Jon’s Mix – Tour of Watopia Stage 3 Retry

Easily the most frustrating experience I’ve had on Zwift up to now has been the crashing out of Tour of Watopia Stage 3. I understand the technical reasons that running an event like this could / would be challenging, but from an end user perspective, getting kicked out of a workout ~25 mins in is extremely frustrating.

As it happens, Zwift support were very good about the whole thing and gave me a full credit for the ride. That’s fine, but for my own sake, I wanted to complete the full workout anyway. And so, this morning, I did just that.

Many fewer people, much higher chance of iPad not dying.

I opted to take a ride around Zwift’s NYC map for this workout. I was a little wary of the first half of this workout. There are some sprint-type sections right at the start, and I have been feeling a little tender in my legs since Tuesday’s ride.

Pain incoming.

I thought I had completed this workout before. But checking back through my blog, I can’t see that I have. I have done Jon’s Short Mix before which is a cut down version of this workout (30 minutes vs 54 minutes), and I have done a 2×15 minute FTP interval workout before. This was a combination of both.

Interestingly when I did the 2×15 minute FTP intervals previously, my FTP was at 142w. Therefore I had to maintain ~140w for 15 minutes, twice in a row. That one was a hard one. Today’s ride was 2×10 minutes at 140w, which is now not my FTP (I’m at 159w currently), so this was actually “easier” than last time.

Towards the end of the second 10 minute block, it certainly didn’t feel much easier.

Sadly not the finishing arch.

It was definitely more fun doing this workout with a huge pack of riders. Doing a group workout or group ride is high on my list of things to do with Zwift. I’m a little wary of doing this without upgraded hardware. I guess it would be fine on the laptop.

One thing I tried hard to do on this ride in the longer intervals was to work on my breathing. In through the nose, out through the mouth.

I couldn’t get my heart rate down though. I also tried to keep a high cadence, though kept flip-flopping between having too much power, and too little.

On the second longer interval I was doing anything I could to kill the time. This involved taking a few funky screenshots, much like the above. I know the little screen thing in front of the rider is supposed to represent a workout (somehow), but to me it always looks like the rider is reading a newspaper.

The secret with cycling is dogged persistence. Keep turning those pedals and soon enough, the pain will end.

I somehow, and I don’t have a clue how, only got half a star for one of the steps. I think I must have been going too hard in this section, as it’s a sudden drop for 420w to 55w, and it takes a few seconds for my Tacx Neo 2 to respond. In this short gap, it’s easy to over spin and it can hurt a bit.

I’m going to see if there’s a firmware update for my trainer before my next ride.

Overall a decent, if uneventful ride. There weren’t many people online – maybe 300-400 on both New York and Watopia, so there were some sections that were very empty. Such is life at 7.10 on a weekday morning, I guess.

No more rides for me today. I have the Tour of Watopia Stage 4 tomorrow morning at 8am, so if you’re riding that, then see you there.

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