A day late.. that happens when you have a small home based business to worry about sometimes.. and yesterday was exactly that- a worrisome day that needed a lot of hands- on work which meant.. skip the training.
But today.. now that’s a different story… a different kind of training apparently.
I’m one of those folks that suffer from various allergies. Before leaving Vancouver in 2012 I had some tests done and we found out that I’m allergic to pretty muh every animal except horses. I can have a horse.. but nothing else. Great. Horses are cheap, aren’t they?
Fast forward.. one of my allergies is seasonally oriented and the season has started already.
Calgary doesn’t slowly warm up.. it doesn’t slowly get colder.. it goes from -20 a few days ago to +10 right now which is a wonderful environment for the breeding of.. snow mold.
Don’t get me wrong.. I’m not complaining.. I love this city- my neighbours are absolutely awesome and I love love love Calgary in general.. one time I was out on The Felt.. spinning down a hill (I think it was Nose Hill Road) and just burning along.. and as I was gonna turn at the next light what did I do? Shoulder check, signal.. change lanes.. somewhere in there a BIG black truck sped past me and came to a stop at the lights..
I came to a stop behind the truck.. and then the driver flipped it in to park and got out and I was like “Oh no.. here we go..” but…
“MAN!!! DO you know how fast you were going? You almost hit 70kmph!!!!” and he came up and shook my hand.. I think my jaw was on the ground.
Don’t judge a book by it’s cover they say and well.. this proves it. Calgarians, in general, are super nice.. sure, there’s a few nut jobs but there’s nut jobs everywhere.
Anyhow- the training today was difficult as allergies make it harder to breath smoothly, make my mouth “pastie” and a few other issues I won’t go in to BUT…. the gear I chose for the 120m spin was one harder than the last ride and.. my legs are telling me about it now. I thought I was in the same gear as last time but.. apparently not. One harder. Which is awesome.
Although I’ve been living in Calgary for over 5 years, I have yet to restock my winter cycling gear.. and while living in Vancouver my winter cycling gear slowly evaporated. So, while the weather outside is getting closer to roadwork.. the roads are still populated with rutted ice and the wind is still a tad bit too chilly for my gear. I’ll be fixing that this year.
Being something other than a “fair weather rider” is me, afterall.
I remember couriering here in this (un)fair city.. it would be -420000 degrees or some such rediculous number and not a Bike Cop to be seen. Once the weather turned a balmy 10 above.. they’d be out there scouring the roadways looking for US… to make up their lost quotas, obvie! I swore I’d never be a Fair Weather cyclist. I guess.. time makes liars of us all.
Today’s training, therefore, was yet another indoor trainer sess. As I may have mentioned previously.. I tend to mount the bike with enhanced tension so, even in light gears it’s a harder workout. But, that got a bit tiresome (?) or, well- my body got used to it. I’ve burnt through many tires on both the Kestrel and the Felt this way.. added friction being added wear on the tire.. but I’ve never~ yet~ purchased/ used trainer specific tires.. probably wont, either.
At any rate- I’m used to pushing hard gears. The last training session was a bit lighter as my muskles were still kinda soar from the previous PUNCH’d spin sess… but this time- my muskles were SINGING as I flipped it up to the Big Ring and down a few.. working hard, my legs felt enlivened and… alive! Kinda felt like my old self pushing hard gears, sweating profusely.. and loving it!
I’m in the process of saying goodbye to someone.. that person who thinks he is Less Than,.. who distrespects his own self.. that person that is a victim of abuses untol’d for decade upon decade..
You’d think that someone who just “dropped out” and went on a personal exploration meanderment for the better part of almost ten years would be above or beside the effects of abuses but.. in all honesty, the very reason I had to drop out.. the very reason I needed nearly ten years all to myself. Ultimately, it was time prepping and working to get closer to ME such that I could invite ANOTHER in to my life.
But.. that’s my headspace today. And difficult is as difficult does.. so, today- I turned it up a notch or.. two.
Normally, I’m happy to spin it out for 120 minutes with what ever movie I can find but today.. as I was doing my warm up.. I noticed I was pretty far down the cluster. A lot further than normal (well, one or two gears to be specific). I knew, also, that if I pushed it down another gear I’d be wanting to flip up to the big ring so…
I slipped up to the Big Ring!
So, up till now I’ve been content working on consistency.. spinning for 120 to 180 minutes at a stretch (it’s hard sequestering 180 mins.. so many different things to do and take care of…). I’d keep the gear lower, the resistance higher.. and just sit back and watch.. Shazam! or Deadpool.. or Star Trek or what ever.
But.. at heart I’m a Chunder King.. that means I push hard gears.
I’m not really a “spinner” but.. I am trying to learn how.
So.. today I pushed it down to a much harder gear.. same high resistance on the roller but a pretty tough or tougher gear. Legs were shaking when I got off the bike. Reminded me of that first time I strapped my bike on to a Vetta frame based wind trainer and span for what seemed hours (but the taxi company downstairs said it was 23 minutes due to the noise). Time.. fleeting..
Anyhow- training was good today. I feel like progress has been made.
Finally took the time to fix The Kestrel yesterday. It wasn’t a big fix.. but since I have the Felt.. I wasn’t in a rush at all. But- for use on the trackstand the Kestrel is rarin’ to go. So, strapped in and spun away for 120 minutes.. 60 mins in 6th.. 60 mins in 7th. Perceived intensity was upper edge(s) of moderate, nearly difficult. But that’s my perception compared to riding on the Felt.. the nice- ish thing about the Kestrel is that she’s got 700c wheels which fit my trackstand better. The Felt, with her 650c’s, has the resistance roller dialled almost all the way up which means there’s little room for modulation- it’s either just making contact or.. not making contact at all. With the 700c’s I can dial it in and make the workout a nice difficult one.
Training.. it can be a hard thing to do especially when you’ve got a small company that demands a lot of your time. Trying to “eke” out an hour here, an hour there.. and trying to increase stamina can be worrisome and difficult.
Today while I was on my 120min spin I remembered something that was mentioned in an article generally about the boat Vakita and her captain. Specifically, he mentioned that pedalling the boat was akin to spinning on flat ground in third gear. Third is pretty easy.. I’ve logged 14 hour days in harder gears.. and uphill.. both ways (j/k),.
So, today I checked out what gear I was in.. 6th. And I train indoors on my trackstand/ friction trainer. And the friction is a bit harder than “regular” or flat road work. So, my guestimate is that I’m in about 8th gear spinning for 2 to 3 hours..
I also have a guestimate that if I can spin for 3 hours here in training I’ll be good to go for spinning full days around the world. I feel this because I have so much *other* stuff I have to do I can’t sacrifice much more than three hours.. and I’m also pretty well aware that you don’t have to train at full volumes for competition.. I never did as a triathlete. So, training for fractions at higher intensities.. BANG ON!
Long and short of it- I’m pretty solid on the cycling part of things.
And I’m pretty psyched about the mod’s I’ve gone and done to all my websites. The future is looking positive.