Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Westwood - 4x1m high cadence, 6x2m L6, 1x6m L5

More high cadence drills, L5 and L4 intervals...

The good news is that the cadence drills do seem to be working... Best 5 seconds was over 170, best 20 over 160, best 30 over 150 and best minute was over 130... This is easily 30RPM higher than anything I could have done a year ago.

The bad news is that L5 is still anemic... the goal was L6 (430 watts) for 2 minutes... but I found it effectively impossible to get there... about about 1:20 or shortly after my heart rate would hit about 177 and simply couldn't continue...

Also did 1x6m L4 practice TT.. This was far easier to finish as it fits into the good portion of my power profile.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

VVV Wiltshire 160km

This was postponed from last week due to rain... so thought I would give it a try and see if my shoulders would last...

Michel, Dino and I started about a half hour after the main VVV group with the specific goal of doing a fast 32-32 km/h ride for the 160km.

First half to Timmy's in Abbotsford was ok... About half way through the second half though my shoulders started getting very sore. 

Michel did most of the work and we maintained a good pace. That at least meant less time suffering :-) The painful shoulders are strictly a function of time on the bike... so overall five hours on the bike at 32km/h was less painful than six at 28km/h...

Unfortunately I managed to leave the Ergomo in it's charging station... So TSS is an estimate... I figured 50-60 points per hour, or about 300. Last time I did two years ago I did more work at the front, but lower overall pace... and got 325 .. so hopefully not an unreasonable estimate.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Pez - You Look Mah-velous: Cycling Style Etiquette

Pez at it again... how to look and ride Euro-cool

Billy Crystal and his alter ego Fernando Llamas said it best when he mugged, “It is better to look good than to feel good, dah-ling.” The cyclist’s version goes something like, “It is better to look good than to ride good.” We can’t all be world champions or even win the sprint on the local club ride, but at least we can look cool going off the back.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

News from the tubular testing front, they are fast if you over glue!

A very interesting post over at Bike Tech Review....

It appears that the old track axiom of over glueing may have some basis. Adding an extra two layers of glue (3 for rim, 2 for tubular, instead of the suggested 2 for rim and 1 for tubular), at least using Mastik, may result in a lower CRR...

Not recommended for Tri-Guys though if you want to be able to fix a flat in a race... The tester reports that it took him a day to remove a tubular glued in this fashion...

Glued in this fashion a Vitorria Crono dropped down to 0.00235.. a substantial improvement over the previously reported 0.00276 when lightly glued. And possibly gettting it close to the "fastest" tire in the AFM list.

I am just half way through glueing a new Pista on a Zipp 404 front wheel for the track racing season... So it's out to put another coat of glue on... instead of just the final mount... I should have mounted it yesterday, but got busy... then stumbled across this tonight..

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Heritage - Hour of Power - 12x2:30 L5

Heritage Hour of Power... 

This is my 2km loop 2 blocks away from home... roughly 1/3 up at 7%, 1/3 flat and 1/3 down... five minutes per loop. Repeat 12 times. Target is >350 watts, L5, on the uphill portion for 2:40 (best) and 2:55 (end)..

By coincidence the uphill correspondes very nicely to a 2km TT or Pursuit on the track... Start with 20-30 seconds > 400 and then complete 2 additional minutes > 350 watts...  Assuming of course I can translate this to fixed gear AND practice the standing start, transition to aero, etc... the overall power should allow for a reasonable time... I'm hoping to get close to 2:30 for next years Canadian Track Nationals (which we are hosting here..)

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Anmore Tour - L4/.L3

The weather forecast was for rain so I decided against the Flatlander 200km... I don't mind getting wet, but cycling for 6-7 hours while wet just didn't have enough attraction to get me up at 4:30 to get to the venue for 6:15...

The weather here (as opposed to farther east in the Fraser Valley) in the afternoon was actually reasonably nice ... AND dry... so went out and did my old standard Anmore Tour, mostly L4, falling off for the last half hour to L3.

Yesterday was the "Group of guys who meet at the Esso across the Pitt River Bridge at 9:00" ride... which is mostly an L2 social ride along Ford Road and then out to McNeal and Neeves Road, but with a bit of a L4 windup along McNeil and then finishing with a short sprint at the south end of Neeves..

