Author: eschlange

Get a smart trainer. Today.

(Note: if you’re unsure of the difference between a smart trainer and a dumb one, read this post first). Many strong riders are Zwifting right now with dumb trainers and a power meter. If this is purely a budgetary decision then so be it, but I’ve heard several such riders talk about how they’re “perfectly happy” with their current setup. All I can think is… ignorance must be bliss. Because I’m convinced that anyone who tries Zwift with a smart trainer will never go dumb again. I know this because I did it. I started on my rollers, because that’s what I had. Then I borrowed a friend’s dumb trainer as well. For me, adding the Zwift experience to my dumb trainer riding barely improved on my miserable indoor training experience. Sure, I was riding on a course–but it didn’t feel real at all. My pedaling seemed to have little connection with what was happening on the screen. I’m not the only one who feels this way, either. Again and again I see posts from folks who started Zwift with a dumb trainer, then moved to a smart one. They say things like, “Why did I wait so long? This makes the experience 100x better!” In a world where many cyclists drop hundreds of dollars on gear without blinking an eye, investing in your indoor training by purchasing a smart trainer is an easy choice....

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Smart Trainer vs Dumb Trainer – What’s the Difference?

Trainers can be organized into many different categories, but when it comes to Zwift, you’re either on a “smart” trainer or a “dumb” one. A smart trainer’s resistance is controlled by Zwift. When the incline of the Zwift course changes, your resistance changes. You “feel” the hills. Additionally, a smart trainer will broadcast your power (and usually cadence) via ANT+ and Bluetooth.       A dumb trainer is not controlled by Zwift. You may be riding up and down hills on the Zwift course, but you’ll feel no difference in the resistance because your Zwift has no way of talking to...

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Links Every Zwifter Must Have

Zwift.com: it may seem silly to list this first, but this is the place to log in and edit your profile, link up your Strava and other accounts, and more. Zwift Ride Calendar: want to join in a group ride or race? Here’s the official calendar from ZwiftHQ. Zwift User Manual: the unofficial guide to Zwift, maintained by James Gill. A huge, living document covering Zwift basics, hardware, levels, and more. Zwift Riders Facebook Group: an active group of 32,000+ discussing all things Zwift. Honorable Mention (Helpful Links, but Not Required Reading) ZwiftPower.com: the place to go for race results (including live results during a...

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Zwift Ride Calendars

UPDATE: Zwift HQ now manages the Zwift events calendar, which can be found online at zwift.com/events and also via the mobile link app. The Teamup calendar explained below is used much less, and only for events not listed on the official calendar. Zwift doesn’t yet have a built-in calendar tool, so the community has developed their own methods for organizing group rides. The Teamup calendar is the most used tool, while the Zwift Riders Facebook group is used by some organized who want additional exposure. Teamup Calendar zwiftcalendar.com Pros: Anyone can see and edit events (not just Facebook users) It’s easy to add this calendar’s data to your tool of choice (for instance, your iPhone) via the iCal feed Repeating events are supported Events are color-coded by ride type (Race, Group Ride, etc) Cons Many Zwifters don’t realize it exists Zwift Riders Group (Facebook) facebook.com/groups/zwiftriders/events/ Pros Organizers can brand their event with a snazzy masthead Riders can RSVP so organizers have an idea who is showing up Events are be easily shared with the Zwift Riders group Comments/discussion can be posted for each event Cons No repeating events, so each ride must be entered separately No iCal feed, so you can’t feed the events into the device/interface of your choice The Verdict For me, the Teamup approach wins. But when I post my Pacific Wakeup Ride (PWR) it goes on both calendars for maximum exposure. Until...

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