I see these coloured bars at the bottom of the ride and I know they represent zones. But how do I know where I am in those zones? There is no arrow to indicate so how can I tell? Thanks
They represent the last 15 minutes or so of your power output in game. The furthest right is your current output. IIRC they correspond as follows: Grey = active recovery; Blue = endurance; Green = tempo; Yellow = Threshold; Red = Anaerobic
So it doesn’t tell me what’s coming up in the ride? So how do you use it if it’s retrospective? I’m not sure what to do with the information.
You use it to judge your ride and effort easier than looking at the raw watts number. I don’t have the range of watts for each of my zones memorized. So let’s say I want to ride a 2 hour endurance ride I just ride and keep the graph at the bottom in my view and make sure it is mostly blue with maybe a few trips to green. Conversely, if I want to work on threshold efforts keep it in the yellow and recover in whatever zone you want.
It’s just another representation of your effort for the ride. In a workout it’s basically useless since the trainer resistance is being controlled so you will always be in the target of the workout you are doing.
For workouts what’s coming up is in the box on the left. For free rides look at the mini-map and elevation profile at the top right to see what grade is coming up.
Yes I’ve done workouts. So what you’re saying is that I watch the graph while I’m riding to ensure my watts stay within whatever range I set? So these aren’t watts for the course I’m on but only my personal watts? And if I see red and I want an endurance ride, then I have to back off? But how do I tell at what point I’ve been in red if it’s retrospective? Wouldn’t it be more useful to tell me where I am as I’m riding so I can adjust right away? I feel like I’m missing something.
What you are asking is exactly what the graph is showing. The rightmost point of the graph is your current output in comparison to your FTP that is in your settings. If the rightmost is red, you are about to flame out. But then again your lungs will tell you that.
You know where you are in relation to your FTP also by looking at your watts which is also real time.
You mention you have done some workouts. I’d suggest doing a couple workouts while you pay close attention to that graph along with the workout plan on the left side of the screen and thus your watt output. You’ll quickly understand the relationship now that you know what the graph is telling you. You’ll also see during a workout that the target wattage is depicted in the same color in the workout plan on the left and in the top center HUD that is showing what power you should be delivering. It all works together very well.
Keep in mind, for any of this to be valid your FTP must be set reasonably correct. If it is too low the workout is too easy and when Zwift thinks you should be in yellow for example because you told it that is what your FTP is, you are actually in green for example. If too high, you will be pushed way to hard, likely not finish the workout, and you’ll be blowing your lungs out in your anaerobic region while Zwift thinks you are a stronger rider than you are so it says you are just in yellow for example. If you don’t know your FTP, do one of the FTP tests so Zwift can establish the correct number for you.
Thanks so very much for this excellent explanation Joel. Likely time for another FTP; it’s been awhile. On some of the workouts, it’s an issue sometimes to stay at max Watts for the full workout. I doubt my FTP is too low as it’s not that high- 121. I can’t be getting worse on Zwift, can I? I tried to calibrate but couldn’t get to the 35km/hr and hold it… not sure why as I’ve been able to calibrate before. I’ve been on Zwift for 3 years so I’m not a super newbie.
I know you started this thread asking what the graph showed and the answer is spot on.
I wanted to add, if you want the graph to go away, just push “G”.
I think in a workout, it can not be removed.
I know the UI gets a lot of bad press, but since going to a large TV display, I see a lot more details and there is a lot of info displayed on the screen.