Emily Petricola: Why you need an InfoCrank power meter

Emily Petricola: Why you need an InfoCrank power meter

Emily Petricola may be a five-time world champion cyclist, but she’s still relatively new to the sport.

She made her first major appearance on the world stage at the 2018 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships in Rio de Janeiro – eleven years after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS).

Now, as she prepares for her first Paralympic Games in Tokyo later this year, Emily tells us about how she credits the InfoCrank as the biggest catalyst for improving her training and why she thinks you should invest in one if you’re truly serious about going further and faster on the bike. 

When I was diagnosed with MS, I went from being someone who was really fit, active and healthy to someone who was not capable of doing exercise to any level, let alone the way I had prior to my diagnosis. My life has completely changed post-diagnosis. I’ve changed careers, sports and even the place where I thought I was going to build my life a few times over. 

All of the expectations you have as a young person about what track you are on, and where you are going next get thrown out the window when you are diagnosed with a degenerative condition like MS, which has no set course and no way of knowing when something might go wrong or change. It was a true loss of identity as I was no longer capable of a lot of things I had done before.

Being involved in paracycling has completely changed my post-diagnosis life. It has enabled me to tap into the athletic version of myself from before and has really been the silver lining of being diagnosed. There are many things that I can’t do physically anymore, and cycling is literally the only sport that I can now do. Every time I get onto the bike it allows me to prove to myself that regardless of anything else that is going on with me, I am still capable of doing this one thing really well.

Emily Petricola - photo credit @ogaram

Image credit: Ogaram Media

InfoCrank has played a huge part in my training – having a completely accurate power meter was probably the biggest catalyst for improving my training and enabling me to make necessary improvements to ultimately make the national team. When you have a tool that allows you to track your training so comprehensively and measure your performance consistently without other factors influencing the data, it means you can start planning a clearer path forward with your training. Prior to having a power meter I was only using heart rate to track effort, which can be impacted so significantly by fatigue, heat, illness and other factors making it hard to gauge how hard you are actually working. Power is power and you are either pushing it or you aren’t!

I’m lucky that my coach at the time, Shane Kelly, asked me to get an InfoCrank power meter as they were known to be the most accurate and reliable power meter. What I love about it is that you don’t have to constantly calibrate it – it is almost plug and play! It is also great to have the power balance across both pedal strokes as this can be an important tool for me when one side is more compromised than the other.

I now have a far greater understanding of the imbalances of power across my body since using the InfoCrank. One side is more significantly impacted by the disease than the other, and so knowing what my normal ratio is for each side and tracking it during times when things are a bit tougher than they are during a more ’normal’ period is important and can help make decisions around backing off training until things start to head back to a more familiar place. Thinking of getting an InfoCrank? Do not hesitate! It will be the best thing you can do in terms of improving your performance.

Webinar: How to level-up your Zwift skills

Webinar: How to level-up your Zwift skills

As part of a new webinar series, InfoCrank is hosting a session aimed at helping riders become better racers on Zwift (and IRL!).

If you’re chasing Zwift XP or climbing for the coveted Tron bike, this webinar will help you and your virtual cycling avatar to improve your performance in Watopia.

The webinar will share simple examples to demonstrate how to use your power meter to improve key parts of your riding and pedalling skills, which will benefit you both in eracing and out on the roads. The focus will be on the short game; getting faster quicker.

With practical, easy-to-do steps and skills you can take away to practice and perfect in your own time, the webinar will help you to unlock the full potential of your power meter within Zwift. There’ll also be a Q&A at the end of the session. 

To view the available times and sign up to the webinar, please click the link in the schedule below. 

Webinar schedule:

Spaces on the webinars are limited. If you can’t make the session, please let us know as there is potential to add additional dates. Just get in touch via improve@vervecycling.com .

Webinar: How to level-up your Zwift skills 1

How to set power training zones

How to set power training zones

Cycling power meters, something once the preserve of well-funded professional teams and national elite level coaching programmes, have now been made accessible to cyclists of all abilities, budgets and disciplines.

Whether you’re a relatively new convert to cycling, already a battle-hardened veteran or someone returning to the sport after some years of a lay-off, structured training with power is one of the most effective ways to take your performance to the next level. Here’s our guidance on getting started with a power meter and setting your power training zones.

Training with a power meter allows you to isolate the key factor underpinning performance in a way that training with just speed or heart rate data simply does not. Speed and heart rate can and will be influenced by many extraneous factors such as hydration levels, nutrition, wind speed and direction and body position, whereas the power you produce through your legs will always remain an excellent indicator of performance on any given day.

How to set power training zones 2

In order to productively begin training with power first you must perform a Functional Threshold Power or FTP Test. Watts is the measure of rider output and therefore power, the increase of which is the objective of any structured training programme. In a nutshell the test aims to capture the maximum number of Watts you can generate on the bike over the course of an hour. Periodically running the FTP Test will tell you whether you are improving (increasing your power) or regressing (witnessing a decrease in your power output).

