Operation Overkill: Mission Successful!
So this week was 'Operation Overkill'. The goal: go hard, hurt the legs, unleash fury. (The following week will be a recovery week. ;)
Plan: Tue, 2.5hrs w/4x O/U; Thu, 3hrs w/4xO/U; Fri, Street Sprints; Sat, OBB Ride
All were a success! And despite the fact that i came into this pre-stressed, with lots of hard riding the week before... Monday my TSB was -16, which usually isn't a sign of a 'great' workout to come..
Let's begin. You will know it is time to turn the page when you hear Chewbacca howl like this: RRRRrrAAWWWaaaAAAHHH
Tuesday - 4x O/U
Gorgeous day, i finally stripped off the two pairs of booties from my shoes, and put on the toe warmer! Also, rode with knee warmers for the first time on the road this year. Sunny and bright.
Not too much to report, pretty happy with all four efforts. #2 was interrupted by some traffic, but nothing too crazy. Fast day, nice speeds. Still not averaging 300w (which i was doing on the Observatory), but 296w is the 'magic number', if i do it perfectly. These aren't too far off...it's hard to stay perfectly focused, dealing with traffic, debris, other cyclists, and what-not. (Thank you Colwood Mayor Dave Saunders for making sure we can't use the velodrome. You're a real champ. And by 'champ' i mean 'enema sack'.)
Here's the intervals:
Fast day...nice to be moving. I really tried hard on #3, and kept my cadence up for all.
Here's the Garmin file: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/27876625
And the full data: http://docs.google.com/View?id=dgdbj3nx_338ggjgxhb
Thursday - 4x O/U
Another nice day, Gillian joined me out to Mattick's and then turned back, she had some paper to work on, or so she said. ;)
Today i knew i would be escalating the riding, going at least 3hrs as well. (It's also worth noting that i got in over an hour of 'commuting' riding...it was a pretty easy pace, but something to consider..)
Started the intervals, felt pretty good, here's the numbers:
Even faster day! The 350w 'Over' portions felt not too bad, but when dropping down to 265w for the 'Under', i felt like they were harder to maintain.. #3 was tough, and i took an extra minute to recover (usually 4mins rest between efforts.) I didn't feel super-motivated and attack the final one, i think i really just wanted to get it over..haha..
Finished the intervals, and rode back down Lockside Dr to Sidney, stopped in the Lifestyle Markets there for a water refill, and continued through and across the highway, and rode the East side of the airport to Panorama, and back into town. Remember, i wanted to add more miles today.
I decided early on that if i had a lot of time when i reached the Observatory, i'd do it as well...and i was only about 2hrs in when i reached it, so i also did a 'firm' effort up the Observatory:
That's to the fire hydrant at the top. Certainly not my hardest effort or fastest time, but it was another tough effort to throw in. I burned back down the hill, and actually sprinted near the bottom to get myself up to 68kph. =)
Continued back into town, and for some reason i felt really motivated, and just kept powering along and a fairly high pace. My 3hr NP (Normalized Power, sort of like 'average' without zeros) was 235w - that's pretty freaking high for me, esp. for that length of time...!! I was powering along at the 3hr mark, and felt pretty good...that's *really* odd for me. I seem to have suddenly developed this long-distance endurance and depth.. Well, at least for me. It sure ain't going to win the Tour de France, let alone a Cat3 race....but it's pretty cool to somehow develop this...
Anyways, here's the Garmin file: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/28045840
And what WKO spits out: http://docs.google.com/View?id=dgdbj3nx_34gpw7pvhc
Wasn't too terribly fatigued after that either, surprisingly...and i think this was one of the harder individual training sessions i've ever done - it was about as hard as an OBB ride for me. =)
Fri - Capital City Cycle Sprints
Part III of Operation Overkill. I jumped into one last year, it's a pretty fun event, and track sprinters should be all over this.
It's over on Harbour Rd (left over the Blue Bridge, Goose runs along there), which is actually a perfect location for this. They start at 7:30pm, and are pretty informal. Most of the participants are fixie and courier peeps, but the spandex is beginning to invade. ;)
The format is pretty simple, it's a 2-up drag race over 300m. You start with a trackstand, and one of you counts down, and then it's go time! It's from the far side towards downtown, so a slight downhill.
