From a training perspective January always feels like a month where you turn the corner. For those of us for whom racing starts in early March there is light at the end of the tunnel as far as training is concerned. For many, a new year brings with it new goals or a renewed motivation. At least for a short while anyway!
I decided to get out on New Year’s Day and do some miles after trying to chase back fitness following a bit of illness in December. Unfortunately the roads were icy – the first time this winter – so I cut it short and headed home on A-roads and ended up doing an hour on the turbo again. So much for fresh air and coming out of hibernation! And that has really been the story of the month. My training has ratcheted up several notches (as planned) but mainly on the turbo. I did get out on a club run with Seamons but managed to trash my already-poorly freehub so swerved off early. I have been out the odd time since, but I’ve mainly put a lot of hours in indoors. Not quite going stir crazy because I’m feeling very motivated at the moment, and power seems to be coming along nicely and I am heading towards race weight too, which helps. The only niggle I have is some slight pain in my left knee from time to time, so I’ve been trying to nurse it a bit with varying degrees of success. After the effort it took to regain the fitness I lost in December due to illness I’m loath to take too much time out as a result but I need to be careful.
In other news, I swapped turbo trainers mid-month from a wheel mount to a direct drive and it is much better, both in terms of quietness and “feel”. Without any evidence to back it up, I think it is helping my training because I’m not pedalling squares the way you often do at high power on a wheel mount turbo. At least that’s how I’m rationalising it internally!
The North West Cyclocross league also came to a conclusion. The last event saw me standing in a hi-viz jacket in a muddy field as a marshall rather than race, but overall across the 9 qualifying races I managed to finish 24th out of a league of 214 veteran and ladies, which I’m happy with as a debut season. It remains to be seen if I will do it again next year!
I also sat down and wrote out some goals for my proper race season. These focus on power, PB’s, the M&DTTA Cheshire points series and club events. I find having clear goals helps me focus on the training in hand especially when it’s getting hard.
That’s about it – not many miles but a lot of hours and my CTL is quite a lot higher than I expected it to be at this point. 6 weeks to the first race!
Overall, during the month I rode 354 road miles, with 18,697ft of climbing at an average speed of around 15.6mph. I used 13,650kcals of energy, with another 20,504kcals during 26hrs and 32mins of turbo time. Total training stress was 2776TSS