Monday: Morning spinning class at West Kirby, Barbara reported a full class last night. It must be people trying to work christmas off. This one had about 8 in it.
Gym next, weight machines and then 500 calories on the crosstrainer. This took 3 seconds under 45 minutes and was really boring and I started mucking around with power levels. 150 watts on level 11 got upped to 200 watts on level 14 out of 25. I don’t know what the woman on the machine next to me got out of her session but level 1 had the wattage at 39. I tried level 1 at the end and it’s a complete waste of time.
2 Km on the Concept 2 rowing machine with a drag factor of 88 took 8 mins 37 seconds which is steady going. The 500m/split time that it shows allows you to alter your technique as faster is not always the most efficient. Another set of weights then the shower and home.
Aldi had no sandwiches so I left empty handed.
Tuesday: Still the wrong side of 88 kg mostly due to a plentiful supply of chocolates in the house and no willpower on my part among other things.
Morning spinning class at West Kirby then the gym again. Much the same weight routine that wants a bit of looking at and ran another proverbial mile. Started of at 9km/hr and upped it for the final 0.5 km to 10.5 km/hr. 148 kCals.
As all the machines were occupied I had a go on an exercise bike. I normally wouldn’t touch these with a barge pole as they are mostly used as seats to watch the TV.
I’d set the time to 15 minutes and set the level to 13 which at a cadence of 80 rpm was 240 Watts.
I couldn’t maintain this for 15 minutes so backed it off after 5 minutes, recovered for 4 minutes at 100 Watts which is 100rpm at level 5. Adjusted the seat up a notch then spent the remainder of the time using Lances high cadence technique. 100 rpm at level 11 is about 250 Watts and it did feel better, near the end of the session I upped the level to 14 with the power shooting up to 300 Watts. Average power was 196 Watts and it felt like it, I had to get a paper towel to wipe bike and the floor.
Shower and home for a SIS Rego recovery drink. It’s the first time I’ve tried one and the 50g sachet has 29g of protein in it.
Spent the afternoon blogging, twittering and sorting out the heartrate monitors. Found the Forerunner 50 box at the back of the cycle gear cupboard. I soon realised how much Discovery Channel stuff I have, like George Hincapies 2005 race shirt with radio pocket, and his shorts. Steve Cummings’s skinsuit plus a winter jersey along with a mountain of other stuff like the Lance 7 stars kit. A battery or two later I found out I’d been using the wrong strap with the wrong HRM.
Now with a working HRM that measured calories it was off to the last spinning class of the year.
I’d phoned up for a bike and was told just turn up there are plenty. This was a bit of an understatement.
I’m first there turning up 15 minutes early, Barbara turned up and so did another two and that was it. A class of 3 to see the year out. Mind you it was -3 Deg C outside. No fan tonight for obvious reasons, reset the watch at the start and off we went all 3 of us. A squash court is a pretty bleak place to spin but it’s even bleaker when the lights go out as there is no one in the class to keep the infra red sensor alive.
The stats: 550 kCals with a dicky cheststrap. It doesn’t count heart rate in a timetrial tuck. Average heart rate 138 BPM including it stopping a couple of times.
Doesn’t look good for tomorrow. Probably a short ride to the Eureka and back and look back on the year.
Wednesday: Lie in, under 90 kg so yesterdays effort was worth it. Been crazy two weeks off work with the weight going on daily despite rides, spinning classes and gym sessions. Putting the Tacx away for Christmas didn’t help. Picked up the comic from Tesco along with Cycling Plus.
Now I’d popped into Halfords the other day and saw the Boardman £999 carbon bike. I had a double take on the price and gave it the carbon flick of the index finger test. Carbon sounds dull, aluminum rings, steel hurts I reckon.
It was they’re usual good review and it came top in most sections if not all. If your wanting a Carbon bike this is the one. C+ have been shouting Focus Cayo praises for a while but the Boardman bike beats it hands down in this review.
When I was looking at this sort of bike they were twice the price, if it had mudguard eyelets I’d buy it as a winter Trainer. Never mind how hard things you think are going to get, get yourself a carbon bike for under a grand, get out there and give it you’re best.
