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Perceived effort vs actual results


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I've noticed lately that when I feel good (and fast) on the bike it doesn't necessarily mean I am. I have a couple of segments that I created on my usual routes, and most of them are short but very steep hills. For example: 1) 760m at avg 9.1% gradient; 2) 330m at avg 18% gradient and 3) 850m at avg 8% gradient. 

 

Some days I go hard at these climbs and I think I'm smashing it, but my time then says otherwise and I might not even be in my top 10 efforts. Other days I take it easy and then almost get a PR. Could it be that the segments are too short to accurately calculate times? I use a Fenix 3 by the way.

 

Anyone else ever experience this?

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330m at 18% gradient? Holy **** man, that's a blooming wall! 

 

My tip - get a power meter. Best way to see if you're improving, then you can compare the wattage to the RPE.

 

Diarise each time you attempt those segments, look at the trend, then you'll discover yourself.

 

The human body is not a machine. You can't corrroborate your RPE and the time you complete those segments. Very well trained athletes know their bodies very well, and can more often that not gauge their efforts based on RPE. Us amateurs may get there eventually, bit it's a skill you pick up. 

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RPE is also fairly flawed, as this is all influenced by various other factors, such as fatigue, temperature, stress etc.

 

as mecheng posted, only way to gage actual output is to get a tool to measure your baseline, from there you should be able to match output to perveived effort.

 

I still cant get it right, because I mostly remember only the tough parts of the ride, rating it as “hard”

 

This morning’s ride was “hard” in terms of effort, but the numbers (power) were lower than usual, because I am currently in a fatigued state. ( my legs are very upset with me)

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