Saturday, September 16, 2006

Another shot at Douthat

Douthat (Middle Mountain Mama) is tomorrow.

In years past I've never had a good race there. I'm hoping for a consistent ride tomorrow.

I had a little scare on Friday night. We got back from soccer practice/game and I was really cold and then my nose started running. I wrapped up in a blanket and lay on the couch. Thankfully in the morning I felt a lot better. My youngest son had been sick earlier in the week so I must have finally gotten it.

The legs seem to be ready to go. Last weekend my legs felt really tired on Saturday but were coming around on Sunday. This week was really busy at work which turned out ok, as all I did was 50mins on the trainer on Wed with some hard efforts and 40 mins around the neighborhood on Thursday trying to ride a wheelie and doing track stands.

It's interesting though the aches/pains that accompany a taper week prior to a race. I've heard of marathon runners experiencing sharp pains and weird aches during a taper week. Last Friday I was helping to coach my son's K-soccer practice. Just running around passing the ball w/the kids. The next day my ankle hurts to put weight on it. It hurt a little on the bike but usually worked out. It still hurt today.

This morning I did my ritual pre-prerace warmup. On the trainer with some good punk and some good mountain bike DVDs. 30mins zone 2 followed by 5x1on 2 off at SMSP then some more Zone 2 for a total of 50minutes.

We visited my brother-in-law in Lynchburg and had an awesome time walking around Downtown Lynchburg and some of the historical districts. Looks like a really fun place. Though it highlighted how uni-dimensional I've become as the walking we did on the hills there made me a little sore. It's sad that I can't play soccer or walk around for a few miles. That's one thing I want to work on a little to balance myself out some.

Days off are recovery but they also lead to dead legs. So the first 30minutes at zone 2 feel sort of hard, and it takes that long for the legs to come around. The SMSP 1x intervals are always a good indicator of tidings to come. Today the felt effortless. The power meter doesn't lie so that is a confidence boost.

I'll be going for 245g-300g of carb for the pre-race meal tomorrow morning aiming to be completely done by 9am.

1hr before the start I'll down a midsized bottle of Gatorade for 56g of carb aiming to be done 15min before the start

Tomorrow I'm running 60oz of gatorade mixed at slightly less then 6% concentration. It's going to be between 2:45-3hrs of a race so at 20oz an hour I'll need between 50-60oz. At 20oz and hour it comes out to around 35g carb/hr. I'm also bringing one bottle of just water. I'm going to set my watch timer to go off at 5minute intervals and try to take 3-4 swigs from the camel back each interval. There will also be a safety energy bar in my pocket just in case. I imagine that I'll be gettings some serious hunger pains about 2 hrs into it, but as long as my glycogen is topped off and I'm not bonking I'll save the solid food till afterwards.

I'll also be bringing two pill boxes of Sport Legs. 3 will be taken 1hr prior to the race start and at 1/2hr I'll take 5 and at 1.5hr I'll take another 5

From the race description it looks like they are starting all the Masters/Vets together sport and expert. I was hoping to go off with all the other experts. The thought is the experts would ride more of the start which can be tricky and have less bottlenecks. If I go off with all the Masters/Vets then getting a good start is more important.

-get to the sweet spot as soon as possible
-control it on the first climb.-Ride with my head first, and then heart later.
-Have confidence to go outside the sweet spot into the red for technical sections and short steep sections/switchbacks.
-Clean the 2nd climb
-Concentrate in the present. Try not to think too much about elapsed time
-Head up, Hips into the turns, downhill fast but in control, be aggressive
-Ride smooth, avoid flats. Shift smooth, avoid chainsuck and other preventable mechanicals.
-2:35 would be a dream finish time. Last year I did it in 2:56 with epic cramping and either bonking of dehydration lightheadedness.
-I don't care about placing for now though mid pack would be a total success.
-I break 2:35 I get french fries

I still can't handle sweet things. My son's 6th birthday was on Thursday. We had cake and icecream. It's interesting, I'm not really craving sweets but I wanted some because I thought that I should be craving it given how my entire life I've craved sweets. It wasn't even that big a piece or that much ice cream. I was almost ill afterwards.

I've cut out lots of fried foods too. Though admittedly, I do crave french fries.

The scale this morning says I weigh less than I've weighed in over 12 years. After a 250g/carb meal it will be significantly higher tomorrow. But going uphill the drop in weight is going to be welcome. Something switched in my brain that day after that first expert race. If you've read for awhile you know that racing doesn't come easy. It's been a constant push day by day to work harder and smarter and get better. I just told myself that if I really want to do well than everything has to get better.
Eating, sleeping, recovering, skills. Those experts are for real man. Guys like me have to work every angle.


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