Monday, August 31, 2015

Everesting Week 8

Rest Week…say it with me ahhhhhh!

Monday; Easy Spin to get the blood flowing!


Tuesday; TrainerRoad Mount Field. Mount Field is 3x12-minute intervals at 85% FTP with 3-minute recoveries between intervals. Seated/Standing/Mixed intervals. Legs a bit tight but had an extra easy 2 miles W/U/C/D


Wednesday; TrainerRoad Pettit. Pettit is an hour of aerobic Endurance work spent between 60-75% FTP. Nice and easy, added extra time to catch up on the last stage of US Pro Tour...up next The Vuelta!


Thursday; TrainerRoad Black. Started off slowly, too late in the day, got into it after 40 mins or so! Black is an hour of aerobic Endurance ranging from 50-80% FTP. Starting to get fidgety but focusing on the rest!


Friday; TrainerRoad Pettit. Just 'cos it’s my birthday I don't get a day off! Pettit is an hour of aerobic Endurance work spent between 60-75% FTP. Nice and easy. Extra 3 mile Warm Up/1 mile Cool Down.


Saturday; Local Loop x2. HOT HOT HOT! Zone 4/5 HR 99f max ave 95f.


Sunday; Segment Ride. Three climbs, added a little extra on third and then a couple of miles cool down at the finish. Solid ride but very very hot!


So while it was a rest week I still managed to rack up over 12 hours and 183 miles.

Next week is going to be big and there is no sign of the weather breaking so all this heat training is a good thing!

Speedplay Pedals Zero Aero Walkables (2600 miles update)

A quick update on the Speedplay Pedals Zero Aero Walkables that I reviewed back in May. Since then I have put on just over 2600 miles on them and they are, well were, well will be working fine, for now at least. During last week I noticed that I had lost a rubber cover, the actual walkable part!


I have lost my left one and that the one I use to put my foot down on at traffic lights etc. Obviously the rubber not only provided some grip but was the protection for what is underneath, namely the cleat. Anyone familiar with Speedplay pedals will know that typically you have a steel cover that protects the mechanism. In the case of the Walkables the material is significantly less robust. As you can see in the photos I am wearing through them at an alarming rate; three, possibly four rides outdoors has made a major impact! I am not sure how they fell off, they certainly took a bit of punishment at the Golden Gran Fondo when I had to walk a country mile in the gravel.


I have ordered some replacement covers so I am hoping that will help them last the next 2400 miles or so which is about the entire lifecycle of the cleat. I’ll keep you posted if there are any more issues!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

USA Cycling Coach Level 3 Certified

So this happened this week, I finally passed all the requirements and tests to qualify me as a Level 3 Coach. I decided to study and pass this exam not just due to my interest in Cycling but also to have access to a body of knowledge that comes with being a Coach and improving my overall understanding of cycling beyond just jumping on the bike. It probably comes as no surprise that I am a bit of data junkie so this should give me some insight into how to analyze the data and improve my performance.


Oh and it may serve as a launchpad for career #5 at some point in the future!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Everesting Week 7

This was going to be a big week, it’s was the last build session before a rest week and the penultimate one on the TrainerRoad Sustained Build (High Volume) Plan. Here is how it shook out;

Monday. Off. One thing I am finding is that a zero miles rest day makes the next day really hard so I am now going to add a gentle ride/spin just to keep the blood flowing.

Tuesday. TrainerRoad. Jacks. 4x8-minute intervals at 105% FTP with 1-minute recoveries between intervals. Total time @ intensity is 32 minutes. Seated climb for first interval, dropped cadence and gearing and had standing climbing for last three intervals. 2 mile extra warm up and extra 3 miles cool down.


Wednesday. TrainerRoad. Senaca Rocks. Lots of seated effort. 3x15-minute intervals @ 85% FTP with 5-minute recoveries between intervals. First Interval at 60s RPM second 80s RPM and tried for 90s RPM for third! Extra 2.5 miles W/U/C/D.


