Monthly Archives: December 2011

Winter Cycling Training – Day 3 of Week 4 Redux

Last workout of 2011!

I am finishing up the makeup week I choose to do after recovering from my December four to six week cold. Today’s workout was intervals – five during warm up and five during the main set. The warm up intervals were 20 seconds long at 110% Critical Power but the main set intervals were 30 seconds long (with ten seconds less of recovery time.

As you can see, that extra ten seconds in the main set intervals really hit me hard. I managed to hold the intended wattage during the recovery phase of the interval for only the first interval. After that, I could not. Perhaps, I hit the intervals too hard. The workout called for an effort of 110% of my critical power of 244 watts, but I my effort was higher – 136%, 139%, 128%, 133% and 128% for the five intervals.

After these intervals, it took me some time to recover, but I did and extended the final main set item from ten minutes to fifteen minutes shorting the cool down from ten minutes to five.

The other interesting characteristic of this workout, and all three this week, is my high average heart rate. The first time I did this workout, my average heart rate was 138 bpm. Today, it was 152. This difference is magnified by the fact the first time I did this workout was without a rest day before. My conclusion, my cold is responsible – I am not completely well yet.

For this workout, I switched back to the PowerTap Comp wheel. Testing before the workout revealed that the dropped data was not due to weak batteries in the hub – they tested as strong as new batteries. The data dropping stopped when I moved the pickup closer to the hub. Now that this wheel is fixed, I am going to keep it on the trainer until my first race on February 26. I think there is something wrong with the old Powertap hub, not only does it send data spikes but it also creaks. I need to tear it apart and inspect it.

Tomorrow’s work out calls for over two hours on the trainer. This does not sound like fun.

Migraine Update

At 1:43 today, I had a migraine attack – right side. I was at home so I laid down in a darken room and rested, I even dozed. The pain is medium – about a 16 penny on the Nail Scale. I have slight pain when I cough.

Food at lunch was a Moroccan Chicken plate with brown rice at Venti’s but a better suspicion is Red Dye #40 in Gatorade G2 which I drank after my workout this morning.

See Dr. Chris Neill’s Blog post on migraines.

Winter Cycling Training – Day 1 of Week 4 Redux

I’m back on the bike, well the trainer that is.

This morning was the first time in a very long three weeks that I woke up and did not need a sinus decongestant. This is good as I need to re-start my winter training program. I decided to repeat the last week of the program, the week before I got sick. The workout looked to be a tough one:

10' @ 65-70%FT + 5' alternating 20" @ 110-115%FT
40" @ 65-70% + 5' @ 75% FT

5x1' (1' Rest@ 65-70% FT) as 1-4 set @ 150-120% and last one try pushing 3-5w higher -- the last set will be your baseline for next week-- + 15' @ 78-80%

5-10' @ 60-65%

Translation (using my Critical Power Wattage):
Warm Up for ten minutes at 159 watts, then do five 20 second intervals at 268 watts with 40 seconds rest at 159 watts. Lastly, do 5 minutes at 183 watts.

The Main Set calls for five one minute intervals at 268 watts each followed with one minute rest at 159 watts. After the five intervals, do 15 minutes at 195 watts.

The Cool Down is just ten minutes at 146 watts.

As expected, the workout was hard, but I managed to do all of it; no quitting early. The above graph shows the five warm up intervals and the five main set intervals. It also shows that I worked a bit harder than called for. My Warm Up intervals ranged from 296 to 313 watts, and my main set intervals ranged from 269 to 313 watts with the highest output being the last interval.

I am please with my performance today.

Felt S32 TT – Preparing for the Racing Season

Time Trial racing season is getting nearer.  The first race is the Jack Frost on Sunday, February 26.  While the race is two months away, I have some plans for my Felt Time Trial Bike.

To Do:

  1. Replace the 52 tooth chain ring with a Sram 55 tooth chain ring
  2. Install Shimano 10-speed bar end shifters on the newly installed Profile Design T2+ aerobars
  3. Wrap the handle and aerobars
  4. Install the Aero Disc Covers on the wired Powertap Wheel
  5. Install the wired Powertap Computer harness

This will create a TT ready bike with higher gears than what the bike had last year, increase the number of sprockets in the rear from nine to ten and allow me to keep a Powertap wheel continuously on the bike.  Last year, I would have to remove and install the rear cassette and Aero Wheel Covers every time I wanted to race.

