Thursday, March 31, 2011

What to think?

I decided late yesterday afternoon to test my legs at the "Wednesday Night World" ride from the Trek store.  The ride started at 5:30.  It truly was a last minute decision... I wasn't prepared at all.  No clothes laid out, no water bottles, and no dinner.  I have about a 20min drive home, in that time I thought about how I was going to get rush through the house to get everything ready.  Where are my bottles, what clothes to where, air in the tires, lights, ride or drive to the shop...etc.

I decided it would be faster to ride to the shop.  I had plenty of time once on the bike.  Whew! relief.  I made it with a few minutes to spare.  We did the typical roll out down the trail then North out of town.  There is a long flat road about 3miles before the ride kicks into full throttle.  I kept thinking... I don't want to work.    A couple of guys got out in front just before the hill.  A sort of head start or pre-emptive strike.  I was on the front not working too hard but not resting either.  Just waiting for the rest to roll by.  Note to self... don't do that!  Surprise, I was able to stay resonably close to the lead pack.  I had to make up a little gap.   Heart rate check 179bpm.  Top of Zone 5.

Now there was about ten guys in the packed.  Some guys that I have never ridden with were pretty fast.  I was right at my aerobic threshold when we hit the next big hill.   I blew up on this hill.  I had to slow down and found a more sustainable pace.  Again, the group got together.

Next up were the rolling hills of the Omaha trace rd.  I like rolling hills.  I saw some incredible speeds on my computer.  35mph down hills 25mph over the hills.  I was pretty comfortable with this pace.  I had good energy for the sprint.  Limpach and Lucas got out in front but I wasn't far behind.

Overall, I am happy with my fitness.  It was fun to mix it up with a group ride.  The bike works great!  No problems at all.  It just did it's thing and let me do all the work.  TODOs:  more cruise intervals, more hills, less weight :)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Still work to Do

Even though it is a rest week there is still riding to do.  This morning I took the chance to sleep instead of waking up for a trainer ride.  So, I will do that tonight.  1:30hr endurance work.  Nice and Easy.  

I will have to do some work Thursday with some Form Sprints.   Then Saturday, I will do another fitness test on the trainer.  I am feeling faster so I am looking forward to seeing how much.  It would have been nice to have a rest week right before the Twin Bing race.  I would have substituted the test for the race.

I am looking forward to the Twin Bing race.  Looking at the results from last year...  I finished last of all the people who finished.   I think everyone that finished in front of me are Cat 2 now.  A little encouragement.  I need to look at my training schedule and work around this race.  I don't want to taper.   I will just rearrange to have easier/shorter days before the race.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Ready to Rest

Though, I did not ride all my scheduled hour I finished with a solid week. 

After I missed my Thursday and Friday rides, I was determined to ride and not on the trainer.  I ventured outside in the snow.  I prefer to have 35 degrees and snow over the same temp and rain.   My feet and seat still got wet from the wet road but it was bearable.  I was able to ride 4hrs.  In that 4hrs I did 25min in zone 4 with some long cruise intervals into the wind.  I did another 35 minutes in zone 3 and the rest in Zone 2 and below.  The last hour I was done riding and just limped home.

Sunday, I was scheduled for 5hrs.   I led a Spin class and then made it home for a 4hr ride.  Craig was able to meet me at Hiway 370 & Hiway 50.  We coodinated out training schedule and it worked out good.  He had a "Group Ride" day.  He could ride hard or easy.  I had an endurance ride... zone 2 and lower.  We set a moderate pace down Hiway 50.  Craig rode hard up the hills and I kept my consistant speed.  Once we got on the flats, Craig would do most of the pulling into the wind.  There were a couple times my HR went above my Zone 2.  We parted ways at Hiways 370 & 50.  I rode home into a steady headwind.  I had to help out with some painting at home so I called my wife for a rescue.  Still I had 4:15hrs on the road. 

This morning it was very slow going.  I was beat.  Thank goodness I am now on a rest week.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Wait, What?... it's Snowing

Wet sloppy snow last night and more predicted tonight.  That is going to throw a wrench into my training plan. 

I still trying to work out in my mind how am I going to make this weekend work.  I have already missed my workout last night.  Didn't feel like climbing on the trainer this morning.  So now I have an endurance ride tonight, Hill work tomorrow, and my long endurance ride Sunday.  I suppose I will take it one day at a time.

Today, I am scheduled for 4hrs.  Not going to happen... I will sit on my trainer for 3hrs.  I am thinking tomorrow I can get out on my Single Speed for my Hill workout.  Sunday, I will do a Spin class and probably head out for another long ride.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Blown off course

The plan yesterday was to ride NorthWest of town then back to the East to Blair.  That didn't happen.   The planned route would have taken me far away from home.   The weather was so cold and windy, I did not want to be stuck in the middle of nowhere if I ran out of steam.  So, new plan, go North and fight the wind as long as possible.  Then turn around and ride home with the wind.

