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Cadence, who needs it?

Old 01-24-23, 05:47 PM
  #101  
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
Just ride and don't worry about your cadence.
Ridiculous. You know what forum you're on, right??

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Old 01-24-23, 06:04 PM
  #102  
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
... Anyone under say 65 should be able to pedal at 150....
But why?
It this about:
-getting faster?
(for how long)
-going longer?
(how fast)
-Winning?

They are all different and the optimal training to do them is different. The most powerful are often not the fastest. The fastest rarely win the head-to-head [road] race.
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Old 01-24-23, 06:25 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Cycling is primarily an aerobic sport.
That's bloody obvious, but that aerobic activity is entirely the repeated application of torque to pedals. You just acknowledged that muscle fatigue is a limit on how much torque you can put out.

So are you actually claiming that people don't vary in the amount of torque they can put out aerobically?

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Old 01-24-23, 06:26 PM
  #104  
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Originally Posted by Doge View Post
I don't think how you pedal matters much.

I find it works best for me if I use my feet.
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Old 01-24-23, 06:27 PM
  #105  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
I find it works best for me if I use my feet.
Because you have them.
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Old 01-24-23, 06:40 PM
  #106  
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Originally Posted by Doge View Post
Because you have them.
True. I do have some fascination with adaptive technology. A few months ago, a woman very patiently demonstrated to me how she steered her hand cranked recumbent when I asked her while passing on a MUP. Damn cool machine.
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Old 01-24-23, 07:11 PM
  #107  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
That's bloody obvious, but that aerobic activity is entirely the repeated application of torque to pedals. You just acknowledged that muscle fatigue is a limit on how much torque you can put out.

So are you actually claiming that people don't vary in the amount of torque they can put out aerobically?

​​​​​​
Iím saying that pushing a big gear is not very important compared to your aerobic capacity.
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Old 01-24-23, 07:15 PM
  #108  
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
Just ride and don't worry about your cadence.
Just ride and donít worry about this thread.
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Old 01-24-23, 08:01 PM
  #109  
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Originally Posted by Eric F View Post
Ridiculous. You know what forum you're on, right??

Yes of course I know what forum i am on...This is general forum, the thing I notice about general forum is that it's so focused on performance, racing, winning time trails, pumping out as many watts as possible, setting speed records that it's no different from road racing forum or time trail forum....Not saying that people shouldn't post such stuff here, but just saying that it seems that for majority of people cycling is all about racing and performance and nothing else. To each his own, ride in whatever way makes us happy.
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Old 01-24-23, 08:28 PM
  #110  
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Originally Posted by Doge View Post
But why?
It this about:
-getting faster?
(for how long)
-going longer?
(how fast)
-Winning?

They are all different and the optimal training to do them is different. The most powerful are often not the fastest. The fastest rarely win the head-to-head [road] race.
Why? Well, this all started when I joined a group who had been riding together for years. I was 10 years older than most of them and had (and still have) a crap power/weight ratio. So I experimented with different things, trying to be able to sort of keep up, even if I got dropped on every hill. Caring about efficiency mattered. But yeah, over a period of about 5 years I did get faster, even though my power/weight was still crap. I did better on long rides than short ones. I could out-sprint everyone in the group, so my glycolytic system was pretty good.

I don't think you're thinking about this in the right way. Do some 10,000' days with a 3000' pass climb and you'll figure it out. Winning? Naw, I never raced formally. But you may know how it is - every group ride can include some racing. I did OK. My last long event ride, I was the 7th oldest rider, so bib 7 and finished way ahead of even the double digit bibs. I was in the top 10 finishers on a few brevets in my early 60s. Anyway, it seems to me that paying attention to what your body's doing is helpful.

