Wednesday, March 16, 2011

2011 January Training - Part 2

Finishing out from Part 1 on my January training diary, I'll cover the 'meat' of the Gran Canaria trip and then the recovery.

After doing several 3 day blocks of 2 hard days, 1 easy day, I was ready to move to 3 days on, 1 day off.

The first part of the first day of each block remained the same – 3 x 13 minutes at Threshold – why 13 minutes? That was roughly how long the climb was, I would have rathered it being 15 minutes but the location was perfect – a 45 minute warmup from home and at the most arid part of the island - so the least chance of getting rained on while doing the tough intervals. The remaining part of the ride was mid tempo climbing up to the maximum amount of riding I had planed. It started as 3.5 hours but worked up to 4.5 hours.
A sample threshold day - 2,400m of climb in total
 The following day was a long endurance type ride – between 5 and 6 hours – I would ride tempo on the long sustained climbs – about 80-85% of FTP and the rest at endurance pace. This is when I get to see most of the island.

The last day of the block had 2 options – a group ride if I can find a descent one, or a split day. If it was a split day, 3 x 20 minutes at Sweet Spot (90% of Threshold) – if I can. This would be followed by 1 minute on, 1.5 minutes off by 10-15 times in the evening. If it is a group ride, I would plan for 6 hours with a few harder efforts thrown in (as well as a coffee stop!). By the end of this, I'm pretty toast and ready for a recovery day.

Out with my wife on a group ride :)
As the weeks progressed, my Threshold power increased steadily so that my final sessions where the best of the trip despite having acquired a lot of fatigue – somehow, all my best efforts come when I'm in a fatigue hole.

Upon returning to Ireland, it was 3 days of very easy riding and a weekend of longer rides, but still at an easy enough pace (group rides to add in some social aspect). With that, I was ready to start February and build again.

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