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Pictures from BCMCA Langley RR

Some pictures from the BCMCA Langley race Aug 23... thanks to John Sullivan.

The better looking rider is Anselmo Rossielo... I think this was the last turn before the finish sprint for our group.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Legally Speaking with Bob Mionske - Readers' thoughts on road rage

Bob Moskie had an excellent set of columns this summer documenting and commenting on some of the Road Rage incidents that made the news this summer.

One of the problems with our sport is that when you put in a 1000+ kilometers a month training on the urban road system you do end up getting passed by jerks (they are the ones that pass by too fast, too close and think it is funny to honk loudly in your left ear) or be cut off by idiots who don't understand that you simply cannot stop a bike going > 30km/h like you can a car with disc brakes.

But it rarely helps to get angry it these types... so try and keep your cool and smile when you catch up with them at the next set of lights... At least occasionally it may help them think twice the next time...

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Higher cadence...

I spent all summer doing high cadence drills on the road bike.. Last night was the first time at the track that I think we started to see some progress.

The chart on the right is a quadrant analysis chart showing pedal force to pedal velocity for 2 track training rides last December, a representative race from the 6-day last January and the training ride last night.

The dark blue and green show last years training rides. The light blue is the 6-day points race. The light purple last night.

What we see is that last year we had the highest power output (section I, top right) for the race. And last night we had numbers slightly higher than that... 

Also we see that at levels we see higher cadence numbers (more samples on the right) for the race and last night... 

So while not conclusive it seems to indicate that we are a) spinning faster and b) putting out higher power at the same cadence.

Both of which where the goal of doing higher cadence drills.

Ford Road - 20s anaerobic intervals and Track L3

Yesterday was 20 second anaerobic intervals... One every five minutes for an hour... Done with 53x13 gear, start at low speed,  push as hard as possible for 20 seconds... A lot harder than it sounds... 

Tonight out to the track. Mostly L3 in a small group... Pushing up to a few sets of 7-8 laps on the front at about 42-43 km/h. Then as group slowed down, three take-a-laps (drop down from blue and sprint until you catch the group again...)

Track legs starting to come back. The lead outs at 42-43 for 7-8 laps felt comfortable.. much better than last month when I simply couldn't get up to speed without getting short of breath...

Fall season track racing starts Oct 3... 

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Anmore Tour - L2 with L5/L6 intervals

Anmore Tour, mostly L2 with ana-areobic L5/L6 intervals... 

Saturday, September 13, 2008

VeloVets Golden Ears - social ride, some L3/L4

VeloVets Golden Ears Ride.. social ride but once we get to the park its typically a fast TT out to the end and then a fast TT back to the park gates etc...  After the Timmy's stop back to Pitt River Bridge via Neeves - McNeil Road loop. Which also ended up as a nice long L3/L4 pull. So ended up with a nice training ride overall.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

SFU via Barnett - 10x1m high cadence drills

Out to SFU via Barnett, doing 10 one minute high cadence drills. These where supposed to be at random power so the rolling highway was suitable. I think I managed to do over 110 average RPM for each interval. I still get the bouncing in the saddle syndrome about 122-125... 

Followed that with some L4 climbs (10 minutes and then 5 minutes) up to SFU and then home.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Heritage Mtn - 3x10 L4 Hill Reps

Out to Heritage Mtn, 3x10 minute L4 hill reps..

Building CTL back up, getting ready to start doing track work prior to the start of the fall track series (2nd Friday in October....)

Which assumes I'm brave enough to get back up on the boards in a mass start race. My physio suggests shoulder pads. Not sure how well that would work.... could be a detrment aero wise... on the other hand might be good for intimdating the other starters :-)

Sunday, September 7, 2008

BCMCA Cobble Hill RR - 2nd

More tire troubles... I had thought (hoped) that the casing was ok, but apparantly not... fortunately I was able to baby it back to the parking lot (where it finally popped...) and swap the tube in lap 3... Lost about 5-7 minutes from the lead group of 50-59's... but still managed a (distant) 2nd... And that was enough points to keep me in first place for the years overall in the 50-54 group.

