Yesterday I completed the eighth and final stage of TrainerRoad’s “8 Days in California” challenge!
Stage 8 description: This is it. Your final chance to leave it all out there. A brutal circuit race awaits you on day eight with four, lengthy laps on a punchy and hilly course. Be ready for hard efforts at or above 110% FTP as you navigate the technical course on your way to the finish.
My post-stage comments: The final stage of the 8DC was extremely difficult, and the last lap almost broke my legs off. I was able to hold it together, but it took every last ounce of energy and determination I had to meet or exceed the target watts on the intervals. New 8DC personal records set on this Stage include: NP of 278 watts, IF of 0.97 and a 2-minute power output of 376 watts. I also tied my TrainerRoad 60-minute power best of 273 watts (set during Stage 7). It feels great to have another successful “8 Days in California” in the bag! I earned the hell out of the TrainerRoad 8DC jersey, and I will wear it with pride. Thanks to TrainerRoad for putting together this unique and fun(ish) virtual cycling event! I am already looking forward to the 2015 8DC, but not quite as much as I’m looking forward to a well-deserved pizza and a couple of Fat Tires tonight (my nutrition was ultra-strict over the past 8 days). Finally, great job to all my fellow TR 8DC teammates who left it all out there.
I spent 19.7% (00:15:56) of the 81-minute stage in the Threshold power zone, 10.7% (00:8:41) in the VO2 MAX power zone and I was in the Anaerobic Capacity/Neuromuscular zone for 8.7% (00:07:03) of the time.
My heart rate data for this stage is as follows: I spent 37.1% (00:30:04) of the stage in the Threshold zone (155-171 BPM) and 34% (00:27:32) was spent in the VO2 MAX zone (171+ BPM).
Expanding on my post-stage notes above, my Normalized Power (NP) output for this stage was 278 watts (breaking my 2014 8DC NP personal record for the third day in a row), and I also set a new 8DC Intensity Factor (IF) personal record of 0.97 (breaking Stage 7’s IF PR of 0.96). My Training Stress Score (TSS) for this stage was 126. You can check out the entire stage with all my workout data here.
Also on this stage: I tied my indoor 60-minute average power output personal record of 273 watts, which was set on Stage 7 (my overall/outdoor 60-minute power average PR, set last month on this ride, is 279 watts), and I set a new 2-minute indoor average power PR of 376 watts.
I set, or tied, various indoor power records on every single stage of the 2014 8DC. This challenge pushed me, and pushed me HARD.
Here is my 2014 8DC Stage 8 workout graph (click to enlarge):
Again, I’d like to thank TrainerRoad for putting together another fantastic cycling challenge! Not only did I enjoy the challenge itself, the 8DC added to my enjoyment of the actual AMGEN Tour of California. Why? Each of the “Eight Days in California” Stages were obviously strongly inspired by the actual Tour of California stages; as I enjoyed the Tour of California each day after riding my 8DC stage, I felt a connection to the tour that I otherwise would not have. Well done, TrainerRoad.
All of this has made for a super fun, exciting and challenging week of cycling!
So, the final standings are in: 1,757 riders participated in this challenge, and only 515 cyclists (29.31%) crossed the finish line at the end of the eighth stage. Successfully completing all 8 stages was no easy task–-congratulations to those riders who gave this challenge their all!
As I did last year, tonight I’ll crunch all the data and put together some interesting facts and figures. I’ll have those stats along with a final wrap up of the tour in tomorrow’s blog. Right now, however, I’m taking my bike off the trainer and going for a much needed ride… outsiiiiiiiiide!