Friday, February 06, 2009

Power, Progress, and Testing

It's been a solid week of training so far... and that's good thing because there's a good chance of rain this weekend so I am not sure what I will be able to get in.

I am trying really hard to simplify my training this year and not have to give it too much thought. I need workouts that I can do in the morning before work and right from my front door if possible. There are two weekly workouts that are my favorites and that I know work for me. Both of them include hills...

The first is big gear hill repeats on the bike. I do this workout on the road and it consists 4 x 10-12 minute climbs @ 50-60 rpms. I alternate standing and seated climbs. It's all about building strength. Ideally you would probably want to increase the length of the climbs or the number of reps but I can get this workout done in 90 minutes before work so I can make it work. It takes me 20 minutes to get to the base of the climb and then I knock them out and crawl back home. I just continue to use bigger gears as the weeks progress. I started doing this work out last year and it made a huge difference.

I also do hill repeats off road but for this workout I like the road so I can use my power tap to collect the data. This is the kind of workout this is repeatable and it's easy to track the progress week to week, month to month, and year to year.

So here's a comparison. I did this workout on Wednesday and compared it to the same workout I did almost exactly a year a go.

Last year.

1.30.2008 - seated
Duration: 11:32
Norm Power: 229 watts
Avg Power: 227 watts
Cadence: 58 rpm (avg)

1.30.2008 - standing
Duration: 11:08
Norm Power: 243 watts
Avg Power: 243 watts
Cadence: 51 rpm (avg)

Now for this year.

2.4.2009 - seated
Duration: 10:38
Norm Power: 249 watts
Avg Power: 248 watts
Cadence: 62 rpm (avg)

2.4.2009 - standing
Duration: 10:36
Norm Power: 272
Avg Power: 270 watts
Cadence: 55 rpm (avg)

This workout serves as a good test of where I am at. My power is up across the board from where I was last year at this time so that's good sign after just a month of solid work on the bike. This is perfect test workout for me because it's easy to repeat and the numbers don't lie.

The other workout is what Beth and I call the K.O.M (King of the Mountain) run. This is done on my local trails and there are two significant climbs.

I haven't kept a good record of of my times for the climbs over the last year but I am starting that now. I did this workout yesterday morning to get a baseline and plan on repeating this workout weekly and I am interested to see the progress. I am also planning on building this workout up to 4+ climbs in my build toward Pikes in August.

Climb #1
Distance: 1,92 miles
Time: 16:35

Climb #2
Distance: 1.6.1 miles
Time: 14:15

Well that's it for now... Just some geeked out training stuff. It rained all last night and I actually contemplating getting on the trainer... sweet!


Jaakko Hiekkaranta said...

solid progress man!

it'll be good to see how much more you'll destroy the competition this year :)

Cliff said...

Irony, is going to be 30*F tomorrow and I am contemplating getting OFF the trainer :D

Ryan Denner said...

solid work JW!

but, avoid the trainer at all costs - hit the trails and mud if u must!

JP Flores said...

that is big progress....a sign of great things to come. What hill are you using for these repeats?

MJ said...

Huge progress. Nice job!

Can I request a post about what tools you are using to collect, analyze and display all of the data? Is it powertap software? and garmin software for the run?

How much of a hassle is it to geek out to this level? I have a garmin but I use it while running and don't take the data off...

It's super clear, simple and useful.... I would like data like this...


GZ said...

700 feet in 3 miles is GOOD. :)

So are those lower hills there part of the bigger chart?

Ryan Denner said...

dude, do you keep your HR the same each interval? CV just had me to 4 repeats. measure power on each interval, but keep HR > 165. just curious if you factor in HR.