Welcome to the my April 2015 Endurance Path Update!
I started doing monthly updates last year, but did not follow through. I am going to start them back up and see if I can refine them enough for it to make sense to keep them going. As always, any feedback is greatly appreciated. If there is something specific you would like to see or do not want to see in these monthly updates, please leave a comment or send me an e-mail through my Contact Me page.
My intention is to share quick highlights of any endurance racing, training, nutrition, health and any other fun endurance sport related activities that I experienced this month.
I have never done any road racing before and I decided it was time to give it a try. Over the past year, I thought I was getting pretty decent on my road bike and I can safely say that I have been humbled. That being said, I have really enjoyed the road racing and by all means will keep at it. I intend to try out a time trial during the month of May as well. I have a lot to learn when it comes to racing with a pack, drafting, conserving energy and climbing hills.
Total Races: 5
Road Races: 2
Spring Fling #5 Criterium – Lawrence, Kansas
Results: 7th out of 20
This was my first race ever on a road bike and was totally unplanned. I was mountain biking that morning on the Clinton Lake Trail System when I heard some commotion and an announcer. I want ahead and checked it out to find a criterium race getting under way. I went back to the camper to fetch my road bike and entered the Cat 5 race that was later in the afternoon. This was nuts, but I loved it. A lead pack took off on a break away going into lap 3. A couple laps later, I was by myself trying to chase them down. I reeled in a coupe of guys that got dropped from that pack, but was not able to cover the gap. After this race, I knew I had to keep at it.
Tuesday Night Worlds #1 Criterium – Minnesota State Fairgrounds
Results – 20 out of 56, but no points
Bottom line, I had no idea what I was doing. This was a Cat 4 / 5 criterium with every 3rd lap being a sprint lap for points. The final lap counted for the same amount of points as the other sprint laps. Overall time was tracked as well. I was basically redlined the entire race and too nervous to get too close in line and basically blew up.
THK (Thoren Heuval Kernesse) Road Race – Avon, Minnesota
Results – 30th out of 46
My first road race. Again, no idea what I was doing. I found myself in the front of the pack on a couple sections coming into the halfway point. This was a bad idea as I got totally dropped when we hit the climb. I didn’t really see it coming. I figured I would drift to the back of the pack going up the climb because I was spent and the next thing I knew, I missed the back and couldn’t get back on. We had dropped part of the pack already, so I didn’t end up last. I did have a strong finish up the final climb though, to leave with a little bit of confidence and feel good.
Ken Woods Memorial Road Race – Cannon Falls, Minnesota
Results – 24th out of 47
I’m starting to figure it out a bit. Hung with the lead pack the whole race. There was a couple minor break aways, but we reeled them back in. I hammered up the big climb the first lap around and hung with the leaders. Coming back around to the big climb again at the finish, I couldn’t hang though and ended up dropping to 24th place and over a minute behind the leader all on the final climb. I am feeling better about things though and just need to work on my power.
Tuesday Night Worlds #3 Criterium – Minnesota State Fairgrounds
Results – 18th out of 46, but no points
This race went much better for me, other than I jumped for a sprint on the wrong lap and completely put myself in a bad position and blew up. That being said, I was actually able to recover and wasn’t too far off from grabbing some points on the final lap. I think I could have gotten up there if I would have positioned myself better on the second to last lap. I got myself stuck in the middle of the pack and could not get out around people.
All races are included in the mileage and session counts.
Total Miles: 236
Mountain Bike: 42.7 miles
Road Bike: 185 miles
Running: 4.3 miles
Hiking: 4 miles
Total Sessions: 20
Mountain Bike: 4
Road Bike: 12
I officially removed the training tire off of my road bike before our spring break camping trip the last week of March. My training now has turned to actual road rides, some trail riding during spring break and road races. I still haven’t created the best morning habits yet, but try to get a body weight and short work out in before work in the morning that involves squats, push ups, lunges and abs.
That being said, I have ridden twice as many miles this year as I had by this point last year. Last year, I only had 230 cycling miles in by the end of April and I have over 600 miles in this year. There are 3 things that have contributed to this: The first, being the fact that I picked up a Cyclops Jet Fluid Pro Trainer last fall and hammered through Sufferfest videos throughout the winter months. Secondly, I also purchased a Fat Bike for the winter and was able to get a few trail rides in. Lastly, I took a 3 day weekend to go mountain biking on the Santos Trail System in Florida with my Dad back in February.
I am still working on fine tuning the nutrition, but I have created what I think are some fairly good habits. I have a pretty good breakfast routine of 2 to 3 eggs. I usually get my eggs from a local farmer, but occasionally they run out and I have to get them from the store. I highly recommend purchasing your eggs from a local farmer vs the grocery store if you can. You’ll understand as soon as you see the color difference after cracking them in the pan. They are so much richer in color and taste. At any rate, I have been adding spinach or broccoli and cauliflower to my eggs on most mornings. I used to do just eggs, but always felt like I was missing something and decided to add some veggies for some natural carbohydrates.
For lunch in the past, I had been mixing tuna with feta cheese and have now started doing raw vegetables and still adding the tuna on occasion. I do snack during the day and with my activity up from last year, I seem to be hungry more often. On most days, I have been adding a muffin in the mid morning and some fruit in the afternoon.
Dinner has usually been a mix of a meat such as chicken, fish or a burger along with organic frozen vegetables from Costco.
Health and Fitness
Weight: 158 lbs
Body Fat: 15.2%
Even though, I haven’t necessarily been feeling my greatest… The month of April was pretty darn good in comparison to March. I spent most of the month of March with a cold or sinus infection, which severely limited the amount of training I was able to do. Not to mention, I had some international travel for work that didn’t help.
I have struggled quite a bit with recovery in the past and this still seems to be the case. I used to think it was because I was getting older, but I honestly think it is because I tend to push myself past my my level of fitness too often. I think the road racing is going to be good for me and really help me figure out how manage racing and training.
My kids are 5 and 7 years old and are able to hit some single track with me, so we can do some family rides on light training days. Sometimes, my wife will ride with them and I’ll break away for my own hot lap and then catch back up with them. It’s great to have the whole family involved and my kids can’t wait to race.
I have started a resource page to share what I use for all kinds of things related to racing, training, data logging, nutrition, health, trail finding, etc… You can visit the page with this link: Endurance Path Resources. Please let me know if you would like to see anything else. I will continue to make updates as I expand the site.
I had pretty good month when it comes to taking on new challenges. I would say, I need to pick up the training a bit more if I am going to be competitive. I tend to struggle with recovery and I am working on figuring that out, whether it be sleep, food or overtraining when I do train. I hope you found this update useful, whether it be insightful or inspiring. As I mentioned above, please leave a comment below or or send me an e-mail through my Contact Me page if you have any questions or comments.
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