So yesterday I headed outside for my first interval session outside for 2011. After the brutal race last weekend it was obvious I need to get some hard A.C. efforts in so I could force a bit of adaption and get my legs/lungs/heart/and HEAD….. ready for the next race.
Racing with a power-meter makes it super easy to tweak training so it mimics the demands of racing. I have a local hill near my house that is around 90 seconds long. It depends on the wind direction. Some days it takes 2 minutes and others it is 80 seconds. I repeat the hill non-stop for 1 hour. The grade is only 2-5% so you can big ring the entire hill if you get out of the saddle.
Here is a quick comparison of the HOUR OF POWER intervals compared to a very hard Road Race. (see attached screen shot)
Both have low average power… but very high NORM power. They are both desperate. It is shocking how similar 1 hour of intervals mimics the specific demands of racing.
You can see in the attached file I have a circle where the 2 man break went up the road. It was more of a SPLIT(selection) than a break. I was getting dropped when they attacked. So even the DATA when you fail is valuable. You can learn so much from race files it is shocking.
So remember this season when you are suffering the most that you are actually in the laboratory creating some data that someday we will use to tweak and change your training.
If you are serious about getting a coach. Please read the article below...... Every coach and rider is different. I am not for everyone and everyone is not for me, but everyone will train and race better with the right coach.
A deck of cards is built like the purest of hierarchies, with every card a master to those below it, a lackey to those above it.
Training in the winter for bike racing is a brutal activity that very few people can comprehend. Hours spent suffering quietly so you emerge in the spring ready to race and brawl against all of your rivals and your mental demons. Our past racing results and failures are what motivate us daily on our winter-long pilgrimage of torture and torment. Living here in Idaho I have the choice to either go outside and brave the elements or suffer for hours on the trainer. Neither are very pleasant but both are essential. Each and every one of my winter training experiences builds a foundation for the coming road season. The one thing I know for sure is that the harder and longer I train the more indestructible I become. Recently while surfing the internet I came across a cycling blog that had a great quote “train so you can make yourself harder to kill.” On my way down into the basement to train the same day I picked up a new deck of playing cards from a shelf. I opened the box and took out the promotional cards from the deck. I easily ripped them in half and tossed them in the trash. There were 54 cards left. It struck me that this particular workout which I was dreading was just one card in a deck of many. That doesn’t mean that the particular workout didn’t have value. What it meant was this workout was one opportunity for me to “stack my deck” for road season. Today’s training might create the 1 second gap I will need later on the top of a climb or to win a TT. Today’s workout might also crush me and make we re-think why I do this sport. To be completely honest most of my workouts do a bit of both.
I was now sitting on the trainer and I tried to tear the entire deck in half. It was impossible for me. I have seen a You-Tube video where a guy ripped a phonebook in half so I know it is possible. But, I have also seen Fabian Cancellara time trial at 50k an hour and I can’t do that either. The 2 promotional cards I threw away were easy to tear. They took a few watts at most. To destroy the deck was going to take some power that I do not yet possess, and to time trial at close to 50kph is going to take a bit more work. Both the phone book ripper and Cancellara the T.T. ripper could literally destroy my personal deck of cards.
Thinking back to last year’s road season I realized that the epic winter of training I had done allowed me to do the same thing on a different level. I certainly didn’t become world class or star in my own You-Tube video, but I did have a few magical days on the bike. My deck of cards was definitely more robust than some of the guys I was racing, and in a few cases I was able to simply destroy a few others who in the past have destroyed me. I had moved myself up in the hierarchy and created a few lackey’s along the way. If you think of a field of bike racers like a bunch of playing cards this starts to be a valid training theory. As a whole the field is a vicious monster. Just like a full deck of cards…. It is hard to rip it in half. But during the race you have many opportunities to play the game and manipulate it in your favor. If you can’t climb and the race finishes on a hill you better get in a break, if you can climb don’t panic you can win from the break or the field. Just like in any form of gambling if you want to win, you have to be prepared to lose. The great thing about bike racing is you can win even if you are not the strongest; you just have to know how to play the game to optimize your strengths. Here’s the trick: don’t handicap yourself by not coming to the race prepared. If you were dropped the year before on the climb you better show up lean and ready to rumble. You have all winter to prepare. Don’t waste the opportunity. Every time you train you have a chance to “stack your deck.” If you do it right you will eventually be strong enough to survive even the most desperate of moments.
We train hard “day in and out” with the goal of becoming a winner. In the short run you might lose a ton. You will have some terrible workouts and results. These losses will test you more than any good workout or race you have ever had. Bad wattage during a workout or test is the best medicine in the long term. Training hard will make you more consistent. The more consistent you become the more durable you will be. I don’t have the highest 5 minute or 20 minute power. But I race well almost every weekend and I can sustain my peak wattages on a regular basis regardless if it is at mile 10 or mile 100. Just like everyone I struggle early in races when everyone is fresh. But after a few hours I start to feel like a beast. I often can make up my own rules late in the race. It is like ¾ of the deck is gone. Now I am playing with just a few racers and that is when the real game begins and I know there will be 4 face cards and a joker left. All 5 have a shot to win, but often it is the rider who pulls the ace from his or her back pocket who wins the race. Last year I remember racing to the KOM against a particular racer who I for sure thought I was going to beat. We had gapped almost 100+ racers and I was definitely riding at a new PEAK 5 minute power. We were 10 meters from the KOM line. He stood up and humiliated me. In just 10 meters he shredded my deck of cards. That experience is definitely one I will not forget, I didn’t have a bad day or bad legs….his (better) was just better than mine.
