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Dial it up to 882 watts...WTF?

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Dial it up to 882 watts...WTF?

Old 07-31-10, 10:34 PM
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JonnyHK 
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Dial it up to 882 watts...WTF?

I was just checking out the Garmin 500 data from this morning's ride in Ascent and was surprised to see that it calculated my max power at 882 watts.

This is not a powertap etc, it is a calculated power based on all the known variables that the Garmin collects and that I have entered (weight etc).

dataglitch..png

Since this is a truly epic amount of power, I just had to know where I did this. Was it that attack on the short hill, or was it the acceleration to catch the little guy who put on a push?

After a quick search of the data I found a short acceleration up a 20 deg hill. Hmmmm. There are some 10, 11 and 12 deg climbs here, but I'm pretty sure I haven't gone up anything this big. Let's double check on the map...nope, nothing close there.

So - I am reminded of the board game 'Monopoly' where you can get a Chance or Community Chest card stating "bank error in your favour" etc. Today I had a data error in my favour!

I think the unit got a bit 'lost' when it was turned back on after a drinks break and didn't calibrate fully before we rolled. When it did gather its thoughts there must have been a wild alteration in the elevation - and the consequent calculation of power was just a little off!

Maybe I need to save up for a 'real' power meter...
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Old 07-31-10, 10:43 PM
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Well, no, estimated power won't be remotely accurate, but that doesn't mean that a peak of 882 watts is all that crazy. A peak might be for only one second, and lots of riders are able to hit that kind of wattage. I don't know my peak power, but I do know from a few experiences with CompuTrainers and a friend's borrow PowerTap that it's higher than 882 watts - and I'm 56 kg. If you're bigger, an 882 W peak is even more plausible. From the same CompuTrainer experiences, I know that hitting 450 watts is relatively trivial even for a little guy like me. With a real thrashing, higher wattages are possible, and I once did a five-second test at 897.

This is all totally different from sustained power. As mentioned, that 897 is a five-second average. I have no idea how long I could hold 450 for, but not long! It's the same idea with something like 882. If your Garmin is telling you that you were putting out that power for a sustained period of time, that's messed up. If it's saying that you peaked at 882 on your ride, that's pretty plausible, even though chances are that it's a highly inaccurate estimate.

If you want to get a power meter, cool. I was seriously thinking about getting one for next season, but I decided that I really didn't need to go there. I would have been way more insufferable with the numbers than I even am in this post.
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Old 07-31-10, 11:08 PM
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882 peak watts for a brief interval is not unusual... ran some old fashioned calculations a while back and calculated that at my weight I was able to generate 1000 watts for a few seconds and this was when I was topped out in a sprint or hammering up some short 12% grades we have here and a 20% grade is going to bump up the numbers if you were laying down some crank bending power.

As another smaller rider my wattage numbers are lower and bigger guys can really generate some intense, albeit brief bursts of power... am thinking that track sprinters get numbers in the 1800 watt range.
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Old 07-31-10, 11:15 PM
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I'm about 207lb and I know I can push about 650-700 watts out of a Concept 2 rowing machine for a couple of minutes!

I didn't immediately think it was an error, but I did want to see where I had done this epic feat.

The reason I'm sure the data is wrong is that the location on the map is pretty much flat and I wasn't working hard there. If it had been at one of the two locations that I suspected it was then I would have just accepted the truth that I am a cycling monster (over very short distances).
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Old 07-31-10, 11:42 PM
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Where are you seeing this? I have a Garmin 500 but have never seen it display an estimation like that.
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Old 07-31-10, 11:42 PM
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I weigh 180 lbs and can push roughly 7,000 watts. I know this because I work in an industrial facility and once had to attach my bike to the 10hp rotary-screw air compressor when the electric motor blew out (real 10hp, not the Sears inflated kind). I was on the bike for roughly 13 hours. It was a good workout but nothing to write home about.

882 watts is easily doable.
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Old 07-31-10, 11:53 PM
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Originally Posted by colombo357 View Post
I weigh 180 lbs and can push roughly 7,000 watts. I know this because I work in an industrial facility and once had to attach my bike to the 10hp rotary-screw air compressor when the electric motor blew out (real 10hp, not the Sears inflated kind). I was on the bike for roughly 13 hours. It was a good workout but nothing to write home about.

882 watts is easily doable.
only on bf... can humans do the work of 10 horses.
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Old 08-01-10, 12:17 AM
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Originally Posted by JonnyHK View Post
I'm about 207lb and I know I can push about 650-700 watts out of a Concept 2 rowing machine for a couple of minutes!

I didn't immediately think it was an error, but I did want to see where I had done this epic feat.

The reason I'm sure the data is wrong is that the location on the map is pretty much flat and I wasn't working hard there. If it had been at one of the two locations that I suspected it was then I would have just accepted the truth that I am a cycling monster (over very short distances).
Even if it was accurate (which I doubt because the shorter the duration, the worse "calculators" get), 800W fo a 207lb rider is far short of monsterous... Sorry to burst your bubble.
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Old 08-01-10, 01:54 AM
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Originally Posted by JonnyHK View Post
I'm about 207lb and I know I can push about 650-700 watts out of a Concept 2 rowing machine for a couple of minutes!

I didn't immediately think it was an error, but I did want to see where I had done this epic feat.

