Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Crit Racing

I've been a big believer in participating in race type efforts during training. We have a local crit race every Wednesday night. This particular race was a point race with sprints every 5 laps with 27 total laps. With this format, the race is much more tactical. This causes many more spikes and lags in power and effort as the power chart shows. This was the first crit race that I've used my CycleOps power meter. I really like having this data while racing and it's a great way to analyze the effort after.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Key running workouts - Great Race Day Prep

I had an early morning 75min run planned today that included 45 mins at 1/2 IM race pace. I'm a big believer in practicing race day efforts. As my youth ice hockey coaches relentlessly preached, "you can't expect to show up on game day and just turn on the switch". By practicing and training appropriately, one is able to take the guess work out of race day performance. One still has to be "on" at any given race, however if you haven't been able to dial in on specific key workouts during training, it's going to take some pretty amazing luck to be able to pull it off on race day.
Today's session was a nice effort that felt a lot more manageable after my Friday track sufferfest. It still amazes me how the human body adapts to VO2 training sessions. As long as one recovers properly, the fitness gains can be pretty substantial. The perceived effort relative to pace following a VO2 max workout day is almost always a significant jump up in performance. In addition, having the ability to train with others during these hard efforts is a tremendous advantage. The key workouts are not always fun during the effort, however the dividends paid back later in the race season are unparalleled.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

REV3 Bike Course

I had a 3hr base ride with hill repeats prescribed for my Saturday workout, so I figured it would be a great opportunity to go sample the REV3 bike course up in Middlebury, CT. I am really looking forward to racing on this course. The bike is going to be challenging, but fair. The roads are great and the scenery is unbelievable.
I also ran the last 3 miles of the run course. I was very impressed with this section as well. I am really excited for June 7th. The pro list of participants keeps getting deeper and deeper, Matt Reed just signed up for the race. The pro race should be a classic.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Training Partners

Due to my daily commute into NYC I've spent the majority of the past 5yrs training almost entirely by myself. This can get a bit dull. It's also mentally challenging to really push on some of those key workouts. One can think of a thousand reasons to pull it back a bit, while training solo.
I had a track workout scheduled for Wednesday that included mile repeats. I had performed a couple of these workouts over the winter and I had completed the most recent one two weeks prior to St. Anthony's. My coach has been pushing me to really stress these repeats and find a new pace. He felt that I've been settling into a fixed pace and not pushing myself to another level. Fortunately, I had scheduled to do this workout with my friend, Eric Hodska. There was an immediate impact of having a training partner to push the workout. One of the first things that was noticeable was the ability to key off of someone else and not be completely focused on my own effort. In addition, the pacing and continued focus of the efforts were much more consistent. I have a bad habit of flaking out a bit in the mid-section of some of my harder workouts. While the efforts were still strenuous, they were much more controlled. I cannot stress the benefits, of training with someone else, enough. I was able to drop 10 seconds, per mile repeat, from my most recent attempts. I do still believe that there are certain workouts that need to be done solo, but this was an extremely enlightening workout and much more manageable.