If you’re just getting started on a Peloton, you may have come across a phenomenon known as output. It’s a great way to measure your progress and fitness as you train. But how exactly is output measured? What is a good Peloton output for 30 minutes, for example?
A good Peloton output for 30 minutes is between 300-480 kJ, with a good average of between 180-250W. If you’re not hitting these stats just yet, don’t worry – we’ll show you how you can improve your average power output.
What Does Peloton Output Mean?
Your Peloton output measures how much energy, or power, you exert during any riding session. Riders use their average Peloton output figures to measure their fitness. Some even draw up a Peloton output table to track how well they’re doing!
Your Peloton output can vary depending on a few different factors, which we’ll cover in more detail shortly. While it’s good to know what counts as a ‘good’ Peloton output, it’s healthier to strive to improve your output over time.
If you want to set a good output goal, and you’re reasonably fit, you should aim for between 300 kJ and 480 kJ if you’re riding for 30 minutes.
How Does Peloton Calculate Output?
There are two main types of Peloton output. These are called total output and current output (or average output). Peloton calculates both through how much energy you exert during riding.
Your current or average output refers to your energy exerted at any one time. Peloton measures this with watts. Your bike calculates this by taking how many revolutions your bike wheels spin (RPM), and how high you set resistance. This is your bike’s difficulty level.
With this figure, you can then work out a good total Peloton output. To work out total output on any Peloton ride, you take the current output figure and multiply it by ride length (in seconds). Then, you divide it by 1000.
So, if you have an average Peloton output of 200W for 1800 seconds, you’d have 360,000. Divide by 1000, and you have a total output of around 360 kJ. That’s within the range of what many refer to as a ‘good output’ for the time taken!
What Is a Good Peloton Output?
Most riders can expect an average output of anywhere between 150W and 250W. Remember, that’s current output, worked out to an average. Therefore, you may have moments where you pedal at 400W!
Various factors impact what makes a healthy output for Peloton riders. For example, you need to consider your age, your functional threshold power (FTP), your age and fitness level.
To achieve a ‘good’ Peloton output, it’s worth considering high intensity training. HIIT sessions, where you exert lots of energy in short bursts, can boost these figures.
You can also improve your Peloton output by taking on power zone rides. More on those a little later!
Below, we’ll look at what might be ‘good’ Peloton outputs for different session lengths.
As a relatively short session time, many experienced Peloton riders can expect good total outputs of between 300 kJ and 480 kJ in 30 minutes.
Most riders can expect an average output of between 180W and 250W. That accounts for cooldown and moments of higher intensity exercise.
A good total output for a 45 minute class is likely to be higher, between 400 kJ and 650 kJ. This is where you’d normally start taking on a power zone class, for example.
An average output for a 45 minute session is likely to be as low as between 150W and 220W. That’s partly because you may have moments where you need to slow up and recover.
A 60 minute ride is likely to produce between 150 and 250W on average. A good total output to aim for may be around 400 kJ to 700 kJ.
Again, notice the differences between these number ranges. Your total output increases, but your average stays around the same. You won’t exert maximum output on Peloton for the whole of your ride!
Why Is Good Peloton Output Important?
Peloton output is great for measuring current fitness, endurance, and overall health. The higher your total power output, the more energy you exert during a set session.
If you notice these numbers increasing over time, you’re building strength and getting fitter. Remember, it’s easier to maintain high output on short rides compared to long ones. That’s why your average outputs may be higher in half the ride time.
Measuring Peloton power output is a great way to compare stats with other riders. Measuring and tracking macros while exercising can be a lot of fun. Peloton gives you an extra dimension by accurately calculating how hard you work!
What Can Change My Peloton Output?
Your choice of workout, fitness level and class length will all change your output. But, there are a few other factors that might affect your final scores. Let’s take a look.
The more intense your workout, the higher your total output will be. This is a key reason why riders choose HIIT sessions and power zone classes.
With high intense interval training, however, comes moments during your Peloton rides when you need to slow down. That impacts your final average, not your total.
Younger riders can expect higher outputs than older riders due to bodily function and heart health. Though some 40-year-old riders may be fitter than some 20-year-olds, age can restrict how far you’ll go.
That’s not to say people over a certain age can’t hit a good Peloton average output. It’s important to consider your own personal and physical limits. Even better – discuss it with your trainer or instructor!
