Thursday, December 8, 2016

2017 Plans

Tis the Season…oh apparently it’s nearly Christmas too!

Anyhoo, after much pencil chewing it looks like this is the 2017 Schedule. Obviously this is dove-tailing into Becca’s plans and we are off to Wisconsin in the fall for some IronMoo as well as another trip to Northern California for the newly Ironman Santa Rosa 70.3 and a trip to Boston in the Spring!

I am also dipping my toe into the Ultra Marathon Cycling Association (UMCA) Year Rounder Challenge; 12 Centuries or more in 10 months!

Definitely no grass growing between our toes this coming year! As usual there are plenty of horizons coming my way…

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Wednesday, December 7, 2016

The Magnificent Seven!

While a lot of my training is spent on the trainer those days that I do ride outside I have a short list of things I never leave home without. This goes beyond that basics of some cash, a phone and a spare tube. None of them are super expensive or technical but from a lot of experience I have found that they are all essential to have.

RoadID App; Well to use this you do need a phone. It’s provides a "follow me" e-breadcrumb trail that you send to someone so they know where you are. Over several iterations the functionality has improved but at its basic level it provide telephone based GPS accuracy on your location. It works every time.
Pedros Tire Lever; just one, you only need one. These simply are the best levers on the market. They do not break and they do not scratch. They come in nice bright colors although as a traditionalist I choose the old school Pedros yellow every time!
 
Pump; I have an older Lezyne Carbon Drive Mini Pump. It fits in my jersey pocket easily, can pump up to 90lbs and weighs just one pound. I particularly like the hose attachment (Presta and Schrader) this avoids snapping off your valve when you’re fumbling with fitting it on.
Fly 6 and Fly 12 Camera/Lights; I pretty much always rode with a red blinky and sometimes a white one so adding these to my list of Go-To items was a no brainer. I only got them in September but so far I love them and I recently backed their Kickstart Campaign for a dedicated Duo Mount which will mount the Fly 12 with my Garmin. With the uptick in accidents and deliberate aggressive motorist/cyclist interactions the ability to capture things on camera brings a welcome security blanket in case something untoward should happen. A longer post on these will follow.
 

aLoksaks; perfect for your change, phone, credit cards and other little bits, it keeps them secure and dry. I use the one that came free from Skratch Labs when I purchased a sticker pack from them. This has to be one of the best freebies out there!
Nitrile Gloves; keep your hands, gloves and kit clean. Seriously there are a penny a pair and have saved my kit several times on the roadside!
 
Lipstick charger and 3” iPhone cable; they weigh nothing and can really save you in a pinch. Just keep them together and charged and you’re good to go. Personally I use Anker products, I lucked onto them through Amazon and found them to be reliable and road tough. Yes, I have dropped it a couple of times!


So, what are your Magnificent Seven?

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

A Lap Round the Park; CX Footage from SLOCross

After several failed attempts, mostly due to user error, I was able to capture some of my CX Racing using a Garmin Virb. I really wanted to get the start so you can get an idea of just how frantic and flat out it is.

This footage was from the SoCal Prestige SLOCross weekend. The start was on a section of road which was first for me, my extensive CX Racing now extending to a grand total of three courses! But like the other two you were funneled down quickly. Additionally this was a lap that I didn’t crash, that sounds like it would make for dramatic footage but it’s really a case of me falling over sideways!

So here it is, enjoy!

You can read the race report here.

Monday, December 5, 2016

IWBMAT Tour

With the Search LA event off my agenda I was teed up for the final Global Suffering League event, the IWBMAT (I Will Beat My Ass Today) Tour, it’s a Sufferfest Knights only event that spans five days and has 9 ‘fest rides. It’s actually 10 if you include the FTP “Prologue”. The event started on the Wednesday so leading up that I took the Monday off and spent Tuesday test riding a new pair of shoes. I last rode a Sufferfest back in February and since then I have covered plenty of miles but very little of it at this volume of intensity and duration.

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There is no letup in this event and even with the preceding weeks riding the CX Plan my legs were not ready for the back to back rides over multiple days; Here is how the week went down;

Wednesday; Power Station + Revolver. Power Station is climbing. 11 “walls” of varying duration and effort. This was the best ride of the week, it went downhill pretty fast after this! Revolver is Intervals 15 x 1 minute way above Threshold! It sucks! Total for the day; 1:50, 33 miles, TSS 125.

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Thursday; The Long Scream + Downward Spiral. I prefaced the Long Scream with a 15 minute warm up as this is actually an add-on video and ramps from 0 – 60mph very quickly. Downward Spiral is 2 sets of descending intervals where the effort intensity ramps up and the rest interval match the duration. FUGLY! Held on ok to LS but lost the plot on DS. Best I can say is I crushed the rest intervals! 1:54, 35 miles, TSS 112.

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Friday; The Best Thing in the World + The Wretched. So basically two 13:30 minute race simulations, followed by a 35:00 Tour de France stage featuring flats, three major climbs, three very short descents, a valley and a rolling run in to the finish. It was Wretched and so was I! All it takes is all you got...and I didn't have much! 1:47, 31 miles, TSS 103.

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Saturday; ISLAGIATT, It Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time; I added a 15 minute warm up just to get the blood flowing! This was followed by four climbs between 8-20 mins long followed by a finish. It may have seemed like a good idea but it really wasn’t! Dialed it back to 90% just to hang on and still nearly blew up!  2:07, 39 miles, TSS 108.

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Sunday; Blender + Half is Easy. Blender is a bit of everything; Long Threshold Intervals, VO2 Max Power Intervals and then more Threshold work! Half is Easy, isn’t! 2 x 20 15 second max out efforts. A this point it was all I could do just just get my legs spinning up to my FTP, not even close the required effort! As before I added a 15 minute warm up! 2:49, 46 Miles, TSS 119.

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Stick a fork in me I was done! Swept up by the Broom Wago!

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So for the week I was back over 200 miles and most of it was a super high intensity! Needless to say I am glad it’s over. The week certainly took its toll!

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This comimg week I am finishing up the TrainerRoad CX plan, it’s a taper week and so fit’s in really nicely. I have my last CX race(s) of the season on Sunday and then I will be starting the TrainerRoad Sweet Spot base plan in advance of the Belgian Waffle Ride camp at the end of January and the 4 Days To Fitness over the new year;

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As always onwards and upwards!