Always Learning

This is has been one of those weeks when I feel like I’ve learned something new from each and every training ride. Yeesh, I think I even learned a lot while sitting here in front of my computer reviewing my training data and thinking about my training. Yes, one of these weeks where little things click and other things don’t.

I didn’t do anything groundbreaking out there this week – the normal recovery ride, intervals, ‘cross skills practice, and some running. But I learned that you really can’t shirk the details. Making sure tire pressure is correct. Really measuring saddle position correctly. Paying attention to body sensations – maybe a headache shouldn’t be ignored. Pushing a bit deeper can do wonders for one’s confidence. Remember to eat.

Yes, some vital lessons here. I think it is worth re-emphasizing the “remember to eat” lesson. On Tuesday I set out for my VO2Max interval work-out. I left at around 11 a.m. – before leaving I had some fruit and Luna protein bar (chocolate mint). After an hour or so of riding I settled into my interval workout: 4 min VO2Max efforts with 4 min of recovery (I had four of these to do). The first three intervals went really well and I was ready to really rip the fourth one… Well, I had absolutely nothing. It didn’t seem to matter how hard I pushed on the pedals I couldn’t get the wattage numbers to budge. I was flat, empty and frustrated. I recovered from these and then did some short all-out efforts (these went well) and then I rolled home (munching some Clif Bloks).

I told Marc about this and he summed up my issues with the last interval very simply “you were under-fueled” – I thought I had eaten enough but I guess it had been a while since I had eaten breakfast (6 a.m.) and by the time I started my intervals it was around noon… Yes, so big lesson learned – even though you don’t feel hungry – eat – particularly if you have an energy draining work-out to do…

Thanks for the feedback on the Freaking Out blog post. I’m feeling a lot better today. I’ve got my lists of things to do before taking off for Pennsylvania on Friday. My feelings of confidence have returned. I can only do what I can do – and whatever it is – I’m going to savour it – I’m super lucky to be able to be riding my bike and to not be on the sidelines watching.

I’ll be posting over the weekend so there will be some race reports posted on Saturday and Sunday. Best of luck to everyone who is kicking off the ‘cross season this weekend – and for those of you racing in the Ontario Provincial Mountain Bike Champs this weekend.

You are better than you think you are. You can do more than you think you can.

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