Level selection for 4DP

I can never seem to get a good gear/level selection for my 20min effort in 4DP. I was aiming for same ballpark as my half monty result but for my ideal cadence I always ended up either well under or over. I went through 4 levels and all my gears but settled for what transpired to be disappointingly easy. I know I’m not supposed to use erg mode but would it really be the end of the world? Can you adjust difficulty of erg mode like you can a normal workout.
Using kickr core and app on iPhone cast to Apple TV.

1 Like

Sometimes I just go through a lot of gear changing, grind for a few minutes, then spin a bit.My legs are often too cooked to pedal ideally.

1 Like

Technically yes, just set it in erg and if you’re on desktop use the up/down arrows as virtual gearing. They basically adjust that % intensity.

I’ve always been in the anti ERG for tests camp and I still firmly am for the harder efforts as the variations I think are too big to react quick enough with changes. But after a few failed tests due to not being able to settle on a level/gear like you, I’m definitely tempted to try ERG with the intensity adjustments for my next test.

For one thing, given the last two wasted tests it certainly can’t do any more harm. But obviously you do need to be actively aware of making sure you are adjusting based on RPE.

2 Likes

I agree with the level for other bits, just knocked my “standing starts” predicted powers out of the park and erg mode wouldn’t let me do that. But I’m going to try as you suggest for the ftp portion of my next 4DP as otherwise I’ll just blow up or heaven forbid, finish without suffering like last time.

2 Likes

Let us know how you get on if you remember. I really need to schedule a test week in at some point as well to give it a go myself.

FWIW (and this isn’t a popular choice as Lee says) I’ve been using erg for a while - probably the last 6 tests if not more
For the 5min and 20min it really helps me. And I train on erg anyway

2 Likes

What works for me: I go with L5 (Tacx Flow smart) with me adjusting the gears during the 20 mins. I normally start the session with a fairly light gear and then increase the resistance as the FTP drags on.
O ya, and I only focus on the W, I ignore the cadence, to me it’s much better to just focus on one of them instead of both :grimacing:

1 Like

I’m about to start FF so thought I’d check into this, and you have more flexibility in level mode than ERG.

Choose level mode, and you can change gear, change level with the 1-9 keys, and also the intensity (percent) with the up and down arrows. If you can’t find a suitable setting with this then things must be dire :wink:

1 Like

Then consider things dire!
But seriously, I’m just going to use erg mode and adjust resistance from there; I was just checking to see if I was doing something obviously silly.
To elaborate:
If one wants to adjust resistance just slightly say 10w (eg at 345 but want 355) but keep same cadence +- 3rpm, you are talking numerous level and gear changes to attempt to achieve it (also not just one button when using an iPhone) by which point ones HR and focus are potentially all over the show. The best I could achieve within these parameters was about 15w of where I wanted to be, or in other words best part of 6months ftp training away. (To get this close I did practice runs of gear level combos to work out what power output they translated to).

2 Likes

Lol, Sufferlandria is a dire place.

Just finished, and while trying to take my mind off the pain I realised I was incorrect earlier, as adjusting the percentage only moves the target in level mode, not the resistance. You’re stuck with gears and levels as you say.

How close are your cassette increments? Maybe a really close turbo-only one would help, but that’s starting to get extreme.

I’m not good enough to try for +/- 10w - I start in a gear/level/cadence that’s at or just above my target then try to maintain that cadence while staring at my stem and gurning…

Guess ERG is your best option unless the minions can offer something else

1 Like

Cheers for your input.
I’m assuming I’m being fussy! I just want the best data I can get for my workouts. Going too hard (and breaking) or too easy will give me a ftp that is too low, then how would I suffer sufficiently on my workouts I ask you?!

2 Likes

I can add a new dilemma - I recorded my test on my Garmin too, using my bike power meter, and that reads +5w on FTP, +6w MAP and +8w on AC. Interestingly, -7w on NM.

Do I use the FF turbo results or PM ones? Lol.
Ok, that was a bit of a hijack, sorry :slightly_smiling_face:

1 Like

What power meter? With a 4iiii you can use a multiplier to match your turbo. With a stages you cannot.

1 Like

I also use ERG for the longer efforts. It only works if you know roughly what power you will get though. If you get it wrong you can die.

The advantage is two fold:

  1. you can concentrate on only 1 thing
  2. Often what you can do falls between 2 teeth on your cogs at optimum cadence. If you fiddle with gradient and gears you can get it perfect but it’s a hassle.
    The problem is that if it goes wrong it really goes wrong and by the time you adjust the level you can have been in the Red too long to save it.
    I think it’s be ideal if it automatically mode switches during the interval, so for instance the first 15 minutes in ERG and then the final 5 in slope mode at the correct slope for that power output.
1 Like

It’s an old Quarq Riken. There’s no power match with The Sufferfest, and 5w is well within the +/- 1.5% of both turbo and PM. I don’t often ride this bike outside (it’s a road bike and I mainly ride MTB) so I’ll stick with the turbo results and not be pedantic…

1 Like

I’d stick with the turbo. If you have a garmin headunit you can get an app to correct the power but outside you would be hard pressed to hit the difference between those numbers.

2 Likes

That’s my thinking too. My MTB has a different power meter again, so definitely apples to oranges stuff. Makes sense to train consistently with a single source I think.

1 Like

Don’t think you are at all :slight_smile:
It’s our app to use as suits us … get in there … :slight_smile:

1 Like