The only downside is that I will be using a wired PowerTap wheel, meaning there will be a pickup unit mounted on the rear chainstay with a wire running to the computer mount.  Having wires on a TT bike is not what you would want, but this bike already has exposed shifting cables.  As such, it is that big of a deal.

Short Test of the Powertap (Orginal) Hub

Several years ago, I purchased a used Powertap hub from a good friend of mine. It is the original Powertap Hub and it has been sitting in my garage for several years when one day I was rummaging around and saw it. I thought that this hub would be fine for my trainer and I recently installed it.

However, my recent (now three week long cold) has prevented me from doing any training, until today.

While I am no where near completely well, I felt good enough to do a short test using the new hub. The results are below:

The hub worked very well, with just one exception – the data had three very high wattage spikes. I edited the data file to remove them so they do not show on the above graph.

As to my effort, it was hard. I rode to the Carmichael Training Systems Time Trial workout and I cut the workout short after two warm up intervals and one power interval. This was enough in my current condition.

I’m hoping I can continue my training next beginning this Tuesday.

My Cold Continues

I did not ride this weekend as my cold continues.

On Saturday, I felt better than Friday, but I could not force myself to get on either the trainer or ride outside in the cold fog.

On Sunday, I felt worst and spent the morning on the sofa.

Today, I feel even worst and I’m trying to find a way to stay at work. Drugs seem to be the answer.

Life can be hard at times…

I have not been on the bike or the trainer since our Anniversary Weekend.

Just after returning from Ashland, I began to have a series of Migraine Headaches, including two in a single day. I missed work on both Tuesday and Wednesday, December 6 and 7. I did make it to work on Thursday, but I was not able to get on the trainer. Then, beginning on Friday, December 9, I came down with a cold. This caused me to be off the bike that weekend, and I missed work on Monday and Tuesday, December 12 and 13. I was too ill to participate on the Salem Bicycle Club Christmas Lights Ride on Wednesday, and then on Thursday, I suffered another Migraine Headache. While I am recovering from the cold, I took today off of the bike again as I am still not ready to ride.

If all goes well, I will restart my training in the coming week. After consideration, I will repeat week four, allow me to ease back into the program.

Wedding Anniversary Weekend Continues

After our very enjoyable bicycle ride yesterday, we checked out of the Wolf Creek Inn and traveled southward to the small town of Ashland. Soon after passing though Sunny Valley, we entered a cold fog that continued all of the way to Ashland, only getting colder as we drove south.

We checking into the Ashland Springs Hotel, where we were told that our room had been upgraded to ‘Deluxe View King’ on the top (ninth) floor. When we arrived in the room, we found it cold and condensation on the single pane windows. But as the town was covered in fog, there was not that much to look at anyway.

We celebrated our Anniversary with dinner at Macaroni’s Ristorante. Then, we walked to the Tingstad and Rumble concert. Joanne and I were overwhelmed with great music in a very intimate setting.

The next morning, we woke up to a very cold Ashland – 18 Degrees. Frost covered everything with a gloomy freezing fog in covering the town. We had hoped to ride our bicycles up to 7,532 foot Mt. Ashland. After seeing the weather, we changed our plans.

We checked out of the hotel, and headed north toward home. We hoped that we would drive out of the fog and into the sun, which shone north of Ashland the day before. We were disappointed. The fog must have covered the entire state. Realizing that we would not find any sunshine, Joanne plotted a route northwest of Roseburg.

It was colder than yesterday, hillier than yesterday but we had fun.

Celerbrating our Wedding Anniversary

Joanne and I decided to take a long weekend and head south to celebrate our 17th wedding anniversary. Our plan was to drive down to Southern Oregon on Friday and spend the first night at the Wolf Creek Inn. Then on Saturday, we would drive to Ashland, and check into the Ashland Springs Hotel and then enjoy a Tingstad and Rumble concert. When we made the reservations, we expected the weather to be wet, this is December in Oregon after all. But, we were wrong. There was no rain forecast for the weekend, so we ended up taking our bikes.

After a very nice breakfast at the Wolf Creek in, we headed off on our bikes to Sunny Valley.

We rode at an easy pace and when we reached Sunny Valley, we spent some time exploring the site of historic Fort Leland the last remaining covered bridge on the north/south Pacific Highway system.

Our return was on the same roads but with the warm afternoon sun. After leaving Sunny Valley, the road roams along side of Grave Creek. The day was not without issues. Just after leaving Sunny Valley, Joanne’s bike flatted in the rear. After an extensive inspection, she found a small wire stuck in the inner tube. The the repair, the return ride was with out incident and only one vehicle pass us; the roads were very quite.