Today, I’d like to talk a little bit about my training in the past two months and share some insights and lessons I’ve learned along the way.
Training with Power
I began training with power in the middle of December and it’s definitely proved to be a useful tool in planning and carrying out workouts. However, I’ve haven’t made too big a fuss about it because I know most of you don’t own one. Also, I’ve not been training with the power meter long enough to be able to tell what kind of workouts I benefit the most from, but I’m sure that will all come with time and experience.
This picture sums up my training over the last two months well:
You can see two pretty huge gaps in training as my bike was being shipped to and from Santa Cruz. Other than that, you can see I’ve been pretty consistent in taking 2 days off a week.
I think when it comes to training there are four things you need (listed in order of importance):
Other than recovery, consistency is (in my opinion) the most important facet to training. I’ve had some GREAT weeks of training. In fact, in about 90% my workouts I’ve met or exceeded my power targets. But these great weeks have been broken up with weeklong breaks such that the overall benefit has been watered down.
In the next three weeks (and into the racing season), my goal is to be more consistent in my training, not letting external speed bumps have a huge effect on me getting out and riding.
One of the critical facets of training with power is the power test. The power test is a 20 min all out effort that correlates with one’s function threshold power (FTP, the theoretical power output one could sustain for 1 hour). Some do this test every couple weeks, some much longer than that. I did one at the very beginning of my use of the power meter and one today.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get the result today I was hoping for. I did pretty much the same exact power as the first time. This is a little frustrating as, subjectively, it seemed like I had moved up a bit. But I’ll re-test in a couple weeks and I’m sure it’ll be up as I’ll be doing more targeted workouts to increase FTP.
My goal in the next three weeks (besides being more consistent and doing a better power test) is to increase intensity in preparation for the collegiate season. I plan on doing some harder rides (1-2 hrs) at Sweet Spot (between tempo & threshold), and increase the amount of time I’m allocating for intervals (more repetitions, longer intervals). Furthermore, I want to try out tabata intervals a few times.
If you’re interested in the workouts I’ve been doing, check back in the coming weeks as I’ll be posting more on training methodology. Thanks for reading and don’t hesitate to leave any thoughts or questions in the comments!