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The Toolbox: better without more watts

Updated: Dec 13, 2021

Have you ever wondered why the riders that seem the strongest don’t always win? Why they aren’t always at the front of the ride late in the day? Or why they can’t last more than an hour on the mountain bike trails?

What makes cycling a great sport is that it is about more than just the wattage you can push. If that were all that mattered, the strongest riders would always win in races, but they don’t. Of course we all want to push more wattage to go faster. But, there are many aspects of the sport that we can work on that contribute to our performance without having to push more watts. At Sans Chaine we arm you with a set of tools that you can use to make yourself a better rider. The Toolbox concept is about making you more efficient - better without having to push more wattage, so that you have that amazing ride.

We are motivated by performance targets and Strava PRs, leading us to the notion that it is our wattage that makes us good riders. While wattage matters cycling is very much a sport of efficiency. Think of it in this way. The less work you can do to get to the finish line fresh, the more energy you will have left to contest for the victory. Or in another way, the more efficient you are the further your limited wattage and energy will take you on that challenging group ride you love to do.

Efficiencies in cycling can be found in many ways:

  • how you move in the peloton,

  • drafting and understanding the wind,

  • respiration,

  • pedal stroke,

  • and how you fuel your rides.

The Toolbox blog series explores the ideas and techniques in cycling that will make you more efficient as a rider.

The idea of efficiency has been lost in cycling today. Many riders don’t know basic things like drafting and how to use the wind. Using the Toolbox you can make yourself a better rider without the stress of training. These are ideas and techniques to practice and mix into your rides, but they won’t make you tired as you improve.

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