Excellent month of cycling progress–goals reached, many new PRs.
What an incredible month of cycling progress it has been! I decided to dedicate May to fitness and cycling training (I didn’t ride my mountain bike a single time in May), with a focus on saddle time and difficult trainer workouts. I am very pleased with what I accomplished: I set dozens of new personal records, and have improved my cardio and overall level of fitness substantially.
Here are a few of the highlights…
This month I cycled a new distance personal best of 1006.5 kilometers (625.5 miles), besting my old record of 885.6 kilometers (550.3 miles) set during the month of November 2012.
I knew I’d be resting today in anticipation of Saturday’s 100 mile ride, so to get over the 1,000 kilometer mark I had to get the final ~50 kilometers in yesterday. The weather was horrible. I thought about doing a trainer ride, but I really wanted to ride outside. The wind was relentless, and so was the rain. There were times during yesterday’s ride that the rain was coming down so hard that it actually felt like I was being stung. Whatever, I was already wet and committed to the ride. it sure felt good when I knew I’d crossed the 1,000 KM mark! 🙂
My current one week distance personal record is 286 kilometers (177.7 miles), but that’s going to fall this week, too. So far this week I’ve put in about 192 kilometers, but tomorrow I’ll be doing my first hundred mile ride, which will add another ~160 kilometers to my weekly total. That will put me around 352 kilometers (219 miles) for the week. Depending on how I feel on Sunday, I may do a recovery ride which will further boost those totals.
I also set numerous new timed segment personal records (too many to go back and count) which include dozens of top 10 finishes on the Strava leaderboards (five of which are new KOMs).
On the trainer I made great progress, too. I completed the difficult “8 Days in California” challenge (8DC), which greatly improved my fitness.
During the 8DC I set new 2, 5, 10, 15, 20, 60 and 90 minute power output records.
After the 8DC I re-tested my FTP, and scored 294–another new personal best. My new FTP score gave me a new FTP/Kg personal best of 3.77.
One of the most important lessons that my transformation and bodybuilding years taught me is that hard work, when intelligently applied, always pays off. I’ve taken those principles and applied them to my cycling, and there’s no question that the work is resulting in improvements.
So, what’s next? I’m going to keep training hard (of course!), but I’m also going to focus on dialing in my weight and diet for optimal cycling performance.
Also, and this is long overdue, I’m going to start racing. XC mountain bike racing obviously has a lot of appeal to me, but there’s not much here unless you’re able to travel all over the state (I’m not). While I’ll continue to look for ways to get into the XC MTB racing scene, road racing is equally–and in some ways, even more–exciting to me. I think with lots more hard work and some racing experience I could evolve into a worthy adversary.
Well, the rain from yesterday’s ride sure did a number on my Madone. I had to almost completely disassemble the bike yesterday to clean and dry everything. There was literally water sloshing around in my rear rim! I’ve never seen that happen before.
That’s OK, I wanted to do a major tune-up before tomorrow’s century anyway. I washed the bike, trued both wheels, thoroughly cleaned and lubed the drivetrain, centered and adjusted the brakes, fine-tuned the derailleurs and cleaned/greased the headset bearing. The bike is looking and running smooooooth.
Lots of work to do today, I’d better get on it. Happy Friday!