Love this guy, and there’s some great advice in here!
Love this guy, and there’s some great advice in here!
It sure did. Well, actually, it never seemed like that great an idea: ISLAGIATT is a two-hour endurance ride; here’s how Sufferfest describes it:
How long: 2 hours
What it’s about: Endurance and climbing
Best for: Staying strong toward the end of longer events
I’ll go ahead and cut to the chase: this workout was the hardest thing I’ve ever done on the bike, period. The essential ‘plot’ of the workout, if you use the video like I did, is that you’re racing the Giro d’Italia. The video introduces you to some nemeses: Gloworm, the Colombian, and a few others I can’t remember. The goal is to be more aggressive than them, as a representative of Sufferlandria.
What struck as the video went on was that I really did want to beat them. It was like a video game; I knew that I wasn’t really racing them, but whenever I was told that one of them was pushing them, I wanted to win. It was a pretty good mind game, I have to say.
The ride is basically four climbs, and here’s how those climbs broke down for me:
Climb One: That was hard, definitely hard, but I’ve got this. I’m 36 minutes in-I’m going to make it!
Climb Two: My legs hurt…a lot! But I’m halfway through; I just have to do everything I’ve already done-again, but with tired legs. Oh, and don’t forget your hard bike workout from yesterday!
Climb Three: I’m almost 1 1/2 hours in…but I can’t do another climb. I just can’t. I’m going to throw up. I’ve sweat through one towel already. I can’t keep my power up. This is just too hard…
I still have to do one more climb???
And how did the Sufferlandrians feel about how tired I was???
Climb Four: The video calls this climb Mount Apocalypse-because you’d rather have the world end than keep going. I totally agreed.
The End: Hey, the climbs are over! I’ve won the award for being the most aggressive-but wait…there’s more. Now, I have to try and win the stage!
But I kept going. Of course, the end of the workout is an all-out effort. My power was like 418. It was insane.
So, to summarize: It was very difficult. It was relentless. Now that it’s over, my legs hurt. But, hey, at least it’s only Day Two, right? I’m not even looking at Day Three yet!
Here’s my workout, if you’re interested:
Day One of the Tour of Sufferlandria is pretty straightforward: Rubber Glove is an hour-long workout that culminates in an all-out 20 minute threshold interval. If you’ve tried TrainerRoad before, then you should’ve done a threshold test in the beginning, so Rubber Glove is a lot like that. It was a really straightforward workout, here is how Sufferfest summarizes it:
How long: 60minutes (Warm-up, FTP test, Cool-down).
What it’s about: Functional Threshold Performance test.
Best for: Setting fitness baseline for training programmes.
I’ll be honest, it wasn’t easy, but I also came away thinking that it wasn’t insanely difficult either. I was more than a little surprised by that…until I got finished and TrainerRoad hit me with a bomb:
TrainerRoad tailors your workouts based on your FTP, which is theoretically the intensity level, and power, you could hold for an hour straight. Well, it seems that my numbers were a little low, so TrainerRoad informed me that my FTP was increasing from 219 to 253, and my Lactate Threshold was going up from 135 to 150. What does this mean? Life is going to get a whole lot harder.
Over the past couple seasons I’ve come to realize that the bike is crucial to triathlon.
Swimming is all about technique and efficiency. I’ve come a long way in my swimming abilities, and I’m happy with the gains I’ve made. My IM Louisville swim time was far better than I expected it to be…
I’m also a much faster runner than when I began. Just a few weeks ago, I did a nice, long run. After it was over, I compared to a long run I did at the same time last year, and the results were pretty awesome: I went twice as far, at almost a minute faster per mile, with the same HR.
However, I’m definitely a mediocre cyclist. When I look at the podium finishers in my AG, I can see that they’re good swimmers, strong runners, but, and here’s the key, very strong cyclists. So, this season, I’m really going to try and emphasize the bike! So, it seemed like a good idea to go for a Tour of Sufferlandria! The ToS is 9 days of Sufferfest workouts on TrainerRoad, and it won’t be fun, or pretty, but should definitely get me some power on the bike. It’s also a perfect time of year, since I can afford to cut back on the run and focus on the bike at this point in my season. So…here goes nothing!
I got an email from my Master’s Swim Club that contained a really helpful video link for those of us who didn’t grow up swimming laps in a pool. If you’re like me, swimming=freestyle. I’ve just recently started working in a pretty terrible-looking backstroke, which I’m sure impresses just about no one who might happen to be watching me.
I think I’m guilty of just about every mistake listed in this video. I think it’s only natural to keep your head looking forward when you start; there is a wall ahead of you at some point. However, as soon as you start staring at that black line, you do naturally feel your hips rising and your feet getting higher in the water. If you want to test this, try the Tarzan drill: swim with your face out of the water looking forward. You’ll feel your hips sink, your feet drop, and everything will just feel difficult.
Flat swimming is something I’m sure I still do, just not as bad as when I first started swimming. I remember swim rotation being hard to address because it felt like there were so many other things to focus on when thinking about technique: hand position, head position, keeping my legs straight, the correct pull, etc. However, after I started focusing on not staying flat, I definitely saw immediate improvement.
The general sentiment with triathlon is that running is all about consistency and volume, biking is all about power and volume, and swimming is all about technique. For the whole list of common freestyle swimming mistakes, check out the video below.
Oh…and here’s an entirely unrelated GIF of a dog swimming-it just cracks me up
Triathlete has a pretty good rundown of some professional triathlete’s New Year’s Resolutions. My favorite: Caroline Steffen-No more pulling on the lane rope when swimming backstroke.
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