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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just rode a 40mi N-S ride and half of the ride was straight into 13-20mph winds from the South (made for a great ride back though).

I don't use stuff like Strava for competitions with others, I use it for data logging for myself. Stuff like calories burnt, miles ridden, etc.

Obviously, heading into gusty winds will make you work much harder than when it's still. A feature to manually put in wind strength/direction after a ride would be great...and have a different outcome concerning calories burned.

I wonder how difficult something like that would be? It wouldn't have to be overly complicated and you do put factors like personal weight into the program to begin with...
 

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Obviously, heading into gusty winds will make you work much harder than when it's still. A feature to manually put in wind strength/direction after a ride would be great...and have a different outcome concerning calories burned.
Getting actual wind conditions that the cyclist experiences is pretty difficult if not impossible. Weather report wind speeds are taken 30 feet (10 meters) above ground and away from obstructions. A normal bike ride route is lined with buildings, bushes, trees, hillsides, etc. that significantly disrupt the wind. Even out in the open in flat country you don't experience the wind speed reported by the weather stations (Hint: wind speed at ground level = zero). Add to all this uncertainty the fact that the wind is always gusting, changing directions, and rarely a straight headwind and you can see where you don't have much of an idea what the wind is relative to the accuracy you could get from a good power meter.

My gut feel is that the wind you experience on a bike is about 1/3 of the reported speed but given that 1 mph faster on the bike (or 1 mph more headwind) is about 8% more power required due to the wind, headwinds are still very significant.
 

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For every headwind, there's a tailwind. For my rides, it seems like it averages out. Most of my rides are out and backs either directly or a big loop. I start into the wind most of the time. On really windy days, sometimes I'm a little fried by the time I'm turning and putting the wind at my back. Like others said, get a power meter if you really want to know.
 

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For every headwind, there's a tailwind. For my rides, it seems like it averages out. Most of my rides are out and backs either directly or a big loop. I start into the wind most of the time. On really windy days, sometimes I'm a little fried by the time I'm turning and putting the wind at my back. Like others said, get a power meter if you really want to know.
You are fastest when there is no wind. You do not "get back" all the extra energy it took to fight the headwind when it turns into a tailwind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
You are fastest when there is no wind. You do not "get back" all the extra energy it took to fight the headwind when it turns into a tailwind.
Yeah...lol...I noticed that today. Thankfully, my "out" was in the wind and my return was with it. The problem is, after chunking through nearly 20 miles of wind...my legs were not happy. I had plenty of gas in the tank and the ride back was nearly 10mph faster than there...but it definitely took a toll on the guns getting there...
 

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You are fastest when there is no wind. You do not "get back" all the extra energy it took to fight the headwind when it turns into a tailwind.
This makes sense. Although I don't have a power meter, my personal experience agrees with this.

As others have said if you really want to know how much energy you are expending, get a power meter. Otherwise, if you wake up and it's too windy to ride, just go for a run. That's what I did today.
 

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You are fastest when there is no wind. You do not "get back" all the extra energy it took to fight the headwind when it turns into a tailwind.
There's a mathematical proof of this, the short answer is that you spend more time held back by a headwind than you do getting a boost from a tailwind so the overall average is slower.
 

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There's a mathematical proof of this, the short answer is that you spend more time held back by a headwind than you do getting a boost from a tailwind so the overall average is slower.
You can ignore the "time math" and go straight to physics. Power to overcome aero drag is cubic with speed (bike speed plus wind speed). Add a 2 mph (real) headwind at 20 mph and it takes 33% more power. Add a 2 mph (real) tailwind and you save 27% in power. Pretty straightforward.
 

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Most definitely. My loop is much faster with no wind. With 10mph sustained winds, my 1hr 6min ride becomes 1hr 11/12 min. However, there are times when I actually like the head wind. It gives my workout a whole new perspective.
 

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For every headwind, there's a tailwind.
Can you explain that to my regular route, please? The wind just loves to change direction moments before or after a turn around.

The tailwind does not help as much as the headwind hurts speeds, though. I had a tailwind at the start one day, I was sailing along at 4 mph over my normal average speed! But when I turned around, it was slow going. I ended up averaging about 2 mph less than my normal average.
 

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Or if you don't want to guestimate, you could ride w a power meter;)
I agree that if you want that kind of detail, a power meter would get you that result. It would also give you a good training tool. Plus, if you are doing some century and want to last, the power meter will help you not expend too much effort early.
 

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What is this "no wind" that you guys are talking about? I live by the beach, there is always wind. :cryin:
adapt and adjust.............
Get a board rack for your bike and surf..............crosswinds are going to suck though getting there
 

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adapt and adjust.............
Get a board rack for your bike and surf..............crosswinds are going to suck though getting there
I actually have no problem with the wind but at 135 pounds it's hard to punch through it sometimes. Around here you learn to accept it and use it as a training aid.

As for the surf, it generally sucks in my area but the bikini's on the beach can't be beat. :blush2:
 
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