CompuTrainer Class FAQs

Why the Three Sessions?

The three sessions provided are consistent with a periodized annual training plan. The classes present a progressive training stimulus to build your base aerobic fitness and neuromuscular system before complimenting those gains with improvements in top-end speed and other event-specific physiological adaptations.

What is the CompuTrainer?

The CompuTrainer system, it is a precision ergometer measuring wattage, heart rate and cadence. It enables the cyclist to become stronger and more efficient, improve power and speed and learn how to properly train to improve performance, technique and fitness. With the Multi-Rider system, 8 CompuTrainers are linked. All riders are performing the same workout but each at his or her own fitness level (based on the FTP test and associated power zones).

The CompuTrainer Coaching Software allows us to tailor each weekly class to your personal fitness and goals by creating training intervals based on a percentage of your Functional Threshold Power (FTP) as established in the performance evaluation during our first class of the session. So each rider is performing the same workout qualitatively, but not quantitatively.

The CompuTrainer set-up at Wheel & Sprocket is bar none. From the platforms for each bike to the fans and available accessories, they have it all. If your bike is equipped with a cadence-sensing computer, we can set it up to record and display on-screen with the rest of the CompuTrainer data. The same is true for your Polar heart rate monitor. Sensors for tracking these data are also available for purchase at Wheel & Sprocket.

What are Power-based Training and Functional Threshold Power?

Power = work/time – in cycling that means the combination of your pedaling force and cadence (pedaling speed). Power in watts as measured by the CompuTrainer is a direct measure of the rate of work produced by a cyclist and an excellent gauge of training intensity.

Functional Threshold Power (FTP) is the maximum average power (watts) a cyclist can maintain over a one-hour effort. We use it as a measureable marker for performance and improvement in the sport. Your first session will be a performance evaluation to determine your FTP. After the test, we will use your FTP data in watts to establish your training zones to customize your workouts.

What about Heart Rate?

If you have a Polar heart rate monitor, the data will be picked up by the CompuTrainer system and recorded along with your power values (and cadence if your bike is equipped with a cadence sensor). If you own another brand of heart rate monitor, we recommend you record and use those values in your training as well.

Whereas power is a direct measure of the amount of work you are doing, heart rate is an indirect measure of how you are responding to that load. The two measurements are both great tools when used together in your overall training program. However, they do not always relate. Heart rate varies based on dehydration, heat stress, fatigue, the inconsistent nature of riding with traffic, etc. So your body’s heart rate response to a given power output can change day to day. Additionally, your heart rate response is not immediate, so when performing short, intense intervals in training, the heart rate response may not be evident until the interval is nearly complete. Measuring power and targeting specific wattage within a training interval removes the guess work from training. We know exactly how much work you are performing from start to finish, maximizing your valuable training time.

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