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This sentence is on page 13 of the exerpt.

"So if you are 25 percent efficient in terms of of mechanical energy generated, and 1 kilocalorie is about 4 kilojoules, then only about 1 kilojoule is acutally realized as mechanical energy or every 1 kilocalorie of biological energy burned."

That numbers in that sentence seem to contradict themselves... The actual meaning of the terms aside.

Also earlier in that paragraph it talks about what comes first, kilocalories or kilojoules.
Based on that wouldn't it be 4 kilocalories for every kilojoule Instead of the other way around?


"1 kiloCalorie equals 4 kilojoules."

So is it 1000 FOOD calories burned for 4 kiljoules? That can't be right.



Joe, will it be available in digital format? Best, Fabiano.


Thanks! Will probably get one this year sometime...FINALLY!

Joe Friel

Fabiano--Yes, it will be available as an ebook by the end of this month, my publisher says.


HP...it is right but I had to read it a few times to get it. He's saying that 1 kc equals 4 kj (in a 100% efficient system). So since we're about 25% efficient, we *only* put out 1 kj per kc. So 1000 food calories (in your example) that we burn only produce 1000 kilojoules of output.


Hi Joe,

Congratulations on getting the book published! Looks great and real easy to read. Just got a quick question for you: is it theoretically possible for NP to be below avg power in a session? I was doing intervals today (7*5min @ Z5) and for each interval my NP was below my avg. I'm puzzled as to how that is possible. Wouldn't NP be only higher or equal to AP since it reflects true metabolic cost and I can't be working easier than what I'm actually exerting (i.e AP)?

Thanks for your time.

Cheers, Boon


This looks very interesting! But seeing that I currently only use power readings on my ergometer would I still get good enough value out of your book?

Joe Friel

Jens--Just depends on if you understand what the data is that you're currently generating on your ergo.

Joe Friel

Boon--Yes, it's possible if there are a lot of "valleys" and few spikes.

Rob Newsom

Joe - I've been reading your stuff for the last 10 years. Thanks so much for the help. This last year, I've been racing with power and I'm now entering the first base season period where I will use a power meter. My plan is to go back to using HR zones during base (with the exception of some mid and late base intervals), however I've become a bit confused. You reccomend spending most of the base time in Zone 2. With an LTHR of 174 Zone 2 is 141-155 for me. Coggan's Zone 2 has an upper limit of ~142 and then his Zone 3 closely corresponds to the HR range of your Zone 2. This seems pretty different. Your training manual states that there isn't much use training below YOUR Zone 2 range. Why do you suppose Coggan shows such a discrepency compared to yours?


Joe, I think you have undersold yourself when explaining this book. By that I mean this book has huge value over just owning the "Training and Racing with a Power Meter" book. I now have both. Your book doesn't just complement the other book; it says different things in new ways, with your very special style. I especially enjoy your careful and easy to understand explanations of terms and plans - I feel more "coached" and helped along by your book than the bigger book. As a frequent Century rider, I also think your Century plan makes a lot of sense and I can't wait to try it next season. The part about defining your IF goal for a Century and then training at that same IF seems intuitive, but I for one haven't been doing that. The Base and Build and Taper period plans are all described in great detail.

Can you help me with one topic? If I want to lift weights 3x/week during any of these plans - especially during the Base periods - how would you recommend I coordinate that with riding 6x/week? Lift only on active recovery days and off days? I am especially concerned about when I do my leg weight lifting workouts (including heavy squats). It's very tricky to try and be rested for a leg workout, and recover the next day from it, without interfering with the riding, and specifically harder rides. I have an obsession with trying to be a weightlifter and a rider at the same time, and I don't want to let that go, since I enjoy both equally. Finally, any ideas on identifying TSS for weightlifting and manually adding it to the riding TSS for a complete understanding of total stress?


alex canonero

Hi Joe, Great book, already got it in Spain. Good job in making this topic easier to manage. Keep them coming.
All the best
Alex ( Mallorca & Tenerife Camps)

Joe Friel

Alex--Thanks! Great to hear from you again. Hope training is going well.

Joe Friel

RB--No, I'm sorry but I don't have any thoughts on assigning a TSS number to strength workouts.

Joe Friel

Hi Rob--I don't know. You'd have to ask Dr Coggan.

cheap jane

Congratulations on getting published Joe. My training partner referred me to you and your book and I'm planning to pick it up once I get back home!

Jon Ayers

Thank you so much for writing this book. Very appreciated! I agree with the post above that it is quite complementary to Training and Racing with a Power Meter. In particular, I found Chapter 8 extremely helpful in building my training plan around my job during the winter.

I have two questions 1) on page 72 you define IF as average power/FTP. But the other book defines it as NP/FTP. In fact, it seems to me one could more easily define TSS as (IF) squared times # hours riden times 100. This is pretty simple and intuitive to understand. 2) On page 158 you recommend only one muscular endurance workout per week, but the sample training plan on page 159 has it twice. Which should we follow?

Jon Ayers, 56, Masters Road Cyclist, Maine

Jon Ayers

I have the same challenge as you in fitting in strength training with cycling training. I measure Kcal and just take about 1/2 to get a TSS. It is usually 20 or 30. But mostly, I just listen to my body to balance the strength training into the plan. I only do once a week during the season, and then mostly for core and flexibility.

Jon Ayers


Still studying your book 4 weeks later. Question about your Century plan, specifically Century Simulation during the 9-10 week Build Period.

If during that 9-10 weeks I plan a recovery week every 4th week, while I'm usually doing a ~10% greater TSS ride every weekend, should I skip the longer ride during the recovery week? Or, just take it easy DURING the recovery week, and do the longer ride at the end of the week? (In effect, never missing a week of doing long rides).

I'm assuming that there should be a recovery week or two during the 9-10 weeks, but I'm not sure if skipping the long ride is a good idea or not.


Joe Friel

RB--Most athletes need no more than 5 consecutive days of recovery every 3-4 weeks. Monday thru Friday. That means you can do a quality, event-specific workout evy weekend, if you want/need to.


Thanks for solving that. One more thing I'm concerned about. Your example of a Century Build plan only has 3 serious w/o's/week. I think your other plans - and plans of other coaches I've seen - always have at least 4. Why did you choose only 3 in this case?

I'm wondering, for example, if it would be better to get in a 4th w/o/week of maybe some Muscular Endurance (would equal 2xME w/o's/week) for more power at LT support? Or is that too much?

My goal is a 5.5 hour Century (Subaru Elephant Rock, 3rd time) @ .80IF (192NP for me) @ 18.2MPH. So I will ride the simulation days at .80IF, using your chart to calculate ride duration for each of 9 weeks (cool chart!).


Joe Friel

RB--Some athletes can tolerate 4, others can't if you can then by all means do it.

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