Thursday. TrainerRoad. Mount Goode. 3x15-minute intervals at 97-99% FTP with 8-minute recoveries between intervals. Extra 3m WU and 2m CD. Struggled with wattage. Fell off on second interval, rode third as 5mins standing, 5mins seated @85rpm and 5mins standing. Added 1000m rowing to finally cool off


Friday. TrainerRoad. Pettit. Pettit is an hour of aerobic Endurance work spent between 60-75% FTP.Optional form drills include Form Sprints, Endurance Spinning intervals, and quadrant drills like Pistons and Kick & Pull drills. Started to see some Power drop outs?


Saturday. TrainerRoad. Meteorite. 5 mile warm up then 4x20-minute over-under intervals with 2-minute valleys at 80% FTP and 3-minute peaks that ascend to 95-100% FTP; endurance intervals between over-unders are 15-minutes long. Lots of technical issues with this ride? My Power and HR kept dropping off, a problem with my sensors more than anything? I stopped rebooted, restarted and after two hours on the bike it was all I could do to not step off and kick my bike over and then as if by magic things came back online. I guess a Unicorn must have flown overhead at that point!



Sunday. Today's ride was about saddle time. I had planned for 6 hours but 5:30 was fine. First 60 miles were flat and fast, albeit with a headwind for 3 out of 4 directions! At Mile 60 I turned inland from PCH and rode through Decker. Nearly lost my cookies and had to stop twice to get my HR back below 95% max. Finally got to the top and rolled back the next 20 miles to home. A good day on the bike and a massive week with 240 miles racked up. Becca was out on the route SAGing me and she also had our DSLR, she grabbed a couple of great photos!


Here’s another look with a Grade profile turned on with emphasis on the climb;


This really was great training, a lung busting climb after 60 miles (3:20) in the saddle! Nobody said this was going to be easy but this ride was a solid reminder of exactly how hard it is going to be!


So a pretty big week, in fact I think it’s my biggest ever!

239.93 miles in 14:53 including 1000m and five minutes of rowing!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Garmin coverage…

No I am not talking about my GPS signal!

I got a nice write up on the Garmin Blog today and they are planning on sending me some goodies for the Everesting ride in October!


Click on the photo and you will go to their post

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

A clean pair of heels!

White shoes…on the face of it is there anything more ridiculous for cycling footwear! Exposed to the elements and about as close to road you can get! Well as I have three pairs; Road, MTB and Triathlon I am clearly a candidate for ridicule! That said when clean and bright they look awesome, with a snowy white or brightly patterned socks and a good tan they are hard to beat!

I had trouble finding road shoes, it took me so long that I even got bored looking for them! In the end I lucked into a pair of Bontager RXLs which were on sale at a local bike shop for 50% off and I took them. They are light, stiff and expensive shoes, even with the discount! They are 95% perfect, there is one annoying feature which is the upper strap is fully adjustable so you can position it squarely over your foot and sometimes it slips. It doesn’t happen all the time but it does happen…so about 95% perfect.

I have had them now for almost a couple of years and of course they are showing some wear. Fortunately where I ride I get 277 days of sunshine and only 25 rainy days a year they really don’t get put through the wringer! A quick wipe down with a Veloshine does the trick usually. Mine have been taking somewhat of a beating from the inside out, this is more of a result of hours spent on the trainer which does not have air circulation to dry your feet that you would have on the road and they were starting to take on the color of the socks, specifically a pink hue was permeating the mesh panels and stitching, they were taking on somewhat of a fuchsia glow.

I had tried a couple of things to clean it with but with no luck and it was when I was standing in line at the grocery store that I noticed the Clorox Bleach Pen by the Candy and Chapstick. I wondered if I could bleach them clean…for $3.00 it was worth a try!

Well 15 minutes work with a stiff brush and the Clorox answered the question, yes I could! It took a couple of attempts and will probably take another round but the mesh has cleaned up pretty well, the stitching still needs some work but it’s not really noticeable when riding.

