Intermediate Base I complete; Fitness improvements; Miles for April and May.
On Saturday morning I completed the final workout in the Intermediate Base I cycling program, “Beacon“. The workout included 6×8-minute Steady State repeats just a hair below my FTP (currently 270) with 4-minute recoveries.
I noted the last time that I did this workout that it was a tough one. It was a borderline call to do this workout the day after a pretty tough 19.1 mile MTB training ride, but I went with rule #5 (link possibly NSFW) and did it.
During the clearing effort my legs were not happy, and I thought, “Uh oh, what did you get yourself into?” I exceeded my wattage targets on the first couple of intervals, but I felt a bit scattered. By the third interval I settled in and embraced the pain; once I did that I felt great for the rest of the workout.
I remember the last two intervals feeling very tough the first time I did this workout, but this time around I rode well above my target power with no problem. My average power on the final 8 minute interval was 288 watts (target was 259) and my average heart rate was 166 BPM. The last time I did this workout (November 2012) my power output on the final interval was 277 watts with an average heart rate of 176 BPM. I’m putting out more power with less work now. There’s no question that I’m currently in better shape now than I was at my peak late last year.
Here’s the complete workout on TrainerRoad.
I’m looking forward to re-resting my FTP and the next training program, but I won’t be doing that until after the 8 Days in California challenge, which starts on Sunday, May 12, 2013.
Over the next couple of weeks I’m going to do a mix of mountain biking and road cycling, and my indoor workouts will be mostly Sufferfest videos. Sufferfest videos can be ridden without TrainerRoad software, but done that way the intervals are based on perceived effort. The Sufferfest video, IMO, are best utilized with TrainerRoad’s software because then the intervals have wattage targets based on the rider’s FTP. In other words, no wimping out.
So far this month I’ve ridden a little over 344 miles, and with a couple of days left in April it’s looking likely that I’ll exceed last month’s total of 364 miles. Good. If I exceed 364 miles that will be a high water mark for 2013, but well short of the 550 miles I rode last November. I’m looking to make May a pretty big month, and would like to hit 500 miles if I can. A lot of that will depend on how many miles the 8 Days in California challenge generate. I’ll have a better idea on May 5th when the “routes” are released.