I don't know if it'll work the same each time, but last night it was elimination style, so if you lost your sprint, you were out. There were about 18 people to start.
I knew about a quarter of the peeps. Trackies Jimmy Holtz (Holtz! HOLTZ!) came out, as well as Chris Anstey. (Dr. Wayne Walker came out to watch.)
From the MTB scene were Halldor and Mitch. A number of people were excited that Mitch and i would finally square off... Traditionally he's been the guy to win all the sprints...what would happen when he faced his first vegan?
Jeff, owner of Capital City Cycles (who host the event) was out of course to race, and the rest i don't know as well. Fixie Dave made it out, but has been ill, so didn't race.
So things got started, and there were some pretty tight races!!
Quarter-final: Me vs Jim Holtz. Eeep! I know he's got a pretty solid 500m time, so i didn't give him a chance. I decided to ride my 50Tx17T (on my Ridley of course), which is about 80". Pretty light from a track perspective...but it was chill out (maybe 9C), and i wanted to make a quicker start..which i did.
I blasted off the start, and just hammered. My main goal is to get a few good sprint efforts in, so i didn't look back, but just put my head down and drove for the line. (Normally i'd try to keep an eye out, and if i'm ahead, keep it 'close'..i think it's more sporting. But again, my main focus that night was a good workout.)
In Jim's defense, he used a really light gear..i felt bad eliminating him. : \
2nd Quarter-final: the only 3-up of the night, with Mitch and another rider i didn't catch the name of... But this was the show-down... I had a good 20min rest, so was feeling good. (Well, as good as i could after all the riding i've done!)
I'm not a 3-up fan for sprints...but hey.. I was eager to race Mitch tho. We lined up, and i believe Mitch counted down, and we were off!
Well, he was! I felt the last gear was a bit spinny, so dropped down to 50x16, which is about 84". With the bigger gear, and a bit more fatigue, there was a noticeable delay in my start...and i haven't done standing starts in..oh...about a year. My form was shit. But, i got the gear turning over, and started my chase!
I got up to speed, and started to worry... Mitch was still ahead!!! The line isn't terribly clear during most of the approach...! I continued to pump and spin, and began to creep up on him....i edged past and continued to pound the pedals, motivated!! I jammed and jammed and wham - there was the line! I'd made a few bike lengths, but it was closer than i'd prefer...he really spun it out! But that was two more riders down... Vegan power!
Semi-Final: Oh my, now it was Halldor. And looking at my file, there was about 8 minutes that passed since the last sprint, and when i started this one. I was feeling tired now..
We lined up, and Halldor counted down. Wham - we're off. Once again, Halldor was off, but i got my legs spinning seemingly faster, and powered through, leaving him behind at the line. I was pretty fried after that. No mercy from Halldor.
The Finale: There can only be one, and it was between a rider i don't really know, i believe his name is Andrew. (Sorry if i got it wrong!!)
Again, looking at my file, i had a whopping 7mins of rest between the last sprint and this start. Gah. No freaking bike race in the world has you doing three standing starts in the span of 15mins. Owwie!! And Andrew got to recover while Halldor tore my legs off.
Okay, enough whining..haha.. We lined up, he counted down, and ZOOM - he was freaking GONE. I was really feeling it at this point, but i put my head down and jammed the pedals hard as i could. He was still well ahead by the time i got up to speed (if you can call it that at this point) and sat down.... I did all i could: spin my legs. I crept up. It was soooo slow. I clawed my way up to him, and again made it past, and jammed for the line. I knew it was mine before i hit it...VICTORY!!! It was over!!!
There was the awards ceremony, and prizes were handed out. Very cool. If you're interested in coming out, details are here in this awesome poster. If you're on the Facebook, join the event page, and post fun stuff on the wall. =)
Next sprint is April 23rd, mark your calendars!
Here's a summary of my four efforts:
You can see i was getting TIRED. Reminder the 1st was in the 50x17, and rest were 50x16 (if memory serves..makes sense based on the cadence and speed.)
The times don't line up really, as the PowerTap recorder ever 1.3 seconds or so...not the *best* for sprint efforts.. I eased off before the line on #4, so it was actually a bit longer (obviously, since it was slower. ;)
Halldor posted a bunch of pics here. Here's a few highlights:
Jimmy and me!
