Training – What is it good for?

Its been an interesting 5 months.

When I found I had a place in the TCR, I knew I had a lot of work to do – I was nowhere near as strong on the bike as I’ve been in the past.

So, how did the training go?

Screen Shot 2018-07-23 at 22.11.09

The above graph shows my training load since 1st Jan. The blue line shows the training load (distance and intensity) – which increased steadily.  I had 2 big rises – from 6 days in Lanzarote, and 4 days on the tour of wessex – big rides with hard efforts.  Apart from that my load has been pretty consistent – some good weeks, some bad, but the overall load just increasing slightly.

This was a success.  In the past, I did too much too soon, and ended up having a very disappointing last 6 weeks.  I currently feel good, and feel I could have done a lot more training.  However, I often felt pretty fatigued too at time, especially on some commutes.

Training Volume – hrs

Screen Shot 2018-07-23 at 22.16.34

I’ve averaged 17.5 hours  training a week.  It’s been a balance of workload v enthusiasm, and I decided early on that a realistic, repeatable, sustainable effort was the best approach for me.  I had a couple of off weeks, (Grey bars where the planned duration was more than the actual).  But overall, I did more of my plan than I did not do.

I dropped my gym work pretty early on, (and used my lunches for route planning instead)  However, I hit 75% of my turbos, which is a big improvement for me.

So what did all this training achieve?

Screen Shot 2018-07-23 at 22.18.07

The gold standard is frequent ftp tests – that I didn’t do as I hate them.  I always found my peak ftp is in March on my Lanza camp – a combination of hills, wind and competition.

Instead, my Garmin watch has been calculating an estimate of my Vo2 max.  This has seen a steady increase over the last 8 months, even in the last 2 when my training volume stabilized. Nice

Finally I’ve done some power tests at a hr of 130bpm (MAF tests).  I saw my power increase over the months in this test

Date Test (3*10 mins) avg power
@ hr
bpm for
each 10mins
power for
each 10 min
04 Nov Zwift 30 min @ MAF 178@131 130
10 Feb Zwift 30 min @ MAF 182@131 131
08 March Zwift 30 min @ MAF 180@130 130
05 April Zwift 30 min @ MAF 185@132 132
03 May Zwift 30 min @ MAF 199@132 131

I don’t feel ready, but hopefully I am.


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