The 50-59's had started out quite slow. Don Gilmore and Hugh Trenchard on the other hand set a very fast pace and caught us in lap 2 (or 7)... We followed them down to the start/finish and then I was the only one who managed to stay with them on the slow climb back up... Ended up a good minute or two ahead of my group before getting dropped on the small steep hill at the far corner (400m at >9%) 

Then TT'd and stayed off them for about two laps until the tire trouble and my group caught and passed by me. After fixing the tire I had the 30's group just ahead of me and tried in vain to get back onto them. Even getting a boost from Don and Hugh as they lapped the field... but again getting dropped by them on the hill just 50m short of jumping onto the 30's...  That was with 1 lap to go.. From there it was just TT around picking of stragglers from various groups...

So it was a difficult day... lot's of L3 riding and match burning (keeping up with Don and Hugh and 7 times up the hill...)

Cobble Hill RR:
Duration:   1:54:16 (2:00:39)
Work:       1832 kJ
TSS:       172.9 (intensity factor 0.953)
Norm Power: 300
VI:         1.12
Pw:HR:       3.18%
Pa:HR:       1.42%
Distance:   63.649 km
Elevation Gain:     902 m
Elevation Loss:   903 m
Grade:     -0.0 %  (-1 m)
Min Max Avg
Power:       0 964 267 watts
Heart Rate:   0 182 164 bpm
Cadence:     25 134 86 rpm
Speed:       1.8 71.8 33.4 kph
Pace         0:50 33:20 1:48 min/km
Altitude:     142 220 186 m
Crank Torque: 0 99.9 30.4 N-m
Temperature: 24 31 26.8 Celsius

Saturday, September 6, 2008

VeloVets 10k TT - 14:02 (again)

Very nice day. Very little wind... Just enough to notice that the trip back was about 4km slower on average than the trip out... Averaged 45 out and 41 back... To arrive in exactly the same time as last time out a month ago... when there was a lot of wind and I did 48 out and 39 back.

Pavg was higher this time, 350 vs 332. Which doesn't make sense... 

Different skin suit? This was the older full length Cervelo skinsuit which has a different weave than the newer short sleeve VeloVet skinsuit I used last time.  Wouldn't think it would make that much difference. 

Bill Riley was slightly slower today compared to last month. 14:33 vs 14:20... 

Grasping at straws I checked the difference in air density.. Aug 6th, was warmer and lower air pressure (21.5C,101.41kPa, Dew Point 14.3) compared to doay (14.2, 102.07kPa, Dew Point 11.4).  Punching those numbers through a spreadsheet gives air density of 1.187 and 1.22 respectively... 

Then pushing those numbers through analytic cycling shows a nominal speed difference of about .4 km/h which is about 10 seconds... Or about  a about a 10 watt difference required to average the same speed (43kmh) for the two different air densities. So it would appear to make sense. I did work harder today... but it WAS harder just to get the same speed.

These also compare reasonably well with last years best time... 13:48. Which was on a day like last month (1.191) with power higher than today. But with an less aero bike position.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Westwood - 5x6m TT

Adnan's infamous 6 minute practice TT's, starting full out.. Very painful... I do these two different ways depending on how much time I have. If pressed for time I do them as hill rep's close to home on the road bike, about 1.6km at about 7% grade. If I have more time I ride out to Neaves Road on the TT bike and do them there (flat and aero...)

As usual the 2nd effort was the best, Pavg for 6 minutes was 359 watts. 

Interval 2:
Duration:   6:03
Work:       130 kJ
TSS:       13 (intensity factor 1.137)
Norm Power: 358
VI:         1
Pw:HR:       6.53%
Pa:HR:       -16.92%
Distance:   1.581 km
Elevation Gain:     116 m
Elevation Loss:   0 m
Grade:     7.4 %  (117 m)
Min Max Avg
Power:       131 600 359 watts
Heart Rate:   94 176 164 bpm
Cadence:     40 120 71 rpm
Speed:       8.5 30.9 15.7 kph
Pace         1:57 7:04 3:50 min/km
Altitude:     173 289 232 m
Crank Torque: 17.1 87.7 52.2 N-m
Temperature: 22 23 22.6 Celsius

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Managing Your Training Stress Balance

A nice article on Managing Your Training Stress Balance over on the trainingpeaks blog by Matt Fitzgerald.

