After my post yesterday, John James sent me a link to a good article about approaching training from PezCyclingNews.com. There were a couple of points that stood out to me and I’m including them here. But before I get to that, I’d like to give you a peek at my ride yesterday to the peak.
If you click on the image to enlarge it, you will see more detai – including the skyline of Greenville, SC in the distance. I rode up to this point from somewhere down near those building. Seems like it should have taken more than just 30 minutes!
Now for the Pez piece. You can find the whole thing here – Toolbox: The Training Week. Ironically, this was published to the popular cycling site just yesterday.
Optimize Your Training Time – If you are on a limited training schedule you have to learn to optimize the time you have available. That means cutting out the ‘junk’ hours and focusing on the task at hand. While it sounds logical and doable, you’d be surprised how easy it is to squander training time. Take that extra 20 minutes to warm up and you’ve cost yourself both the 20 minutes, and the positive training effect of having stepped up the intensity, even if it’s only to a tempo pace. Multiply that over 3 training days and your 10 hour training week only has 9 hours to accomplish the goals you set.
Here is a workout that he describes with a profile very similar to a popular climb here in our area. The only difference is that it takes me thirty minutes or more to get to the base of the climb. Still, it is something to consider when I have a couple of hours to give.
Around my house that is a 3peat climb on Montebello Road; a 2-mile climb that averages around 10%. It usually takes me about 15:30 to climb at 300W (which is about my FTP) and about 4:15 to descend, so if I do 3 up/down in an hour it gives me about 45:00 minutes of threshold work, a nice recovery between intervals, and a serious dose of climbing. As fitness goes up I can push harder to try and get as far below an hour as possible. My current best is 55:55 with individual intervals of 13:35 at 350 Watts, 14:44 at 319 Watts and 13:54 at 343 Watts, for a total TSS of 100.7 and an Intensity Factor of 1.07 at 258 Watts average/322 Watts normalized (My FTP was set at 310 at that time, but was probably closer to 330). Since it’s about 15 minutes each way to the climb this is a pefect workout on those days I don’t have long to ride.
This advice was given by Matt McNamara. You can learn more about his coaching at www.sterlingwins.com.
However, nothing does you better than a good ride. That is just what I enjoyed last night. No personal bests, but just a good, solid effort from home up to the Tower Road on Paris Mountain.
It was near sunset, so by the time I reached the top the temperatures has dropped into a very comfortable 70 some degrees. Because of the climbing involved it was “easier” to get some good 1 to 10 minute peak maximum numbers. Still, at an average 222 watts (averaging 260 watts from home to the top), it wasn’t a killer.
The most fun was coming down off the mountain. You can see the profile above. The little yellow tag is the marker for the finish of my first lap which is the KOM line at the top of Altamont Road. For one short dip in the road I hit nearly 60 mph (if you do Altamont Road, you know where it is). Mostly it was in the high 30s and 40s.
However, it wasn’t that speed that was fun. It is the looks I get from the motorcyclists as I come down that last straight stretch towards State Park Road. Riders of Harleys and crotch rockets alike, they stop their conversations and watch me descend. I think they are surprised by the speeds we can get – without a motor.
Hope my cycling friends had fun at Donaldson Center last night. I wasn’t able to make it. Next Tuesday night will find me absent as well because I will be out of town. Miss the ride… hope to be more consistent once baseball season ends.