Holding the edge

It’s been awhile since I’ve gone into full-on geek mode, and if you disagree, hold on to your britches…

Those from the wattage forum already know that I’m a beta tester of Dr. Andrew Coggan’s latest creation, the Training Manager (TM).  This came about as a result of putting his TSS concepts to use in a rolling TSS Excel spreadsheet within a month or two of his TSS release.  The rolling averages over time proved to be a great way to manage training volume and the concept received a lot of interest on the forum.  Some time later, Andy came out with the TM and shot a copy of his spreadsheet my way.  It became immediately apparent the rolling averages had just become obsolete…

If you’re not sure what I’m blabbering about and still reading, check this out for a very brief refresher.

The TM is hands down the best method of volume management I’ve seen.  With historical power meter records, one can not only determine *why*  form was so good on that particular mystery day, but recreate the training pattern that produced it in the first place.  When the TM goes public, those with the capacity to understand it’s use and implications are going to have an eagles eye view.  It is better than EPO, HGH, IGF, and anything else that comes from a needle, and what’s even better, it’s legal.  Thanks Dr. Coggan.

One of the lessons from last year was when to call it quits for a bit.  After the E12, I kept right on training and CTL kept moving upwards.  It wasn’t long before my body gave me the finger…so in an effort to avoid that this year, I scheduled in a rest week following the E12.  Funny thing is, my body still gave me the finger – right at the start of the E12, in fact the first *step* of the race – that hip issue turned out to be a torn rectis femoris – so taking the next week off wasn’t optional.  I couldn’t walk, let alone ride…

Another thing I’ve learned is that to do well in long events, the chronic training load needs to be fairly high.  Of course it’s a delicate balance – too  high and recovery is compromised.   An obvious difference in my training patterns between when I did shorter races and now is that the peak CTLs occur during events, whereas they used to occur about 2 months prior to the big events.  Here’s what the first race block of the year looked like in TM pictures:

That’s a nice every-other week pattern…the result of another realization last year that back to back weekends of hundies kicks my a$$ ;) 

Anywho…after 8 days off the bike post E12 (including a business trip out east),  I was shut down hard.  It took some work to get going again, but wow!  8 days off mid-season is the best thing I’ve done in years (js, you readin’?), or so I think…time will tell.  It is definitely the most time I’ve had away from the bike in years (yet another manic confession).  Since the E50 carries higher priority for me than Breck, I bailed on the Breck race in favor of this one:

I’m fairly certain the competition will be off the charts at both events, but the CB event carries absolutely no pressure.  If I pay $175 at Breck and pin a number on, well that changes my whole outlook on things and that would not be to good for the E50.  So I’m actually gonna try something different & do this as a training race rather than go out and kill myself.  I’ve been thinking about the CB event since last year – it is one of the best places to ride on the planet.  I’ve done the first 2 loops before, but haven’t been on the Dyke trail and am so psyched to see some new CB paradise. 

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!