Toaster challenge

World famous track cyclist Robert Förstemann battles a 700w toaster. Can he, with his 74cm legs, generate enough energy to create a golden-brown toast? Please like, share and comment!

The challenge was set up to show how much energy we humans consume compared to what we can generate. This is a graduation project from the Stockholm Academy of Dramatic Arts filmed in Stockholm, Sweden.

The finishing examples estimate how many Roberts that would be needed to power either a petrol car consuming 6,5l/100km for one hour, or a one-hour Boeing 737-800 flight.

Producer and Director – Nathan Grossman
Director of photography – Johan Hannu
Original music – Fredrik Wictorsson
Mechatronic engineers – Jitin Thomas and Satyajit Bagchi


3 workouts show you how to use power to maximize your performance

In simpler terms, watts measure how hard you work. One horse, for example, can produce 746 watts. One super human, like six-time Tour de France stage winner Andre Greipel, can create a charge of 1,900 watts in a single sprint. Most pro cyclists produce about 200 to 300 watts on average during a four-hour tour stage. The recreational rider, on the other hand, might be only able to sustain this wattage during a 45-minute or hour-long spin class.

Used correctly, watts can help you better understand how your energy is being transferred to the bike. Perceived exertion changes based on several factors such as your stress levels, how well you ate or slept before your ride, and the temperature outside. Watts are unbiased. “That’s what’s great about wattage. It takes out of all the variables,” Pennino says. “If you’re training off your heart rate,” he explains, “when you’re stressed, tired, dehydrated or sick, your numbers are always different. Watts, however, are always watts.”

The challenging part about watts is understanding what, say, 150 watts mean for you. Because one’s individual number is very subjective—meaning it derives from a combination of bodyweight, leg strength and overall fitness—there’s no clear-cut answer.

Look at it this way: “If a 200-pound (91 kg) man and a 125-pound (57 kg) woman are producing the same wattage, the female will go faster because she’s pulling less weight,” says Pennino. The advantage women have over men, who are generally bigger and stronger, is that they’re lighter and, therefore, if they are strong, too, then they can produce a lot of power and ultimately go faster.

To find your personal power numbers, start by determining your baseline with a 20-minute time trial on a stationary bike. “Hit the gas to see what’s your average watts. Once you get that number, take off 10 percent to calculate your baseline number, or functional threshold power (FTP),” says Pennino. So if your average power is 200 watts, then your FTP is 180. From there, follow these three workouts to determine your training levels for interval, tempo and easy endurance rides.

  1. MODERATE RIDE WITH INTERVALS

    Duration: 60 min
    Warm-up: 10 min (Start with easy riding sprinkled with a few 1-minute sprints to get the heart rate up and body prepped)
    Main Set: 40:00
    Do this set twice:
    4 min at 100% of your FTP
    1 min recover
    3 min at 110% of your FTP
    2 min recover
    2 min at 120% watts of your FTP
    3 min recover
    1 min at 130-140% watts of your FTP
    4 min recover
    Cool down: 10 min (Easy spin followed by stretching)

  2. EASY ENDURANCE RIDE

    Duration: 1 hour, 35 min
    Warm-up: 10 min (Start with easy riding sprinkled with a few 1-minute sprints to get the heart rate up and body prepped)
    Main set: 1 hour, 15 min (Keep watts 65-85% of your FTP throughout the entire ride)
    Cool down: 10 min (Easy spin followed by stretching)

  3. HARD TEMPO EFFORTS

    Duration: 1 hour, 20 min
    Warm-up: 10 min (Start with easy riding sprinkled with a few 1-minute sprints to get the heart rate up and body prepped)
    Main set: 1 hour
    20 min at 85-95% of your FTP
    20 min recover
    20 min at 85-95% of your FTP
    Cool down: 10 min (Easy spin followed by stretching)

 [Via: equinox.com]

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