So I have been Striving for a couple of weeks now. Not every single commute but a couple in the morning and if I took the long way home and at weekends. I have found it very useful to record the elevation gained on these routes. However I have found the proliferation of segments bewildering and sometimes just plain odd. After repeating a few routes I started to get PB updates on dozens and dozens of segments.
The other day I did a very familiar evening training route of 37km from Manchester out to Dunham Massey, all roads that I know and get good pace along but are rather suburban As and Bs. I find that I have gone through many, many segments ranging from 200m to 3.5km but mainly not more than 1.2km. Every single one of these has some sprint time 49kph as KoM. Not only am I not aware of these as I pass by, sprinting for them if I knew they were there would just disrupt my rhythm. Later I start to wonder why people make such small segments; is it just to grab themselves a KoM on their local roads, and what is the point if you are the only one going out sprint along there?
One of these sprints is particularly irksome, it is 200m and the KoM is 83kph; that is faster than Cav. I wonder if this is the sort of thing that should be flagged to ‘clean up’ Strava or should I just ignore it?
As I am more interested in how I faired over longer distances I tries creating some segments of my own. I started with my morning commute. I was aware that I couldn’t go door to door as this would just create an impossible segment I just took the main roads which were 7.3km. I was happy to see I had ‘given’ myself a KoM; but I quickly found out that Strava backfills the route and I dropped to 8/21. I actually think that is a good thing, though I wondered why someone hadn’t created a similar route before.
I had another go and used some of my training routes. I made a 15.6km segment which I was 11/37 (chuffed that other people were using it and I had a reasonable position) and a 4.8km which was 55/921 (very good, though again no top 10.) What was VERY interesting is that this weekend 3 guys have done my longer segment 15.6km down the Alderley Edge bypass and A64 and done it on the same day within 8 seconds of each other, two in the exact same time. This looks suspiciously like they have seen my new segment and set off together to do it. They pushed me down of course. I am glad to be inspiring riders (careful on those roundabouts fellas.)
I guess my long segments will give me something to push for though I may never get KoMs. In summary; why don’t more people make longer segments? I vow never to make a segment under 1km.