The thing is, no matter what the distance or pace is, getting more efficient and knowing your correct cadence for every situation is very helpful, to say the least. What I'm talking about is the basis for whatever optimal training one does. Paying attention is everything.
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Old 01-24-23, 09:52 PM
  #111  
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
Yes of course I know what forum i am on...This is general forum, the thing I notice about general forum is that it's so focused on performance, racing, winning time trails, pumping out as many watts as possible, setting speed records that it's no different from road racing forum or time trail forum....Not saying that people shouldn't post such stuff here, but just saying that it seems that for majority of people cycling is all about racing and performance and nothing else. To each his own, ride in whatever way makes us happy.
I donít think you are necessarily wrong. However (IMO) a big factor in this is that forums like this are populated by people passionate about the activity. Passionate cyclists tend to be concerned about performance-related matters related to going faster, farther, and/or more efficiently. Personally, I donít raceÖany more. I hung that up almost 20 years ago. However, Iím still interested in lightweight, fast bikes, even if my fitness isnít what it used to be - World Cup bike. Solo cup motor. My time in this forum has increased my awareness that passionate cyclists donít always look like the folks I ride/rode with, and riding a non-racing bike doesnít mean they are less passionate than anyone else.
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Old 01-24-23, 10:04 PM
  #112  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Iím saying that pushing a big gear is not very important compared to your aerobic capacity.
That issue, endurance at high pedal load, low cadence, can make a difference when one runs out of gears on a long steep climb. HR doesn't get that high because cadence is low, but OMG that can hurt, especially when one has a lot of miles in one's legs. I remember reading a race report of a long one in Italy, an all day affair with a big pass near the end. It was said that the rider with the best pain tolerance won it. Certainly not an every ride kind of thing, but I've been there and I would not walk or paperboy, no. Gotta have some pride. I train everything.

But you're right. It can make a difference, but not that often. OTOH, being fairly good at the high pedal load thing might matter for endurance. There is this: https://www.trainingpeaks.com/blog/l...rvals-cycling/ but whether putting the time there or somewhere else is a different question. Ivan Basso was known to use long Z4 low cadence intervals. He did OK.
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Old 01-25-23, 01:23 AM
  #113  
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
Yes of course I know what forum i am on...This is general forum, the thing I notice about general forum is that it's so focused on performance, racing, winning time trails, pumping out as many watts as possible, setting speed records that it's no different from road racing forum or time trail forum....Not saying that people shouldn't post such stuff here, but just saying that it seems that for majority of people cycling is all about racing and performance and nothing else. To each his own, ride in whatever way makes us happy.
My interest is about efficiency. The more efficient I am, the longer I can be out there doing what I enjoy.
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Old 01-25-23, 03:03 AM
  #114  
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
That issue, endurance at high pedal load, low cadence, can make a difference when one runs out of gears on a long steep climb. HR doesn't get that high because cadence is low, but OMG that can hurt, especially when one has a lot of miles in one's legs. I remember reading a race report of a long one in Italy, an all day affair with a big pass near the end. It was said that the rider with the best pain tolerance won it. Certainly not an every ride kind of thing, but I've been there and I would not walk or paperboy, no. Gotta have some pride. I train everything.

But you're right. It can make a difference, but not that often. OTOH, being fairly good at the high pedal load thing might matter for endurance. There is this: https://www.trainingpeaks.com/blog/l...rvals-cycling/ but whether putting the time there or somewhere else is a different question. Ivan Basso was known to use long Z4 low cadence intervals. He did OK.
I was talking in general out of choice. When you are gear limited on a long steep climb then you have no choice. As I happen to do lots of very steep climbing, I do train low cadence, high torque quite often. I'll go as low as 50 rpm seated at threshold power in training, but I'm usually standing below 60 rpm if I run out of gears. On the flat I never ride below 75 rpm out of choice at any significant power.
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Old 01-25-23, 05:48 AM
  #115  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
Iím saying that pushing a big gear is not very important compared to your aerobic capacity.

And I and just about everyone else is saying that pushing a big gear over time requires a lower aerobic capacity to go the same speed as spinning a lower gear.

