No one disputes the importance of base training, and the truly serious make careful note of time, distance, and wattage in their pre-season rides. But when it comes to outdoor training—at least at my latitude—that doesn’t really capture the whole story.
[click-through for larger sizes]
Jens Factor, as defined by this chart, is just that—an integer value you can factor into your training data to properly reflect the increased benefits of staring down winter weather. Jens Voigt, a veteran roleur known to take particular glee in miserable conditions, is its obvious namesake.
It’s worth noting that Jens Factor makes no provision for precipitation, because the various types present such wide-ranging levels of difficulty depending on other conditions. It’s also worth noting that the Creative Commons license under which I released this image contains provisions for free re-use…
Oh, also—you can now buy the design on a wall poster or some t-shirts.
thoughts on “Winter Training: Calculate Your Jens Factor”
This is awesome.
-22F in Minnesota this weekend – I guess I was at Jens Factor HC.
Nice! Version 2.0 should incorporate precipitation. Driving rain is known to increase Jens Factor.
I think we need a new scale. Several in Omaha are biking the daily commute with temps as low as -16F.
And I think we’re in for a cold snap coming up this week. 😉
No fair! It’s not my fault that the temps in Seattle don’t get beyond Jens Factor 1.
number of offspring should also be added as a variable. I think Jens has 16 children.
Jens factor 3 here in ontario
This is the coolest thing I have ever seen!
I think we need to not only add precipitation but also temperature on the opposite end of the scale. Having ridden in Adelaide during January at the Tour Down Under where the daily max can reach the 40C level (with overnight minimums still in the 30C’s) you need to have some ‘Jen’s Factor’ in you as well.
the ironic thing is, Jens probably goes south for the winter
I sent this to my friend Mike — the only guy I know who loves Jens as much as I do — and he thought it was cool, and then I get an IM saying hey, had I seen the little photo credit at the bottom…?
Even cooler now.
I gave up work commuting in Edmonton when it exceeded Jens factor 4 on November 18. Definitely not up for factor HC.
Jens Factor HC made me laugh so hard I spew java through my nostrils onto my keyboard. This is one of the most killer charts I’ve ever seen. Chapeau, Cosmo.
wow. when i went out on sunday, i was pretty smug… come to find out it was only a JF3. guess there is only one Jens.
Hey, thanks for the image credit! Much appreciated.
You’re neglecting the other scale of weather-hardiness, though – the Hushovd Index, used to tally which nationalities of rider are going to be wrapped in leg-warmers, jackets and long gloves while others ride along cheerfully in shorts:
HI1: Only the Spanish are in legwarmers
HI2: Italians are starting to look a bit chilly
HI3: French riders start to wrap up
HI4: The Belgians and Germans start to feel the cold
HI5: Even the Danes and Norwegians are starting to suffer a bit
HI6: Thor Hushovd puts on a light jacket.
Great job, but you forget that a Jens factor 5 is the equivalent of a Boasson Hagen factor 2.
You guys need to harden the …. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XY3TfjOeuhM …….up. Our domestic racing season is in our winter! I was 40 before I realized that Cyclocross photos in foreign media publications was as a separate class of cycle sport. It just looked like ‘racing’ here in New Zealand, only shorter, “why only an hour long? Why aren’t you doing the full 100 km standard club race?”
Jens is not a fair control, we have already read on this blog that he is not human, any self flagellation in comparison is shallow braggadocio, I’m a Jens .01 pass me another beer its 20 C and the racing season is 5 still months away, thought’s of tapering for the TDF on TV haven’t even entered into the training plan yet.
Jens Voigt once challenged Lance Armstrong to a “Who has the most testicles” contest. Jens won, by FIVE! And, whenever you have a problem in life, just ask yourself, WWJD? “What would Jens do”? Jens ROCKS!
Cosmo – check out part 7 of the interview. I think you just got the ultimate compliment for your efforts.
Great post and informative post.
@ Guy, @ Cosmo
Just flicked through the current edition of the German “Tour-Magazin”, in which they had a feature about Jens. He tells them about the “Calculate your Jens Factor”-thing, too. Seems like you really impressed him with that, Cosmo…
What would be the Jens Factor for 35deg Celcius and 80% Humidity! That’s my planet in summer.. Yeeeouch. Not fun.. and literally, not cool!
i just think we need to not only add precipitation but also temperature on the opposite end of the scale.
any way,good job here!
This is fantastic. I’m planning on integrating this into our team training over the winter.