Thursday: Not the best of days, a lie in came up with a car that had been left with a parking light on for half of a day and no chance of starting it. Two decent length extension leads and a battery charger meant a restart in the dark. Luckily it fired up OK but not without the radiaor fan staying on and the power steering not working. A two hour drive had the battery charged up I hope. Went for a mile walk to check out a 305 problem.
Friday: Off out to the Oval, give the gym a try out. Over a year after it closed for a pool upgrade not much has changed. The gym looks like it’s had a coat of paint and that’s about it. The machines are the same Preccor machines which aren’t that bad once you select a progam.
Had half an hour on the crosstrainer on a cross country program was 400 calories worth, weight machines followed by a 30 minute session on a Concept 2 rowing machine that had me doing 6300 metres at a steady pace.
After that it was a 15 minute run on the treadmill aerobic interval program. Not sure what was meant to happen on this when I started but the machine started to increase the gradient according to the profile. 8km/hr is hard work on a 9% gradient, then it drops to 6% then 0% then repeats.
Going back to the same machines I started on after a year break revealed just how much form I’ve lost.
There is an assisted dip/chin up machine and I was totally useless at it today. The gyms I’ve been using for the past year haven’t got room for the full range of machines and I’ve taken it too easy.
To finish things off it was 30 minutes on the exercise bike. Intervals on this program, 2minute on 1 minute rest. Cadence, the aim was to maintain a cadence of 100 rpm as I slip back into 70 rpm mode when on a ride. 100 rpm at level 10 equates to 240 Watts and is hard to sustain for 2 minutes.
The machine has a fatburn/aerobic/dangerzone LED bargraph and feeding in my details has it turn red at 145 bpm. So it is in the redzone for every interval. For the last interval I’d up the level a couple of steps and the power shot up to 360 odd Watts. Heartrate shot up to 172 bpm too with that I was done.
I was in there about 2 1/2 hours which is a long time, there was a few people coming in to check the facilities probably with a new years resolution to keep. This little lot was 1650 calories on the HRM and it did tally with the calorie counting on the machines.
My brother Andy rang up about his 705 and what to do next. A 705 doesn’t come with any software that actually makes the thing a useful device. Even the manual is a pdf on a CD.
Thai meal over the road which was good again.
Just started following Alberto Contador on Twitter. Some goods pics from Lance in Hawaii.
Saturday: Late start to the day. Rode to the Eureka for breakfast. Rode back with Dave the scenic route Puddington, Burton Denhall lane, and Parkgate. 16.7 miles. Looks like the altimeter is playing up on the 705as mine was showing a gradient of 200% on Denhall lane which is 8% max. After yesterdays gym session I’d have to treat this as a recovery day.
Sunday: Should have been a Northend training ride. Missed the easier run as it was still dark at 9 and may have made the 9:30 run but would have got battered by clubs big hitters. It’s bloody freezing by the way and the place is packed. Liverpool Century are there doing speed trials. I witness the CTC setting off to Delamere in the snow. I opt to call it a day and return home as I have no wet weather gear. Snow flurries on the way home via the scenic route. 16 bloody cold miles. This later turned to rain and I would have been in deep trouble even if I went out with the CTC to Delamere.
Off out to Birkenhead to get some thermals. Marks had a pair but not the Merino wool ones that got swept off the shelves. Cheshire Oaks faired a lot worse but at least I picked up some cycling mags in Smiths.
Todays Times was a tale of two cyclists, Rebbeca Rommero interviewed by Paul Kimmage was in sharp contrast to the Nicole Cooke article in Ingear. The Kimmage interview was laboured and covered the same ground as most of the previous interviews about ditching rowing etc. Nicole rides for Halford’s but Rebbeca is still unsponsored. Given that Chris Hoy is on TV every 15 minutes it seems a bit unfair. Good article in Cycle Sport about Steve Cummings and Italy.
Mixed start to the year, it could have been better but a lot worse.
Dakar rally which this year is in Argentina. A continent away from Africa and it seems to have lost a lot of it’s magic.