I have mediocre aerobic capacity and exceptionally high muscle endurance. Can you understand that I would have a different perspective on "importance" than you?
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Old 01-25-23, 06:46 AM
  #116  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
And I and just about everyone else is saying that pushing a big gear over time requires a lower aerobic capacity to go the same speed as spinning a lower gear.

I have mediocre aerobic capacity and exceptionally high muscle endurance. Can you understand that I would have a different perspective on "importance" than you?
I find it very difficult to discuss cadence with someone who has a very strong preference to ride on the flat in a 53/11 gear at sub 50 rpm as if thatís an ďefficientĒ strategy.

Can I ask what you are hoping to gain from this thread?
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Old 01-25-23, 08:08 AM
  #117  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
I find it very difficult to discuss cadence with someone who has a very strong preference to ride on the flat in a 53/11 gear at sub 50 rpm as if thatís an ďefficientĒ strategy.

Can I ask what you are hoping to gain from this thread?

$500,000 in cash from Big Chainring. That's a remarkably inane question. The thread asked for perspectives and opinions on cadence. I'm offering one you choose to repeatedly denigrate and declare "not important". What do you seek to gain by that?

It is an extremely efficient strategy. For me. I am not drawing any general conclusions from that and I certainly am not recommending it to anyone else. My ability to push a 53x11 gear for hours on end without fatigue setting in puts me far out on the right tail of some bell curve or another.

I think we all get at this point that you find it difficult to discuss anything with a person who has a different perspective. Rchung is making the case that the importance of cadence is overstated, Why aren't you arguing with him?
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Old 01-25-23, 08:57 AM
  #118  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
$500,000 in cash from Big Chainring. That's a remarkably inane question. The thread asked for perspectives and opinions on cadence. I'm offering one you choose to repeatedly denigrate and declare "not important". What do you seek to gain by that?

It is an extremely efficient strategy. For me. I am not drawing any general conclusions from that and I certainly am not recommending it to anyone else. My ability to push a 53x11 gear for hours on end without fatigue setting in puts me far out on the right tail of some bell curve or another.

I think we all get at this point that you find it difficult to discuss anything with a person who has a different perspective. Rchung is making the case that the importance of cadence is overstated, Why aren't you arguing with him?
I don't know why you feel the need to self-justify your personal choice of cadence when you are a non-competitive cyclist. You are just riding for fun at your preferred cadence. There's no arguing with that, you can do whatever you like and there is no need to defend it like a wounded rhino.

Now if there were a few highly competitive cyclists using your super-low cadence strategy, then it would be worth discussing its merits in respect of performance. But there aren't any as far as I am aware. Neither are there any modern training plans geared toward using an ultra-low cadence strategy. So I would have thought it would be irrelevant to the OPs original question. Since you have made it clear in the past that you have no interest whatsoever in attempting to increase your cadence I really don't know why you are getting involved in this discussion.

I think the main point RChung was making is that performance-minded riders all sit relatively close in terms of their preferred choice of cadence and what really separates them is their variation in pedal force. That makes perfect sense. I ride quite close to a typical World Pro in terms of my cadence, but my pedal force and therefore power is considerably lower. You on the other hand choose to ride at a very much lower cadence and relatively high pedal force because that's what you enjoy and have decided is your best strategy for riding fast.

Now here's a thought experiment for you. Let's pretend your life depended on riding faster and you approached an experienced, professional cycling coach for advice. What do you think they are going to say about your current pedalling strategy? Would you really stick to grinding away on your 53/11 if it was a matter of life or death. Or would you maybe try a different approach to producing more power? I'm not expecting an answer, just trying to see how you would feel about this if you stripped away your personal preference for a super-low cadence while just riding for fun in a non-competitive environment.
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Old 01-25-23, 09:03 AM
  #119  
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
My interest is about efficiency. The more efficient I am, the longer I can be out there doing what I enjoy.
You keep using that word, I do not think it means what you think it means. As long as I can eat on rides, I'm limited by fatigue, not efficiency.
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Old 01-25-23, 09:54 AM
  #120  
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
I don't know why you feel the need to self-justify your personal choice of cadence when you are a non-competitive cyclist. You are just riding for fun at your preferred cadence. There's no arguing with that, you can do whatever you like and there is no need to defend it like a wounded rhino. blah blah blah, blah, blaaahh, bleet..

