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JaRok2300




Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 388
Location: Worcester, UK

PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 9:05 am    Post subject: Cadence Reply with quote

Just came across this and whilst not a fan of the individual I know this is something he's preached for a long time.
http://trisutto.com/low-cadence-triathlon/

I've been playing with cadence on turbo sessions and naturally gravitate to 85-90rpm (which is where my road rides normally come out). 100rpm feels bouncy and elevates my heart rate, 70rpm feels artificially slow and takes all my concentration to keep it down.

I know this topic has been round the houses before but has anyone successfully changed their "natural" cadence or is it generally what feels best for you?
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explorerJC




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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 9:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

you don't have a natural cadence...
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Nobbie




Joined: 24 Jul 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I started cycling I had a cadence of about 85-90, but as I got stronger it dropped. In training it is about 70rpm and about 80 for a sprint tri. I've never tried to pedal to a particular rpm, but notice in a sprint tri that I go best when I can sync my breathing with my cadence.
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iwaters




Joined: 06 Sep 2016
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 9:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I looked at it a little for both running and cycling. I feel far more comfortable just running at whatever cadence feel comfortable. Trying to force a higher cadence didn't seem to have any benefit and made me feel odd.

Sure grinding out in a massively high gear at 55-60 rpm isn't sensible but if you naturally run in the 80-90 I can't see what benefit you will get forcing it higher
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JaRok2300




Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 388
Location: Worcester, UK

PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

explorerJC wrote:
you don't have a natural cadence...


Maybe "natural" is the wrong word but 85-90 is the range I seem to find myself in without thinking about it when not limited by gearing. Uphill I would tend to be in that range until gears run out and then cadence drops to accommodate.

Much higher than that feels a bit frantic and seems to take energy just turning my legs that fast irrespective of what the bike's doing (my perception only)

I guess my question is whether there is any benefit in deliberately trying to move away from that 85-90 range so that 70-75 (for example) becomes the new normal.
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explorerJC




Joined: 20 Oct 2005
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 10:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

JaRok2300 wrote:
explorerJC wrote:
you don't have a natural cadence...


Maybe "natural" is the wrong word but 85-90 is the range I seem to find myself in without thinking about it when not limited by gearing. Uphill I would tend to be in that range until gears run out and then cadence drops to accommodate.

Much higher than that feels a bit frantic and seems to take energy just turning my legs that fast irrespective of what the bike's doing (my perception only)

I guess my question is whether there is any benefit in deliberately trying to move away from that 85-90 range so that 70-75 (for example) becomes the new normal.


optimal mechanical efficiency is around 90 rpm...energetically optimum cadence is that which the rider has trained to sustain...there is some current research underway that suggests a lower bike cadence enables a greater run performance in triathletes (which i can well believe) but i have several questions that i'd want answered before I would be satisfied that was worthy of pursuit.

as i understand the higher cadences, negative work torque comes in to play which is negatively related to FTP
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explorerJC




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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 11:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

iwaters wrote:
. Trying to force a higher cadence didn't seem to have any benefit and made me feel odd.



as it would
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Buzz_




Joined: 19 May 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 11:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

explorerJC wrote:
...there is some current research underway that suggests a lower bike cadence enables a greater run performance in triathletes (which i can well believe) but i have several questions that i'd want answered before I would be satisfied that was worthy of pursuit.

I feel I run better off a high cadence. I don't have any quantitative data, but my legs feel better if I spin at 95-100 rather than 75-80 for a given bike pace. It is one reason I find running off a hilly bike to be particularly difficult.
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explorerJC




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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 11:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Buzz_ wrote:
explorerJC wrote:
...there is some current research underway that suggests a lower bike cadence enables a greater run performance in triathletes (which i can well believe) but i have several questions that i'd want answered before I would be satisfied that was worthy of pursuit.

I feel I run better off a high cadence. I don't have any quantitative data, but my legs feel better if I spin at 95-100 rather than 75-80 for a given bike pace. It is one reason I find running off a hilly bike to be particularly difficult.


which is one of the reasons why i have some problems with the research...
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TRO Saracen




Joined: 18 Aug 2010
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've rooted around this a bit, my current thinking is smoothness is far more important than the actual cadence.

