five minutes, that'd put me in the 'Cat 3' category. Maybe the 'Cat 4' category would be more accurate, since I only kept it up for 4 minutes in the actual ride and I probably would've slowed after that. But the thing is, up until now I've been too intimidated and doubtful to even think I could compete in a bottom-rung Cat 5 race.
Are these numbers any indication of anything? They're taken from a hill climb, and I don't know how well that translates into all around power. I'm light, which gives me an advantage on the climb.
And of course, I know this power profile chart I referred to is just sort of a questionable benchmark. The wattage calculators are anything but exact, too - but I have nothing better to go by.
I'm wondering if I may have a shot at this racing deal, or at least be able to be proud of these numbers. It was certainly eye-opening and encouraging when I saw where I fell on the chart. Or am I missing something that puts me back in the category I belong in, "Untrained non-racer"?