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I am a big believer in, as they say in the military; “husbandry”, that is looking after your stuff and this is a easy and quick fix that will help you pass muster!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Everesting Week 6

A big week and I managed to hit all the high points! 5 rides on the trainer Tuesday through Saturday had me passing the 140 mile mark so I was on track for a 200 mile week…it wasn’t to be but I got close! Here is how it shook out;

Monday. Off

Tuesday. TrainerRoad Stevens. Stevens is 5x6-minute intervals at 105% FTP with 2-minute recoveries between intervals. Cadence target 85-95. worked to maintain cadence target, fell short of the power target on the 6 min segments -12-20 watts pm each.


Wednesday. TrainerRoad Leavitt. 90 total minutes of Tempo-ish work broken into 7x10-minute segments ranging from 70-80% FTP. Extra mile warm up and two on the cool down, extended the last segment to roll the 5 miles. Nice solid ride.


Thursday. TrainerRoad Mount Hayes. Today I was a sprinter in a climber's stage, fell off the back early and rode in with the Grupetto! Focused on keeping the power consistent with each interval. 4x12-minute intervals at 95-99% FTP with 6-minute recoveries between intervals.


Friday. TrainerRoad Pettit. Pettit is an hour of aerobic Endurance work spent between 60-75% FTP. Super hot in the garage!


Saturday. TrainerRoad KingsPeak. Hard work but not as bad as it looked on the outside of the box. Standing climb on upper overs. 4x18-minute over-under intervals with 90-second valleys at 80% FTP and 3-minute peaks that ascend to 95-100% FTP; endurance intervals between over-unders are 12-minutes long.


Sunday…ahh fresh air! 51+ miles riding a possible Segment. I had originally planned for 10 ascents of a potential Segment but the day got away from me and I ended up riding only 8! Actual elevation gain per segment is different from Everesting Calculator so I need to figure out where the difference is! Beyond that this ride was freaking hot, 91f at PCH and up to 98f at the turnaround! Felt good on the climbs through and as the road shading increased that helped a lot. Lots of practice on the descents too!


Here is some more analysis from StravaStix, where you can really see what time is spent either climbing or descending. I am surprised at the amount of actual flat there is!


Bottom line for the week:

192 miles in 12:01:33

TSS on the trainer 438

Here are a couple of great photos that Becca took from yesterday and some I took with my go-go-gadget arms! As you can see my cycling tan is coming on great;



This week has a similar Tuesday thru Saturday profile and then Sunday will be a longer Endurance ride with less climbing but with more time in the saddle.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Hello World…

I’ve been on a bit of summer hiatus!

That said I have lot to catch up on and well as spilling the beans about what is next!

I rode the Golden Gran Fondo in June and Becca raced Ironman Boulder in August!


Right now I am training for an Everesting attempt at the end of October and then some crazy bike races during the first half of next year!

I am actually going to go back and backfill my training etc so that everything is chronologically correct because that pleases my sense of order!

In the meantime, check this out!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Everesting Week 5

Travelling back from Ironman Boulder on Monday put a dent in my training at the beginning of the week so I just picked up on Wednesday and went from there, what was missed was missed and I know there is no catching up when that happens!

Wednesday; TrainerRoad FTP Test. Extra 2 miles warm up/cool down. Solid warm up session. Stayed with FTP line and increased slowly over last 7-8 minutes. 5 weeks on training plan plus 10 days at altitude paying off in spades. More info in this post.


Thursday. TrainerRoad MontGosford. 75 minutes of Tempo intervals spent between 70-80% FTP with intermittent, 2 to 3-minute recoveries at 55%. Extra 1 mile W/U and 1.5 mile C/D.


Friday. I had to drop my car at the shop in the morning so I threw my bike (well I actually laid it gently on a blanket in the back) drove to the shop and then rode home. A good opportunity to hit a few usual segments to see where I am, picked up few PRs along the way. TGIF


Jumped on the trainer in the afternoon too although it wasn’t a great ride!

