Monday, September 7, 2009
Pound Town-The Most Important Time-Stressed Time Trialing Workout
1h45min trainer (15 warm-up followed by 1:30 in 54-11)
Transition into 3 miles at 5:50 pace (5 total)
One problem with riding in NYC is that good, uninterrupted TTing is at least a half hour away over the George Washington Bridge, and even then you face the Cycling Grim Reaper. The looming scythe of doom in this case is multiple flats (even one is a pain in the ass), getting lost, or (god-forbid) a crash. I really would not know what to do in any of these scenarios. After a mechanical disables my bike or something, I imagine I would first hide the bike and get a run workout in (it's called PRIORITIES people), followed by a little crying (also PRIORITIES), an attempt to ask for help (followed by getting yelled at in a Jersey accent), and so on. The "so on" in this case is the inevitable--prosituting yourself for a quick fix. Oh, actually that's the "so on" for trying crack. But I'd totally go that route if they agreed to fix the bike.
To avoid the hassle, I set the Cervelo P2SL on the trainer, plopped the computer beside me with sites of interest already loaded, and went to Pound Town. After 15 minutes of warming up, I put the bike in the biggest gear and just told myself to turn it over for as long as I could stand. 80 RPMs near the end of the time felt really hard, and I used the fatigue to simulate the second run heavy leggedness. The philosphy behind this workout is getting acquainted with the specific stress of massive gears (which I like to race in) and constant muscular tension that is difficult to simulate in a real-world setting. Then, with the transition run a focus on high turnover sets the legs back to a feeling of equilibrium. Serioulsy, it felt like I was jacked on some horse steroids during the trainer workout. It's strange because I have limited my bike work a ton in the past month; maybe the time was necessary to refocus and rejuvenate. Or maybe it is the regimen of horse steroids I grind up and put in my cereal. We may never know.
I would highly recommend this type of big gear trainer pounding to any cyclist without a very developed cycling ability. Cycling performance is obviously limited by endurance, but I think it is easier to frame cycling-specific endurance in the framework of power and strength. This type of work feels like weight lifting and I believe the same power gains can be made from it. Also, you get to watch sweet videos if your computer is set up well while you do it. Today I watched Dexter, a Showtime original about a serial killer (it is so much fun; I recommend it highly). By the end of the two hours, I was starting to think murder was okay. Perfect for children of all ages!