As I am sat writing this blog the arguments are raging as to whether the power numbers of Chris Froome are believable as natural performance, or are artificially enhanced.  This further highlights the use of power measurements by the professional peloton.

As a result, a question I am getting asked more frequently is whether a cyclist (or triathlete) should train with power output.  In my mind there is no simple yes or no answer to this.  It all depends on your budget, and what you are looking to achieve, and what events you are targeting.

Garmin vector pedal on Cervelo
Power meters… a nice gadget, or an essential training tool?

As the price of power meters constantly seems to be coming down, and the variety of manufacturers offering systems are increasing, do you need a power meter just because everyone else has one?  …or do you just want the latest gadget because you think it will make you go faster!

Similarly, do you own a heart rate monitor, but it hasn’t seen the light of day for years? Are you even using the numbers to their full extent?  Which is going to give you the best performance advantage…..

In this slide presentation I go through some of the things that you need to consider when making the choice about whether to use heart rate, power output or both to get the most from your training and racing:


Regardless of whether you use heart rate, power output or a combination of both, remember knowledge of your metabolic profile is really the key to getting the most from these systems.

I hope this gives you something to consider, but remember it’s all about training smarter, not just about training harder!

Have a good week