This makes me think about the past 7 years of training and racing. Over those 7 years I have had a ton of good and bad moments. I have 2000+ power files and every one of them tells a story, and they all make me a bit harder to kill. I realize now that my current fitness is a sum of those 7 years. They enable me to survive hard training sessions day after day. At times they have allowed me to ride the break into pieces and occasionally they have dealt me the sweetest hand.
A racer doesn’t have to look much further than Cadel Evans to find inspiration to fight for an entire season. Evans came up short all season for every one of his goals. He had an awful Tour de France and Vuelta. I am sure his team was about to fire him! But, he his deck was so stacked that he knew he had an ace left in his pocket. Evans won the world championship by holding his cards close and playing the game until the very last deal. He could have easily packed it in for the season and stopped racing. But, like all good addicts, he couldn’t stop gambling. He knew that he was ridiculously fit and just needed a few things to go his way. That day at the world championships is proof that you can’t win…if you don’t play.
Even the bad workouts and races have a place in my deck. If you notice there are a lot more plain cards with numbers than ones with pretty pictures. The pretty pictures are the rare cards. They can win you tons of money in Vegas or in the back room of a smoky bar. They are the cards you wish you were dealt every day. But to be honest what fun would gambling be if you won every time? It is in the losing and stress of losing that makes winning such a cool experience. Training is just like that. If your goal was to always feel good on your bike and to always win you wouldn’t have gotten into bike racing. You would have just done “tours” and your local group rides. You would search out events where you were the strongest and just crush people. That would be like going to Vegas and betting a penny.
So as you sit on your trainer or ride in the freezing cold I want you to think of your ride today as just one card. This one ride will not make you a PRO or win you a national championship. This card is just one in a deck of many. The larger you make the deck the harder you will be to destroy. This one ride is part of what will make you the beast in the breakaway that rides everyone’s legs off. This one card is the 1 second that will win or lose you a time trial. Don’t expect every ride to be perfect. Don’t be shocked when the watts are awful. Be excited when things go your way because you know that the cards will be against you at some point and this success will help. Think about riding hard 54 times before you expect to see great fitness gains. That is 52 hard training sessions and 2 jokers before you expect to improve. A few good workouts will not win you races. You need tons of good and bad rides before you truly become an excellent bike racer. You will learn how to play and win with a poor hand. The longer and harder you train will enable you “stack the deck.” Eventually you will be playing with 5 Ace’s and a few jokers up your sleeve. From the outside your stellar performance will look like a damn magic trick but, like all magic, it’s the hard work put in by the magician that makes it look real.
Old post... but still a good read. Get ready for CX season... it is here.
ONE MORE LAP… (written in the middle of cyclocross season)
As the CX season unfolds I realize how quickly the cyclocross season comes and goes. Months of hard work and it is almost time to start thinking about racing on the road bike again. With only 4 weeks left in my cyclocross season I must remind myself to race every moment of every race before the season ends. It is so easy to back down… damn every race I want to quit at some point. I always think of what I heard Kent Bostick said to my friend John Hart… "Little buddy...Your pain is not special." I live by these words during the hardest part of the race. Sometimes as I am gasping for air & my legs hurt so bad I want to cut them off… I just remember that “my pain is not special.” As I spit on my top tube unable to see straight…. I remind myself again… “Your pain is not special”I hurt… damn do I hurt. Every day I train… I hurt.
This past year at masters nationals I was standing on the curb yelling at my wife with 1k to go in her time trial. She was 3 seconds back on my time sheet. I noticed she was crying when she rode by…these were not tears of sadness… dude these were tears of insane pain… pain I don’t know if I have ever felt. I go hard… damn sometimes I go so hard I can’t feel my hands or feet…but have I ever gone so hard I cried! Never…not yet… And I guess that is why she as a stars and stripes jersey and I don’t……….. So this year that is my new goal… To race so hard that I either pass out or cry… Pain and failure is 99% of this sport. So why every time I am suffering do I feel pain and usually fail? You would think I could ignore the pain and grab success by the nads….. It is at the moment when it hurts the MOST….I start to think “my pain is special”…. But I know it isn’t.. We all feel it… we all want to quit. Every minute of every interval I think about it for at least a few seconds… It is like beating your head against a concrete wall. Each time you slam your forehead into the wall it hurts, but the wall doesn’t move. The crazy thing is………. I have been repeating this process for 6 years now. So this must not be failure. I didn’t LOSE... I raced my brains out and went as hard as I could... each year I get faster…..the guy in front of me must be stronger … so should I just quit and not chase him? No way!!! There will always be someone faster… The struggle is what I love the most. I think to love any sport, and especially to survive racing you have to enjoy getting (beat down) as much as you enjoy “giving the beat down.” I just want to be out there suffering… it always feels so much better when I am making others suffer…but I learn more and grow more from being on the receiving end of a good ass beating. Motivation comes from failure for me. I think about the NIKE commercial….
