My objective was clear: stop the clock sooner, average a higher speed and average higher watts.
I checked Joe Friel's 'The Power Meter Handbook' from the library this past week. A bit late but nonetheless, there's no expiry date on learning something new. While I've barely started the book, I read one section about balancing one's power output with the time one will be spinning.
That's not a new concept to me. The efforts that I've put in on the CT have been strong, I like to push myself in training, and I know that these efforts would not be sustainable for a half iron or an Ironman. Most of the CT spins last about 40 minutes.
Still, there's no doubt in my mind that the CT has proved a huge benefit to my overall fitness and in particular to my early season bike fitness. I ended up cycling outside both days last weekend and I was happy with both of the spins: the first was about 55k and the second was about 85k. Both on the Sea to Sky Highway to Whistler, in other words, varied terrain.
During the past few days, I was reviewing my TT stats since January and while I've been keen to generate better numbers, I'm content with the level of consistency - especially as I have been increasing my swimming and running frequency and volumes too.
Four of the seven TTs had finish times within a 25 second range. The two outliers - the slowest and the fastest - were the first and the last one.
About half way through the Winter session, I opted to spin on Friday evenings (6:45pm) and Sunday mornings (7:30am).
I found that I tended to spin faster on Sunday mornings vs Friday evenings which I attribute more to mental fatigue at the end of the work week. Plus I swim at 6:15am on Friday mornings and the 12-hour gap between workouts wasn't ideal for me. I like training back to back.
This past Friday I rode well for about 3/4 of the time that I clocked but I hit a wall on a flat section that was about 2.5k in length. I never recovered enough.
I wasn't sure what to expect this morning. I've been thinking of a sub 40 minute finishing time for several months but it hadn't happened. I decided that I'd have to start with a bit more power and really focus to be in the moment.
During the spin I kept myself from looking at the clock. I can't control time. I can control my effort.
So I focused on my overall watts and my watts per kilogram and whenever they dipped, I renewed my effort.
I started with more effort than I have previously and kept it together.
The end result was a huge confidence boost: Thirty-eight minutes and thirty-one seconds! Oh ya!! I was impressed.
I will celebrate by taking a late Sunday morning nap.
As for next year, I left some room for improvement. I, for no particular reason other than wanting it, had gunned all season for an avg watts of 300. Ok, in part I sought this because of what others were producing. For me competition is about: Heck if he/she can do that, then so can I.
Today though I fell 3 watts short. Yet that's close enough to know that it's within reach. I'll get it. I promise.
TT’s - Winter session
*22.53k course - starts flat and then rises to 3.5k elevation, then eases and then rises a second time and finishes on a 1.5k grade for the final 2k
41:58.9 32.2 253
40:16.7 33.6 274
Sunday Feb 8 41:09 32.8 261
Friday Feb 27 40:14.56 33.6 275
Sunday Mar 1 40:24.77 33.5 272
Friday Mar 27 40:41.37 33.2 270
Sunday Mar 29 38:31.76 35.1 297