Whatever I’m doing, it’s working.
It’s now mid-April. I have never been in better shape so early. I saw 182.6 the other day, which puts me a little over 7 pounds less than where I started in January. At this rate I will easily be in the 170s for my big events this summer, which is HUGE. Consider that last year I lined up for Okemo at 190+. What a tank.
The legs are super strong. In spite of what happened at Battenkill with the batteries running out, my legs feel like that race never happened. Energy level is still not back yet, but that’s expected when you bonk the way I did. I expect by next week things will have returned to normal.
The biggest change I made this year, by far, has been riding from January onward, instead of waiting for March. It is cold as hell. And since the first two months are low intensity, you rarely get warmed up enough to be comfortable out there. But the cycling specific muscles get a huge head start this way. In past years, I would do my base work on elliptical machines and short trainer sessions. Around May I would have my lungs, but the legs were far behind. That just isn’t the case this year. They are arriving together.
It’s hard to want to get out in the cold. Make it easier on yourself by getting the right gear. Invest in it. Having what you need to tackle the elements makes the actual activity far more palatable. A good jacket and tights. Really warm gloves. Wheels you don’t really care about, and great all condition tires, something of the 25c variety.
Another change – I also do a core workout at least once per week, usually twice, which I have managed to do every single week of 2010. Even if I’m on a recovery week, I at least do something. 8 Minute Abs saves my week all the time.