”my better is better than your better”
…. If you haven’t seen it go to YouTube… and check it out. But really… is my BETTER …better than your BETTER…. Damn if that was 100% true I would win a ton of races. I don’t win very often so I think there must be some guys out there whose BETTER is BETTER than my better. So if Kent Bostick is correct that my pain isn’t special… and others are better… why do I bother to suffer and race? 99% of the time I know I can’t win. There are always several riders who are a bit stronger. In some cases a TON stronger. So why do I spend thousands of dollars racing and 100’s of hours suffering each year? That's a great question. With probably 100 different answers. I have my identity so wrapped around cycling what would I do if I stopped? I would probably have a terrible drug problem or gamble my life savings away. So suffering for hours on end might just be a bargain. So now that we have an idea of the consequences if I stop suffering daily and quit riding. The new question becomes: how can I suffer in some sort of bliss? This is a trick I am getting better at each year. I love to watch Chris Horner suffer… the guy is always smiling… Try it… for me it works…. For the first time I have started to invite the pain in… I don’t run from it like I used to… I don’t start to question why I hurt or think “I must be having a bad day.” What I have learned is when you go HARD… it hurts. It always will. I always hear riders talking about “bad legs” most of the time it makes me chuckle. Bad legs usually just mean the race was hard. If you ride with a powermeter I want you to try to ride around 600 watts for 40-45 seconds… that is the start of a cross race. DO it every day… If you ever have a day where that feels easy and your legs don’t burn…Go buy some lottery tickets. So when it hurts…. IT IS HARD!If you are in shape…and have trained a decent amount… and your legs hurt and burn…it is a pretty good sign you are going hard…not that you have bad legs, but that you have fit enough legs to suffer. Somewhere along the way we have come out with the idea that going hard…..should feel good. That is crazy talk.
If you feel good = You are not going very hard (at least not hard enough to get benefits from training or to be successful in a race)If you feel bad = you are probably pegged and on the rivet-this is actually a good thingBad legs = people in your race are “Better than your better”Good legs = you need to upgrade99.9% of the time I think the above is correct. We all have bad days every once in a while. But if ½ of your races are bad… then you are not being realistic. Your training either doesn’t match your goals…. Or your goals don’t match your pedigree.Now that we have solved a pretty serious math problem let’s get back to the fact that most of us are not very good. What do I mean? Most of us suck. Yes we suck. Hard to stomach but the sooner we all figure it out the more credit we can give to the riders who don’t suck…….. Now this isn’t very nice, but what I mean is that the guy who beat me last weekend sucks a little less than I suck. The guy who finished behind me isn’t better than my Better. Every week the goal is to suck a bit less and try to bring the best effort I can manage to the race. Each week I have new excuses as to why I am going to suck. I try to hide them under the bed in a shoe box, but I always let a few slip. Usually I talk about how hard I trained or didn’t train. That is my favorite. But the bottom line is when we walk up to the starting line we are very vulnerable. It is how you learn to deal with the insecurity of sucking that makes you a great warrior.
Dude…. win or lose if you bring a great fight you should be able to pat yourself on the back and be amped about how you raced. Most of the time we just beat ourselves into a pulp during the race, and then continue to do so for the following week. The key is to ask yourself several times during the race “can I go harder?” If the answer is yes… then get on the gas. If the answer is “no” then stay the course. So next time you are out racing at Defcon 1...try to smile… you should be amped that you are killing it. If you are crying then you know you are pegged. Pegged is pegged. The guy in 10th is just as pegged as the guy who won. Neither effort has more value. Like Kent said “your pain isn’t special.” So don’t run from it… invite it in…and next time you are racing and the race is finished... I challenge you to race one more lap… why not… it is what we do and who we are. Cross season will be over in a blink of an eye. Enjoy every painful minute of each lap…. Soon there will be no more laps to ride and no more cross races till next year. My guess is that all of us will spend the next 9 months getting ready to do it all over again!
Before the time trial this past weekend one of my old team-mates dads asked me how I felt. I said “I am ready to bleed to win this thing” I meant it. I respected the crap out of the other 60 cat 1-2’s that were there and my ego wasn’t about to give an inch. I knew I had a fight on my hands and I wasn’t certain about the outcome at all. I was scared as crap, but I was 100% all in. I was prepared to suffer mentally and physically the entire effort.… I was going to earn a good or a bad result…. The entire time trial I pictured myself as a rat in a rat trap trying to eat the damn cheese that was just out of reach of my broken neck. I kept trying to nibble and lick the piece of cheese. I was going to win or lose this damn TT with the best possible effort I could manage. I even shoved my time trial bike at the finish line to get an extra .01 seconds. I had gone as fast as I could. That is all you can ever do.