Managing your training stress balance in this way involves ensuring that:

1. Your training stress balance is slightly positive (+5 or so) on race day: most competitors perform best with a slightly positive TSB.

2. Your chronic training load reaches its highest level two to three weeks before race day: your CTL is a measure of your fitness level, and you want your fitness level to peak close to your peak race—but not so close that you don’t have time to reduce your fatigue level with a proper taper.

3. Your chronic training load never decreases for two consecutive weeks after you begin focused preparation for a peak: a declining CTL indicates declining fitness. It’s okay for your CTL to decline slightly when you reduce your training to promote recovery, but if you reduce your training enough to see your CTL decline for two straight weeks, you’re going beyond recovery and entering the realm of “detraining.”

4. Your chronic training load never increases at a rate exceeding 5 TSS/week: increasing the training load faster than 5 TSS/week typically results in performance decline or injury.

5. Your TSB does not drop below -20 more than once every 10 days: a TSB of -20 indicates a severe level of fatigue that endurance athletes cannot experience frequently without negatively affecting their performance in workouts.

Matt then gives some short and succinct ways to help organize your training plan to

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Neaves Road practice TT and Westwood L2/L3

Yesterday I was out to Neaves Road on the TT bike. Did a practice 12km TT. Non-aero (other than TT bike.) Still managed about 40kph out and back.

Today I spent some time trying to get the road bike back on the road... I.e. get both wheels remounted with new tubes etc... The front was problematical. Immediately blowing up with two new tubes.. Obviously something wrong with the casing... So put a diferent one on and that seemed better. I had a new Bontrager X Lite Pro for the rear, so used the rear casing for the front.

Out for a ride and almost immediately another problem going downhill... the front almost blew up again! Before it did I managed to stop and let the air out and see what was happening. The casing was popping out and then the tube would push out and burst...

So back home with low pressure.. Close look at everything. It appears that the right front brake block may have been mis-aligned and possibly contacting the the tire casing when the brakes where applied. Which would match both the blowout on Sunday and todays almost blowout...

I'd blame the LBS except to use their vocabulary, this was a consumer installed option... :-(

Anyway. Re-aligned the brakes and back out.... Climbed and descended multiple hills for about an hour and a half without problem... So hopefully that was it.

I have another Bontrager X Lite Pro on order for the front. So that will get installed when it arrives to replace the pretty much beat up XXX Lite on the front. It got ridden on flat for about 4km on Sunday.. But does seem to hold the tube in better than the (presumably) damaged front casing.

BCMCA Nanaimo RR

After waiting in the rain here in Port Moody for a week, Sunday was a beautiful day. We took the ferry over and rode to the race with plenty of time to spare...

Unfortunately though about 4km into the race I could feel the familiar thump-thump of a slowly leaking tire... so had to turn around and limp back to the start line... put a new tube in and started again... only to have it happen again.. It appears from that post mortem that I probably got a kink in the tube while installing it. As they say, Haste makes waste...

We managed to get the original tube to hold air so we could head back to ferry... only to get yet another flat less than half way there.. So there I was on the side of the road, 10km from the ferry terminal, flat tire, no spare, can't patch because it was a blowout. And my ferry will be leaving in about 45 minutes..

With nothing much to loose I stuck out my thumb. As Blanche DuBois says, "I have always relied on the kindness of strangers." and hoped that one of the seemingly endless line of pickups would pick up...

Well Vancouver Island is a pretty laid back place and a nice guy pulling a small open boat on a trailer almost immediately pulled up and asked where I was going etc.. Said to toss the bike into the boat and 15 minutes later I was at the ferry terminal. Arriving about 3 minutes ahead of the rest of my group.

Getting back to the bike at the end of the trip we found that the rear tire was once again flat... so the score for the day was four flats!

And precious little riding... other than the 15km warmup and 4km of racing :-(

From what I could see from the sidelines it looked like a fairly intense pace was set. Mike Sevcov, Derek Tripp and Don Shaw caught most of the 60's in the first (of three) laps with Dave Mercer (and perhaps one other rider) being off the front (individually) by less than a couple of minutes at that point. They where caught shortly after that and I think those three plus Dave managed to just stay off the 30-40's to take the win.