So from my office it took me about thirty minutes to get out of town.  I made it to the Omaha Trace rd then to Ft. Calhoun.  At this point it was only 1:15min into the ride.  It seemed like 3hrs.  I was out there and feeling ok, I might as well finish the ride.  After Ft Calhoun came a long ~5mi flat section.  I had been thinking about how miserable it was going to be.  I would feel the full force of the wind here.  I watched the time on my HR monitor, telling myself that  1:45hr was long enough to fight the beast. When the time hit 1:45hr I was only a couple miles out of Blair... should I keep going.  I didn't.

I made a quick stop to dig out a Clif Bar from my jersey, then headed South.  What a difference.  My speed was 11mph into the wind and now it was 31mph without trying.  I covered 7 miles in no time.  Went back through Ft. Calhoun and onto the flat roads by Boyer Cute.  There I completed a couple cruise intervals... getting my HR up to my lactat threshold.  With an assist from the wind I powered up some steep hills.   I was home free.  I ended the ride with 3:25hrs & 55miles.  So with the ride to work I had over 60mi and ~4hrs a little short of the plan but I will take it.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Wednesday Update

Not much to report.  Last nigh I only did two short cruise intervals on the trainer.  My rear wheel flatted about 4 minutes into the second interval.  The patch gave out on the tube.  I put on a wheel from my other bike but lost all my motivation.  I was ready to be done.

I rode into work this morning.  The traffic down Blondo at 6:30 is light.  Tonight I am riding to Blair.  Since the wind will be out of the Northwest, I will ride to Elk City then North to Highway 30.  Highway 30 will bring me to Blair.  Then it will be a easy ride home with the wind.

I am getting tired.  It seems that as soon as I climb off the bike from one ride I am preparing for another.  I am ready for a rest week. Just a few more days!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

This is the last work week of Base 3

It is going to be tough to work in all my training hours.  Today will be fine.  I did a workout in the morning and I will do my 2hrs of Cruise intervals tonight.

The problem will be the next three days.  I have to do a long ride tomorrow.  I am thinking that I will get into work by 6am and leave at 3pm. Doing the long ride won't be that tough either but after that I will be less motivated to finish the rest of the weekday schedule.  Which is a 2:30hr ride Thursday and 3:00hr ride Friday.  

For the weekend, I have more hill intervals and another long ride on Sunday.  I can't wait 'till rest week!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Recap for the Week

For the past week, I stayed with the training schedule.  I did miss my workout on Thursday but made up the time with a longer than scheduled ride on Saturday & Sunday. 

Saturday, I went with the Bike Master's group.  I also was slated for a hill workout.  So either on a hill or into the wind I would pick up the pace.  I did this one time before the sprint point just before Maple Street out west by Waterloo.  I got in front of the group and picked up the pace.  A couple guys hung onto my wheel.  When the sprint sign was visible one guy attacked.  I was able to get on his wheel.  I was able to recover a bit and counter to take the sprint.  I contested the sprint a couple more times but was beat out.

Sunday, went with the EVCC group on Sunday.   I was in for a easy ride but Rich and Craig were there.  Rich likes to do steady hard pulls.  Craig likes to sprint for stop ahead signs.  So, more hard pulls and sprints.  Craig is riding well and he beat me on a few sprints.  It was a fun weekend.

Coming up is one more week of Base 3.  This will be my longest week for hours.  I may be riding in the dark for some. 

Friday, March 18, 2011

Very little to Blog

Go Green... it is doubly good on St. Patrick's day.  Yesterday I spent the evening painting the kitchen green.  On the bike schedule I had a Speed works day.  I thought about dragging out the trainer but needed a day off.  So, nothing yesterday.

Today, I rode into work and will ride for another 3hrs after work.  This weekend I have more hill work on Sat. and Sunday an endurance ride.  The weather for the weekend looks ok.  I may have to work around some rain.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Long Ride... Long Day

Yesterday was a long day for me.  The drywall was done in my kitchen remodel so it was time to paint the primer coat and I had a long bike ride scheduled.  Sounds like a good time to take the afternoon off from work.

So, I left work at noon to head home.  I quickly ate lunch while I put on my painting cloths and quickly got to work.  Since everything was out of the kitchen, figured it would only take an hour to paint a coat of primer.  It took an hour and a half.  I was on the road just before 3pm.

My route took me North to Blair, so I had a nice 15-20mph southerly tail wind for about 20miles.  I choose to do this because there were no good ways to get through town to head south.  I didn't want to ride the trail either.