In order to use your FTP Threshold productively, training should be structured around certain ‘Zones’ or percentages of this figure. These are called power training zones and can be roughly broken down in the following way:

Zone 1: Active Recovery – 55% of FTP figure (Easy effort).

Zone 2: Endurance – 56% to 75% of FTP figure (Easily sustainable for several hours, excellent for building general endurance).

Zone 3: Temp – 76% to 90% of FTP figure (Ride interval times to be between 20 minutes and 3 hours, a more focussed effort).

Zone 4: Lactate Threshold – 91% to 105% of FTP Figure (More serious effort, ride interval times to be between 15 minutes and 30 minutes).

Zone 5: VO2 Max – 106% to 120% of FTP figure (Hard effort with intervals to last no more than 2 minutes to 8 minutes).

Zone 6: Anaerobic capacity – 121% and above of FTP figure (Almost maximal effort with intervals to last no longer than 30 seconds to 3 minutes).

It should be clear however that in order to use this approach most effectively, both your FTP figure and any subsequent power data must be accurate, which is to say both true and precise.

There is only one power meter out there that takes its claims of accuracy seriously, and that’s the InfoCrank. The proprietary technology within the InfoCrank makes it stand out as head and shoulders above the rest – independently proven to be the most accurate power meter in the world. The go-to choice for most of the successful national cycling federations, globally the InfoCrank is capable of providing data of a quality all other power meters simply cannot.

There is no doubt that with a thoughtful and consistent approach to training with power any cyclist could steadily increase their individual performance. And there is little doubt that as performances improve, the accuracy of the data will become decisive in who crosses the finishing line first.

Emily Petricola: From rower to Paralympic cyclist

Emily Petricola: From rower to Paralympic cyclist

Emily Petricola may be a five-time world champion cyclist, but she’s still relatively new to the sport.

She made her first major appearance on the world stage at the 2018 UCI Para-cycling Track World Championships in Rio de Janeiro – eleven years after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

She won two medals in Brazil and set a new world record in the C4 individual pursuit before winning the first of five rainbow jerseys on the track and the road the following year.

Now, as she prepares for her first Paralympic Games in Tokyo later this year, Emily tells us about how the InfoCrank has supported her in her cycling career.

As a young person I had rowed at school and for a year or two thereafter. Even after I retired from that sport, I continued to train the same as I had as a rower – which for anyone unfamiliar with rowing, is pretty intense in terms of training commitment!

So, when I was diagnosed with MS, I went from being someone who was really fit, active and healthy to someone who was not capable of doing exercise to any level, let alone the way I had prior to my diagnosis. As a result, I put on a huge amount of weight and was also pretty depressed. I had tried many times to restart exercise, but one of the tricky things with MS is that as your body temperature increases, it can trigger your symptoms.

My life has completely changed post-diagnosis. I’ve changed careers, sports and even the place where I thought I was going to build my life a few times over. All of the expectations you have as a young person about what track you are on, and where you are going next get thrown out the window when you are diagnosed with a degenerative condition like MS, which has no set course and no way of knowing when something might go wrong or change. It was a true loss of identity as I was no longer capable of a lot of things I had done before.

My energy levels were completely compromised, my body was functioning in a different way and I looked completely different to what I had my entire life. The first few years I was struck down with a number of relapses impacting so many different areas of my body, I spent a lot of time just taking it day by day. Many days were just get up, work, come home and go straight to bed.

Over time though, things have improved. With better medications, the disease has been more stable with relapses less often than in those early years. I’ve found a way forward on a different path, and I do believe in many ways I am living a far more fulfilling life now than I had before as MS has forced me to take more time to reflect on things and make deliberate life choices that support me living a far more sustainable, happy and healthy life.

It was back in 2015 while in my job at a school rowing program that I was bitten by the cycling bug. I was lucky enough to be working with an Olympic rower from the national team and asked him if he could think of any way to help me to get back into exercising. When I explained to him what I had tried and what had hindered any progress, he suggested we set up a bike in our office with the AC on and a fan in my face and that we start small and build up slowly. We did and within a few months he thought I should look into starting paracycling and aiming for the Tokyo Paralympic games!

Being involved in paracycling has completely changed my post-diagnosis life. It has enabled me to tap into the athletic version of myself from before and has really been the silver lining of being diagnosed. There are many things that I can’t do physically anymore, and cycling is literally the only sport that I can now do. Every time I get onto the bike it allows me to prove to myself that regardless of anything else that is going on with me, I am still capable of doing this one thing really well. For me it allows me to show what I can do rather than focusing on those I cannot.