After the Time Trial ………I had a rider ask me what my power was. I told him I averaged 305 watts… he was shocked… he said he had ridden close to 400 watts for sure!.............. I had finished over 1 minute in front of him. After a few sentences he implied that he was stronger than I am and just happened to weigh 40 more pounds. According to him I guess I didn’t win the TT or have the fastest fucking time of the entire day. So I guess finishing ½ a mile behind me makes him the next Fabian Cancellara? I should have told him to go look at the damn results again. They post them in black and white and from first to last. This is the way it is, and always will be. I almost suggested that he should calibrate his damn power meter or go on a diet. He was insulting me and didn’t even know it. 3 days later and I am still a bit tweaked when I think about it. He has the same disorder that almost every racer has. Why can’t athletes realize that every race is an opportunity to gain knowledge and increase your skill. Instead of pointing out he was obviously much stronger than I was…………. He should have been critical of his effort, his training, equipment choice, anything instead of telling me how fast he was for a big guy with an over eating disorder. Don’t hate on me for being skinny… Hate yourself for being what you are not. Bad results are an opportunity to trim the fat and get lean and mean.
A real failure does not need an excuse. It is an end in itself. Gertrude Stein
Last season at the GILA… I was with a good friend and I woke up in the morning dreading the coming stage. He quickly pointed out that I should be stoked…. “You get to race your bike today.” We train so we can race. Then on race day we forget that racing is why we ride. Racing is the gift. Racing is what you should be stoked about..……. not a new set of carbon wheels… or a cool new cycling kit…. We ride so we can race. We train so we can crush people…… then in the race when we get crushed… we should figure out how to train better, harder, smarter. etc……. instead we make up all sorts of crap…..ignore the gift of racing and never improve upon our past performances because we are blind to what is holding us back.
It isn’t flat tires and heavy bikes that slow us down…. It is our FLAT SQUARE MIND….. Leaking air and spewing crap all over the place. When you show up for a race and people ask you how you are doing… Tell them you are ready to rumble… ready to hurt… and hopefully you can end up on top today. Don’t tell them about how hard your work week was, that you have been sick, that this isn’t an “A” race… that you haven’t started your V02 block of training yet…. Blah…. Blah….. Blah…. If you are going to spew excuses then I suggest you take up a different sport. My good friend Jason has more legitimate excuses not to train than anyone I know. But he rarely ever uses any of them. At 4 a.m. almost every day that dude is on the trainer or out on the roads 350 days a year crushing it. It doesn’t matter if he is sick, didn’t sleep, or if the damn sky is falling. He has missed very few days of training in 7 years. His hard work is what motivates me. I can’t quite live up to his standards but I try. He was the first rider I knew that had a CTL of 100, 110, 120. It didn’t kill him and made him stronger… I gave it a try and I can’t put into words what it did for my riding.
For the most part bike racing sucks, hurts a ton, and training sucks even worse. If you are lucky you will have a handful of great races over several years. So for every 1000 times you ride your bike you might just have 2 or 3 incredible days. Most riders never actually win a race. So you have to endure the bad… I went 100 races without a win…..but during that time I learned a ton. I learned how to lose…I learned how to train… I learned how to want to win…. I thought I wanted to win… but winning is almost impossible. Go look through anyone’s race results and see how rarely even the best local riders win. It takes time and tons of attempts to make a race go your way. I had to learn how to “shut up” and pay attention to the details. I had to learn to stop throwing out excuses and start looking for answers. I have found that if you can’t compliment yourself… compliment someone else. Seek out the racers who win….. pay attention to them…. Do what they do…. and give credit where it is due… when you fail go back to the drawing board and come up with a plan on how to improve, and try not to make the same mistakes again. It takes an honest rider to realize that every time you race you probably gave it your best shot and your best just wasn’t good enough. Don’t use this as an excuse but as an opportunity to learn and make changes. You can’t improve if you are not critical. If you think you are doing everything right you need to probably look in the mirror a bit closer. Bike racing is definitely a journey with a very abstract destination.
– Thomas Edison
I respect my limitations, but I don't use them as an excuse. Stephen R. Donaldson
There is a 1 in a MILLION chance you are going to have the perfect cross season!
I like those odds.... but if you don't block a few PUNCHES you are going to get your fricking HEAD KNOCKED OFF! If you think you can get in the RING and not get hit... you are crazy. If your not careful you'll be talking about "NEXT YEAR" before this year even has a chance to get started.
The first few minutes of every race is DEFCON 1. You will want to quit. You will doubt everything about your entire existence. I want you to be ready to get hit and hit hard. The first few minutes of every cross race... I find myself screaming at my inner self.... "COVER-UP" dude "COVER UP".. The attacks and hard accelerations are like boxing's equivalent to body shots that are breaking ribs. Early in a race there is always someone that can hit harder and faster.