The first 10 miles I had company.  It was a med. student from Creighton.  He was all key up waiting to learn where he was doing his Internship so he went out for a ride.  We parted ways in Ft. Calhoun.  With a tail wind the nine miles to Blair went quick.  I should of stopped there for drinks there but kept riding.  I headed on West Hiway 30.  Straight into the wind... my speed went down from 23mph to 10mph.  I watched the town signs go past.  20 miles to Fremont.  I wasn't going to Fremont but what seemed like an eternity the next sign said 17miles to Fremont.

I finally made it to my turn off Hiway 30, staight South.  The was less wind so my speed picked up.  I was now on the Bike Master's Wed. Night ride route.  Cool, I can meet up with them.  I did for awhile.  I was going to hang off the paceline but was coaxed into working.  When I got to the front I was working way harder than I wanted.  We made a turn then I hung off the back.  I was able to keep the pace pretty well, it was still harder than I wanted to work so I just road back to the shop by myself.  I had to stop because I was totaly out of fluids.  I downed a gatorade and Mt Dew.  Talked to some peeps and headed home in the dark.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Toughing it out

I climbed on my trainer last night to do my cruise intervals.  I had to stop at Lowe's to pick up some stuff for my kitchen remodel so I didn't get dinner until 6:30.  When I got home I ate too much.  Well, too much to climb on the trainer to do an intense workout.  I waited for an hour and watched some of the Tirreno-Adriatico race.

I was on the trainer at 7:45.  The plan was to do 3x12min cruise intervals.  Intesity zone 4/5a.  I really hoped to hold a good effort in zone 5a.  I did my standard warm up recovered for 10min and was ready for my first interval. 

From the start 12min seemed do-able.  I watch my HR steadily climb into zone 4.  Five minutes into the interval I was right at 174.  The top of my zone 4.  The next 3 minutes I struggled to keep that effort.  To finish out the 8th minute I convinced myself that I could change plans and do 4x8minute intervals for the workout session.  That is what I did.  I finished the last interval did about a minute easy spin and I was ready to get off the bike.  It was the hardest thing I have done this year to date.

I am taking off work early to paint my kitchen and do an endurance ride.  This ride is going to be nice and mellow.  Nothing over Zone 2.   The hardest thing to do is stick to the training plan because I really want to do a Wednesday Night Shop ride to test out the legs.

Yesterday was a good start to my Base 3 week 3.  Adding up my workouts for the day I had over three hrs (45min Spin Class, 45min elliptical, and 1:30+hr trainer).  Today it is 4:30hr endurance ride.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Tuesday Cruise

Monday was a rest day nothing to report there other than I needed it.  My legs were a bit sore from my Hill workout Saturday and the occasional sprint on Sunday did not help recovery.  Today I feel pretty fresh.  I had to lead a spinning class this morning.  I got my HR up but didn't push against any of my limits.

Tonight calls for Cruise intervals.  Each of these intervals can be 6 - 12 minutes long.  I am going to try for 3 12 minutes long.  I remember somebody telling me last year that I had good speed but I didn't have a very good top end.  I think he is right.  So even though I am still working my base 3, I am going to start pushing my upper zones.

Tomorrow I may take the afternoon off for a 4:30 hr ride.  I will ride to work then take off from there for another 4hr or so ride.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Is it Spring yet?

Almost, the time change is a good indicator that spring is right around the corner.  I believe next week.  I am doing well with my training but it is just the start of Base 3.

To recap the weekend:

Friday, started the weekend early with a long endurance ride.   The wind was pretty strong as Rich and I headed west to pick up Craig.  My schedule called for a 3hr ride but ended up with a bit more time in the saddle.  I did what I needed to do... stay in Zone 1 & 2. 

Saturday, I meet a bunch of people north of town to do hill repeats.  I did one warm up hill on Mckinly up to 72nd then back to Hiway 75 for longer steeper hills.  I worked two hills and I was somewhat disappointed that I couldn't get my HR up into my zone 5a.  It was a force workout so I was focusing more on getting the burn in my quads.  I got that for sure.   On the "Surfside" hill I definatly got both the burn and up to Zone 5a.  A couple times into the wind I used the wind on the flat roads as my hill to get the desired affect.  Anyway, Force workout... check.

Sunday, I had spin class then a 3hr endurance ride.  Check.  I pushed it into my Zone 4 a couple times.  Which I am not happy with but I am getting better at controlling my urge to take off with the group.

This week is Base 3 week 2.  More of the same.  Adding about 3 more hours to the weekly time in the saddle.   I am pretty much done in the gym. 

Friday, March 11, 2011

Early Start

Getting an early start on the weekend.  Today I am going to take some vacation time to take advantage of the weather.  I have a 3hr ride scheduled and would like to do it while I still have some sun light.

