Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Putting in the Miles

Last week was my final week of serious training before the 2009 US Mountain Bike National Championships. This meant a huge week of time on the bike and lots of painful intervals, but also some good fun.

Between my race last weekend and then along endurance ride I was ready for some rest time. Monday was a day to sit around and let my body except the punishment I gave it over the weekend while recovering for the week of training.

Tuesday - Hill attacks. This means find a short hill and sprint up it for 30 seconds recover for a minute. Rinse Repeat. I did 3 sets of 4 attacks with 5 minutes of recovery between each set of 4. Legs felt awesome, though my bike was feeling weird as I put my narrow flat bars back on in order to fix many fit issues I was having, the first and foremost was my cockpit length and the only shorter stem I had was not the same size as my riser bars (ugh!)

Wednesday - Climbing Repeats with Hill attacks every 2 minutes. These hurt. All you do is go long and hard with even harder efforts throughout. To make matters worse these workouts always come with a total time of 3 hours at a minimum, I did 4.

Thursday - Endurance Ride. In order to prepare for nationals at my best I took the 2.5 hour trek up to Sol Vista Ski Basin to ride a few easy laps on the Nationals Course. All I can say is: Sol Vista you guys need to get your act together. Though I haven't seen the DH course or Super D course the XC course is rather sad and not worthy of being the course that determines the American National Champions. The climb is all well and good but as soon as you reach the descent you essentially ride down a "trail" that is marked out and has been ridden but not actually built like a real trail ought to be. To make matters slightly worse half way down the descent there is a short power climb that is over a section of the mountain that has been clear cut and then the trees were sent through a chipper. You ride over these wood chips with no way of understanding where the course is. Finally, near the top of the course there is a section of trail that IMBA would cry at. It shoots straight down the side of the mountain without a sign of even thinking about sustainability. Nor is it actually built. Imagine grabbing your mountain bike and then just riding down the side of a hill straight, hmmmm.....

Friday - Recovery. I needed some good recovery after those past 3 days to get ready for a big weekend.

Saturday - More Climbing Repeats with hill attacks. Went back out for the same workout as wednesday and did not feel it. Did my first interval and after not being able to get my heart rate up to where it needed to be consistently I bailed on the workout. Sometimes it is better to just ride and recover than really over do it.

Sunday - Another Endurance ride. With the plan being to head to Winter Park again this coming weekend for another Winter Park Series race I thought let's go to Winter Park ride some epic trails and check out the course. After talking to the guys at the Trestle Bike Park Shop about the area a little bit I suited up and headed out. All I can say is the mountain biking in Winter Park is truly epic. Amazingly built trails that are so much fun to ride. I smiled for 4 hours and never got tired.

Now it is time to taper off and let my body really get the best out of that last week while keeping the engine finely tuned with some short hard efforts this week and a race this weekend.

Hope to see you out there in Winter Park enjoying the epicness that is the Fraser Valley in Grand County, CO.

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