Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A tale of two Crits

We've had a marvelous WTNC season so far... no missed races for rain. And last night we got a bonus. The UBC Grand Prix took all the Cat 1/2 riders so us lowly and unprivileged types (Cat 3/4 and novice) got to do a double distance for our WNTC..

This made for interesting comparisons as last week the Cat 4's had fastest ride of the season (and quite possibly faster than any last year..) @ 41.5kph average speed for the 26 minute race. With a peak at just about 42kph average pace about half way through.

This week of course was a bit slower. There where a few upgrades (people moved up to Cat 3...) And the group was smaller. But my impression was that because we where going to race twice as long, 50 instead of 25 minutes, the pace setters where setting the pace a bit slower. So About 38.5 for the first half and (strangely) a bit faster at about 39.4 for the last half. Or about 39.1 kph average overall.

Here are the two power files with the average speed and power shown.

What I found was the pace for last week was just at the edge of what I could do. Heading into the last two laps it was maybe I could just pull in right now... Perceived effort was over the top.

Last night the pace (2.5-3 kph slower) meant I was just inside my comfort zone (well not comfort but at least not my unconfortable zone...) So hitting two laps to go close to 50 minutes in and I had no thoughts of pulling in.

Last week vs this week numbers, normalize power watts and average watts

  • 316, 235
  • 311, 247

So last week overall wattage was lower, but the peaks (up the hill) where higher and more punishing. This week overall wattage was higher for longer, but the peaks where less punishing. So overall I was closer to my ability zone and therefore perceived effort was lower.

The numbers also show another "problem". I hit 100 TSS points in 50 minutes. And in fact after a short (< 1 minute) "rest" actually decided to push on and keep up a (not quite race) effort to fill in the one hour. Got to 120 TSS ... which of course with an Intensity Factor of 1.09 makes this an NP Buster... theoretically impossible. Although IFF possible it would be done by doing repeated short high intensity intervals with rests between ( a good enough description of the WTNC course...)

But I suspect this simply means I need to move FTP up... currently at 285. Probably need to move it up to about 295, which would move TSS down to about 105 which is closer to what Coggan predicts should be the max for this type of effort.

Trainingpeaks links: