Watt Matters is a blog about training and racing with power and other related musings.

Aside from writing items here on occasions, I also provide cycling performance improvement services via coaching, aerodynamics testing and host a cycling tour.

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Testing 1, 2, 3...

About four weeks ago I wrote about one of the performance tests coach has me down for every so often - a 16 km (10 mile) time trial (or near enough to 16km). In my case I use the local training circuit - Sydney's Centennial Park and do a 4-lap TT. Well I just did another one of these on Tueday this week.

Ease Up!
In the lead up over last few weeks, my training was eased back a little, partly to give my body a chance to catch up with the CTL I had accumulated and in response to a few early signs of fatigue (like being unable to complete a set interval) but also a chance to have a race or two with a little freshness. Now I was by no means overtrained, not even close, and race power outputs have certainly been healthy enough. It also represents a segue into the next phase of training, where intensity of workouts really starts to pick up for the build towards the track championships next March.

So what's the Performance Manager telling us? Well this is an extension to the chart I last posted here on 23 October.

My lastest PMC

So since last time, we see CTL continue to build through to mid-November, reaching a peak of 98 TSS/day on 12 Nov (which is an all time peak CTL for me - last season my CTL peaked at 81 TSS/day). After that you can see the impact of my training easing back, with CTL dropping, going TSB positive and enjoying some good form at the track carnival up at Gosford.

And the test TT? Well here's the chart of the ride. Stats are shown on the left, with wattages by lap also indicated.

16km TT test

Pacing TTs well is a challenge for me. Let's face it - I don't do lots of TTs so my pacing is a less than fine tuned skill but I'm sure I'll get better with more practice. I'm a track/crit rider, used to the dynamics of that environment.

Last time I tested (1 Nov) I talked about how I picked it up a little mid-way, then paid the price in the final lap. Well this time I started slightly more conservatively (~5W less) than last time but found that the last lap and a half I was able to crank it up considerably. So in the end I averaged only 1 Watt higher than last test.


While it's not much of a PB (it's still a PB!), I am pretty happy with that as I had all the "mental sensations" of actually losing some aerobic fitness this last couple of weeks, so personally I wouldn't have been surprised to have struggled more than I did.
I suspect coach knows more than I do though....
Soft c**ks
Last weekend I was supposed to have a race but I turned up and found they'd decided to cancel since all these softies in Sydney go underground at the slightest hint of wet weather. So bugger it, I got on my bike and did some hard laps anyway. After eight circuits at Heffron I got a bit bored, eashed back for a short time then two other guys came through doing turns so I jumped in with them and we cranked it up for a few more good laps. So a neat little 50 minute effort. Then the rain came.

My MAP test is tomorrow and this weekend I race the Brindabella Challenge crit. Will report in next week.
MAP Testing - where failure is a success...

MAP Testing - where failure is a success...

The Young Ones