Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Burning a Match

We all know what burning a match is...we did it as kids. Didn't we? At least I played with matches as a kid...hahaha. And, we all know what a matchbook is right? If you don't, that's the paper/carboard jacket that all of the matches are held in place with. And, there are a certain number of matches within this matchbook. There could be 3, 5 or even 20...but nobody has an infinite number. Sorry Lance, not even you.

So, what's this have to do with cycling? Well, every cyclist has a matchbook with a discrete number of matches in it. When you're done all your matches..you bonk...game over..end of race day...especially if you burn them prematurely. Question is: how do you know how many matches you have in your matchbook? Equally important question is: how do you know when you burned a match? I'll answer the initial question first: the best way of knowing how many matches are in your matchbook is through hard training and/or racing experience. The answer to the second question is: you can tell if you burned a match based on the following chart:

All you have to know is your FTP, and you can determine what a burned match is for different durations. Pretty nice/easy eh? For more information on, "What is a Match?" refer to Allen/Coggan, "Training and Racing with a Power Meter".

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