No, it’s not a new kind of workout, although Kiel Reijen from Trek Segafredo may disagree! I mean logging your miles. Well, to be honest, I don’t even mean your miles. What I am talking about is the mileage you’re accumulating on your bike and specifically the components that wear out!
Runners, well most of them, log their miles on their shoes and as cyclists there no reason why we shouldn’t too! Most certainly the “consumables” should be logged, these include tires, chains, cassettes and chain-rings. If you want to go the extra mile you can log the mileage of anything. your headset, the bottom bracket, batteries; in your power meter or lights, shoes, cleats, seats the list goes on…basically anything that wears out!
There are several benefits:
- Anticipated maintenance; you can see when you could be ordering new parts. Align this up with your events so you know that you may need a new XYZ as you come in to Race Week!
- Wear and Tear measure; does you bike shift and sound like a bag of horseshoes falling down the stairs…maybe that chain you “just put on” was from 6,000 miles ago?
- Avoid a dead battery; halfway through your ride and your Power Meter goes dead or worse your front light in the dark!
- It’s fun; this of course depends on your definition of fun!
There are several Apps/Websites where you can log this information, I’ll cover some options below:
Garmin Connect: to be honest Garmin Connect is hopeless. It allows you to have “Bike”! There is no granularity. I suppose you could add each component as a Bike but is so simple it’s not worth bothering with.
Training Peaks: it’s much the same as Garmin Connect. It has the capability to create a Bike profile. You can add wheels and some notes. As a general odometer on your bike it works, but it’s pretty basic.
Strava: within Strava you can add a number of Bikes and then create a list of components for each. However, it does have some limitations. If you are switching the same bike between the road and a trainer it assigns the mileage to the component regardless of the activity type. The problem with this is that you will accumulate miles on a front tire when you’re riding inside! This feature is available in the free of paid for version of Strava and is a good place to start and will give you some understanding of just how many miles your components have if you have a single use case for them.
SportTracks; you may have never heard of this platform but they’ve been around for over 10 years. Their gear tracking has all the bells and whistles you could think of. You have a fully customizable Gear Screen which allows you drill down as deep as you want and then assign each item to a specific activity. You can also nest items i.e. a Gravel Bike with a Gravel Wheelset with a Cassette and pair of Tires can be linked. Each item will individually accumulate the miles and each item will be updated when you upload a Gravel ride. Uploads come from your Garmin or Wahoo unit through Garmin Connect or Wahoo Fitness Apps on your phone. For anyone who wants to track a myriad of items this site can help.
For the average Joe (or Josephine) my recommendation is Strava. Create a bike profile and add some components that you want to track, if you’re training indoors and outdoors with the same bike you will have to work within the constraints noted above. If you want to go a little deeper check out SportTracks, they have a 45 day free trial and a forever price lock on whatever the price is when you sign up!
As a rule of thumb a chain will last 2000 miles, a cassette 4000 and chain-rings 6,000, but as they say, your mileage may vary…. literally!