Tomorrow, I am doing a force workout.  I am meeting some guys at the Scooter's on Mckinly St & Hiway 75 at 11:00am.  We are going to do some hill repeats on 75 then move over to do the hills by NP Dodge park for more repeats.  Should be fun! 

Sunday, I have a 4hrs of riding schedule.  I will count spin class as an hour.  I will do another 3hr ride on the road.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

On Target

I am still on target to get all my hours this week.  Last nights long ride, it was tough to stay focused and in my zones.  I just tried to keep my HR in a comfortable zone.  The last 45minutes, I was energized enough to keep my effort in upper Zone 2. 

Today, I rode into work.  My route is only about 7mi with short steep hills down Blondo Street.  It took me about 30min from doorstep to doorstep.  Today is a short day for riding.  At somepoint in my commute I have to do some high cadence work.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Cruise Intervals..

were the main course of last nights workout.   My goal was to get at least 20 minutes worth of work in my Zone 4/5a. 

I had some things to do at home so I didn't climb onto my trainer until 7:30pm.  A bit late in the evening.  I was worried that I would not be able to sleep after an intense workout.  Since my workout was to be 2:00hrs in duration I had plenty of time to warmup.  I used the warmup I do for my Fitness test:
20min easy
10-15min Zone 2 - 3
5min Zone 3 - 4
5min easy
1min 95%
3min easy
1min 95%
5min Zone 3
10min easy

The warmup is a workout in itself.  The intervals went well.  I did only three for a total of 20min (6min, 7min, 7min).  Starting the first interval, I watched my HR climb up into mid Zone 4.  It was tough and I wanted to be done after 2 minutes.  I was thinking that I had a long way to go to get into shape.  I kept pushing.  I wanted to hit my zone 5a but was happy to finishing the 6min up top of Zone 4.

I did some quick calculating and figured if I could get away with doing only 2 more 7min intervals to get the recomended 20minutes of cruise intervals.  The second and third intervals, I was able to reach up to Zone 5a.  I was happy with that and didn't feel so bad.

For me, the key to doing these intervals is knowing how hard to start.  My HR monitor is not going to tell me untill about a minute and a half into the interval.  So I watch my HR climb if it is not where I want it, I would lift my intensity.  About 3 minutes into my intervals, I can tweak my effort and my HR will soon follow.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

1st Day of Base 3

My morning workout almost didn't happen.   I had the alarm set for 4:30am and planned to be on the bike by 5:00.  The half hour gives me time to wake up and do some chores.  Instead, I was going to skip the workout.  I went back to sleep.  I woke up 20 minutes later and relized that I would be upset with myself for missing this workout. 

I wiped the sleep from my eyes, then was on the trainer.  The trainer will now be named Dottie (a vicious life-sucking bitch from which there is no escape!).   I was going to do either a Tempo Ride or Some Cruise Intervals.  I ended up with an Endurance ride.  Just couldn't muster up the energy or motivation.  I will do the Cruise Intervals (3 - 5 intervals 6-12minutes long).

Monday, March 7, 2011

Rest Week Highlights

I was on the bike 3 times for a total of 6hrs.  I climbed on Tuesdays and not until Saturday did I climb on again for my test.

The test on Saturday went well.  I was fairly motivated for the test.  I have been doing so many Endurance rides in the base period I was looking forward to the challenge of working hard again.  Also, I was interested in how my training is progressing.   I don't use power but I can compare my avg Speed for the 30min time period. 

After a proper warmup, I started my 30min TT.  I was able to get my HR to 175bpm within the first 5 minutes.  I felt pretty comfortable.  It started to get tough about 8 minutes into the test.  Going slower was not an option so I kept pushing.  I was relieved when I finally hit the 20 minute mark but at that point 10 more minutes seemed like an eternity.  My avg. speed was dropping.  Now down to 5 minutes.  I have been able to lift my effort in the last 5 minutes but not for this test.  I could only manage a short burst of energy for a few seconds. 

The end result was avg speed was a little bit higher than last year.  My avg HR was 175bpm.  When I looked at my graph, I noticed that my top sustained speed was when I had my cadence at ~106rpm.  Interesting.

So, the training zones will be the same.  I think 175bpm is about right.  Anything above that seem to be unsustainable for more than a few minutes.

Sunday, I was back to a 3hr endurance ride.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Rest Week Starting Badly

For some reason, I couldn't sleep last night.   I think I had a total of 2hrs sleep.  When 5:30 rolled around I got on my trainer for an hour.  No problems there... I kept a solid effort going from start to finish.  Anyway, I have another hour to do tonight.  I think I will move my weight lifting session to Wednesday.