Friday, May 21

Like rain on my wedding day

Yes, that is how it happened.


After writing Wednesday's post I had some time to reflect on the "Not Training" training program. I have some theories about the whole thing, but I won't bore you with all the details. Let's just say that over the past few years I rode a lot of what the more serious cyclists would call "junk miles". Going out for an hour or two before work every day and just riding around did little more than just make me tired, sweaty, and that much more smelly at work. I think the new game plan is to rely on the residual and incidental fitness I have from riding my bike 5-7 days a week for the last fourteen or so years. Beyond that I have no desire to try anything else this year... call it an experiment of sorts.

I did actually (attempt to) read a fitness column recently. I was hoping there was an easy answer like "Eat more beets" or "ride less, drink more, blog constantly", but this column was written by someone a little smarter than that. Alison Dunlap is an athlete of the highest caliber, so when she speaks I listen... if only for a little bit. Recently in her Coach's Column on Mountain Bike Race News she answered this question:

Question: I am a good climber but I have a hard time holding people off on the flats and open road sections. How do I get faster and more powerful on the flats?

I have to admit I felt like I could relate to this rider's predicament. Being that I am not a very powerful rider and I tend to get crushed on anything that doesn't have an elevation profile that looks like an EKG I took an immediate interest. I started to read the article, but after the third paragraph it started to sound like one of those kinda posts from days of yore over on Dave and Lynda's blog, kinda like some secret alien code that only the fellow aliens that are hiding amongst us waiting for activation can understand. I gave up. I just can't read about zones, thresholds, Vo2, intervals, or something silly called "recovery". I just can't pretend that I would change what I'm doing in the name of performance, especially if it means I have to upgrade my vocabulary.

I've got some advice for this particular rider. If I were writing my "Fit Dick" column (that is still being pitched to the major publications) I would suggest that the rider only do races with lots of climbing and skip the ones with a bunch of flats. I guess another solution would be to take the climbing races seriously and if he/she felt compelled to do the flatter races just don't feel bad if you drink too much the night before because you were going to suck anyways. That's what Fit Dick would do.

This weekend will not be all about me for a change. I'll be volunteering at the 2010 Catawba Riverfront Classic Race. This is a big fundraiser for our local club, and since I've been lame on the trail building/maintenance front I'm going to try to absolve myself of some of this karmic guilt. Well, maybe only some of my guilt since I'll only be helping with set-up and registration from 6:00am t0 10:30am, and then I get to be an "on the bike" course marshal for three hours which sounds a lot like a bike ride to me. If you ain't racing this weekend, and you think you wanna help the Tarheel Trailblazers do their thang contact Neal Boyd ( or 704.503.0138)) and let him know you'd rather handle a pen and some safety pins rather than a pulaski this weekend. Much appreciated.


Peter Keiller said...

i too have implemented the un-training plan in an attempt to prepare for this years really big shows.

great minds and busy schedules.

in the end i predict trans-sylvania and breck will conclude similar to last years SSWC's...

in case you have forgotten, that is with me pedalling slowly (but purposefully) amid mine own stench of whisky and bacon as your crumpled body lay trailside.

either way.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the shout-out and your support at the local fundraiser Dicky!! See you there.


ps. Learnings from Dicky's search for gold: "Training program? We don't need no stinkin' training program."