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Froome TrainingPeaks analysis

Image: Froome: Put in the ride of his life

Team Sky rising star Chris Froome delivered a storming time trial performance in stage 10 to take the lead in the Vuelta. Dirk Friel of TrainingPeaks analyses Chris’ ride.

See how Froome captured Vuelta lead

Team Sky rising star Chris Froome delivered a storming time trial performance in stage 10 to take the lead in the Vuelta. Dirk Friel of TrainingPeaks analyses Chris’ ride. August 29, Stage 10: Salamanca ITT 47km Stage Results 1 Tony Martin (Ger) HTC-Highroad.0:55:54 2 Christopher Froome (GBr) Team Sky.0:00:59 3 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Team Sky.0:01:22 4 Fabian Cancellara (Swi) Leopard Trek.0:01:27 5 Taylor Phinney (USA) BMC Racing Team.0:01:33 General Classification 1 Christopher Froome (GBr) Team Sky.38:09:13 2 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Leopard Trek.0:00:12 3 Bradley Wiggins (GBr) Team Sky.0:00:20 SRM Data Average Watts: 406w (Normalised power: 412w) TSS: 99 Avg Speed: 31mph Max Speed: 45mph Avg Cadence: 94 Avg Heart Rate: 147bpm Race commentary Chris Froome rode the time trial of his life as he rode his way into the overall lead in the Vuelta. The Kenyan-born climber finished second behind Tony Martin (HTC-Highroad) in the 47km time trial to take the general classification lead by 12 seconds ahead of Jakob Fuglsang (Leopard Trek). Team Sky’s head physiologist Tim Kerrison is delighted with Froome’s performance. “Chris is doing a great job in the race looking after Brad and staying in contention himself,” he says. Froome averaged 5.8w/kg at 406W for nearly an hour! He paced the event to perfection as the first half had a total altitude gain of 219m and he averaged 414w, versus the second half where the course had a total elevation gain of only 86m and he averaged 398w. There were certainly riders who started the time trial too hard and suffered in the final 20km where Froome ended up gaining ground. This is the ideal test of one’s true capabilities at what is termed Functional Threshold Power (FTP). A cyclist’s FTP is the average watts they can maintain for a 60-minute effort. Given the fact that Froome’s 47km time trial took him 57 minutes we can easily conclude that his FTP equals a tad more than 400w. Now that you know what it takes to compete at the highest levels it can be easy to see how you compare to the world’s best. Well it’s easy to do if you have a power meter that is. If you don’t own one try asking if your local fitness gym has any indoor bikes which display power. Or ask at your local cycling club to see if you can rent one for a day in order to conduct some of your own field tests.

Analysis

How long can you maintain 5.8 watts per kilogram? Chris Froome can do this for 60 minutes and now he knows his true potential and can apply those power values within his future training. Another great concept we can learn from Froome’s TT file is the idea of assigning a score, known as Training Stress Score (TSS), to each and every ride. Froome rode for almost 60 minutes at FTP so that equals 99 TSS. One hour at FTP equals 100 TSS. Using TrainingPeaks and SRM power meters Team Sky can quantify each day’s training load in terms of intensity, duration and frequency. When viewed over time TSS values paint a picture of each athlete’s fitness, fatigue and form. There is no doubt that Froome started the Vuelta with high fitness and low fatigue. This is the ultimate scenario for any professional rider who hopes to enter their important races with peak form. Be sure to view Froome’s actual race file in the TrainingPeaks.com Interactive File Viewer.

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