Blade Carbon Wheels, Fat Dogs, and Measuring Improvement!

Blade Carbon Wheels, Fat Dogs, and Measuring Improvement!

My Blade Carbon Wheels are arriving next week!

Very excited about this one. My Blade Carbon Wheels are going to be here next week, which means I’ll be riding outside again in no time. The weather is starting to be consistently warmer, winds are returning to seasonal, and sun is shining bright. It’s bike riding season!

I do a great deal of training with Trainer Road on my turbo trainer. The turbo is great because it requires consistent effort, not unlike what is needed on a flat bike course in an event. I can use structured workouts to make sure I’m hitting target powers and intensities well. Also, its safe. No cars whizzing past me, no one on their cell phones near-missing, and no tricky intersections or roundabouts to contend with. I can (and do) hop on shortly after a 5 AM wake up without worrying about how dark it is. Just hop on and ride.

But it can be pretty boring. And stinky. My wife won’t go downstairs while I’m working out – she says it reeks down there when I’m going. I can’t smell me but I’m not surprised. It has to be pretty gross. And with the great weather we’ve been having, it has led me to want to ride outside. I almost did today, but changed my mind mostly because I wanted to ride now (aka – then) and not wait for it to get a few degrees warmer. It was 5C at the time, and as I’ve written about elsewhere, I’m a notorious cold weather wuss on the bike.

So what do my new wheels arriving have to do with riding outside? Well, you’re right – I do currently have wheels that can go outside. Novel, eh? The wheels on the bike currently have my training tires on – the rear has a bright yellow (cool looking) trainer tire and the front has whatever the stock tire is on the stock wheel of the Cervelo P3. Yes, these could be used to ride outside. But I don’t wanna. I have waiting to go a new Ultegra cassette, which will go on the new rear Blade Carbon Wheel. My plan is to swap the rear wheel between the stock with trainer tire and the Blade with stock tire when I go inside/outside. For the front, I’ll just leave the Blade wheel on all the time with the stock tire. For race days I have race tires that I’ll put on the Blades.

AND, I’ve figured out that I can take the power targets from Trainer Road’s workouts and put them into a pre-defined workout plan for my Garmin. Which means I can ride outside while still working on hitting the Trainer Road plan!

Running with the Dogs is Getting Easier!

Beauty day out there today. I did my 60 min Friday light ride and followed it up with a soft-brick 5K. That is, a brick that isn’t really a brick because I had to put on my cool-weather running clothes (5C) and gear up a dog before going. Probably a 10 minute turn-around, which is a looooooong T2.

Took the fat one first, Loki. Dragged him almost the entire way, and included three bathroom breaks over 2.7KM. He paced in at 5:34/km.

Came home, swapped to the less fat one, Scout. She is a bit younger and far spunkier with a much higher energy level than Loki. No bathroom breaks, and I didn’t have to drag her until the last incline, which is less than a half-km from home. She paced in at 5:01/km over 2.7KM.

Considering the soft brick and running with dogs, I’m pretty happy here. My running is getting better! Yesterday I ran my second fastest-ever 10KM as well. And it was in a workout that included rest, so I’m sure I’ll be breaking that record any day now.

W/FTP has improved 6.4% in a month of base training!

I’ve been doing the Trainer Road Sweet Spot Base High Volume I plan. I noted that today is exactly one calendar month into the program, so I did a bit of math. Between wattage increases and fat loss, I’ve improved my W/FTP by 6.4% in a single month.

I think what makes this even more amazing is that this month has been base training. Yes, it is Sweet Spot Base training, but still base work. I’ll be very interested to see what happens when I enter by first build period and actually do workouts that target improving FTP in a more specific way.

I started riding with TR post-injury in January, but it was unstructured “whatever I feel like” work until mid-March. At the time I was focusing on getting over my PFPS and really just turning over the pedals. I started tracking my progress in a custom-spreadsheet that is focused around setting weight targets and goals in mid-February. Based on this data, I’ve improved my W/FTP from February by 10.9%. Incredible!

So the gains have been good, and my fitness is improving. None of my clothes fit, again, and I’m starting to think that a race weight in the low 140s is actually reasonable. For now I’m focusing on getting my body fat % to 13, and from there I’ll re-assess and set a new goal. If all goes according to plan and trend, I’ll hit that mark in just a few weeks.

 

Don’t forget that you can save $100 on your Blade Carbon Wheels by using promo code ‘GETAERO100’!

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