My advice to all racers is to get your head ready for the MENTAL JUNK SHOW of Cyclocross. It is a roller coaster of a season. You are going to have some killer days and some where you get crushed. It is a beautiful sport, but absolutely vicious. Get to every starting line you can. You just don't know when you will have a killer day. You are going to flat, wreck, and just plain make some stupid mistakes. The season is short and will probably make you a bit bi-polar. You can't wait for it to start... and by December you will barely want to clean your bike. Don't worry about places. Don't pick random NUMBERS for results. Don't say I want a TOP 5. That is insane. If you want to pick numbers go buy a lottery ticket. Top 5.... think about that. What if SVEN, COMPTON, TREBON, PAGE, ALBERT, STYBAR, .... show up.... Are you getting top 5? Don't think silly crap like that. You are a mature adult with a college education. It is BASIC MATH. I know in our own heads we are all ROCK-STARS. Destined to be discovered. SHOOT for the damn MOON.... but don't worry about where you are going to land.... BEFORE YOU GET THERE..... FIRE THE DAMN ROCKETS AND GET OFF THE LAUNCH PAD FIRST! Just put the pedal to the floor. Don't pack a parachute. Just crush it. See how long you can survive.
Just race your brains out. Places don't mean a thing. Try and race an honest race.......where you get a good start.... race patient... then push yourself to the limit. Race for the PLACE right in front of you. That is the only place you have control of. Race to not get caught by the racer behind. Tons of riders including myself have ruined a good season looking for some random number or result. I have won some races and ridden awful. I have lost tons of races where I have ridden stellar and performed to almost personal perfection.
My only other advice is to give your RIVAL's the credit you want them to give you. They trained hard this past season, and it was probably with the sole purpose of kicking your ass. They love to suffer.... and if they beat you... they must have gotten pretty good at it. They probably secretly almost hate you... and you secretly almost hate them. (NOT REALLY BUT YOU KNOW WHAT I AM TALKING ABOUT) They want to beat you.... YOU want to beat them.... Some of them will sell an organ just to finish in front of you. They bought CARBON THIS... and CARBON THAT... You matched their Carbon and RAISED them..... with a new Coach & 5 a.m. workouts. It isn't just a race ....it is almost a war.
THOSE WHO CULTIVATE POWER,
IDENTIFY WITH POWER.
TAO TE CHING
Everyone you are racing has probably gotten faster. If they SMOKE you... be glad they figured out how to beat you. NOW you have the chance to figure out how to turn the tables on them. That is how the game works.
You don't deserve to beat people if you can't take a good beating. As racers we have all had those miserable car rides home after a bad or humiliating race. So when it is your turn to be STOKED... be STOKED.... when it is your turn to be humbled... be humbled. Next weekend or Next season you will have a chance to do it all over again.
Nothing makes me happier than to have a killer race. But nothing has made me improve like getting my EGO totally mud-stomped. The beat-down is what I need to get my sh*t together. I find more motivation when everything is going wrong. When someone has me pinned to the floor and is just pummeling me. This is when you wish you could pass out or just quit. But you made the mistake of training hard enough to ENDURE the violent beating, but not enough to win in the exchange. You are taking it... and not giving it. These memories are quite vivid and very UN-forgettable.
YOUR MANTRA NEEDS TO BE THIS!
I WOULD OF...............
Those who master themselves have strength. Tao
- Here are some recent race results. Do any of these make me a great coach? Definitely not a guarantee. I know tons of riders that would make awful coaches, and several great coaches that are awful racers. I think I am a pretty good happy medium of fashion and function. I have raced and struggled at several different levels. I remember getting last in my first TIME TRIAL and dropped in my first Crit. I also can remember winning a ton of time trials and several races off the front solo. I have enough Power Data of success and failure to bring down Google. I have a pretty good idea of what it takes to win and prosper in every category and discipline. From what Wattage it will take to win TT Natz... to the Power it will take to win on the final climb at Mt.Hood or the Gila. I went almost 100 races without winning anything worth a damn. I had stellar power numbers and just couldn't quite figure out how to put it together. 2009 and 2010 have just rocked.
