Friday, 6 March 2009

I Need More Cowbell...

Okay, the title has nothing to do with biking, but when I thought of my last two bike workouts I thought, "I need more cowbell". I don't know why...

So I've managed 3 hours of biking in 2 days. 1:45 hr on Thursday and 1:15 hr this morning. Not really a huge deal in the big scheme of things, but for me there was some neat stuff to be learned during these sessions.

I was up at 5am yesterday morning to get my workout in. I was up and ready to Lance it on the bike. I had gone to bed at 8pm the night before - I was experiencing a total energy drain Wednesday night so instead of working out had a Susi Self Care night - this involved going to bed early.

I felt great when I woke up and planned to do as many 10/5 sets as I could in 1:45 hours. I did an easy 10 minute warm up, then got right at it. As always, the first set was a breeze. My heart rate was in the target zone, my cadence was great and I was pedaling about 27.5/28 km/h. (Oh to hold this in a race!!)

As I went along my sets, and shed several pounds of water via sweat, I focused on my legs and applying equal pressure on the pedals. I also kept watched of my heart rate and cadence. About the one hour mark my stomach started growling. I didn't have dinner the night before, and no brekkie before getting on the bike. So I stopped to get a banana and hopped on again.

The sets were getting harder. It was great mental training to keep things going and not to give up (not that I would, I was feeling good although tired). Just after the hour mark my heart rate started climbing. I couldn't keep it in the zone. By the last set my heart rate was 5 beats higher than the top of my zone. This was 10 beats higher than when I started out. I decided it was more important to me to maintain my speed/cadence then to slow down and let my heart rate drop. I have no idea if this was a good thing or not.

This morning I woke up and got back on the bike. This was going to be in place of a run session. I decided to do what I did yesterday but for 1:15 hours instead. This way I'd keep my heart rate in the zone it would have been had I been running. I assume I was fatigued from yesterday because my heart rate started out higher right from the get go.

I had gone to physio yesterday and learned a few things. One, I'm a sloucher and my posture sucks. This is affecting me in my sports, which means I am going to fix it! Physio's really have to love working with obsessive triathletes...tell us what to do and we will do it if it will make us swim/bike/run stronger and faster!!

I always have pain running down my arm when I'm in aeros, so she said pulling my shoulder blades back and down, at all times not just on the bike, would likely help. So this is what I focussed on when I was on the bike.

Actually, I didn't right away, until the shooting pain started up. Then I remembered the trick (I had been remembering it when I was sitting and standing yesterday - my back is now super tired and pissed that I'm trying to fight the slouch!) Sure enough, the pain went away as soon as I pulled the shoulder blades back. Nuts. This meant I had to keep doing it and it was tiring.

So for all of the sets I did the following checks: pull back shoulders, pull down shoulder blades, check arm for pain, engage core, check cadence, check heart rate, check time, check pedal pressure and repeat. It got a little tiring, but I knew I had to keep doing it because I was correcting things every once in a while.

Seriously, who needs tv or music when riding?? Just keep checking your posture and technique until you go insane. It's way more entertaining!

The very last set was a struggle. I was pooped and down several pints of sweat. It took everything in me to keep my cadence up, but I did. I felt great after the workout was done. I think Lance would be proud of the effort both days.

I'm happy with my biking this year and think it will be interesting to see how things are when I am able to get back out on the road!! Hopefully I won't have to wait too much longer for that...

Peace out my friends!


  1. I've often thought that if the inside of your head isn't more interesting than most songs, most movies, all TV, and most other 'entertainment', you have a problem.

  2. so in other words you paid someone to tell you to stick your tits out? Here - i am free - stick your tits out :)

  3. OMG, Jenna. Ha.

    When I read "One, I'm a sloucher and my posture sucks" I immediately tried to correct mine, as I am a sloucher too. Checking everything over and over again sounds absolutely exhausting! Great workouts though, Lance would be proud.

    Have a great weekend!

  4. Father saya you take after your mother..I didn,t know.

    I believe I,lll get in touch with Lance maybe he,ll give you some tips..if Oprah can ride with him why noy Peanut????It,s sunny in BC and due to snow the weekend.

  5. I love your "Susi Self care" night-those are so important! But, ummmm, how on earth did you skip two meals in a row? I skip snacktime and I practically bonk, even if I'm not even exercising.

    I need to do that posture/shoulder blade thing too but sheesh i got tired just reading about your efforts!

    Way to go!

  6. Great bike workouts -- you are going to rock on the road this year!!!!! :) :) :)