Five years on and it still works.
In the last couple of weeks I've been bouncing around with a Chronic Training Load (CTL - "fitness") above 100 TSS/day (see link for an explanation of these terms) but had some external life stresses and work commitments (like refurbishing and expanding a growing indoor cycle training centre amongst other things) which combined saw me "crack" a little in training. Not badly, just enough to know it was time for a little recovery.
By cracking a little I mean being unable to successfully complete a scheduled hard tempo session within a desired power range a couple of times and one endurance ride that was a bit of a grovel. One bad day isn't always a sign, but 2-3 examples not far apart is something usually worth taking a closer note of.
So I shut down the session the second time it happened and had a rest day the next day. It is also very hot and humid when I get to train which likely did not help, and combined with insufficient sleep, well the signs were all there.
So an extra day's rest, combined with a few no-bike days due to coaching work commitments saw a sharpish drop in Acute (recent) Training Load (ATL) and a corresponding rise in Training Stress Balance (TSB - "freshness").
On Saturday I had my regular squad training group (which I run) and said to myself that if I feel OK, I would go race in the afternoon.
As it turns out, I did feel pretty good in the morning, so I decided to line up for a crit that afternoon (at Sydney's Heffron Park).
Which is always nice of course. A good way to start the year off.
Winning move was made when I attacked with a bit under 3km to go.
A few things to note for day of race:
- FTP: 295W - my last TT in December was @ 297W (38-minutes)
- CTL: 96 TSS/day
- TSB: +19
- NP*: 300W (50-minutes)
- AP^: 257W
Race was not overly hard, I was pretty well in control most of the time. I had a solo break mid-way but that failed due to a rear puncture (was given a replacement wheel and allowed to rejoin main group).
The final 4-minutes of the race was a new
all-time best 4-minute W/kg.
Now ordinarily I wouldn't expect to feel so good with TSB that high. Neutral to somewhat positive TSB yes, but at +19, sometimes you feel underdone or legs are a bit claggy. Not today.
Fresh and Fit. Toss smart into the mix and well, wins are there to be had.
By the way, I know it's been way too long since I've posted. It's just been a very busy 12-months. All good stuff and I hope to be able to get back to more regular posting. I have a backlog of items to write about!
A super full year of events coming up in 2011. So much happening on the coaching, training and racing front, I will endeavour to keep y'all updated!
* Normalised Power
^ Average Power