working only makes me realize how much a love riding bikes.
with southern cross coming up this weekend the focus over the past few weeks have been adding in some volume while keeping a little intensity mixed in just to keep the high end fitness sharp. this fall was unique in the fact that i raced all winter therefore really neglected my base training. where as all of the last several years i have always taken off a few weeks, had a bit of a transition, then jumped in the base training for about 3 months...this year is totally different. there really hasn't been a base season...i raced my last cx race on Jan 29th...first endurance race is Feb 25th(simply a training race)...first xc race is April 1st...also a first for to start my xc season to start so late. normally i start in early March...this was done on purpose though! i wanted some time off racing and some to build...and that's what i have been doing!
this past weekend had me all excited to ride...i was feeling good and the family was out of town leaving me to train and recover like i wanted to. mother nature would interrupt me just a bit but we worked it out...
Saturday's plan was 3-3:30hr ride @ ez to endurance pace. Jerry decided to join me and with rain on the horizon we decided to head out early to beat it's arrival. the route was more rolling hills than anything just so we could keep the effort control ed. BUT i did decide to go try out one new hill before the ride really got underway. the climb up to red mtn park fire tower was the first goal...and it did not disappoint. very steep and rewarding once at the top. after we crest the top, we turned around and rolled on. The rest of the ride seemed to fly by. before i knew it, we had rolled Ruffner, John Rodgers, 78, and were out on 119 heading to Baily Rd..i love that climb, and on to sicard, pumphouse, overton, and back to homewood. just a great ride! temps were perfect, jerry was riding strong, and the legs felt great. ended up with lil under 4hrs of ride time.
Sunday had huge potential for me...but mother nature was bound and determined to keep me off the bike for the full 5hrs that i had planned. the plan was 5hrs out in the Talledega National Forest with the emphasis on Mt. CHeaha repeats. i have been wanting to do this ride for a long time but because it takes an hour each way to drive and the ride itself is long, i needed lots of free time...this weekend was perfect..except for the rain. it rained all morning and was cold but i was bound and determined to not let that stop me. i headed out there about and was rolling by 1p. it was great! the rain had stopped and there was zero traffic! there was no visibility either but that's ok, i was training not sight seeing. the first 12miles are all rolling hills building up to the base of the Mt. Cheaha. on my first accent, i flatted right at the top, worried about flatting again and not having another tube, i just fixed and moved on. after the first crest, i rode down the south side of the mtn to lake howard and turned around there...back up was a sweet cat 2 climb at 6.1miles and about 1400ft of climbing! after the second crest, i dropped back down to Adam's GAp and turned around there for the 3rd time up...the legs were starting to hurt and it was getting cold...avg temp was 42..and going up was no problem, it was flying down at 40mph that made the air a tad chilly. after the 3rd climb, i decided to head back. it was a fantastic ride and im already looking forward to doing it again. all in all, i got 52miles with 6200 ft of climbing all in 3:30.
week ended up with 15hrs of riding and some tired legs. this week is a semi taper week and then we launch a new build phase for 2 more weeks until work and Disney take over for 2 weeks. ILDS!