Training Program – Day 4 Workout 2

Intermittent rain meant I didn’t really fancy a outdoor ride today – and I DID have a nice fresh Tacx VR DVD to play with – the T1957.20 – Training with Tony Martin one.

Training with "das panzerwagen"...   Oh dear!

Now, todays ride called for base distance, at no more than Tempo if possible, so there was no way of riding this DVD at full intensity – according to Phil, the guy who filmed it, Tony was pushing something like an average of 260W for the circuit (must have been an easy day for him…) – now, co-incidentally, that’s somewhere near my FTP figure, so, I reckoned that if I rode the loop at a 60% intensity setting, and tried to match cadence, then I should theoretically get something like a sub-tempo workout. Of course, I guess that the schoolboy mistake I made was not figuring in just how much lighter Tony is than I am… hence the ride came out at more like an IF of 0.76 rather than 0.6. Arse. Still, it WAS actually a good sub-2 hour ride, and will provide a “line in the sand” to go for if I have any more 2 hour “Tempo” workouts in the plan coming up. Plus, hopefully, I can also wind up the intensity % and ride against this ride as a virtual opponent I suppose.

It’s a cracking ride though – a rolling ride in the hills around the shore of Lake Konstanz…


shows a rough outline of the route, and the profile, where


should give some idea of the workout I got…

Garmin Connect details for this ride are here (the Strava stuff is a bit crap for non-gps logged stuff, and if I add a GPS track to it, I end up showing up in the Strava KoM lists for that ride, which isn’t really cricket, is it ?

In other News, I actually managed to lose 0.7kg this week.  So that’s last weeks pig-out resolved – wonder how long it’ll take to remedy the Christmas Binge ??


Just a Quick Hour on the Trainer again…

I know it’s the sensible option, keep out of the rain and howling winds, and after all, that’s why the not inconsiderable investment in the trainer was made a couple of winters ago.   I still insist that the trainer was probably the main reason I managed to get the weight off and keep it off – because the temptation to sit on the settee eating when I’m snowed / rained off would have got the better of me.

Anyhow, I turned to the Virtual Reality stuff again – this time the “Passo Del Gavia” from the DVD  T1956.32 – Giro Del Mortirolo.   Now, this is a “bit of a swine” of a climb – around 17km of solid climbing – between 7% and 13% from what I remember…   But, as I’ve said, I’m not exactly 100%, so I cranked down the “power setting” on the TTS software to 40% and basically “sat and twiddled the pedals”.

Hey – it’s not a massive workout,  but it’s a bit over 500kCals towards offsetting the Christmas excesses, and, while I’m not 100% and neither is the weather, it’s pretty much do-able every day…

Its not exactly helping the Strava challenges though…  but I’m still uploading the rides like todays….

Rain (and Wind) Stopped Play…

at least outdoors.   Blowing a complete hoolie all day, Horizontal rain early doors too.   Bottled it, I’m not ashamed to admit it.

Dragged the Tacx out and did the last 2/3 of the 2010 Etape du Tour DVD – 79km of along and 2.7km of Up.

As I was scheduled for a “base level” ride I actually dialled the intensity of the resistance down to 50%, but that still equated to as much climbing as I’d normally do in maybe 3 of my normal daily rides – difference being, you could just “sit in and spin” on the trainer without fear of some tool on a MTB with the brakes disconected passing you doing a 1 handed wheelie and smoking with the other one!

Anyhoo – details for the ride are here on Garmin Connect this time – Strava mangles the data from the Tacx for some reason.

Interesting profile isn’t it.  No – Not mine – I’m face on anyway, not in profile – I mean the yellow mountainy bits behind all the graphs.


Indoor Session – Virtually Italian

Well – the UK is in the grip of Gales and horizontal rain – I’ve just lost half a dozen Tiles from the roof, and theres no way on gods green/blue earth you’re getting me outside on the bike in this – it nearly blew me off my feet at 6am when I went outside to rescue the wheelybins, 2 of which were breakdancing on the patio, and the third which was making a bid to escape, Dalek like down the garden path…

So, trainer it is then, and my kitchen becomes the streets of Finale Liguria at 5:30am on a summer morning as I fire up the laptop and run the Tacx training software T1956.37 – Milan Sanremo.  The route of this Virtual Training DVD follows the coastline by and large, and is basically the final 80 Km or so of the famous race, including ascents of all the minor Capi and obviously the 2 detours for the ascent of the Cipressa and the Poggio.

There’s a really great google earth “flythough” here to give you some idea of what I’m on about.

The ride is actually quite a serious hill repeats session if taken as a full-resistance ride, which at this stage of my training schedule I’m far from ready for, so – to make it a more manageable affair, I dialed the resistance down to 60% of actual – which still gave a good, sold 2 and a half hour base session, the Strava data seems to imply that I gave it a little more into the Tempo region than I would normally strive for, but, well – i’d had over 90 minutes of base, and felt warm and loose and just wanted to “spin it up” a little on the last two classic hills.  An overall intensity of 0.65 and TSS of 106 for a 2.5 hour ride says I got it largely right – plus the variability index was pretty damned good to at 1.07 – all in all, I’m fairly happy with the ride.

I usually try and find a video clip for the Tacx rides, but at the moment I’m not 100% sure that this one will last very long, as Tacx has a new “remake” of the ride in production, and they often kill off the old links…

Still – it’s nice while it works I guess…



The New Season Begins Here…

… or more specifically, in the back kitchen, sat on the Tacx Bushido, cranking away like a hamster on a wheel.

Started the whole thing off with a 25 minute ramptest, designed to allow the Powercal Heart-Rate/Pseudo Powermeter to be calibrated.

there’s strava links for this fiendish little test here, and a quick graph from sportstrackes below…

Sportstracks Powercal Calibration Run - Power and Heart Rate Plot

Sportstracks Powercal Calibration Run – Power and Heart Rate Plot

Basically, this is a 5 minutes at 110bpm then 5×3 minutes at gradually increasing heart rates followed by another 5 minutes at 110bpm to cooldown again.

The data, when dropped into the Cycleops Poweragent software should allow the “personalisation” of the Powercal belt to the specific measured power output as measured with the real honest-to-god  powermeter from stages cycling.

The Second phase of todays ride turned into a bit of a Hill-Intervals session using the Tacx VR DVD –  T1956.37 Milan Sanremo 2008 – I actually rode the first 50.8km of the course, and did all the minor Capi before the poggio and cipressa.   Frankly, that was enough, on top of the earlier ramp test…   especially as I didn’t want to end up completely spannered for tomorrow, in case the new bike arrives.

Once again there’s a Strava link to the ride here, and a plot from Sportstrack – this time showing the “virtual” ascent/descents…

Tacv VR Ride - Milan San Remo

Tacv VR Ride – Milan San Remo