Tour de France Average Watts

Over the years, Tour de France cyclists have averaged speeds of about 40mph or about 25 km/h. During the normal flat stages of the tour pro riders can usually average between 230-250 watts which is equal to burning about 900 calories each hour. 

Pro cyclists on the tour will usually average more than 300 watts or about 1100 calories an hour. For instance, Tadej Pogacar who won the 2021 race has a Functional Threshold Power of 415 watts which is the power he can sustain for about an hour’s riding. 

However, it is important to note that for explosive one-hour climbs, some tour de France riders have been known to exceed an average of 500 watts. In the final stages of a sprint for the finish, some cyclists have even hit maximal efforts averaging more than 1500 watts. 

How Many Calories do Tour de France Cyclists Burn?

Top cyclists at the Tour de France who compete in all 21 stages burn about 120,000 calories or an average of about 6000 calories for every stage. On some of the more difficult mountain stages, racers can sometimes burn up to 8000 calories. 

To make up for the huge losses in energy during the rides, cyclists usually eat all manner of delectable treats such as energy bars, jam rolls, and mouthwatering gels so that they can get fueled up without chewing. 

Why Power Measurement is Important?

In earlier days, we had to measure cycling performance using either heart rates or miles per hour. During the early 1990s, cycling switched to measuring power output in watts. 

Since that tie companies such as Ergomo, Powertap, and SRM have been producing power meters to measure the deflection of the crank arm using a specialized wheel hub or minuscule gauges that enable the more precise measurement of power output.

Most devices measure power output in watts with the key statistic being watts per kg of the body weight of the cyclist usually abbreviated as (W/kg).

This makes it easier to measure training intensity as compared to speed which may be more related to wind and terrain. While heart rates may offer a rough gauge, they usually vary in response to factors such as exercise duration, temperature, caffeine intake, humidity, fatigue, altitude, and hydration. 

Power measurement is thus important as it measures the energy that is being delivered to the pedals thus measuring the intensity of work in watts. Measuring power thus makes it possible to monitor training and characterize the course of training, assess aerodynamic drag and sleekness and also assist in pacing. 

How Many Watts Does the Average Cyclist Put Out?

A beginner cyclist will average about 75-100 watts during an hour’s workout. A fit athlete will usually average more than 100 watts in an hour while a pro cyclist will consume more than 400 watts during an hour’s riding. 

The typical cyclist will produce an average of 310 watts of power in a minute of riding.

How Many Watts can a Pro Cyclist Maintain?

A professional cyclist can usually average power output of about 400 watts during a race. However, cyclists have been known to produce higher outputs of more than 1000 watts for short periods of time such as the final sprints

In terms of watts per kg the average professional cyclist riding in the Peloton can produce about 6.15 W/kg assuming they weigh in at about 70 kg. 

The average cyclist will usually maintain an average power output of about 163.8 watts for about 20 minutes while the professional cyclist will be able to maintain a wattage of about 429 watts. 

While the untrained rider can only manage 20 minutes of riding at close to their maximum effort before benign totally exhausted the professional cyclist riding in a Peloton at the Tour de France would just shrug that off and keep riding. 

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