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£1000 - tri bike or power meter?

 
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carvegybe




Joined: 27 Dec 2010
Posts: 78

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2012 6:29 pm    Post subject: £1000 - tri bike or power meter? Reply with quote

I've done some shorter tris up to olympic and looking to go to 1/2 IM next year at Outlaw.
I'm tempted to get a tri bike (but I know I can get very comfy and fairly aero on my road bike with clip-ons), then started using trainer raod and can see the benefits of training with power and maybe more importantly, racing with power, especially if I decide to go to full IM
Looking around, I could probably get a second hand powertap in a pair of cosmic carbones for £800-1000 on fleabay or a new power2max for about£700
So two questions:
Bike or powermeter
Which powermeter, any experience of power2max?
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irondog




Joined: 22 Jul 2008
Posts: 2389

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:06 am    Post subject: Re: £1000 - tri bike or power meter? Reply with quote

carvegybe wrote:
I've done some shorter tris up to olympic and looking to go to 1/2 IM next year at Outlaw.
I'm tempted to get a tri bike (but I know I can get very comfy and fairly aero on my road bike with clip-ons), then started using trainer raod and can see the benefits of training with power and maybe more importantly, racing with power, especially if I decide to go to full IM
Looking around, I could probably get a second hand powertap in a pair of cosmic carbones for £800-1000 on fleabay or a new power2max for about£700
So two questions:
Bike or powermeter
Which powermeter, any experience of power2max?


Buy the bike, train like a maniac....then if eventually you have the cash and the inclination buy a powermeter. If by that point some of the pedal based systems have actually materialised, and the price is bearable, then get one of them....

I have mates in the club who can do sub 20 for a ten mile TT, a sub 54 for a 25, and they have never used a powermeter.

The TT bike, set up for you and trained on, will produce soooo much more bang for your buck!
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ed_m




Joined: 15 May 2003
Posts: 7560
Location: coventry

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

power is certainly useful in training (well i think so anyway).... might be useful in racing but not so convinced.

a tri bike however is very useful racing Wink ... and if trainer-road gives you enough power info for training on turbo why buy a powermeter.
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g-rex




Joined: 29 Dec 2008
Posts: 381
Location: Tip of Africa

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Get the powermeter (and TrainingPeaks). I have been amazed at how uneven my power distribution was and how much faster I can go if you even it out (in my experience). This is not so useful when doing a shorter TT where you are going all out but is extremely useful when you are doing longer tri's where you are at lower effort levels and have to run off the bike.

I recommended TrainingPeaks too as they show your Variability Index (VI) which is a measure of your power distribution as well as normalised power which is a measure of the metabolic impact of any given ride.
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SteveI




Joined: 25 Jan 2011
Posts: 1316

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:32 am    Post subject: Re: £1000 - tri bike or power meter? Reply with quote

irondog wrote:
I have mates in the club who can do sub 20 for a ten mile TT, a sub 54 for a 25, and they have never used a powermeter.

Well I've gone sub 50 for a 25, and I've used a power meter ever since I started cycling seriously, so that proves it, a power meter will save you 4 minutes over 25 miles Wink

I'd say if you combine the ability to train more effectively and the ability to quantify how aero you are so you can make position improvements, 4 minutes over 25 miles might not be an unreasonable gain to make from getting a power meter. Of course, some people might happen to optimise their training anyway without a power meter, and you can always go to the wind tunnel instead of doing aero testing with a power meter, so the gain isn't guaranteed compared to not having a power meter. But a single wind tunnel trip will cost you as much as a power meter.
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irondog




Joined: 22 Jul 2008
Posts: 2389

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 11:50 am    Post subject: Re: £1000 - tri bike or power meter? Reply with quote

SteveI wrote:
irondog wrote:
I have mates in the club who can do sub 20 for a ten mile TT, a sub 54 for a 25, and they have never used a powermeter.

Well I've gone sub 50 for a 25, and I've used a power meter ever since I started cycling seriously, so that proves it, a power meter will save you 4 minutes over 25 miles Wink

I'd say if you combine the ability to train more effectively and the ability to quantify how aero you are so you can make position improvements, 4 minutes over 25 miles might not be an unreasonable gain to make from getting a power meter. Of course, some people might happen to optimise their training anyway without a power meter, and you can always go to the wind tunnel instead of doing aero testing with a power meter, so the gain isn't guaranteed compared to not having a power meter. But a single wind tunnel trip will cost you as much as a power meter.


I'd love to train with power. I reckon it would make a huge difference. I have all the marginal gains covered (TT bike, fast wheels, skinsuit, daft helmet), and I watch what I eat and train well. But, tricky as (a) power meters are exepensive, and (b) I'd want one built into the cranks, which would mean having 2..... maybe I'll just lose half a stone in wieght and see how I go!
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Oranj




Joined: 27 Sep 2007
Posts: 974
Location: Oxford

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can improve a helluva lot with a decent structured training programme, you don't need a powermeter for that - it'd just be the icing on the cake. I'd buy the TT bike first!
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TimmyG




Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 3592
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Spend less money and get a coach.
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wiz




Joined: 11 Aug 2009
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You wont be happy until you have both Very Happy
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irondog




Joined: 22 Jul 2008
Posts: 2389

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wiz wrote:
You wont be happy until you have both Very Happy


Now that IS a good plan. Actually, has anyone seen:

http://www.stagescycling.com/stageone

They look 'cheap' in the context of power meters, and as its a left crank only (I think) then disc, training wheels, road bike wheels etc can all be used and power readings will be there..... Shimano or SRAM only though?
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JS




Joined: 04 Jan 2011
Posts: 127
Location: Tootsville

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 5:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Get the powermeter. Then give it to me. I'll give great feedback.
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Oranj




Joined: 27 Sep 2007
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Location: Oxford

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2012 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

irondog wrote:

Now that IS a good plan. Actually, has anyone seen:

http://www.stagescycling.com/stageone


I had one in my hand last week, brought over here by Hunter Allen at the coaching conference I was attending: TwitPic

They'll go on sale in the USA in the new year but they haven't paid for European radio testing/approval yet, so it's unlikely we'll see them here before late 2013/early 2014. (I guess if you had a friend in the USA who could buy it for you and send it on as a "gift", that'd be a way around that Twisted Evil .)

The major drawback (of course) is that they only register power from the left leg and then multiply that by two. If your cycling is at all asymmetrical, or maybe varies from one leg to the other as your power output increases/decreases, then they're not so handy. Probably best left to the sportif cyclist who wants to boast about his amazing power output on the Etape Cymru.
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