Monday, March 16, 2009

Testing Done

Along with rest week is fitness testing to see how the fitness is coming along. This rest week I did a bike TT on the same course I did last month and trimmed nearly a minute off my time. I brought my average speed from 22.85 to 23.7 MPH over a 12.3 mile course. Last time I had a brisk tail wind on my way out and a stiff headwind on the way back. This time I had a light tailwind on the way out and a growing headwind on the way back. I was happy with the result because I'm riding my thorn resistant tires and heavy training wheels, so when I break out the tubbies and Zipps for the real race, I should see a good time. This next month I plan on making a few changes to my TT/Tri bike to, hopefully, improve my results. I'm going to get a more comfortable saddle, a more aero arm extensions for my TT bars, upgrade from Ultegra to Dura-Ace, and add some Rotor Rings (Oblong chain rings). These factors should provide a bit of improvement. I'm also going to spend a bit more time on the Tri bike this season--I figure if I'm not racing then there's really no use in me riding a lot on my road bike. I already missed the first road race of the season.

Yesterday, I did the local 2009 Shamrock Shuffle 10K run. My sister-in-law joined me on the run. It was in a newer development in Rio Rancho that we had our run. I haven't raced at this distance and was a bit worried about re-injuring myself. I decided I'd give it a go but if anything started to act up, I'd back off or pull the plug. Anyways, There was about 60 of us at the start line. It was fairly informal. I told my sister-in-law to follow my pace and draft off of me. The organizer sent us off, and we started out with a .5 mile downhill. The serious ex-collegiate runners made their way to the front setting a blistering pace. I told my sis at the start to be weary of a fast start and try to find your rhythm as quickly as possible. This wasn't an understatement. The first mile was done in 5:45. About half-way through the first mile, my sis told me to go ahead. She was well past the rivet and would blow up if she tried to keep the same pace. So I took off trying to catch the collegiate runners. After the first half-mile the race went up-hill for quite a bit. I started to drop the people around me and bridge to the lead pack. I was within 50 yards when we crested the top of the hill. Then we started to head downhill for a spell, which was the worst part of the race for me. I'm a terrible down hill runner. I started getting passed by the people I'd previously dropped. I didn't want to take too long of strides because I didn't want to hurt myself again with the harder impacts. Finally, at the bottom of the hill, the course undulated for the rest of the race and I was able to find my rhythm again. I didn't pass anyone, nor was I passed; I was able to maintain my position for the rest of the race. I finished in 42:44, which is faster than I was expecting (45ish). I've included the race info below. The course picked up nearly 1000 feet.
I'm a bit sore today, but I'm fairly certain I'm not injured. It was a fun but challenging workout. My next event will most likely be a month from now in Los Alamos. It's a duathlon with a 10K run/40K bike/5K run. I've never done one of these, so it should be interesting.

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