Cadence and Morrissey

“Punctured bicycle on a hillside desolate” he once warbled, and I would have too at Saturday night’s karoake but for the fact that after my fine rendition of Oliver’s Army they didn’t seem keen to return the mic to me.

Having previously established that my ideal cycling cadence (the rate at which my legs spin) is somewhere in the upper Alesha Dixon range I have been longing for more definitive data.  Today I got some data, plenty of it and to be honest I don’t yet know what to do with it but I’m hoping it will help turn me into a more efficient cyclist.

For my big birthday at the weekend my sister bought me a Garmin GSC 10 cadence and speed monitor that can be used with my 305 Forerunner.  The Forerunner has been a little neglected since I bought a smart phone just over a year ago as the Endomondo application that I use most days is far more convenient and popular amongst my exercising buddies.  It does throw some occassional wobbles such as on Saturday when it frustratingly under-estimated the distance of my measured 5k Heaton Parkrun.  It is free after all, and so the Garmin should be there to rely upon when I need accuracy and the Garmin output can be imported to Endo to ensure that I have a complete diary of my activity in one place.

The Garmin cadence data showed that on a ride to work when I have a handful of short sections where I can slip into my favoured tempo, I am happy to spin at about 100 RPM.  Much of the ride in is downhill and I would like to see myself using lower gears to maintain a more constant leg spin on the few short uphill sections.  Going home with the gradient against me I started at the same rate but it gradually dropped off to lower 90s.  It’s also harder to maintain a speed with more stops for lights and with more time spent building back up to speed.  My 20km circuit around Pilsworth will be a bit more interesting and I want to learn to spin quicker whilst climbing the long hill on Heywood Old Road.  I’d then like to try moving through the gears quicker to push a bit harder on the down hill sections.

I shouldn’t think that Mozza would care too much for cadence and I imagine he’d happily flounce along at below 60 rpm, wobbling and a-weaving about to attract more attention to himself.  However, I would like to thank him and Johnny Marr for the magic of “This Charming Man” which at 99 BPM gives me another reason to love that song sooo much.


About holmesinho

Happily married father of 2 living in Prestwich 5 miles north of Manchester, England. I cycle most days though mostly commuting and also enjoy running and triathlon.
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