While heavier people may find it more difficult than most to maintain high outputs, they can expect higher scores.
Heavier riders are more likely than lighter riders to achieve larger total outputs due to energy spent. They expend more calories and also work harder.
If you have a low BMI, you may find your output is lower than other riders your age or gender.
Your Fitness and Strength
Fitter and stronger riders can achieve higher total outputs as they have higher stamina. This can also encourage higher output on average, too.
Many riders will step off the Peloton bike occasionally to try other cardio exercises. This can help to boost your strength and endurance. Weight training, too, can help build muscle and keep you pedaling for longer.
Peloton’s power zones help you target functional threshold power goals. You’ll see these written as FTPs. They’re high intensity rides that can help you reach your highest activity thresholds in healthy stages.
Your FTP is the max power you can spend riding a Peloton for up to an hour. Peloton’s FTP tests help you work out your own FTP levels to find the right power zones.
Your output will change depending on how you perform across these zones. It’s always wise to start low and slow, rather than leap ahead!
Here’s a quick rundown of the power zones available through Peloton classes:
- Zone 1: ‘Very Easy’ (likely to exert up to 55% of your FTP)
- Zone 2: ‘Moderate’ (likely to exert up to 75% of your FTP)
- Zone 3: ‘Sustainable’ (likely to exert up to 90% of your FTP)
- Zone 4: ‘Challenging’ (will likely go beyond 100% of your FTP)
- Zone 5: ‘Hard’ (likely to exert up to 120% of your FTP)
- Zone 6: ‘Very Hard’ (likely to exert up to 150% of your FTP)
- Zone 7: ‘Max Effort’ (only sustainable very briefly)
It’s unlikely you will spend much time in Zone 7. However, the higher the level and the longer you ride for, the higher you can expect your total output to be.
Here’s Peloton’s guide to power zones for more detail.
Standing when cycling can theoretically help to improve your performance on a ride. Studies show that standing while cycling uphill may help riders achieve their goals! This can apply to Peloton, and it can certainly help to lower seat pain, too.
How To Improve Your Peloton Output
No matter your age or fitness level, you can always improve your Peloton output. Here’s how.
Adjust Your Resistance
As you start to get used to higher intensity rides, you can increase your resistance levels. This makes rides harder, effectively like you are riding up steep inclines.
Resistance directly impacts your current or average output. Therefore, it also has potential to boost your final output.
As you get fitter and stronger, you’ll hit goals quicker, and can increase resistance sooner. This means you can expect higher outputs sooner, too.
Wear the Right Clothes
Wearing inappropriate clothing for cycling can slow you down and even cause pain. Investing in cycling shoes that you can clip directly into your Peloton is a good idea.
Peloton shoes and clips will help you maintain the correct posture and form while riding. This means you can also keep your pedals moving and aim for a higher Peloton output with greater ease.
While wearing trainers and joggers while riding your bike may be comfy, doing so may reduce your actual power output.
Focus on Fitness and Strength
If you’ve drawn up your own Peloton output chart, try and improve your scores by taking on outside exercise. Regularly jog and strength train, for example, so you can ride for longer, and take on tougher challenges.
Listen to Music
If momentum is an issue, set up your own playlist of energizing music to listen to when you ride. There’s plenty of top cycling playlists on Spotify, for example! You can even use apps to change the BPM of you music, so you can keep pace with the music and have it match the pace of your workout.
The only time you shouldn’t listen to music while riding may be when you have an instructor or session to follow.
Test Your Strength
Peloton’s 20-minute FTP tests are great for helping boost your Peloton output. You won’t be pushing your Peloton bike for the full hour, but you’ll get an idea of your perfect power zone thresholds.
Over time, the more tests you do, the higher you can boost your power zone. In time, that means a higher Peloton output!
Keep track of your output progress with Peloton’s FTP tests and tracking. You may only need to do this monthly to help boost your output.
A good Peloton output for 30 minutes is likely to be anywhere up to 400 kJ (total). But, as we’ve seen, there are lots of different factors that can alter this!
Consider taking on extra cardiovascular exercise, changing your clothes, and taking regular FTP tests to boost your chances of getting the good Peloton output you’re striving for.
Whether you’re a Peloton newbie or are looking for new ways to boost output, we hope you’ve enjoyed this guide! If you know anyone else with a Peloton bike who could use some handy tips, don’t be shy to share it on.