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Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less)
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Zwift Newbies - you have found your kindred spirits, late adapting children of the Covid Generation this thread is for y'all. A good place for those newbie questions that have been asked and answered before, but are new to us.

Maybe a place for a place for you to rant or rave about your experiences in Watopia.

I'll go first. After reading about my new Tacx Bushido's tendency to under-report watts, I decided to use my PowerTap as the telling source for my meager wattage while on Zwift. Sadly it said the same as my Bushido.

Your turn.

http://www.fitspeek.com the Fraser Valley's fitness, wellness, and endurance sports podcast
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [Hydrosloth] [ In reply to ]
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I just signed up for the free trial. Did my FTP test, I might need to find a USB extender since I had a couple of dropouts.

It honestly wasn’t quite as horrible as I thought it would be

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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [Hydrosloth] [ In reply to ]
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I’ve done the FTP test and the first ride now. If I want to jump in a race or group ride tomorrow, what do I need to know How do I know if I’m an A B C or D? Or will zwift tell me where I should be?

Virtual power put me at 268 FTP. No actual pm to compare to, and I’ve replaced the fluid in the trainer, so calibration is an issue, but it’ll be consistent if not accurate.

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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [JasoninHalifax] [ In reply to ]
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From my limited Z-racing experience, C.

IF you want to check times/power you can always snoop around https://www.zwiftpower.com/

the world's still turning? >>>>>>> the world's still turning
Last edited by: Callin': Apr 15, 20 18:57
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [JasoninHalifax] [ In reply to ]
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Been on Zwift for 2 weeks so still working things out.


Depends more on your w/kg than absolute watts. Most races or group rides will have an indication though that shows the range of FTP for each batch.

Most likely you would be B or C unless you are a strong rider (above 4.0w/kg....then you'd be A).
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [JasoninHalifax] [ In reply to ]
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At this point Zwift will not. They are working on implementing features that will tell you if you are entering the wrong category, but right now that is in beta and is only be used for select events. If you have a decent idea of your ftp, divide by weight in kgs. If it’s between 3.2 and 4.0, enter B, if it’s less, enter C, if it’s over , enter A.

Cs and Ds have much more of a sandbagging problem than Bs and As. Use zwiftpower, it makes the race results more enjoyable. But if you don’t want to sign up for zwiftpower, racing on Zwift can still be fun, but I’d recommend doing races that start the cats separately, that way you can race your peers. They way you can tell is when you open the race in the companion app, look at the times for each category, if they are different, your good. Crit city races are even better, because in those, not only do you only start with your category, yin only see your category, so the other cats can’t mess up your race. Plus Crit City is a fun course, I highly recommend it.
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [MRid] [ In reply to ]
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C it is then. w/kg is at 2.9 (not enough watts, too many kgs)

I'll try jumping in a race or something today.

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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [JasoninHalifax] [ In reply to ]
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One last tip....sprint start. Go out hard, sell out to hold the lead pack (this is why separate starts are better). Have your watts up as the countdown starts from 10, that way when the gate drops, you come out gunning. It will feel hard, and unmaintainable, but IT WILL settle down, and then you can start getting energy back for the first climb. (If there is one)
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [MRid] [ In reply to ]
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I have been signed up for a few months, I only have a really old dumb trainer. I did a few rides and enjoyed it until the weather turned nice here and I was able to gt out for a few solo rides. Now the weather is cold outside again and Im having trouble getting back.

Im also wondering how much I am missing with my dumb trainer.
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [H8to wrk] [ In reply to ]
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It depends on what you are using to measure power. If you have a power meter of some sort, then a dumb trainer can work well. I did it for years, with power tap pedals and a Kurt kinetic dumb trainer. You won’t feel the grades, but your speed in game will be accurate, and you can use the gears to help simulate the grades. If you don’t have a power meter, then you have to use what is known as zPower, where the game estimates your power based off the speed of your rear wheel and the know power curve of your trainer. If you have a popular trainer, then it should have a known power curve in Zwift. This can still work, but you have to be careful to always setup each ride the same, same tire pressure, same tightening of the knob against the flywheel, etc. Your power won’t be as consistent, but if you take care to setup correctly each ride, it should still be useful. If you want to do group rides on Zwift, zPower works fine. If you want to race, you can, but most events will DQ riders on zPower, especially in the B and A cats.
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [Hydrosloth] [ In reply to ]
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I tried it once long ago (back in the early days of Zwift) and didn't enjoy it. I stuck with my method of Trainer Road and Netflix for all my indoor work.