Gunning for the line! This is the first side photo of me on the Ridley - i'd say my position is pretty good!! Nice flat back in the drops.
The racers and cheerers!
It's not a smile. It's a grimace.
My opponent for the finale, give him a bigger gear and we all better look out!!
Here's the Garmin data: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/28207128
Note i rode a bit before, and if you click the Splits page, Lap #2 is the full drag. ~300m, and a bit of a drop in elevation. (It's not a full meter i don't think.)
And, as always, here's my full WKO+ Power Data: http://docs.google.com/View?id=dgdbj3nx_35fxc6vzff
Fun fact: each sprint burned about 20 calories. Also, my TSS for ~20mins of EM, 4 30sec sprints, and a bunch of light riding was 96 for one hour. NP 247w. Insane. Sprinting counts for a lot in the TSS world!
No PBs, as expected..too tired. My 30sec peak was 727w, not *too* far off my PB. The course was too short, i would have topped that if i could go a full 30sec.
Finally, here's two graphs from WKO that are kinda neat - the first is my first sprint - notice the steady speed and cadence.. The second is my last (4th) sprint...starting to fade!
Sat - OBB Ride
Part IV: Operation Overkill. Overkill Overdrive.
heh - maybe that's a bit dramatic. =)
Keeping this short, but a pretty firm ride. Lotsa headwind on the way back. Smaller group of us took off from Sidney, missing many of the big hitters..and Craig was going for a longer ride, so wasn't really putting too much effort into the pace.
The pace was firm the whole time. We got onto Interurban and there was a small break off the front with (San Fran)Kevin, Lawrence and Jeff (a newer person on the ride). I knew they didn't have the gas to stay away, but Ryan decided to bridge it up.. We went down the hill just before Camosun and Barbara sprinted away..again, not a threat... Funnily, her husband Dave bridged us back up..haha..
Kevin took off after that, i got on his wheel, but it was short lived. We approached the hill, Barb had gone off again. Over the hill, Kevin went again, i was hoping he was planning some kind of lead-out, so i got on...but he eased up well before the bottom of the hill.....this put me in a shitty place at the front of the pack in the wind going uphill....with Ryan and Mike Elkink right on my wheel.
I didn't have much choice, and hoped for a wee bit of surprise so i got out of the saddle and started jamming it a bit early... No luck, Ryan shot by, and Mike was right beside me. I kicked like Carman having a tantrum over getting a new Ultra-Mega-Mega-Man, but Mike kept me at bay and beat me by a couple centimeters....arrrgh!! Ryan, of course, had it by a landslide.
I don't know if Mike was giving it 100%, but i would like to think that. =)
The group was virtually nil by then...no one challenged me for the Overpass (yay me!), and by the Trestle i was riding solo. I planned to do my 'full loop' (105km, around the water to Haultain), and so carried on. Legs still felt good!
Ran into Charles Durrant as i got onto Dallas. We chatted until St. Charles where he turned off. Hope i talked him into coming out to the next sprint!
I carried on, the winner of the OBB ride. Even as i hit Haultain, i felt really good, and dare i say it: i wanted to keep on riding. I think that's the first time in my life where i've ridden more than 3hrs and actually WANTED to keep it going.
But alas, i had a schedule to stick to, and had fried myself sufficiently. I turned off, and dropped down to a recovery pace for the final 10min home. Finally, a tailwind. =P
Here's the Garmin data: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/28207104
And, WKO: http://docs.google.com/View?id=dgdbj3nx_36pdx4gsdt
Nothing spectacular, peak hour was just under Threshold power, normalized. Sprint wasn't terribly impressive of course, but solid.
And that concludes Operation Overkill! I really pushed it, and totally flayed myself. I'm pretty happy. Here's the week's summary so far:
Ending Duration Distance Weight HR TSS kJ
28/03/2010 10:05:40 301.44 72.0 154 804 6818
I generally try to keep my TSS under 800 for a full week...and it'll cap 900 as i've still got a couple hours to ride tomorrow, although admittedly it'll be a pretty tame pace. I'm thinking i'll head out to Newton to watch and cheer. I'm also eager to do a lap and collect the elevation data. ;)
That's it for now, bye everybody bye!!
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