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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I've been trying to figure out if I'm any good. I've been using this to estimate power at the moment, but it would be great if you all would tell me whether or not this amounts to anything other than an estimate with a ±50% error bar.

I started working on getting in pretty decent shape a couple months ago, starting at a weight of 197 pounds. I weigh 175 now, but I'm aiming for more like 150-155. I'm 5'9".

I just use various times where I pay close attention to the wind based on how it feels both directions (often I will look at hourly weather data and even calculate the head wind using trigonometry), use Map My Ride for elevation.

It's also unclear on aerodynamics because the stem on my bike is higher than on a bike one would prefer for racing.
 

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I looked at the site you linked to, and this looks like it gives you as good an estimate as possible with the limited amount of information available. Those numbers should be in the ballpark, and certainly better than within 50%. I would guess that chances are you're going to be within ±10%. Whether or not that helps you figure out if you're "any good" is a very different question.
 

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It looks a little high to me. I ride with a power. I plugged my numbers in and at 200 watts it said I'd be going 17.3 mph. In my experience I'd be right around 20 mph at 200 watts. I'll have to go back and check my logs but I think I'd only be putting out 150 - 160 watts at 17ish mph.

So I'd say it's within 25%.
 

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We all want to figure out if we are "any good," but, non-metered guesses at power, even with some of the cyclometers out there which have a "power" feature, but no strain gauges, are pretty bad.

It's mostly just guessing. It will give you a ballpark in the right significant figure -- you know, if they say 300 watts, you're probably not doing 150 or 600 -- but not close enough to compare with other cyclists.

OTOH, if you know you've reduced your time by, say, 30 seconds, on a given climb, you might be able to roughly figure out how much power INCREASE that represents.
 

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We all want to figure out if we are "any good," but, non-metered guesses at power, even with some of the cyclometers out there which have a "power" feature, but no strain gauges, are pretty bad.

It's mostly just guessing. It will give you a ballpark in the right significant figure -- you know, if they say 300 watts, you're probably not doing 150 or 600 -- but not close enough to compare with other cyclists.

OTOH, if you know you've reduced your time by, say, 30 seconds, on a given climb, you might be able to roughly figure out how much power INCREASE that represents.
or pick a steep slope >8%. ride next to one with a power meter and ask how many watts it reads and ask about the persons weight.
 

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Power is highly over-rated. Just look down at your speedo when you're going fast and use that as you average speed and go from there.
 

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no that would be the current regime just checking your honesty. if the numbers you provide are not true it is noted for further use. Who knows what else people would be dishonest about then.
 

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Why does it matter if you're any good? Ride often, far, hard and fast. Train systematically if you want. Ride with others. Race. It's all fun. The only time it really matters if you're "any good" is if you're a pro or aspiring to be one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Power is highly over-rated. Just look down at your speedo when you're going fast and use that as you average speed and go from there.
If power could be measured accurately and precisely, it wouldn't be overrated. It's the direct measurement of performance. Average speed is affected by elevation, wind, tire pressure, body weight, height, the friction in the bike's mechanisms, the height of your handlebars, the position you're riding in and probably more.

The power your body exerts can be constant.

Oh, and nice Kung Fu Hustle avatar.
 
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