I wrote, several weeks ago, that I was giving up on the tracking software. No more cycling apps, no more recording of workouts. The reasoning at the time seemed quite sound. Concentrate more on cycling with my wife and quality over speed, watts and feet ascended. I had a good enough base that I haven’t worried about my weight in two years, and I’m fairly fast, about as fast as I can get without making sacrifices I’m simply not willing to make (training plans, dietary changes, and so forth).
I’ve come to understand the two aspects to cycling with speed that cannot be messed with though: Intensity and Distance, or Frequency if you like. If I want to be fast I cannot mess with either one, but distance can be tinkered with and have less of a negative result.
In the last three weeks, on every ride I’ve gone on (which isn’t many because of global warm… er, cooling… er, Climate Change) I’ve been able to hit it pretty hard but I’m not used to knowing where I’m at, at least after my ride is over. This is, if you can believe it, both a good and bad thing. First, I have hardly any enthusiasm left on the trainer – at this point in the winter, I’m just getting my revs in. On the other hand, when I’m out on the road I have a tendency to automatically assume I’m phoning it in, that I need to work just a little harder – so I do.
Now, without the stats I don’t really have any way to judge where I am this season over last, but at the club ride last Tuesday I felt quite strong. I’ve obviously got some work to do (pulling at the front was short!), but I’m actually out on the road a little earlier this year than last (I’m so sick of the trainer that I’m willing to ride in much colder conditions this spring) and I’m feeling pretty good.
Still, I have to admit – I miss having my stats. They let me know exactly where I was and I knew how hard I had to work to get into shape to ride with the group. There’s a flip side to that though and I’m going to try to capitalize on it: If I don’t know how hard I have to push, I won’t hold anything back…
Time will tell how that works out.