- 2010 Race Results (highlights)
- 1st Tour Del Soul Stage 1 TT (Cat 1-2)
- 1st Tour Del Soul Overall GC (Cat 1-2)
- 1st Utah University Omnium stage 1 TT
- 1st Utah University Omnium Road Race
- 1st Tour of the Depot Stage
- 1 TT 1st Tour of the Depot GC
- 1st Jason Broome Memorial TT (cat 1-2)
- 1st Tax Day Circuit race (cat 1-2)
- 1st Garden Creek Gap Road Race Idaho State Championship
- 1st Tour of Bozeman Overall GC
- 1st High Unitas Stage Race Time Trial Cat 1-2
- 1st Tour of the GILA CAT 2 Time Trial
- 2nd Inner LOOP R.R. GILA
- 2nd Overall in the G.C. GILA
- 2nd Tour of the Depot Road Race
- 2nd Utah University Overall
- 2nd Tour of Bozeman TT
- 2nd Tour of Bozeman RR
- Wenachee WA Stage Race (KOM)
2010 Tour of Utah Pro-1 ( just barely finished)
1st Tour of the GILA Stage 1 (CAT 2)
- 1st Tour of the GILA TT (CAT 2)
- 1st Slammer Road Race (Pro 1-2)
- 1st Jason Broome TT (Pro 1-2)
- 1st Tour of the Depot Stage 1 TT (Pro 1-2)
- 1st Bear Lake Uphill TT (Pro 1-2)
- 1st High Uintas Stage Race GC
- 1st High Uintas Time Trial
- 1st Moose Cross Day 2 Cylocross (1-2)
- 1st Tour of Bozeman Overall GC
- 1st Tour of Bozeman Road Race
- 1st Tour of Bozeman Time Trial
- 1st Triple Valley Stage Race 2008 GC Pro/1/2
2nd Masters National Time Trial 30-34
- 4th Masters national Roda Race 30-34
- 8th Elite National Time Trial Bend Oregon
- 2nd Cut throat Cyclocross (1-2)
- 3rd Rolling tunder Cyclocross (1-2)
- 2nd Greased Lightning Cyclocross (1-2)
- 3rd High U Road Race
- 2nd Climbers Trophy
- 2nd GC Tour of the Depot Stage Race (Pro 1-2)
- 2nd Bear Lake TTT (Team Time Trial)
- 3rd Las Vegas Stage Race TT (Pro 1-2)
- 3rd GC Las Vegas Stage Race (Pro 1-2)
- 3rd GC Tour of the GILA ( CAT 2) 2008 and Older
- 1st Triple Valley Stage Race Time Trial Pro/1/2 2008
- 2nd Porcupine Hill Climb Pro ½
- 2nd Allen Butler Memorial Criterium Pro 1/2
- 2nd Masters Nationals 2006 Road Race
- 1st Bear Lake Classic RR Pro/1/2
- 3rd Place GC Nelsons Landing Stage Race Pro/1/2
- 1st Blacks Creek Road Race Pro/1/2
- 2nd Hell of the North Road Race Pro/1/2
- 1st Bozeman/Big Sky Cyclocross Weekend
- 21st Masters Worlds Cyclocross 30-34
- Results 2008 Cyclocross
- 1st Rolling Thunder Cyclocross, MT
- 1st Idaho State Cyclocross Champion (Cat 1-2)
- 1st Crosstoberfest Sun Valley, ID
- 1st King of Cross, ID
- 1st Utah State Cyclocross Championship (Cat 1-2)
- 8th Jingle Cross Elite UCI, IA
- 4th Masters Cyclocross Nationals 30-34
MY FTP was higher than ever before for cross. My 20 minute power was a stellar 5.5 watt to kilo and I was riding near 6.5 for 5 minutes. I had developed a powerful motor....But as we all know......CROSS is just as much about SKILL as it is about power.
Nationals......went OK, but I had no answer for the snow and ICE.
The masters race 30-34... I pulled off a TOP 10. Good enough for a front row again next year, but I got greedy early and paid.....I just couldn't turn lemons into LEOMONADE. LIKE everyone in my race I had to battle the conditions, and they got the best of me......I went from 3rd to about 35th or so....after a first lap mistake. I was able to move back up....but on that course... that day... this is the best I could ever expect to do. We all have certain styles we can/cannot race and this was pretty hard for me. I wish I had better SKILLS (chicks dig guys with skills)Napoleon dynamite..
In the elite race I had a stellar start position!! With the UCI points.... I was in the 4th ROW. Unfortunately, I found myself not really able to move up...or fall back. I finished in the MID 30's. A great ride when you look at how fast the CX scene is getting. Last year I had a bit better finish, but in the "ICE" this was all I could really pull off. Survival mode was the name of the game for me. After hitting the ground several times......I saw Trebon getting carried off the course and I rode pretty scared for the rest of the race. It was a bit anti-climatic. All this fitness and no where to GO!
For those of you who made it to KANSAS ..an ICE storm pretty much made the course a FROZEN hard rutted nightmare. It was scary for me to just navigate the course at full speed. I found to hard to pedal for much of the course. Certainly a great weekend for the GUYS with mad SKILLS and Big engines.
So after CX ended I got a phone call from a good friend that was headed to BELGIUM to race Masters Worlds. I bought a plane ticket, and 5 weeks later we were riding cobbles and racing in Belgium for a few weeks. We raced a FLEMISH CUP race and I rode from the back row all the way up to 6th!! It was a great ride for me. TONS of MUD and the course was SUPER slow.. Perfect. Then we raced masters worlds. A flat course that was primarily single track and fast. I got called up to the BACK row. No joke. I was the 2nd to last person called. I was able to move up to 2oth or something like that by the end of the race. It was blast and a great way to end the season. We rode parts of ROUBAIX and tons of the climbs on the Flanders course. It was one of the best trips I have ever been on. I hope 2008 CX season gets here quickly. I am ready to roll!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Well any doubts I have had during the suffering this season went away at Jingle Cross. I had stellar legs. I was able to track down some valuable UCI pts(14) and put together 2 great rides. 6th and 7th........ 2 KILLER days for me..
All the hard work paid off. This is the best I will ride all season. The courses were perfect for me. Lots of slow grass and climbs.
