With less than 90 days before Christmas (yes, you read correctly), it will soon be time to start thinking about Christmas presents. Here’s a couple of tools that may help you save money on those purchases :
Wiggle Price Alert
Our Price Alert may help you snag a bargain in the buildup to Christmas. You simply select the item you are interested in buying, set a ‘target’ price you want to buy at – or, choose ‘any price drop’. Our price alert service will then check the prices at Wiggle daily for up to 90 days and notify you via e-mail should the price drop. It’s a great way to benefit from any potential sale, without having to check the price on a regular basis yourself. Although this service runs all year round, it may be particularly useful for Christmas shopping since you probably don’t need to buy this item immediately.
So, you need a new tire soon, or want to buy your niece a Fitbit for Christmas and the current price isn’t tempting you to buy today. You don’t need to buy them immediately, so you can afford to see if the price drops. Simply set up an alert and Price Alert will watch it for you!
Of course, the price could go up as well as down, so it’s up to you to determine the best time (and place) to buy.
Wiggle Basket Buddy
For those stocking filler presents or small but essential items, you may find yourself falling short of the ‘free delivery’ minimum spend (£12 at time of writing), meaning you are faced with a £2.99 delivery charge for standard delivery. If you are buying an item for £11.49 for example, you are £0.51 short of free delivery so will pay the £2.99 delivery charge. In this instance, you can use Basket Buddy to find any item for £0.51 (or closest to) to save you the delivery cost, making your overall cost of your order potentially cheaper, for example :
Item I want = £11.49
Delivery Charge = £2.99
Total = £14.48
Item I want = £11.49
Low value item = £0.51 <- I used Basket Buddy to find this
Delivery Charge = FREE
If you’re new to the exciting, virtual cycling world of Zwift, then checkout our Zwift top 10 tips for beginners.
1. Connect your Strava
You can connect your Strava, TrainingPeaks etc. accounts to Zwift and upload ride activity. For those familiar with analyzing their ride data on other platforms, this will be useful. Strava also supports Zwift specific segments. If you want to see your event results at zwiftpower.com and make full use of this service, then you’ll need to be logging those rides to Strava (and have them set to public).
2. Choose a challenge
There are currently 3 permanent challenges on Zwift. You can only be working on one at a time. These challenges tick away in the background over all your rides (providing you have selected one) and there are no time limits for completion. So it makes sense to start one ASAP and make all your Zwift miles count!
The challenges and rewards are :
Ride California – Ride 1,283km (in total) – unlock the S-Works Tarmac bike.
Tour Italy – Ride 2000km (in total) – unlocks the Pinarello Dogma F8 bike.
Climb Mt.Everest – Climb 8,850m (the top of Mount Everest) and then a further 41,150m for a total of 50,000 meters to unlock the cool Concept Z1 aka “The Tron Bike” (with glowing wheels).
3. Look out for competition Missions
Zwift occasionally run ‘Missions’ for a chance to win pretty cool prizes like (real world) bikes and trips. Unlike the challenges, the objective usually needs to be completed in a single ride to get entered into the competition draw. Missions only run for certain periods of time and may be specific to a certain course.
Missions pop-up in the top-left of the screen where you choose your route, just before you click ‘RIDE’. This screen also shows the months course schedule.
You may want to customize your rider so your Zwifting friends can spot you in the peleton. Take a look at the rider kits over at zwiftblog.com. During some rides (such as events and challenges) you will be automatically assigned a specific kit for that particular ride. Some kits can only be unlocked by completing certain challenges, or reaching certain Levels.
You can also choose to ride different bikes and wheels. Some do offer better performance. It appears that the fastest wheels are the Zipp 808 (unlocked at Level 10 – which is approximately 530 total miles ridden) and the fastest bike is the Cervelo S5 (unlocked at Level 24 – which is approximately 3,300 total miles ridden).
You Rider Level (currently a rating of 1-25) is essentially a reflection of how far you’ve ridden on Zwift. The majority of XP points are assigned for every mile ridden and when your XP points hit a certain threshold you are moved up a Level. This information in shown during a ride, just underneath your current speed and distance ridden.
5. Try an event
The organised rides are a great way to enjoy Zwift. The easiest way to join an event is via the Zwift app ‘Mobile Link’ for iOS/Android (this is different to the main Zwift game app). Check the details of events, mark yourself as going, then start a ride a few minutes before. You’ll be reminded that your chosen event is due to start and prompted to ‘JOIN EVENT’.
Event results are usually published on zwiftpower.com, but you’ll need to be logging the rides to Strava (and have them public) if you want to make full use of this.
6. Don’t get hung-up on group rides pace
Number 6 in our Zwift top 10 tips for beginners covers one of the most hotly debated topics amongst Zwifters. For events, riders are organized into categories (these are stated in the details of event) eg:
Category/Group A: 4.0 w/kg FTP or higher
Category/Group B: 3.2 w/kg to 4.0 w/kg FTP
Category/Group C: 2.5 w/kg to 3.2 w/kg FTP
Category/Group D: Under 2.5 w/kg FTP
Your w/kg is your FTP divided by your weight in Kg. It doesn’t take long to realize that a riders weight affects this figure massively. Add to this the fact that riders may not always be in the correct category and you could become frustrated if you are are dropped quickly. You’ll find the best strategy is to 1) Calculate your category correctly 2) Try different events, since the actual pace may vary between different organised rides and 3) Measure your progress against yourself.
You can see your FTP in-game, by going to the Menu and Edit Profile (the pencil icon in the top-left, under your name). This is also where you enter/edit your weight, which needs to be accurate.
Your FTP (Functional Threshold Power) is a representation of the most watts you can expect to average over an hour. It can be set by completing the 60 min or 20 min FTP test in Workouts, or is estimated based on your performance during rides. You are prompted after a ride if your FTP should be increased. You can read more on FTP in Zwifts article here.
7. Join Facebook groups
Along with the official Zwift Facebook group, there are an number of other groups dedicating to discussing all things Zwift (and a little more!). Most notable are Zwift Riders, Zwift Racers and UK Zwifters.
A quick analysis of the 100 mile finishers times for 2015 put the most common finishing times (estimated) to complete the Prudential 100 to be:
5 hours 15 minutes for men (across all age categories) with an average of 6 hours 12 minutes.
7 hours 20 minutes for women (across all age categories) with an average of 6 hours 59 minutes.
What’s the difference?
The average is the sum of all the finish times (within a category), divided by the number of participants in that category. This means a particularly fast (or slow) rider can swing the average.
The most common finishing time categorizes all the finish times into 5 minute intervals and identifies the highest number of finish times in a single interval, giving the figure ‘most riders finished in..’.
However, it is worth noting that in the womens category there appears to be very little variation in the number of riders with finishing times anywhere between 5 hours 30 mins and 8 hours 10 mins (with only a minor increase around 7 hours 20 minutes). So you may see other figures quoted within this range.
Riding the Prudential 100 this year? Check out our event tips here.
(Note: Figures are based on approximations and may contain errors. They are not endorsed or verified by event organizers.)