Call it pedalling in circles or whatever, but I'm convinced that maintaining some 'tension' throughout the pedal stroke helps the run, as the muscles do not relax then contract as violently as a pedal stroke with a huge downstroke (or upstroke) as most of its driving force. Thus less damage results.

It's similar to the quad damage done by running downhill, stemming from the sudden impact on the quad as your contact with the ground is much harder.

This may have some relationship with cadence as there are cadences when each individual can reach - or are nearer this pedalling style; but it can be overcome.

So I do not worry about cadence but often try and focus on smoothness when pedalling, trying to obtain an almost 'weightless' feel to my foot inside the shoe. You can get 'smoother' at most cadences, so even a steady uphill grind I can improve by thinking about it.
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explorerJC




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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

TRO Saracen wrote:
stemming from the sudden impact on the quad as your contact with the ground is much harder.

.


why?

i am with you on developing a better feel for the pedalling stroke and coach accordingly
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TRO Saracen




Joined: 18 Aug 2010
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 1:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

explorerJC wrote:
TRO Saracen wrote:
stemming from the sudden impact on the quad as your contact with the ground is much harder.

.


why?



You are likely to be running faster and also the drop in height from the previous landing point: much more momentum and force as your foot hits terra firma the stresses are higher - steep hill it is almost a breaking effect rather than accelerating off to control speed - watch your quad when running downhill having to absorb this.

It's probably minimised with great technique, light Lange-esque footfall off a high cadence etc but most of us live in the real world and smash our quads up when we run down hill. I certainly do *remembers Boston marathon 2013*
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tuckandgo




Joined: 03 Sep 2012
Posts: 421

PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 2:29 pm    Post subject: Re: Cadence Reply with quote

JaRok2300 wrote:
Ju

I know this topic has been round the houses before but has anyone successfully changed their "natural" cadence or is it generally what feels best for you?


I think I may have said something about this before.
I have, clearly and purposefully.
My first IM (5 years ago now) I did at something like 95 (I was aghast when I looked back at the data a couple of years later, 95 for me now would be seriously uncomfortable for 5 mins).
My last IM (a year ago) was 78 and that is only because it was hilly (counterintuitive but you get less of a rhythm) - on training rides 75 was more normal.

Now anything over 80 feels 'fast' and results in significantly elevated HR and breathing, relative to the power, compared to lower cadence.

Took an off season of training to make the shift. Simply put a cadence cap of 80 on any session.

Oh, and I am not a big guy with thunder thighs.
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SGreg




Joined: 30 Jun 2010
Posts: 1064
Location: High Peak

PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 3:13 pm    Post subject: Re: Cadence Reply with quote

tuckandgo wrote:

Now anything over 80 feels 'fast' and results in significantly elevated HR and breathing, relative to the power, compared to lower cadence.

Took an off season of training to make the shift. Simply put a cadence cap of 80 on any session.

Oh, and I am not a big guy with thunder thighs.



It's odd but I feel the exact opposite.

While yes a higher heart rate and breathing occurs with higher cadence, this is more sustainable than moving the effort to my legs. A slow grind keeps the HR down but I run out of leg power way before I run out of hear power.

I'm happiest putting out around 90-93 rpm

I averaged 86 for IM Wales but that was reduced by slow spinning when running out of gears, My last outlaw was 90 average.

It's all very subconscious off the turbo though.



I fully agree about the smooth stroke being more important.
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tuckandgo




Joined: 03 Sep 2012
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 3:22 pm    Post subject: Re: Cadence Reply with quote

SGreg wrote:
tuckandgo wrote:

Now anything over 80 feels 'fast' and results in significantly elevated HR and breathing, relative to the power, compared to lower cadence.

Took an off season of training to make the shift. Simply put a cadence cap of 80 on any session.

Oh, and I am not a big guy with thunder thighs.



A slow grind keeps the HR down but I run out of leg power way before I run out of hear power.


If you wanted to change that, it would change with training. That is exactly what is used to be like for me. Now I just keep churning along.
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