Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Ramblings in the off season

The holidays are always a challenging time for me. Over eating and cold weather tend to ruin my form on the bike. This year (like most cyclists) I vowed not to let it happen!

On Christmas Day I was happy to find some new cycling DVD's under the tree with my name on them. The DVD set boasts of a 12% increase in power. Who doesn't want 12% more power??

So, with my trainer set up, and a little motivation I began my new indoor training program. While I found the actual video and music content of the series quite lame, the workouts were challenging and I enjoyed them. On off days I've been riding the rollers for 1-2 hours and really working on improving my spin to eleminate dead spots.

So what were the results? I saw my 8 minute power test go from 251NP to 289NP. That's a 13% increase. 13 is 1 better than 12 (insert SpinalTap theme). During this time I've also dropped about 10lbs of holiday goodness from my gut. Another 10 and I'll be at my race weight.

I took 1 week off the bike after completing the series. I plan to run through it again with my new power zones configured. We'll see if another 12-13% is obtainable.

One of my goals for 2009 is to raise my TSS/d score to 60+. As of today, I'm sitting at 36.3. A 60 would be higher than I've ever achieved in the 4 years I've been training with a power meter. Can I raise it that high? We'll find out. Keep an eye on my progress with a shared spreadsheet at: http://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=p_wA1kH7HvjhdS_0pS29Ncw


Paul said...


I took a look at your spreadsheet, lots of interesting numbers that I don't know how to read.

One of the more interesting numbers that is missing is the Normalized Power/Total Weight ratio. (Watts/KG) then you can compare yourself to a power range table like the one shown here http://www.saris.com/wattscalculator.aspx

Matt said...

Good point Paul - my weight has been pretty consistent this season at 165lbs. I'll try to add that to the spreadsheet. I've fallen off the wagon a little bit with testing and keeping my numbers up to date.