The reason I'm sure the data is wrong is that the location on the map is pretty much flat and I wasn't working hard there. If it had been at one of the two locations that I suspected it was then I would have just accepted the truth that I am a cycling monster (over very short distances).
i think your concept 2 is out of whack then! 700 watts is about a 1:15 split... that's a pretty massive erg right there, and you'd probably be throwing down sub 6 times with ease!
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Old 08-01-10, 06:36 AM
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Originally Posted by JonnyHK View Post
I'm about 207lb and I know I can push about 650-700 watts out of a Concept 2 rowing machine for a couple of minutes!

I didn't immediately think it was an error, but I did want to see where I had done this epic feat.

The reason I'm sure the data is wrong is that the location on the map is pretty much flat and I wasn't working hard there. If it had been at one of the two locations that I suspected it was then I would have just accepted the truth that I am a cycling monster (over very short distances).
Originally Posted by umd View Post
Even if it was accurate (which I doubt because the shorter the duration, the worse "calculators" get), 800W fo a 207lb rider is far short of monsterous... Sorry to burst your bubble.
Yeah, I'm in your weight class (little lighter, now), am new to road biking (I've putted around a lot of miles on mountain bikes, but never anything serious) and have a new-to-me PowerTap. Peak in the 1400 region, 5sec output is in the 1200 range, 30sec is in the 650-ish area... and at longer intervals, I'm revealed for the fat ass I am.
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Old 08-01-10, 09:13 AM
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Originally Posted by caloso View Post
Where are you seeing this? I have a Garmin 500 but have never seen it display an estimation like that.
The Ascent software on the Mac is doing the calculation, not the actual Garmin unit.
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Old 08-01-10, 09:15 AM
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Originally Posted by thegunner View Post
i think your concept 2 is out of whack then! 700 watts is about a 1:15 split... that's a pretty massive erg right there, and you'd probably be throwing down sub 6 times with ease!
I did say I could do this for about 2 minutes! There is no way I could keep it up for a full 2k piece. For the record my current 2k erg time is 7.15 (my best, back in the day of racing club open straight pairs is about 6.40).
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Old 08-01-10, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by umd View Post
Even if it was accurate (which I doubt because the shorter the duration, the worse "calculators" get), 800W fo a 207lb rider is far short of monsterous... Sorry to burst your bubble.
It certainly seemed odd, that's why I looked at it.

I'm sure (based on the location) that it is a glitch, but it's nice to know that 800w is not 'out of this world'.
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Old 08-01-10, 09:30 AM
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Isn't that waterrockets' kilo wattage?
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Old 08-02-10, 03:23 AM
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Originally Posted by JonnyHK View Post
I did say I could do this for about 2 minutes! There is no way I could keep it up for a full 2k piece. For the record my current 2k erg time is 7.15 (my best, back in the day of racing club open straight pairs is about 6.40).
more long distance pieces required that's a pretty big split drop from even a 1 min power test to 5, since you're essentially effective power is cut by a factor of 3! i think our coach had a benchmark of 5 splits per testing distance... so +5 from 500 to 1000, +5 from 1000 to 2500, +5 from 2500 to 5000 and so on.
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Old 08-02-10, 08:34 AM
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I'm your size and hit 800w on at least 90% of my rides. It's not that impressive, sorry.
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Old 08-02-10, 08:41 AM
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Originally Posted by thegunner View Post
more long distance pieces required that's a pretty big split drop from even a 1 min power test to 5, since you're essentially effective power is cut by a factor of 3! i think our coach had a benchmark of 5 splits per testing distance... so +5 from 500 to 1000, +5 from 1000 to 2500, +5 from 2500 to 5000 and so on.
Yeah, it is a pretty sad drop off! But in my defence I am a Masters B rower who actually coaches more than he rows. I'm lucky to get on an erg once a month for a work out (coaching stuff doesn't count). Every time I use the assorted prognostic charts (ie predict 2km performance from 500m test etc) I have to 'recalibrate' it for a more realistic plan for me!

I always take heart that I can shift a 1x better over a 1000m race than guys who are 30-40 seconds quicker on the ergo. That always shuts them up!
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Old 08-02-10, 08:54 AM
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My Saturday ride I had 1130w for a max, and 908w for peak 30 seconds, and that was without any real sprint.

So 882w peak power for someone over 200lbs is not a big deal.
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Old 08-02-10, 08:55 AM
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Originally Posted by umd View Post
Even if it was accurate (which I doubt because the shorter the duration, the worse "calculators" get), 800W fo a 207lb rider is far short of monsterous... Sorry to burst your bubble.
the more important thing is how many calories it showed him burning.
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Old 08-02-10, 08:59 AM
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As an aside, the 908 watts was up a 4% grade at 24.2mph. Ran the numbers through Kruezotter, and the calculater said that 908 watts should be 23.9 mph, which was amazingly close.
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Old 08-02-10, 09:17 AM
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Damn, I've never had luck coming up with numbers on there.
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Old 08-02-10, 10:30 AM
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Agreed, 800 W max is not hard to do. The question is how long can you keep it up? I'm guessing Garmin won't tell you that. Enjoy,.
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Old 08-02-10, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by thegunner View Post
i think your concept 2 is out of whack then! 700 watts is about a 1:15 split... that's a pretty massive erg right there, and you'd probably be throwing down sub 6 times with ease!
+1. If you can do this for a couple of minutes on the rowing machine, you should stop cycling and get serious about rowing.

That said, I've hit 1100 watts on the c2 for a single stroke - equivalent to a 1:08 split.
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