Advantages of watt-based Triathlon cycling

Mario Schmidt-Wendling is the head coach of and an experienced Triathlon coach with countless victories as an athlete and as a coach of Pros and age groupers. He tells us why a power meter is the most important training tool for him.

Watt based Triathlon cycling

The so-called Kona Bike Count shows that the number of athletes using a power meter grew exponentially over the last years. But why?

One the one hand, more and more power meters are available on the market and they get more affordable. (Please be careful, not every system delivers reliable and realistic data.) On the other hand, more athletes understand how important a power meter can be. Especially, on the 70.3 and Ironman distances the energy management plays an important roll concerning the total effort. Those athletes who trained with a power meter before the race and who know their Functional Threshold Power (FTP) have one advantage: They know the power they can hold for an hour and therefore they minimize the risk of swim/overbike/run.

Knowing your FTP does not only allow you to set up your training zones correctly. You can also set limits for your maximum watts during a race. Depending on your shape, time of the year and the experience of an athlete this limit can be between 77% and 81% of your FTP.


A power meter is:

–        A tool for performance diagnosis

–        A training partner

–        A pacing tool during a competition

Combined with a GPS watch a power meter is the most important training tool for a triathlete.


Mario Schmidt-Wendling