Sunday, 10 February 2008

Buns of Steel

Saturday was one of the all time great productive rides. 3 hours of tempo, including a bunch of controlled experiments of going hard (between CP5 and LT, closer to CP5), then rolling out at near threshold for 15 minutes or so after. I must never have gotten it completely right because if I had, I would have set a new LT bar, but didn't. 10 minute benchmark got splattered all over Manhattan, so that was cool. So did the 2 hour mark - by a lot. I believe these "go wicked hard for a bit, then go plain hard for another big chunk" are important. It is completely Cat 4 style to get a big gap, overcook it, then come back immediately and get dusted because you're worked. Far better to get a quick jump, spread it out for a while and then hold a hard effort for a long time. Anyway, good workout, solid effort. And I missed all the rain. Sometimes good things come out of having to work on Saturday morning.

Today's ride sucked. I'm done with club rides for the year. They play a role in the health of the team and all that but the time for that has passed. You are either strung out or riding the brakes. I split off to try and salvage some good work, which happened. One of my favorite workouts is laps around Ridge, Ross and Beach. There is a gate at the bottom of Ridge which starts the interval, and several benchmarks along the way. The first is "Zabel tree," which became so named one day when I was delirious. It is actually a stump, not a tree. The mendoza line for Zabel tree is 37 seconds. The second mark is the finish of the hairpin. Out of the hairpin under 1' is a good sign. The swerve sign is the finish of a good short interval. My best known time to the swerve is 1:41. I know I've gone up faster on Goon Rides, but looking at the stopwatch during those rides ain't happening. Anyhow, unless I am doing specific efforts to the swerve sign where I want to be falling over and puking at the sign, the effort needs to be "validated" by getting to the gate at Ross in under 3 minutes. A specific effort to get to the gate can yield much lower times than this, but I'm usually more interested in hauling ass to the swerve sign, then keeeping it going up the false flat. You need to be going over 20 mph past the little horsey zone after the swerve, and a really good sign is when you can't pedal through the curve after the horsey zone. This entire workout, btw, is the "Bettini" workout. I imagine that if there were a real race going up this thing, Il Grillo would be able to get a nice jump on this sucker. In the real world, it's so short that everyone at the pro level would blast by it without notice, but it's a good workout for me and the backstory adds a little interest. If this little zone were a little longer, such that you had like an 8 minute hill (from the bottom gate to the top parking lot above the big horse stalls is only about 4:15), and if the Beach Drive false flat had a longer uninterrupted stretch, there wouldn't be any need to train anywhere else.

Yesterday, my first '08 time from gate to swerve was 1:51. Not bad since it came after two hours of hard riding and it was my first dedicated effort of the type this year. I'd like to post a sub-1:30 for this mother this year. Definitely within reason. It's going to take about 500 watts for the duration to do it at my normal weight.

I'm going to try and convince some team mates to practice some stuff on this beyatch next weekend.

It's all about the bench marks.

The buns, when I got home, were buns of chocolate, not steel. I'm in the middle of an experiment with this recovery drink called Muscle Milk. After one week, results are totally inconclusive. The only place on my body that gets good muscle definition is my calves. They get really muscular. The rest of me kind of looks like the schmoo, even though I've been lifting for like almost three months now.

Georgetown sucked last night. Tough to watch. Bad loss.

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