As far as the doing what's comfortable argument goes: What's been comfortable for you while riding alone might not apply when you find yourself riding with faster riding partners. That's when some people find a need to adjust to a different cadence when they run out of steam mashing the heavier gear to keep up. There is an adjustment period, as a vaguely recall :). But once you stop getting winded at the higher RPMs you might find the right niche for your riding style if you've been having trouble running out of steam keeping up with partners on the heavier gears......ymmv depending on your personal physical makeup.
That was kind of my experience as I began road biking 35 years ago.
My head is spinning.....at a cadence unknown.
Zinger brought up another thing that I've been doing so long I've forgotten about it. When you're in a paceline, pedal the cadence of most of the riders in front of you. That way your bike will respond to you like their bikes respond to them. You'll be a smoother part of the line and less likely to get gaps or run up on people. When they go up, you go up, when they sit, you sit, etc.
Which brings another thing to mind: when on the front on a flat and it's a windy day, hold the gear and cadence, not the effort. Keep a cadence you can maintain. Makes it so much easier on everyone.
I also don't really understand just riding your bike. I want to figure out how to go about things to make myself a better cyclist in the most efficient way possible. Every ride of mine has a purpose and is a training ride in some way and I try to ride each one in a pretty specific way. I have high cadence rides, I have climbing rides, I have hill repeat rides, I have easy rides, I used to have distance rides but now those are combined with other rides. In each one of those rides I'm doing something specific with my gearing, my pedaling, my heart rate, etc. And none of this is in any way bleak- I ride with friends and nobody likes cycling more than I do, I even make other people like cycling more because I'm having such a great time out there.
More power to the people who just want to ride at whatever cadence or in whatever way they feel like it at the moment, I would never criticize or superimpose my way of doing things on someone else. Everyone should ride in whatever way makes sense to them & maximizes their enjoyment of cycling. Just to me it's more enjoyable if each ride sets you up in some way for the next ride.
One thing that hasn't changed though is occasionally getting blown out by somebody keeping a much lower cadence than me......then and now.
After my bike fitting I've managed to get two rides in to see the result. My saddle was raised a tad over 2 cm and back a bit. Two things leap out at me. One is that I have a lot more power in my pedal stroke. The other is a serious change in cadence. Whereas, before the fitting, I could easily spin up to 100 rpm and could also get to 120 rpm without bouncing. It required attention on my part but wasn't particularly difficult. With the new position I have to concentrate to get to 95 rpm. OTOH I don't really need to get to higher rpms to get some serious power and it doesn't feel stressful to pedal at those lower rpms.
Hey bruce19 great to hear that you're really getting back on track. My guess is that you'll be able to smooth out in your new postition in time. Given what you've experienced, this sounds like a real success story so far.
FWIW after the fitting my saddle height was 93 cm. from pedal spindle to top of saddle. And, in cycling socks my inseam is 32.25" (82 cm) just for a frame of reference. I dropped it yesterday to 92.5 cm and will see if it makes any difference today.
I got to thinking, while I was looking at the "I hate the cold" thread. Why on earth did our ancient homonid ancestors leave the serene beauty of the African savanna and go up to Eurasia in the middle of the damn Ice Age (don't quibble with my dates), trek across Siberia, and go over the Tina Fey land bridge to Alaska? I mean, WTF were they thinking?
That's what I'd like to know.
I think I do understand why people get enjoyment out of improving techniques, such as cadence, in their chosen activity. I used to be that way about tennis, squash, football etc, but not so much in cycling since I returned to it a few years back.
My problem is that, up until now, my cycling has been mainly off-road mtb where cadence is still important, but relatively less so than in road cycling. I'm hoping to do more road miles this year so may well take more notice.
I said monkey meat, not monkey brains. Geez. Although I understand they are pretty tasty.
Great. Now my head is really spinning. The cadence has seemed to increase.