Legs Vs Clock -- Log
TT's (Time Trials) are something i hadn't really experienced...short of the shorter events on the track (200m, Kilo, 3km), but now i can add an 18km road TT to my list of experiences.
And what was my experience you might be asking? Well, let me tell you:
Not sure if it hurt more during or after.
So here you are, on your bike alone. There are people ahead of you, and people behind you. Typically, you want to try and catch the people in front, and stay ahead of those behind. People are let out at 1min intervals...so you have at least a minute of safety from the person behind you...
I'm #20, so i'm let loose at the 20min mark...i don't go out too hard, didn't do much of an immediate warm-up (besides riding 25km there), so i took about 30 seconds to get up to speed.
Got there, and sunk into the aero bars (thanks for the loan Andy!) This is also my first real use of aerobars.. These ones are a bit too long, so not the most comfortable, but not too bad either. They definitely helped.
I'm aiming to keep my legspeed high, ~105rpm cadence. My HR clunking between 171 and 178. I'm pushing pretty hard. Wiggling a little. It's weird riding like that.
The first little hill approaches, and i get out of the saddle, and suddenly my bike feels very unfamiliar! Sitting with my arms tucked in makes the hoods on my bars feel really wide.. Plus, i didn't have a lot in my legs for standing up.. Luckily it's barely a hill, so that experience doesn't last long.
By that point, i'd passed a couple riders (on their second loop), and hit the first corner. There i saw Sarah up ahead (she was released a minute ahead of me.) Of course, she was ~100m ahead, and riding in the same direction... It's weird chasing down someone like that..gaining so slowly.. I'd say it took about 3km to actually close the gap, and pass her.
By then, i'd passed the halfway mark (two laps of the course total), and my time at that point was around 12:30 i believe. (Not bad at all, if this pace could be maintained! That would give me a 25min time, which is pretty good for a local rider on this course...esp. sans any aero-gear.)
Now let me describe the experience of a time trial.... Again - it's just you and the bike and the clock. In other races, there's drafting and attacks, lotsa stuff to keep you occupied. You can be riding 95% of your max, but not notice it as much since there are other distractions.
In a TT, it's just you. You feel each stroke. Your muscles aching each time you push the pedal down. They're asking you to stop each time too. Excuses start to flood your mind: "What's the purpose? Isn't this supposed to be an easy week? You've already ridden 80km today, why do this? Wouldn't it be nice to just lay down right now? Overtraining! You're overtraining!!"
At times the heavy breathing suffices as a distraction..but not a very good one. At this point tho, i'm not familiar with how it feels *afterwards*, so i keep the pressure on.
I'm now on the second half of the second and final lap..only another 3km to go or so.. I've been chasing down another rider for a few minutes...inching closer. Chad, who started a minute after me, catches me...drat!! I was expecting it anyway, i fended him off pretty well.
Having him in front worked as further motivation tho, and i picked up my pace a little..passed the rider that i'd been chasing.
Got to the final corner, and several vehicles were turning, and one very nearly pulled all the way over on the road into the bike lane, and i was forced to near-stop. Damn!!
Went back to the hoods, and sprinted to pick up my speed...another 400m to the line.. Again, there was that weird feeling, like i was hugging a big tree. Chad was even further ahead, he didn't have a mini-van to contend with..bastard..
300m to go, and i dropped the hammer, putting everything i had into the pedals.
100m, and i debated getting out of the saddle to sprint.....but i knew i had nothing to give, so i stayed seated and kept hammering....and finished!!
Oh, sweet frogs and porpoises...it was over.
Somehow ended up with a time of 26:03. That tied me for 5th for the night. (What were the 1000ths of a second?? Slackers! I'm *sure* i got him!) I averaged 41.19kph over the 18km course, and i'm pretty happy with my results. I'd done a hilly ride earlier in the day, and was a bit munched.
Afterwards was the worst tho...very achey legs...felt like they'd been run over by a truck! I guess that's what i get for logging 130km for the day, total..d'oh.
Today is very much a rest day....hahaha
Will be going out again next week, plan to get below 26 for sure...let's see how close to 25 i can get....
That was Tuesday, Monday was sprint nite at the track, didn't really do anything too exciting, was a bit tired from the weekend. Fun matched sprint with Sarah.
Looking forward to the track race tomorrow night, long scratch and points - yippee!