Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Return of the INTERVALS!

Yes fair readers, with a switch in focus back to cycling the mode of workouts has changed. Out comes the forlorn heartrate monitor, off goes the jacket on cold mornings, and up ratchets the resolve and sweat. Mind you, intervals for me are probably a lot slower than other riders I know but hey, you have to start somewhere.
Being wednesday and the middle of my cycling week, it was time to stretch the limits. I originally was going to leave the house with jacket, long sleeve dayglo jersey and tights but remembering the heat generated during heavy efforts opted to leave the jacket behind. Having not done a time trial to judge lactate threshold yet I estimated it at 161 beats per minute for me and I don't think I am too far off after todays workout.
Being eager to get into the intervals it was annoying that it took me about 15 minutes to actually warm up before I could start them proper. Another annoyance is traffic lights so my intervals are occasionally pure intervals and sometimes interrupted intervals. I know these are not the most efficient intervals but they are a heck of a lot more efficient than no intervals. I found once I got into the intervals that I was dressed perfect for the 41 degree temperatures. Next month in the brevet if it is this cold I will likely need a jacket as the slower pace means colder percieved temperature.
Riding at between 85-90% of LT I was holding 22 mph much of the way and a few times hit 24 (although admittedly during that interval I hit 100% LT and 88% of maximum heartrate so I was overdoing it a bit). It was so nice to just let loose on the bike again and cut through the wind (of which in the first 7 miles a 10mph headwind held speeds down a bit and likely cost me a PR on time to work on the roadbike). All in all I made it into work in around an hour and 15 minutes so it was not a shabby workout especially seeing as I was on the roadbike and not the recumbent. Two or three of those a week and I should have no trouble beating my time on the 300k I set last December. I don't think I will beat the 14 hours and 23 minute time of last February which is my best time (but wouldn't it be cool if I did?).
Anyway, It's good to be back training for brevets on the roadbike. I'm supposed to get a new stem in the mail anyday to help me get my bars up a little further to ease the backstrain so I can push harder over the long term without back pain. So, things are looking good, life is great, and I am looking forward to a Saturday of climbing out back of Tortilla flat.

Looking down at the little hill in front of the long and relentless 9% grade behind Tortilla Flat. A 3 mile climb of 1000 feet elevation gain (never mind the fact you climbed about 1700 feet just to get here from east Mesa and will have another 1300 to climb to get out after you are done with it).

No comments: