Another solid weeks training out here. The summary stats are very similar to the first week but it’s really been quite different. The first week I had two friends with me so I wanted to fit in with what they wanted to do. The big focus was on riding and that suited me as I find it’s the best way to get back to fitness. This week I wanted to get more of a focus on running which I felt may mean some none biking days. I also wanted to take the opportunity to train with Rachel and E-K as I knew this would give me some good solid swimming.
Tuesday I felt pretty wiped out after the previous week so I just rode over to Club La Santa for a pretty solid (lots of fly and IM) swim session. I then continued my search for new cycling shoes (the ones I brought have the cleat screws bonded in) – Pro Bike didn’t have any in my side, neither did the new shop in PdC.
This meant Wednesday saw me doing my long run to Arrecife where I managed to get the only pair of shoes in my size. Not exactly what I wanted but since I was paying EUR5 per day for my rental shows the EUR130 was worth it even if I need to get better shoes on my return. I felt pretty good on my run and decided to call it a day at lunchtime and have some proper recovery.
On Thursday, again I headed over to CLS for a swim. This was a very encouraging session:
40 x 100m as 10 on 1:25, 10 on 1:45 band only, 10 on 1:25, 10 on 1:50 with paddles
I was leading the lane and on the 1:25s managed to hit everyone in 1:15,16 or 17. Chuffed to bits. I was also impressed with the work ethic of Rachel and E-K – they were getting about 3 seconds rest but they stuck at it and made full set. That was some serious work which is no surprise given how successful they are.
I followed the swim with an extended ride back over Fire Mountain and the Vineyards before my, almost, daily descent of The Donkey Track (it’s an awesome descent).
I was hoping this week to get some big rides in and Friday was the day I had in mind. I’d thought of a route which I thought was more or less the ultimate route on the island. Here’s the profile:
If you’re interest you can see the route here. Interested that that site reckons it’s 3,915 metres yet my Garmin Edge 500 had 3,052m – wonder which is more correct.
I really pushed it on all the hills on the ride and ended up with these stats:
Elapsed time: 7:52, ride time: 7:24 – this was an efficient two stop ride.
202km / 3,052m ascent / 230 watts normalised power / TSS: 408
I even ran just over 5 miles in just over 40 minutes off the bike. Very pleased.
Jo was arriving on Saturday so I got up and did my first run before breakfast. Thats the first time I’ve set an alarm all my time here. It’s great to just wake up naturally and thats meant I’ve been getting between 9 and 10 hours sleep every night. I waited in for Jo and got to work on adding a few things in to my training diary (Ascent and watts Eddington Numbers wahaa !). Very pleased to get a second run done – 10 miler. Did first 5 miles in 43 minutes and the second in 38 minutes. Pretty good for me at the moment.
I’d been looking forward to Sunday as we were meeting with Brett, Rachel, Cat and E-K for a long ride. I’d done my work and thought a nice social ride would be fun. Of course, I wasn’t under any illusions that this would be a coffee stop ride. I knew they wanted about 4 hours but with getting to and from Jo and I would have at least 6.5 hours.
Before I go in to the detail let me just say that I could compare this ride to being mugged by a group though it was all my own fault.
Jo and I ride over to La Santa. She’s riding strong so it’s a decent pace. We then set off as a nice organised group taking it in turns on the front and all getting to have a good old natter. Then heading up Mirador Del Haria from Los Valles Brett tells Rachel he’s going to push on a bit. I get on his wheel and bust a gut to stay with him till the steep bit when I’m gone. Then I’m hauled in by Rachel and Cat. I decide that Brett is on fire and may not be the wheel to follow. I re-assure myself that with better pacing I could have stuck with Rachel and Cat.
I bomb back down the zig zags and get back on. Up to Del Rio is all AOK, Brett up first, then Rachel and Cat (shoulder to shoulder not giving each other an inch) followed by me. Down to Orzola and then along to Arrietta for a stop PHEW ! I needed it.
Now Tabeyesco – my chance to shine. I can’t help myself on this climb and always surge at the start. With this crowd though I don’t think it came across as a surge. In fact, I never lost Brett and minutes later he lost me. In fact, I don’t think I really lost Rachel and Cat for even a minute and soon they’re by and off up the road. To about 1/3 up I was clawing them back and when I got to them went by but Rachel was having nothing of it and went straight past. That was that – the rest of the ride watching them slowly pull away.
Lets get this in perspective. At the start of this camp I climbed Tabeyesco pretty fresh in 32:30 @ 304 watts. This time I went 32:34 @ 311 watts 4 hours in to a hard ride. At a guess that puts Rachel and Cat at about 31:30 and Rachel was riding it progressive (ie increasing wattage as she ascended). Brett I’m guessing was sub 30. Come on Brett – upload to Strava and lets see. I found it amusing that because Cat wasn’t wearing a HRM her SRM computer was picking up Rachels HR !
I had another hurtling descent to get back on. We regrouped at Teguise before Jo and I left them to tack on – we did a circuit over Fire Mountain to Yaiza and back over the Vineyards. My mugging wasn’t over as little Miss Joanna “Double Ironman” Carritt was just warming up. I knew there was trouble when we were rotating in to the wind I was struggling to hang on to her wheel. Before I knew it I was off the back and by Yaiza in desperate need of food – packet of crisps, bounty bar, lion bar and Fanta seemed to help (a little). We get back to PdC and I’m knackered, Jo decides another 5 mile loop to get 120 miles is in order. I was impressed. Thats my girl !
This ride ended up tougher than Fridays: 184k, 6:45, 241w normalised power, TSS: 435
And no I wasn’t able to run off the bike.
What a fun day it was though. It shows you how riding with others can really help push yourself it also shows how you can really get in trouble when the pace and the stops are dictated by others and not yourself. In future for a ride like that I may even carry something in my pocket as it was 4 hours before I had my first food on the ride. I don’t think it impacted me to that point but I reckon it meant I didn’t eat enough at that stop so when i tacked on with Jo I suffered big time.
The week was finished today with a solid ride over the La Santa and then across to go up Tabeyesco – I’d hoped to hammer the best I could muster was 34:30 @ 285 watts.