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Rest and Big Volume

It’s been awhile since my last update and, seeing how I’m stuck on an airplane for the next several hours, I figure that it’s about time I write again.

In the last two weeks I’ve been through both my first rest week and, after this afternoon’s ride, the first week of my second big block of volume (21-24-27 hours).  Let’s just say that I enjoy the rest week more than the volume (pure endurance riding can be a little dull)!

I’m finding that the toughest part of high volume training is recovering from day to day, so I took a chance and invested in a pair of Zoot recovery tights.  The theory of these, as I underand it, is the compression is supposed to force your blood to circulate back to your heart instead of it pooling in your legs, thus reducing the amount of metabolic waste from exercise.

The verdict is still out on whether my pegs are actually less fatigued, but I can tell you that I *feel* better after wearing them for several hours (my legs feel less heavy).  Placebo or not though, doing well is often a matter how you feel compared to the other guy.  People who show up to a race feeling fresh often ride more aggressively and keep their eyes peeled for opportunity than someone who shows up tired; they tend to look too often for a way to conserve energy, so much so that they risk passing up the winning move.

October Stats
Time: 61:56:39 hh:mm:ss
Distance: 1085.91 mi
TSS: 2481
Kilojoules: 35028


Chinook Winds: My Enemy

Another week, another post. My coach still has me scheduled doing nothing but long endurance rides with a pretty moderate wattage ceiling and it’s been harder than you think! Mentally, it’s tough to keep concentration for long periods of time doing the same output for hours and physically it’s tough when you are riding into crazy winds.

Here in Boulder, we have something that’s referred to as the Chinook winds. While I don’t know why we get them, I’ve heard it has something to do with the way air comes off the mountains, it provides seriously high winds coming from the west. It feels like you are riding into a hurricane. I noticed on my usual route up Jay Rd into Boulder that I normally average 17-19 mph depending on the day, but recently, because of the headwinds, I’ve been cruising a mind blowing 11 mph up this road. Conversely, when you turn and the headwind becomes a tailwind, I can coast and reach 30 mph. It’s provides for some interesting dynamics.

I did have a fatal flaw on Saturday and it wasn’t eating enough after the ride. Unfortunately, we were lower on food than I though, so when I came home I was forced to go to the grocery store after the ride and didn’t eat a meal for probably two hours. I felt fine after eating, but woke up the next morning to extremely heavy legs. It felt like riding with cinder blocks attached to my feet. I ended up having to cut my three hour ride little short because I wasn’t sure I was going to make it home if I went out any further. I bonked that hard.

The Stats:
Time: 14:15:01
Miles: 248.66
Average Wattage: 163
TSS: 564
Kilojoules: 8161


First Week of Base!

Well, it feels good to be done with the first week of base training for the 2011 racing season!  Think my coach has me starting early enough?  We worked through my last season of racing and training and found that I’ve never really gotten a solid block of endurance training in.  I’ve always just ridden hard, day in and day out.  So this season we decided that I would start seven weeks early, progressively working my hours up.  By the end of these seven weeks, I should have a solid aerobic engine to work with.

How did I do?  To be honest, it was rough.  I’ve always ridden short-ish rides at a hard or super easy pace, so keeping a moderate endurance pace was more of a challenge than I anticipated.  I suspect that once I get to, and finish, my first recovery week of the cycle that I’ll start feeling a lot stronger.

For the future, I plan to keep this blogging rolling on a weekly basis to, at the very least, give a quick update as to my training for the week.

The stats:
Time: 12:00:47
Miles: 224.66
Avg. Speed: 18.73
Average Wattage: 167.20
TSS: 507
Kilojoules: 7194