Unleashing the Power of Robo Pacers and Teleportation: A Game-Changer for Cyclists

Screenshot of a Zwift avatar on the Tron Bike
March 25, 2024

Mike Ricci


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As a dedicated cyclist, I'm always on the lookout for innovative tools and techniques to elevate my training and performance. Recently, I stumbled upon a game-changer in the world of indoor cycling: robo pacers from the Zwift Cycling app coupled with the teleport feature. It’s been fun to try something new and challenge myself in a new way. I’ve shared this feature with my athletes and have heard nothing but good things from them.

What are Robo Pacers?
For those unfamiliar, robo pacers are virtual cyclists within the Zwift Cycling app that maintain a steady pace throughout a ride. These AI-driven riders offer a constant target to chase or maintain, making them invaluable companions during training sessions.

The Power of Teleportation
Now, here's where things get interesting. Zwift's teleport feature allows athletes to seamlessly teleport to different locations within the virtual cycling world. This means I can strategically position myself alongside a robo pacer of my choice, regardless of my physical location on the course.

To change robo pacers on the Zwift Companion App, read the following article from Zwift:
Here are the directions to the Zwift Portal.

Robo Pacers and Watts per Kilgram (aka w/kg)

How do you know your watts per kilogram?

  • Take your weight in pounds and divide by 2.2.
  • Then take that number and divide it into your FTP.

Here’s an example:

Joe Rider weighs 180 pounds

180/2.2 = 81.8 kilograms

If Joe’s FTP is 240 watts, then we take the 81.8 and divide it into the 240.

Joe’s w/kg = 2.93

Looking at the list of Robo Pacers below, you’ll see that Yumi rides at 2.9 w/kg and this is the pacer Joe would want to ride with, in order to ride at his FTP. Anything over that will be a shorter effort as it will be tough for Joe to ride above threshold for more than a few minutes.

Riding below FTP for Joe would be Tempo or ‘Sweet Spot’ and riding over 2.9 w/kg would be more in line with riding at VO2.

Link to the Robo Pacers

How Athletes Can Utilize Robo Pacers and Teleportation
So, how can cyclists leverage this dynamic duo to enhance their training and performance? Let me break it down:

Setting Goals and Targets:
Before hopping onto Zwift, I set specific goals and targets for my ride. I do the same for my athletes where I may say ‘Warm up at 1.1 w.kg and spend 5 minutes with each RP’. Once you are warmed up you can teleport to the pacer that rides as close to your FTP and spend the majority of your time with this pacer.

Having clear objectives keeps me focused and motivated.

Choosing the Right Robo Pacer:
With a plethora of robo pacers available, I select one that aligns with my training goals and abilities. Whether I'm aiming for a leisurely ride or an intense interval session, there's a robo pacer to suit every need. That’s right, if you just want to ride a long and low ride - low heart rate for a long time, then riding leisurely with a RP is a great way to do it!

Having a virtual companion keeps the rider accountable and motivated to perform at their best.

Final Thoughts
Incorporating robo pacers and teleportation into my indoor cycling routine has been a game-changer. Not only do they add an element of excitement and challenge to my rides, but they also provide invaluable support in achieving my training goals. Whether I'm chasing down a virtual rival or pacing myself through an endurance ride, Zwift's innovative features have transformed the way I train and compete.

So, if you're looking to take your cycling to the next level, I highly recommend harnessing the power of robo pacers and teleportation. Trust me, you won't be disappointed.

Coach Mike Ricci is the Founder and Head Coach for D3 Multisport.  His coaching style is ‘process-focused’ vs. ‘results-focused.’ When working with an athlete, their understanding of how and why they are improving is always going to take precedence over any race result. Yes, there is an end goal, but in over 2 decades of coaching, experience has shown him that if you do the right work, and for the right reasons, the results will follow.

Coach Mike is a USAT Level III Elite Certified Coach, Ironman University Certified Coach, and Training Peaks Level II Certified Coach. He was honored as the USAT Coach of the Year.

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