When this whole COVID thing started I signed up for Zwift as all my friends were having Zwift gatherings and I saw it as a way to get some level of socialization. Well, it seems they improved it quite a bit. I am enjoying it for now. I am finding myself enjoying the "terrain". It's more natural riding in many ways than being locked into X watts for Y hours on TrainerRoad.

I suspect, as this year wears on, I'll be using Zwift a whole lot more. I do expect there to be basically zero triathlon season so this might have to scratch the itch for competition. I haven't thought about racing yet, I am still skeptical about it as I can see so many easy ways to cheat. However right now I am enjoying competing with myself and trying to improve my times on the various climbs and segments.

As with any video game, though, there are so many bells and whistles to learn about. All the various options and screen doodads. I am having fun figuring those out, at least.
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [g_lev] [ In reply to ]
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So to me, the easiest way to deal with the cheating, depends a bit on how strong you are. If you are an A cat, then this may not work as well, but for B and C cats I feel like it works well. So to race B cat, you have to have an ftp under 4.0 or you’ll be DQd in zwiftpower. So step one is using Zwift power. Secondly, if someone is cheating, but they are cheating in a way that keeps them under 4.0 then I’m like meh, that may not be real for that guy, but it’s certainly a realistic power output, that many people can do, so I’m fine racing against it.

And if you don’t want to use zwiftpower, it’s honestly been my experience that sandbagging in Bs isn’t that bad, because even if someone is putting out higher than 4.0, it probably isn’t much higher, and they ain’t getting away from the pack anyway. Racing Bs is fun. Especially when the categories start separately. Now if you are an A it gets tougher, because of the A+ riders, some of whom are legit, some are clearly not. Since I don’t race A it’s hard for me to give much advice, other than pick your races well :)
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [MRid] [ In reply to ]
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That's almost discouraging. Lol...

My w/kg @FTP is around 4.2-4.3 (used to be way better, more like 4.6, but I gained some weight...stupid virus isolation)

I suspect I would get destroyed by the real cyclists in the A group!

I read about zwiftpower and will likely start using that though
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [g_lev] [ In reply to ]
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Yeah, 4.2 is no mans land., sorry :). That said. You can enter a B a Race, since you don’t have a zwiftpower profile yet, you wouldn’t be considered a sandbagger. If your smart about using the draft, you should be able to hold the lead group and still stay within category limits. Once you get some experience, then dip your toes in the As. There are plenty of racers on Zwift who only know their FTP as 95% of their best 20 minute output in a race. And there are certainly racers who monitor their 20 minute power output to stay within cat limits. So I think you’d be fine for now, entering a B race.
Last edited by: MRid: Apr 16, 20 5:48
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [MRid] [ In reply to ]
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Because every thread on ST needs to come around to Lionel Sanders....

I started following LS on Zwift. Dude needs to change his profile pic, still riding the Garneau.

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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [Hydrosloth] [ In reply to ]
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So this aspect of Zwift has been bothering me a bit. My team has been setting up group rides using the meetup feature. It is fairly typical that my scheduled workout is much longer than the meetup is planned for. Like today I am planning to ride for 1:20, but the meetup I am doing is only going to be for about 45 minutes. I plan to start my ride early, then join the meetup for the last 45 minutes. That's awesome and all... but when I do that Zwift cuts my ride off when I join the meetup, sends the file to Training Peaks and Strava, then makes a new file for the meetup ride. After the meetup ride, it sends that file also to TP and Strava.

Now I don't care much about having multiple rides show up in Strava... but in TP it's annoying because I then have to unpair the file, download both, merge them using a FIT file merge tool, then re-upload.

Why does Zwift have to do this? It's frustrating. Just give me one file to work with. I get it that the map thing gets messed up because my first ride will be in whatever world, and the meetup might be elsewhere. But it's still very frustrating that I wind up with multiple files I need to merge together to put in TP (or just accept that my workout is "yellow" with the second ride being just sitting there as an extra workout, but that seems dumb). I use the "yellow" feature in TP to indicate I had a bad workout, or missed some part of something. So looking back it's annoying to see a yellow when I actually completed what I was supposed to complete
Last edited by: g_lev: Apr 16, 20 7:25
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [g_lev] [ In reply to ]
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The explanation that’s been given is that Zwift does this because it’s jumping you to a new location, sometimes in a whole different part of the world, and if they don’t do this, it messes up the speed/distance calcs in the fit file. Or something like that. I use Golden Cheetah, so I just use the combine activities feature to make it one activity, and that works pretty well. I don’t know if Training Peaks has that type of functionality or not. The other solution is to make the other part of your ride occur after the meetup is over, instead of before. In that case, you’ll just keep riding and you’ll get 1 fit file. Of course that may not work for you if the order matters for the type of workout you are doing.
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [MRid] [ In reply to ]
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MRid wrote:
So to me, the easiest way to deal with the cheating, depends a bit on how strong you are. If you are an A cat, then this may not work as well, but for B and C cats I feel like it works well. So to race B cat, you have to have an ftp under 4.0 or you’ll be DQd in zwiftpower. So step one is using Zwift power. Secondly, if someone is cheating, but they are cheating in a way that keeps them under 4.0 then I’m like meh, that may not be real for that guy, but it’s certainly a realistic power output, that many people can do, so I’m fine racing against it.

