As most of you know I’ve had a really bumpy winter this year, on an off training with a torn ligament and 2 inflamed tendons in my ankle wasn’t exactly the best off season I was hoping for. None the less, 8 weeks into rehab and I think I’m seeing some form again, although I don’t want to jinx it!!
Today was the first race of 2016 for me, my ankle is at around 85/90% rendering me still unable to run, and some days it is still rather painful, however I am beginning to see some miles go into the legs from the bike. And what better way to kick start the year, than my favourite Frome 10 mile TT.
With no miles in the legs from winter I knew I was already a step behind everyone, leaving me lots of work to do. 8 weeks of training isn’t a long time, the first 2/3 weeks were at very low intensities and only in the last month have I started hitting anywhere near the mileage I need, and I also have a degree to do remember!
None the less, my prep has been good. Last week I did a 315 watt hour instead of rest day and exactly a week ago I held some decent watts into a head wind on the AVC segment, followed by dragging 15 Bath riders round the chain gang route, intermittently helped by the South West cycling god – Rob Pears. On Tuesday I managed 15 minutes at 350 watts exactly before finishing the session with another 75 minutes at 255 watts. So I knew my legs would have a bit of kick.
I had to be up early this morning to make sure I’d got 5/6 hours work done before I rode over to the race, not an ideal start to the day but I knew the difference that would make would only be a few seconds.
Cycling over to the race I felt pretty good, the sun was out and I was hoping the rain showers would hold off. I didn’t do any bursts as I was just trusting my legs to take care of business. Biggest error of the day.
As I pushed off the start I noticed my cleat was sliding about. So I stropped my way round the course, got hit by the rain, stuck in traffic and was struggling to hit any form of rhythm. Making every excuse under the sun as I went round, instead of getting focussed and getting the job done.
When I finished I saw my time of 23:06 and smashed straight home with my toys well and truly out of the pram. Luckily my ankle held out and there wasn’t too much pain in that department.
On later analysis I managed a 355 Watt average on a tricky day. Considering Rob Pears, course record holder, averaged 337 watts and finished with a time of 20:29. 20:03 on the strava segment being pipped by Matt Burden. I’d say I’m fairly happy with my average, although I don’t feel I deserve it! But the watts don’t lie.
It’s definitely taught me a few things:
1. Eat less baked goods.
2. Don’t throw a strop just because something is going wrong, it’s not always all bad.
3. I need ‘aero-ing up’.
None the less, 25 seconds off my PB and a 355W average, lets get this degree done, sort my ankle out fully and then see what the summer holds.