Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Everybody wants a story....

When someones reading a cycling blog -- what's the draw, what's the interest. Obviously race recaps written well make for an allure. Mid winter kinda makes that a limited commodity unless you are some kind of Arrowhead 135 hooligan. Which by the way, hat's off to you guys & girls. It's not exactly my style or holds any overpowering charm, but I greatly respect the amazing feat of physical & mental stamina it undoubtedly requires.

There are stories of training, of new bikes and of what someone's kids or crazy relatives are doing. Maybe it's someone getting a sponsor to plaster on their jersey.

I always enjoy Doug S's blog back in the day when he time and before all the twittering & tweeting. Witty, humorous... I think he had more bad days on the bike (which were very few) than he ever had blogging.

My story this winter remains much the same. I'm having an amazingly good preseason for my training. This is probably the first time winter hasn't compromised my training plans. I've opted for riding the bike outside over skiing and enjoyed it. Probably have 30-40% more time in than any time previously. Which was actually an eye opener. Not sure who of you keep any kind of records of how much riding you get in but I was looking that over this past month. Comparing previous years, etc, etc. What I found amazing was how relatively little time I've really spent training when compared to what you see written up by "Training bibles" and hear other people talk about. The cool part about it when I looked back. You can still be a pretty good racer without sacrificing the rest of your life to make training a part time job. What's relatively little when it comes to riding? Alot of times you'll read in a training program a person needs to do 500--600 hrs/yr or even more. How easy is that?! On paper maybe 2hrs a day 5 days a week doesn't seem like a lot, but that's assuming 50 weeks of the year - week in, week out. Miss the normal week or two because of a flu or cold, go on vacation for a week, take long weekends to travel somewhere and it's not necessarily easy to put that kinda time in. I've not done a final tally's of years past but I don't think I've ever done more than 350-400 hours in a year and somehow I've manage to reach the level of an expert racer. It leads me to believe the quality of workout you put in goes well above the quantity you put in. I'm not knocking that quantity of miles as it helps in alot of areas. But if your goal is to become faster and you think you have to sell your soul to the devil to find enough time to train I'm not so sure that's the case. Train doing the right stuff & I think you can really surprise yourself.

Though I've worked some moderate intervals in throughout the winter, to keep that part of my fitness nurtured, some recent power tests I've done do not even shown the normal winter fall-off that happens. That's encouraging so I'm excited to see where things could go this year.

Funny story how in life you intersect with other people -- the other week I'm calling Planet bike about some equipment I purchased. This guy, James (no last name given), answers the call -- Lord knows why but for some reason I think I should know him. Anyways it required him to look around for some answers and call me back. And sure enough when he does my suspicion is confirmed -- it's James LaLonde, the youngest of the three very talented Lalonde bros. Often we've been together in a race so it was neat to visit and catch up with someone you wouldn't expect to talk to unless you were at a race. Small world.

Well, another 70 days or so left before MTB racing kicks off. Going be having our Mid winter bike party pretty soon as well. Food, drinks, fun. Always a good cycling video and probably some indoor bike racing... for real. It's pretty wild. We have a pretty dominant 5 yr old in that category of racing, his size & skills work the course over pretty good.... how my wife ever allows it I'll never know... guess I'm just lucky.