Some weeks just start off bad, and end much the same as they start – last week was probably one of those weeks!
Last week was a scheduled “rec week”, recovery week, recreational week whatever you want to call it, the aim to deload / distress from all the effort I’d been putting in lately. But as often happens it doesn’t turn out as planned due to lack of motivation a few rides were shortened and the rest of the week was very much a hodge podge of whatever riding, etc… not really an ideal lead up to the weekends Criterium in Ocean Grove.
The Race: Trying to get in a little more volume to make up for my laziness earlier in the week I’d decided I would ride to the race in Ocean Grove – it’s about a 30km trip and a reasonably easy ride. That is of course until I get out the front gate and realize there is a ripping head / head cross wind; to add to my woes I was running about 15mins later then I wanted to be so my easy ride to the race turned into a pretty solid Tempo session.
The circuit in Ocean Grove is a short flat block in an industrial estate that offers little rest…Well none actually! I didn’t expect to do well here at all, my threshold is ok at the best of times (work in progress), but my top end not so good on longer efforts. Being a mountain biker at heart I much prefer the stop / start nature of the other course we use in Geelong. Anyways enough of that.
The race got off to a furious pace once again, it was on the gas from the get go!.. For the duration of the race I was “bouncing off the limiter” with only a few short breaks. I was positioned fairly well for the duration of the race toward the front but keeping my nose out of trouble at about the 20min mark I hit the front and drove the bunch for a while giving it a crack at pulling away but only managing to get a few meters on the bunch before getting pulled back. Sensing I was going nowhere I opted to drop back just a little and save some for the last few mins then my luck changed, cornering on the outside one of the riders on the inside had a little “moment” that forced me off the racing line which scrubbed off a bunch of speed. A majority of the bunch come past and where now 10m in front by the time I got back up to speed; over the next few laps I managed to pull back the 10m but just as I caught the bunch on the second last lap they took off I just had nothing left but I gritted my teeth gave it my all and then struck a pedal in the next corner – I was off again, race over!
While getting blown out the back doesn’t bother me too much, it does serve a purpose or give a lesson – STOP PULLING TURNS!
In all seriousness the Criterium series has helped my intensity no end, it’s just a shame they only run during summer as I could do with that dose of intensity over winter closer to the Endurance series.
Vic Endurance Series dates have been announced, one round start of April the remainder running June to November, initially I was a little disappointed there was nothing Mid May, but it’s not such a bad thing given the baby is due mid-March. Maybe I can find something else at the end of April / Mid may to slot in to keep my form going (Giant Odyssey maybe?).
I’ve also scrapped the idea of doing the XCO National Championships, instead looking at doing the XCM National round that weekend in Bright instead.