There have been more workouts lately that I have suffered through than earlier in the season. With tons of travel and driving across the country..a short ski trip with Hunter..family.. snow.. we all seem to find reasons to not train or to miss a ride or 2. I have done my best to remain true to the plan with a few tweaks to fit in LIFE. I felt like it was all falling apart until a 350 watt 20 minute yesterday on the trainer ........Now I am back mentally at least... Nationals are in 12 days!!!!!!!!!!!! I can hardly believe it. I am on a ski vacation at the moment and taking 2 days off. Friday I will train and Saturday RACE and Sunday or maybe I will get in some TEMPO.... Then I have to cross my fingers I can repeat the effort I had in IOWA. If you are doing the plan I am sure you have had some days that you wanted to quit or couldn't hit the wattage's.... I have had plenty of those.... WE made it. I just hope Kansas is a fitness course. I have the legs to ride a great hour.
5 weeks left.
Training is going well. This past weekend I raced in Salt Lake and had an epic race. I hate making excuses .......but here is mine. I rolled my tubular on the first lap. Rolled it back on with some mad skills and managed to LIMP 1/2 a lap to the pit. Now here is where it gets a bit funny. I grabbed my pit bike..... jumped on and rode about 30 meters. My feet wouldn't clip in. I noticed that "my bike" had different pedals..."Yeah silly I know" It was the "same bike" just not mine. So I rode back...... got my rig and was off. I was in LAST... I mean I was in the cheap seats. I wanted to drop out but I knew I would have to go train hard if I did....... so I made the best of it. Just tried to KILL it!!!!! I didn't really feel like I was moving up, but as the laps turned I found myself in the top 10 and I finished 6th. Not to far back of 2nd. Maybe 50 seconds??? or so. I was proud of myself for stayin with it when I wanted to quit. Super bummned that things didn't roll my way but that is what CX is all about. WE all flat and wreck!!!!!! it is part of the sport. What is cool is I know I must have some fitness to have ridden back into the race. I feel good and the watts are still rad. I have had a few days I havn't wanted to train but I have kept my promise to do the work!!!!!! This past weekend I did 2 hours on sunday on the trainer and 1 hour of running. I have been doing 1 hour tempo rides with stomps every 3 minutes for 20'seconds!! Last week my Micro Bursts ROCKED. I felt like I could have done 3 more sets. This is really that last hard week!! WEEK 7!!
I did the work but felt a bit slow all week. I didn't race this weekend so I did get in a solid 20 minute effort. Watts were good/great but I could tell I was tired. Week 6 here we come. I still feel on track and am riding strong even with some tired legs. Still riding at 5.2 for 20 minutes and 6.3 for 5 minute. I have yet to really try and nail one of these efforts for all I am worth. But to have these numbers repeatable ..............week to week............. I am pretty excited about that.
The goal this week is to get some SOLID work in. I want to get some great core and running done. I need to keep the head down and just do the homework. Only 2 more hard weeks left. Then it is downhill till masters natz.
Much better start 42nd bib# Horner and Craig were right next to me so no excuses here. Huge wreck in the first corner!! A bunny hop and I made it through. I would say I was in the 60's at this point. I slowly moved up to 43rd and that was all I had. 42 guys were faster for sure today. I stayed upright the hole race.
The course was RAD...... Fast and Flat...... A big run-up or hill would have been nice but it was a stellar course. The field of riders was stronger than any other I have raced in. I hope to better my fitness a bit before IOWA in 4 weeks.
Thursday I was scared to do the blowout ...knowing I had almost cracked 400 a few times warming up. I hit 397indoor seated.... BUT it was work this time. I held on for life. The 3 weeks of training this block is hurting the legs a bit. The 5x8min were a bit nasty and low watts. About 20 off normal. I couldn't get the Hrate up so...the legs are certainly tired. I just have to make it to the weekend and I get to rest next week for LOUISVILLE! should be rad. I am going to race one day this weekend..not sure which yet. CTL is still UNDER 90. I will have to reach a bit next cycle to get it to 95 of so before I rest for IOWA. Nervous if I don't get the workload up a bit I won't see any progress for the end of the season. I really want to see some Peak watts heading to Natz. In the past the closer I get to 100 CTL the better my 20 minute and hour of power. I also have had all my best 5 minutes near 90+ so I will have to be sure to ramp the 3 weeks after KY. I am sure I am in for some big HURT.
Vo2 on Wednesday and 3x20's Thursday and try to race Saturday & Sunday. Well I had stellar legs even though I thought I would be BLOWN. The first few LAPS of the race...HURT..burned..but after 15 minutes I found I recovered from the MEGA dig on the first lap and I was just cruising. I could just turn the gear. I was faster the last half of the race. I certainly didn't have 100% but I still felt solid for the HOUR. I was able to race each lap hard.. Even on Sunday I was able to stay on top of the gear for most of the race. I have never won CX races so it was pretty cool to win both days. The field had about 15 A racers each day so it was a bit small.. But it was great to be able to get out and race. We raced at 6500ft on Saturday and snow covered Mtns. were the back drop... Pretty COOL.
