Ready for college?
Circumstances of late dictate that my work day gets started at 6:30 in the morning. The long days of summer mean that a pre-work run isn’t entirely in the dark. It also means that a ride after work can start at four and still have plenty of light.
The other day after a full day at the office I drove home and in no time I was in my kit filling bottles. After checking my tire pressure I got rolling. My body was shocked by the transition from zero physical activity all day to suddenly pedaling my bike. “Oh, we’re doing this now?” my legs questioned me.
The climb up and away from my home is a good warm up. I start easy and spin a low gear. The climb goes quickly.
Thirty minutes later I am off of the roads and onto a wide bike path where I won’t be competing for space with cars. It is rush hour now and the laws of physics clearly favor the automobiles over cyclists.
I check my bike computer. The agenda today is for seated thirty second power efforts every five minutes with Z3-Z4 tempo in between. Then after six of those I hold tempo for ten minutes then I do a ten minute hard effort and return to tempo for twenty more minutes. The idea of this workout is you don’t get to spin easy to recover. You just return to a hard, yet less than Z5, effort.
Each interval goes through the life cycle of, this is fun, this is hard, this has gone on long enough, this hurts, and finally, this is done.
As the song goes, "Late December back in '63"
Summer is here and it is a great day to be fit and riding. I am glad to see my arms and legs exposed to the sunshine. My arms glisten with sweat. My bike sings as I shift smoothly up and down the cassette. My bike feels fast and I feel strong.
I back off my effort for the final half hour of my two hour ride, but I still throw in some “situational” efforts. That is to say I power up the little climbs and have a couple extended out of the saddle efforts. I coast down the hill to home feeling like I have done something.
It felt good to be doing intervals again. The training for France was largely all volume all the time. I was nervous about throwing in any intervals. Now, I’m not so nervous and it felt good to ratchet up my efforts. Intervals are kind of like diets. Everyone knows they work, it is just hard to actually do it.
Cleveland is where I was born.
If America gets an enema, Cleveland will be the entry point.
One could logically ask if I feel stupid being a grandfather and doing intervals like I was twenty years old. My answer is that when I am doing intervals; I AM twenty years old.