Today was my first race of the season, on the road -- a longish (~3km?) hilly course called Caleb Pike. Perfect for my skills...not
It was fun to be racing again, and doing a bit more intensity (my shortest interval so far, outside of group rides, are at 10min, just below LT..haha..
) as well as see a bunch of the peeps i haven't seen for a while. (Thanks for riding out and back Demian!
This year i decided to race A in the VCL (Victoria Cycling League), since i don't suffer enough in general. ;)
Tough call for me, i feel a bit too strong for the B group, but i don't fair well on hilly courses, let alone hilly crits! I'm wired for 'fast' and 'faster'..if brakes are needed, i'm not that good at gunning it from a big gear and slow speed, over and over (as happens on this course.) I'm more comfortable cruising closer to 40kph, with sprints in the 50-60kph range, but even then, it's entirely different from this! On the track, as your speed increases, so does your cadence, as well as your overall torque drops...it's rather different than what you do on the road, especially on hills. Oh yeah, and this was three times longer than a typical track race!!
Regardless, it was a fun event, and good to test my legs. Picture time - here i am starting off (thanks to Jason at Giga-Bike for these! Check out www.Roadie.ca too!
) The day was supposed to be rainy, but turned out quite nice!
I hung in with the pack for several laps, but the high-watt output was killing me, and i got dropped in a corner...shot off the back! A lap later i found Wendy Simms (a top Canadian cyclocrosser!
) was in a similar situation, and happily we worked together for several laps.. I'd tow on the flats, then she'd drop me on the climbs..haha The real funny thing was both of us had our CX bikes, complete with fenders, and we both had PowerTaps too. =)
There i am suffering on one of those climbs..my leg on the inside looks HOOGE!
I finished the race last(ha!), lapped twice - yay me! Managed not to get lapped by the B's, despite riding solo for so long. I'd get back on for a lap or two when the A's came by... Most impressive was the solo effort by Max Plaxton, who i believe lapped us all three times!!!
David Mercer (over 60yrs old!) also caught me at one point, he was racing B, but i told him he should have ridden A...i think he'd be in there. Or riding with me at least. ;)
Impressive effort by him tho, he rode much of the race solo! (Besides getting towed by the A's for a while.
;) He broke off the front off the start with a couple other riders, one was dropped, and the other scooted ahead (and won i presume!) Awesome effort from David, looking forward to getting back on the track with ya!
Otherwise it was a pretty quiet race.. Although i finished last of maybe 25 starters (and two laps down!
) i feel really good about my training. Although i don't have power ratings from last year, i'm pretty sure i'm a fair bit faster overall.
I also topped all but one of my PowerTap PB's (Personal Bests), tho i haven't done *any* intensity in my training so far. Here's what i've got:
904 - Mar 2 (896 prev)
578 - Mar 18 (prev 567)
437 - Mar 18 (prev 417)
348 - Mar 18 (prev 313)
339 - Mar 18 (prev 288)
319 - Mar 18 (prev 250w - Mar 6 (prev 246 - Feb 27))
312 - Mar 18 (prev 245 - Mar 6 (prev 233 - Feb 27))
272 - Mar 18 (prev 210 - Mar 6 (prev 205 - Feb 27))
1094 - Jan 6
A few BIG jumps, esp. in the 30 & 60min areas..while riding solo, i basically tried to keep it just over 300w. I'm also happy to see that i'm capable of holding 350w for 5mins, which will be key for my Pursuit efforts.
Here's the PT files themselves, first the race itself:
A few interesting items there:
- look at the Speed to see the profile of the course...the peaks are the descents, and the dips are the climbs, also the torque creeps up in those spots
- heart rate hardly changes! It drops when i got in the pack...after the hard bits, they do ease up quite a bit..my cadence indicates coasting.
- the peaks in power show where i was back with the pack
- apparently i blew through 1400kJ in 80mins!!
- apparently my average power output was 304w - yowzah! Peaked at 1,071, which is just shy of my PB..that was me keeping in on the climb..bleh...
Here's the entire ride:
Next week is Newton Heights, which isn't *as* hilly, but has one steep, nasty climb..bleh.. (It's a crit too, so we'll ride it over and over.. Tanya rode it - what didya think?
;) Click here for the cycling league website, maybe they'll list me in 1 millionth place
My Argon is just about ready to come alive! My cranks should be here Mon or Tues, and so will be able to race it next weekend...thank goodness! The 5lbs difference should help....
Training-wise, i'm out of the Tempo workouts (got in three weeks, went out to the track!) and now i'm doing SteadyState, which for me is holding ~280w for 12+mins, and doing 4 repeats. I alternate between doing 'em in the tops and aero-bars, as i'm getting myself used to riding in that position again. After that, the intervals will shorten, and will be max-efforts...
Track racing also starts on April 2nd - i can hardly wait!!
Keep the rubber side down sports fans, support your local velodrome!!!