.
I don't know why you need to go out of your way to post your disapproval of my cadence, etc. in just about every thread you can. I thought you were going to put me "back" on your ignore list.

This is a thread in General Cycling, not a racing subforum, and the OP did not mention competition. Why is it I'm supposed to be looking for racing advice before I have anything to say on the subject?

Your MO is to post some sort of "correction" to my postings then to accuse me of being argumentative when I point out your "corrections" are a load of crap based on some silly assumption you made up about what the purpose of cycling is or whatever.

If you don't think I am worthy of discussing this with you, stop responding to my posts, otherwise, you're just being a hypocrite who can't stand not getting the last word.


You do understand that "highly competitive cyclists" have several genetic advantages that I and you don't, so it's pretty unlikely that my calculations of my own optimal practices would be influenced by their very different considerations. They're also 35-40 years younger than I am.

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Old 01-25-23, 10:37 AM
  #121  
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
You keep using that word, I do not think it means what you think it means. As long as I can eat on rides, I'm limited by fatigue, not efficiency.
This is the closest definition of what I am intending to impart: The term "efficiency" refers to the peak level of performance that uses the least amount of inputs to achieve the highest amount of output. Efficiency requires reducing the number of unnecessary resources used to produce a given output

The least amount of effort (read:leg output), food, whatever, it takes to get me there, the better. Not racing, not competing, not nothing (jump on that grammar police) other than doing long mileage.


Ironically, I worked as an Efficiency Consultant to manufacturers for many years so I have a more than casual association to the word.
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Old 01-25-23, 10:40 AM
  #122  
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
This is the closest definition of what I am intending to impart:
Sadly, effective communication is difficult when everyone has their own peculiar definition of words. We're talking exercise physiology, not manufacturing.
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Old 01-25-23, 11:14 AM
  #123  
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Originally Posted by asgelle View Post
Sadly, effective communication is difficult when everyone has their own peculiar definition of words. We're talking exercise physiology, not manufacturing.
His is not a "peculiar definition" of the word "efficiency". It's one of several that he could have been employing. He could have been referring to mechanical efficiency, efficient use of CV resources, whatever. You just assumed there was only one "right" one, and that he was "wrong" for using it in a perfectly reasonable sense.

Effective communication often requires that people clarify which definition of a word they are using. rsbob did that, and this response is just off-the-wall.
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Old 01-25-23, 11:24 AM
  #124  
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
And I and just about everyone else is saying that pushing a big gear over time requires a lower aerobic capacity to go the same speed as spinning a lower gear.
In my own experience, I've found that I have a most-efficient zone. Pushing a lower rpm requires increased pedal force to go the same speed. There is a point for me where that increased pedal force starts requiring a noticeable increase in aerobic demand. This is most vividly apparent while riding my SS MTB on steep climbs.
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Old 01-25-23, 11:44 AM
  #125  
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Originally Posted by Eric F View Post
In my own experience, I've found that I have a most-efficient zone. Pushing a lower rpm requires increased pedal force to go the same speed. There is a point for me where that increased pedal force starts requiring a noticeable increase in aerobic demand. This is most vividly apparent while riding my SS MTB on steep climbs.

Right. But that's a somewhat different calculation when on a multi-gear bike. I think everyone has to calculate this zone for themselves based on experience and knowledge of their own physical characteristics and how or what they ride.

I think for me the calculation is that I more than make up for the increased aerobic demand of the increased force (if that indeed happens) by the decreased demand caused by the decrease in RPMs. I think this is varying a lot from person to person.
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