The next few weekends will be HUGE tests. Racing in Salt Lake next week will no doubt be humbling. The top guys there are FAST. The following week at the Gran Prix I hope to crack into the TOP 20.. That will take a MEGA day and some real fitness.
Now back to training. I have one more solid week and then I get to rest for Louisville.
The big goal is IOWA "Jingle CX" & Masters Natz so I need to keep the head down and keep killing it.
So How did WEEK one the 2nd TIME go. WELL I made it hard. Things went pretty stellar. I felt like I had bad legs all week but each time I trained I had great NUMBERS. Saturday took the CAKE.. It snowed so I was INDOOR. I got in 30+ minutes of threshold(2x5 and 2x10) and a BLOW out of 375 on the trainer seated. Not Bad. I was able to do a STRAIGHT Hour of tempo at 305.....with Bursts to 420-450 for 20 seconds every 2 minutes.
didn't feel like rest. NO sleep!! Hunter and I played craps till 4am. Probably stood for 12-14 hours most days. Craps, Work, Craps. I think I left with 1k in my pocket. I did get to gamble for 2hours before the CX race and 6 hours AFTER. I won about $600 that night so I took home more than Trebon and I was 3-4 minute back. After the EPIC drive home I got in 3x20's on the trainer SUNDAY. Watts were pretty darn good. I did one at threshold, the next with stomps every 2 minutes and the last at LOW cadence. All 3 were SOLID but not 100% CTL has dropped to 83. So I have some work to do to get it back up for October and November. I am really going to kill it till T-day in IOWA. I will rest a bit for LOUISVILLE but not to much. I am certain the plan is already working. I have one of the highest 5 minutes and a solid 20 minute already. Much higher than any other year for CX. My peak CTL most years is like 70 for CX I really want to get over 100 and see if it translates in to a few good races. I hope nats is SLOW and hard.
Not a bad place to start and about as good as it gets if you were not a REAL pro. I managed to finish 32nd about 4 minutes in the rear of Trebon. One of my best days on the CX bike. I was probably in the MID 50's after the first lap. and moved up from there. I got off the line great but it was a wall of riders and really no where to move up considerably. I chilled and waited till the 2nd lap when things calmed a bit and started to move up from there. I passed about 20 riders before it was all said and done. I felt strong on the slow grass. It was very similar to what I have been training on. After a full day standing and working at interbike I was amazed that the legs felt stellar. I had enough caffine in the system that I am not sure I even nocticed the pain. It was great to race in such a powerful field this early in the season. Still tons of work to be done but I rode one of my best efforts ever on the CX bike.
I pretty much took the PAST week off with work. So Sunday will be the only day I get to train. I will do a few hours on the trainer and try to get in 60 minutes of threshold work and a short RUN. Monday I will restart the PLAN and follow it till Nationals. I will probably ad a few more efforts here and there. No doubt this is the fittest I have been for CX. To pass some of the riders mid race who finished in the TOP 15 at natonals was a cool feeling. Till Louisville and the first Gran Prix race it is time to train. Back to work......
Ok the week was hard. I did 2 by Mock race efforts saturday and the legs were pretty good. 15 watts higher this week than last. I had run almost every day this week. The legs felt dead on the run-up. Sunday I backed it down a bit with vegas in 3 days. I did 15 minute of tempo into 2x8 min of threshold and 3 by 3 minutes of threshold with 30sec hard after each. I did 2 hours including a run. So I am off to interbike. I guess I will ride easy Monday and Tuesday the race is at 9PM WED night. Ouch. After a day working the show lets hope I have some killer legs. Bummer I have to rest this week. But I just looked back and this is really WEEK 5 for me. I didn't rest starting the plan and had done week 1 Twice!. So Legs need a break. I had a solid 3 weeks coming into the Plan. Several sets of 2-3x20s and Micro work already.
Ok the blow out was sick 397! ON the trainer! ( will check SRM tomorrow)
I was going hard but backed it off a bit knowing i had 7 more to GO. I did the others over 350 so that was pretty rad for me. I did 4 inside and then 4 outside on the CX bike on CX course. I just jumped off the trainer and headed outside for the 2ND half. Legs feel great. they felt incredible running on Tuesday also. I can only get in a few more days before I back off a bit for Vegas. 3 by20's Thursday that should be interesting
Thursday !!! CHECKED SRM all is GOOD
3 BY 20's.. I ran for 30 minutes easy this morning with the PUPS....
Ok, if you read the plan it sounds hard...IT is. BUT I am surviving and still gaining some watts. I had 3 hard weeks before I started the plan and still am drilling it.
It was on. I nailed the first one at almost 340. I kind of ramped and held on for life. I figured if I was going to do it...I might as well get a solid 20 minute out of the deal. I backed way down for the other 2, but kept it in my threshold range. So this is SOLID for me. 4 weeks ago I did all 3 efforts barely over 300 with the same Hrate as today. GOOD sign the legs are headed the right direction. I did each effort 30 watts HIGHER than last time. I had to change my Performance Manager Chart to adjust for the higher threshold. It dropped my TSS by a bit. So Still in the MID 80's for CTL. Not very high ....and with Interbike I will have a hard time getting in rides next week.