And if you don’t want to use zwiftpower, it’s honestly been my experience that sandbagging in Bs isn’t that bad, because even if someone is putting out higher than 4.0, it probably isn’t much higher, and they ain’t getting away from the pack anyway. Racing Bs is fun. Especially when the categories start separately. Now if you are an A it gets tougher, because of the A+ riders, some of whom are legit, some are clearly not. Since I don’t race A it’s hard for me to give much advice, other than pick your races well :)


Easiest way to handle is realize a lot of cheating "could" be going on and keep it in mind....it's really a game so don't take it all too serious. I was on a ride the other evening when someone cruses by me on the Desert Flats pushing 15.8ish/wkg for as long as they were in my "view". The reality that that was accurate is about 0% Get a good workout and have some fun while at it and enjoy Zwift for what it is not taking it 100% serious.
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [g_lev] [ In reply to ]
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The easiest way to get around this is have both your head unit (Garmin, etc...) and Strava send the data to TP. Just delete the Zwift uploads in TP after the rides are posted.
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [JoelO] [ In reply to ]
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JoelO wrote:
The easiest way to get around this is have both your head unit (Garmin, etc...) and Strava send the data to TP. Just delete the Zwift uploads in TP after the rides are posted.

This is what I do too. It's especially nice when zwift has a dropout or freezing issue you don't lose any data.

Strava I Instagram I Team Every Man Jack I
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [Hydrosloth] [ In reply to ]
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Seeing a few professional rugby players get on the zwift train.

Hooker training for the Sport of Scrum-Halves [Triathlon]
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [MRid] [ In reply to ]
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MRid wrote:
The explanation that’s been given is that Zwift does this because it’s jumping you to a new location, sometimes in a whole different part of the world, and if they don’t do this, it messes up the speed/distance calcs in the fit file. Or something like that. I use Golden Cheetah, so I just use the combine activities feature to make it one activity, and that works pretty well. I don’t know if Training Peaks has that type of functionality or not. The other solution is to make the other part of your ride occur after the meetup is over, instead of before. In that case, you’ll just keep riding and you’ll get 1 fit file. Of course that may not work for you if the order matters for the type of workout you are doing.

I *could* do that... but after the group ride is over we usually do "happy hour" on Zoom... so I want my workout to finish when the group ride finishes ;)
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [Sean H] [ In reply to ]
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Put me squarely in the Covid Zwift crowd.
I have been using Rouvy for my training for years and I loved it because I would go in there and bang out a structured workout 2/3 times a week but still get in longer rides outdoors plus some group rides and races where I had contact with real human beings.
Now that all that is a so a thing of the past (and hopefully the future) I signed up for Zwift and while I'll be honest I have let some of my structured workouts slide, I am really enjoying doing various group rides and the social aspect of it all.
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [Hydrosloth] [ In reply to ]
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What's the easiest and cheapest way to connect my IPad to my TV while I'm riding on Zwift? I have been watching boxing or Super League while riding on Zwift. This is fun and it helps pass the time but I think I would get more out of my ride if I could see it on my big screen TV. Any thoughts?
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Re: Zwift newbies thread (6 weeks and less) [MikeyG] [ In reply to ]
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MikeyG wrote:
What's the easiest and cheapest way to connect my IPad to my TV while I'm riding on Zwift? I have been watching boxing or Super League while riding on Zwift. This is fun and it helps pass the time but I think I would get more out of my ride if I could see it on my big screen TV. Any thoughts?

Get a lightening to HDMI dongle and connect the iPad to the TV via HDMI cable.


Lots of sources (Apple, eBay, Amazon, etc.)
https://www.walmart.com/...UEAQYAiABEgJ7SvD_BwE
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