Emily Petricola - photo credit @ogaram

Image credit: Ogaram Media

InfoCrank has played a huge part in my training – having a completely accurate power meter was probably the biggest catalyst for improving my training and enabling me to make necessary improvements to ultimately make the national team. When you have a tool that allows you to track your training so comprehensively and measure your performance consistently without other factors influencing the data, it means you can start planning a clearer path forward with your training. Prior to having a power meter I was only using heart rate to track effort, which can be impacted so significantly by fatigue, heat, illness and other factors making it hard to gauge how hard you are actually working. Power is power and you are either pushing it or you aren’t!

I’m lucky that my coach at the time, Shane Kelly, asked me to get an InfoCrank power meter as they were known to be the most accurate and reliable power meter. What I love about it is that you don’t have to constantly calibrate it – it is almost plug and play! It is also great to have the power balance across both pedal strokes as this can be an important tool for me when one side is more compromised than the other.

I now have a far greater understanding of the imbalances of power across my body since using the InfoCrank. One side is more significantly impacted by the disease than the other, and so knowing what my normal ratio is for each side and tracking it during times when things are a bit tougher than they are during a more ’normal’ period is important and can help make decisions around backing off training until things start to head back to a more familiar place. Thinking of getting an InfoCrank? Do not hesitate! It will be the best thing you can do in terms of improving your performance.

I think this past year of the pandemic has been challenging for so many athletes. In 2021, I hope the year ahead brings us greater health on a global scale, and personally I hope that the Paralympic games can go ahead and I can chase a couple of gold medals for my country!

British Cycling and Verve Cycling extend partnership with new four-year deal

British Cycling and Verve Cycling extend partnership with new four-year deal

Verve Cycling, the designer and manufacturer of the InfoCrank power meter, has renewed its commitment to the Great Britain Cycling Team with a new four-year deal with British Cycling.

In 2015, Verve Cycling became the official power crank supplier to the Great Britain Cycling Team, and the deal announced today (12 November) will continue to see riders across all disciplines from the Junior Academy to the Olympic and Paralympic Podium Programmes provided with truly accurate power measurement capabilities using one common and world-leading technology platform.

British Cycling and Verve Cycling extend partnership with new four-year deal 3

With an accuracy unmatched by any other power meter, the InfoCrank is a game-changer for racing and amateur cyclists alike. The cranks themselves are available in all popular lengths and both compact and standard bolt circle diameter (BCD). The cranks also feature real-time output for the right and the left leg (independently measured) to any ANT+ compatible head units. For those looking to gain true elite-level volumes of data, the cranks can also be supplied with a bespoke data logger.

The partnership will also give British Cycling’s 160,000-strong membership the opportunity to access exclusive offers on the InfoCrank and all accessories.

Stephen Park, Great Britain Cycling Team Performance Director, said:

“Data is a crucial piece in the jigsaw when it comes to the overall performance of our riders, and Verve Cycling are the leaders in this area.

“We have enjoyed a fruitful relationship since 2015 and look forward to continue to innovate for the next four years, into the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Cycle. We are also very pleased that British Cycling members will benefit directly from our partnership with InfoCrank to support their own endeavours to perform to the best of their ability.”

British Cycling and Verve Cycling extend partnership with new four-year deal 4

Bryan Taylor, Verve Cycling CEO, said:

“It’s been exciting to see our partnership with British Cycling develop over the years, with a shared ambition for true and precise power measurement that delivers in the most extreme of riding conditions. For the world-leading experts at British Cycling to select the InfoCrank as their power meter of choice for another Olympic and Paralympic cycle is testament to the product and what we’ve achieved together so far.

“We continue to have high aspirations for the next four years and look forward to seeing how we can push power measurement even further alongside some of the most incredible riders in the world.”

Power Meter accuracy – What you really need to know

Power Meter accuracy – What you really need to know

Want to know why the InfoCrank is the most accurate power meter in the world?

This three-part video series covers the 2% myth (the accuracy claim made by numerous power meter devices currently on the market) as well as what validity is, what reliability is and why they are important if you want to be able to trust the data from your power meter.

The series is hosted by Brad Hall, Managing Director of both the Veris Racing team and the Exercise Institute, based in Perth, Australia.

Part one of Brad’s guide to what’s important when it comes to the accuracy of your cycling power meter highlights what you need to consider if you’re thinking of investing in one. This episode reveals the 2% myth – the accuracy claim made by numerous power meter devices currently on the market.

Part two of Brad’s guide to power meter accuracy demonstrates why the InfoCrank is the only power meter you can trust. In this episode, Brad talks about why validity is important and needs to be considered if you’re thinking of investing in a power meter. 

The final part of Brad Hall’s three-part series looks at reliability and what you should look for if you truly want to be able to trust the data from your power meter. Brad covers all in this last installment. 

0
    Your Cart
    Your cart is emptyReturn to Shop