Thursday, May 21, 2009

Can an old dog learn new tricks?

For the past few year I've been reading a bunch about power meters and coaching but I really didn't feel it was for me. See, I just like to ride. I've never done structured workouts and I don't even know how to do a interval. The closest I come to doing intervals is jumping on the hill a few times in the Tuesday crit. I guess you could count the times back in the day in Lincoln when he would tuck in behind the semi's rolling down 9th street. At the speed limit of 35 mph they would hit every light for a mile or so. Kinda dangerous I guess.......

Anyway, this winter and spring was a rough one. I was finding it tough to train hard enough to get any benefit, or was I? I had no way of telling so I decided to get a powermeter. A PowerTap was the way to go for a guy like me. SRM gives you more information but for the money the PowerTap will do just fine. So I rode for the past month just like I all ways did and looked at the power data. And what did it tell me..........nothing! Not that the info's not there, no, it's just that I don't have the slightest clue what to look for. Time to find a Coach to get some direction.

I went with Adam Mills from Source Endurance. Sent a number of power files to Adam and he quickly had a few test rides set up using the PowerTap to figure out my Lactate Threshold. Was that a shock, intervals, I about killed myself. Picture some idiot on the bike, all over the road, struggling to hit the numbers while staring at his computer. Duh, harder than it sounds. During the test I quickly found out 2 things, slamming it into a bigger gear does NOT make more power, the number actually goes down, and 2, my spin sucks. Amazing how much more power you can make with a good spin!

Next up, the VO2 Max/Lactate Threshold Test. The thing about training with power is that it's best to get solid baseline data for your training. A lab setting is the best way to do this so I visited Dave Burnett at Summit Rehabilitation and Fitness.

The Man!

Dave ran me through the tests and explained how they worked as we went along. As a rookie it was pretty neat.

The machine....... it's not a pain full as you might think. the LT test was OK.... the V02.......a bit of suffering, but hey, you have to try to get the best number you can! I'm not going to hit 80 ml/kg/min like Lance, but I did hit 60. So while Lance is climbing those mountains in Italy this weekend, I'll be climbing up Snake Alley 12 times and that's good enough for me.

OK, this is a long post so I'll stop. Bottom line is this...........I'm happy I'm doing this. After a week of working with Adam I've all ready discovered some thing that will make me faster. Once Quad Cities and Tulsa are over we will have some time to work the program and see what happens. I have no doubt what's going to happen and I can't wait!

Oh yea, one more thing. If you have a power meter and have not been tested, go see Dave. The price is right and it's quick and easy.

Off to the races.........see Ya!


t-nuts said...

Have a great weekend!

You own the Snake!

Have fun!


ScottyD said...

As a parent you will grow to love the PT. Optimum training no crap more family time. @ least for me, I've even been able to knock back training to 4 0r 5 days a week & still be fairly competitive all because of the PT. Enjoy. See you in Tulsa