Breaking Down a Zwift Rainbow Efficiency


On February twenty sixth, 2022, athletes from world wide competed within the UCI eSports World Championships. How did Loes Adegeest practice particularly for the Worlds to trip into the rainbow jersey?

Loes Adegeest

Loes Adegeest from the Netherlands received the 2022 UCI Zwift World Champs with a wonderfully executed race and closing surge up NYC. She’s used Xert for the previous 6 months to coach particularly for the race, so we’ve had an opportunity to dissect her buildup and race itself.

We’ve beforehand written particular articles on Xert’s Maximal Energy Obtainable metric; its Health Signature dimensions of Peak Energy, Excessive Depth Power, and Threshold Energy; and the way I’ve used Xert in my very own coaching.

Full disclosure, I’m the Chief Sport Scientist for Xert and Baron Biosystems. Additionally, Loes Adegeest was not sponsored by Xert in her use of the system previous to the Worlds.

This 12 months’s race was two and a half laps of the NYC Knickerbocker circuit with the end line atop the NYC KOM. The circuit is comparatively flat other than the NYC KOM climb giving your complete race practically 1000m of elevation acquire over the 57km. It’s a troublesome end with a center 500m part at 10.6% for 400m after which 100m at 15.7%. The ultimate 500m of the race incorporates a flat 300m adopted by 100m climb at 10.8% and a flat 100m to the end.

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To see the story of the race, we will have a look at her energy and elevation knowledge and in addition to her Most Energy Obtainable (MPA). MPA is Xert’s distinctive metric the depicts how a lot energy an athlete has any given second in a race. It’s the purple line on the chart above and is an indicator of fatigue. The worth goes additional than simply displaying fatigue because it additionally depicts how this fatigue is affecting an athlete’s means to provide energy – their most energy.

As you possibly can see, Loes’ MPA sees some comparatively minor dips in the course of the first two climbs. Her energy knowledge is usually blue (low depth) with solely quick yellow and pink efforts in the course of the NYC KOM climbs on every lap. She had conserved vitality very successfully, by no means being pushed or examined at any level within the race.

On the ultimate lap, just a few girls remained, together with defending champion, Ashleigh Moolman-Pasio. Workforce USA launched assault after assault with Katheryn Curi making a powerful transfer main into the ultimate NYC KOM climb. She was caught handed by “AMP” and three girls managed to bridge and dangle on: Cecilia Hansen, Zoe Langham and Loes Adegeest.

Right here’s a closeup of the ultimate climb to the road. Loes will get the hallmark energy and MPA illustration of a win – a breakthrough-on-the-line. This occurs when an athlete reaches and sustains a breakthrough effort as they cross the end line. It’s the definition of an ideal ending to a race.

Loes performed the ultimate climb actually well. She took a second on the flat second part earlier than the ultimate pitch to the end to get better simply barely, and on the base of the ultimate sharp pitch she deployed her feather power-up and concurrently launching an all-out maximal effort with every thing she had for 20s. The ability-up and energy had been completely timed, one thing she had practiced time and again with breakthrough after breakthrough efforts in her coaching.

It’s NOT All About FTP

Let’s take a better have a look at Loes’s Xert health signature and the way it matches our conventional obsession with Threshold Energy (TP). We’ll see that, whereas a excessive TP is sort of by no means a foul factor, there’s a ceiling that we frequently hit and that larger positive factors can come from specializing in Excessive Depth Power (HIE).

The system evaluated her signature on at the present time to be 853W, 19.3kJ and 309W for her Peak Energy (PP), Excessive Depth Power and Threshold Energy, respectively. A TP of 309W at simply 57kg is a formidable 5.4W/kg. Nevertheless it wasn’t simply her Threshold Energy that made this win occur. It was her HIE too. 

Within the weeks main into the Worlds, after a construct section centered on elevating her TP, Loes’s HIE was as little as 15.3kJ. What if she had continued to deal with her Threshold Energy and never on her Excessive Depth Power? What wouldn’t it have taken to attain the identical consequence?  To seek out out, we use the Superior capabilities of Xert to look at how one other athlete’s signature suits the identical energy knowledge by modeling totally different mixtures of PP, HIE, and TP.


Right here we mannequin Loes if she saved her TP at her precise worth of 309 W, but when she hadn’t constructed up her HIE and it remained at 15.3 kJ. We see that MPA drops beneath Loes’s precise energy output, that means that what she did on race day would have been not possible if her HIE stayed at 15.3 kJ together with her TP at 309 W.


Right here we’ve got an athlete with a low Excessive Depth Power of 15kJ. In an effort to carry out the identical effort Loes carried out that day, this athlete would have wanted to have a Threshold Energy of 327W! (5.7W/kg!) 

For feminine cyclists, this stage of TP could be reserved for a really, only a few on the prime of their sport. Had Loes been centered on her Threshold Energy, reaching 327W would have been extremely inconceivable, even perhaps not possible given her time window of 8 weeks from qualification in December to race day.

Others could have examined race particulars and thought that specializing in dash energy could be a great way to organize. The ultimate effort is just 20s so may very well be for sprinters?  What if her Peak Energy had risen to 1000W?

Doesn’t look like it could have helped a lot in any respect. Threshold Energy would nonetheless should be in rarified territory (324W). That closing 20s effort isn’t carried out in a comparatively rested state, therefore Peak Energy doesn’t have a whole lot of affect on the athlete’s means to push this energy beneath this a lot fatigue. Pure sprinters actually don’t have an opportunity right here.

Studying from a World Champ

What are the massive takeaways for me from analyzing Loes’s profitable trip?

  1. Threshold Energy is nice, however racing usually requires ramping up Excessive Depth Power. That is in step with the final themes of periodization, the place the Base and early Construct phases are usually dedicated to constructing cardio capability and threshold energy. However within the later Construct and into the Peak section, that’s the time to sharpen up race health and the capability to repeatedly surge and dig deep. We noticed this with Loes, the place she got here into the ultimate peak section with a extremely developed TP however a comparatively low HIE, then centered her closing weeks on exercises centered on increase HIE.
  2. Race specificity is essential. Particularly in on-line racing, you possibly can recon the course as many occasions as you would like. This lets you tailor your exercises particularly to the calls for of the occasion. In Loes’s case, she did a number of exercises and efforts on the ultimate NYC climb, so she knew precisely how one can customise her coaching, gearing alternative, pacing, and many others.
  3. Racing will not be regular state! We could simply get lulled into considering {that a} race-defining effort “lasts” 4 min, so due to this fact one of the best ways to coach is to do intervals at your 4 min maximal energy. Nevertheless, as we see on the NYC climb, Loes hit a variety of wattages, with the ultimate surge at a a lot increased wattage AND UNDER FATIGUE. That closing surge due to this fact is far more durable than simply driving at her 4 min maximal energy from a contemporary and non-fatigued state. So coaching for it doesn’t contain simply repeatedly doing max 4 min efforts. As a substitute, your Peak section coaching ought to goal to include efforts that require you to hit efforts at quite a lot of supra-threshold wattages AND from a state of fatigue. Not straightforward however there simply may be a rainbow ready on the finish!

Right here’s Loes’s coaching development within the closing 2+ months main as much as the Worlds. You see an enormous construct with a crew coaching camp adopted by a basic taper that includes an enormous discount in quantity however nonetheless numerous depth.

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Trip quick and have enjoyable!


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