TrainerRoad MountHope. 4x10-minute intervals at 95-99% FTP with 5-minute recoveries between intervals. Should have been 5x10 but right knee sore so eased up and spun through the last one. Super hot in garage too so actually ended up a bit light headed even with two water bottles! Learning to hate the new FTP already!


Saturday TrainerRoad Pettit. One hour of aerobic Endurance work spent between 60-75% FTP. Fitted new saddle (perm Prologue replacement for ISM trial Breakaway version) first mile spent adjusting it. Probably a couple more tweaks and it should be good.


Sunday was a Segment Ride. Three ascents of my Everesting segment today. 5200' over 43 miles. On the day I need to do 17 in total. Some observations; ocean wind blowing up canyon can blow hard. Descent will be cold especially when sweaty. Road is pretty dirty especially around the 8% hairpin corners! It's probably going to be really boring! Each round trip is 1:10 so I may need to reassess as this will make for a 24 hour ride.


All in all a pretty solid week especially as Monday and Tuesday were a wash. Just over 153 miles in just under 10 hours.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

August FTP test

I last did a FTP test on June 30 and I had an incease from 206 o 219, since then I have completed the Sufferfest Three Week climbing plan and put in another week on the TrainerRoad Build plan. I wasn’t sure what the results were going to be but I felt good and knew that my fitness was improving quickly. I had bested my 40k Time Time on the trainer but 2 minutes and had had a solid week of training.

As before I added an extra warm up time and teed up some motivational video! In total there were an extra 2 miles warm up/cool down. I stayed with FTP line and increased slowly over last 7-8 minutes. 5 weeks on training plan plus 10 days at altitude is paying off in spades.




This is the highest my FTP has been with a Power Meter, previously I had a high of 256 and that would have been using Virtual Power which is about 20% over real power on the Trainer!

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Everesting Week 4

Becca and I were very lucky to be able to work remotely for the first half of the week leading up to Ironman Boulder. Anyone who has done an Ironman knows that this is a 2-3 day event before you even get to the start line. Check In, Expo, Briefing, Transition drop off and so on takes a while to sort out.

Monday through Thursday Becca and I camped out and worked away. One thing we realized that we were an hour ahead of the West Coast and that gave us a head start on our workouts.

Monday. Ironman Boulder bike first 14 miles (The Nelson climb). Easy 5 mile roll out. Fast five miles on rolling roads. 4.2 miles climbing to turnaround. Blazing fast downhill will minimal coasting. An easy roll back into town! Fun times!


Tuesday. Lookout Mountain (Golden) Followed the Gran Fondo Piccolo route (missed first and last mile). Aim was to ride steady and solid up the hill and see where that left me vs the Gran Fondo ride 4 weeks ago and determine the improvement. Overall took 3 minutes off of the longest segment (33 mins) so that's a 10% improvement. Very windy descent down Route 40 so took that very steady and rolled back into town. Very happy with this.



Wednesday. Ironman Boulder bike first 10 miles. Apparently this is the Boulder Sprint Tri bike course! PZ2/3 ride round the first 10 miles of IM Boulder course. Lots of time on the drops. 


Thursday. Lookout Mountain. Really went for it today. I forgot to pack a HR strap so a new one arrived yesterday. I was at 90%+ of my LHRT most of the way up. Much more aggressive riding. Lower gear. Higher cadence. Better tangents. Took another 90 seconds off my PR! Very happy to go sub 30 minutes for the largest Segment (Pillars to Grave). That's over 5 minutes taken off my time since the GGF a month ago. Took a nice and easy ride down stopping for some photos and then missed a turning and ended up on the Freeway...oops!


Friday. Ironman run around!

Saturday. Rolling Loop along the Flatirons. Solid two hour ride with some seriously rolling terrain!


Sunday. Ironman Boulder you can read Becca’s Race posts; Race Report, Gratitude, Photos and What’s Next!

A pretty solid week with good climbing and realizing the benefits of the three weeks prior block.

111 miles in 7:24