Saturday, 5 April 2008

Bike Zen...

Today's bike workout was different from any other I've had. I think I hit the 'Zen' zone.

I wasn't sure how today's workout was going to go as training has been very up and down to this point. I realized recently that there has to be a mental change in how I approach my workouts, or the struggle would continue. I didn't necessarily have a plan of how I was going to change things when I got on the bike, I just had a feeling...

From the moment I started pedaling I knew something was different. Usually it takes me a while to get up to 90 rpm, even in an easy spin. Today it was like that right away. I didn't get too excited because I still had over two hours to go.

I started in on my first 10 minute set. I was doing 7/3 high/low zone 2 sets. As I got into the set I thought to myself, well now, this is a good start. My legs felt great. Relaxed and strong. The 7 minutes flew by. By the time I got to the fourth set I decided to try something with my breathing. Recently, I had started meditating somewhat. I would close my eyes and focus on my breathing while counting. Breathe in - 1; Breathe out - 1. I would do this till I got to 10, then start over.

So this is what I started doing when I was on the bike - eyes open of course. Obviously, it's not as relaxed as when I'm sitting in a pseudo lotus position on my couch, but it worked! I was able to maintain my cadence and strength, but my heart rate came down about 5 bpm. This was good as it was a little high going at the start.

The other side effect from this was that I was in a very calm, relaxed state while still pedaling strong. I was totally focused on my pedaling. I could almost picture the wee gerbil in my brain sitting off in a corner on a stack of brightly coloured pillows chillin' with a hookah pipe. LOL. I kept thinking that THIS is how I want to feel at IMCDA. Strong, consistent, powerful and yet relaxed and calm.

I wasn't sure how long this would last, but amazingly enough it did for all my sets. It was absolutely brilliant. Indescribable really! I have no idea if it was just the breathing or maybe the quinoa I decided to try for breakfast! It was truly yummy as I cooked it with diced apples, cinnamon and sunflower seeds. Then I topped it off with a little bit of agave nectar. I will have to eat this tomorrow morning and see if it helps me with my 10 km race.

Oh ya, I am in a 10 km race tomorrow! I have no idea if I will be able to actually race it as I put in a good 2.5 hours on the bike today, but we'll see how it goes. When IG asked if this race meant anything to me I indicated it didn't. I wanted to make sure I didn't miss a long bike workout because IMCDA means more to me. Therefore we kept the bike in and tomorrow I will race on tired legs.

It will be interesting to see how my ego does with this. Will I take it easy, or give it all I've got? Originally I wanted to break my 54 minute personal best, but this may not be so. Ah well, they have a really great brunch after the race so it will all be worth it whatever happens!

For those that have no plans for the afternoon feel free to drop in and visit me as I volunteer at the Footstock booth from 2-4 pm in the Roundup Centre! It's all part of the Outdoor Adventure Show that is on. I hope to check out the show beforehand as well - I will be in my element surrounded by other fitness, peace, love and granola people!! YAY!

I almost forgot to add - 3:16 minute front plank today. I didn't even bother to try to attempt side planks after that! Ow, ow, ow!

Peace out my friends.


  1. om mani padme hum......
    om mani padme hum......
    keep the gerbil on his pipe. I may be trying this soon, I see the results are pretty instant. may also keep my mind on work instead of day dreaming about single track

  2. I have been in that state while running...

    I have been there with swimming recently as well...

    but biking... i just dont seem to have a knack for it...


  3. The gerbil has reached the hub of the wheel instead of incessantly spinning around it!! HOOYAH!! Way to go Susi!! LOL!

    Have a great run today -- mmmmm that breaky you made sounds delicious. Do you mind posting your recipe? :):)

  4. Crap! I forgot the most important part --- 3:16!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WOW!! :) :) :) :)

  5. oh, uhm, ya. it may take quite a bit to get the mind from daydreaming at work...i sure haven't mastered that one yet! not sure i want to either. LOL. i hope to hit some sweet single track this year and i promise you i will be daydreaming about that!

    the gerbil does seem to be under more control, which is a good thing...i don't want him to go away though. he is very good in stressful times at spinning fast and coming up with solutions! plus, he can be rather amusing.

    quinoa brekkie:

    very simple. put 1c quinoa with 2 c water in a pot, add diced apples, sunflower seeds (however much you choose), cinnamon (to your liking) and any other spice you might like. bring to a boil, turn down heat and simmer for 15 minutes. put in a bowl, add agave nectar or maple syrup and enjoy!

  6. This is great info to know.