Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Feeling The Heat

I've been catching a bit of heat lately for not keeping my blog up to date, and to those of you that have been giving the heat, you're right. There's nothing worse than a half or fully deceased blog, they're really just an eye-sore  Either write on it, or take it down. Otherwise, YOU'RE JUST HOGGING THE INTERNET.

I've got a few things that I had been feeling were worthy of a blog post, the least of which was my performance at Joe Martin... but don't worry, like any good cyclist, I've got excuses for you! I've even got visual aids for my excuses!

In my opinion, the most blog-worthy topic running around in my brain is about us cyclist and our predisposition to race-facing each other. If you've ever been on a ride with me when I've been race-faced, then I'm sure you've heard my rant on the topic. But now, I've got new information that makes the race-facing issue even more troubling.

As many of you know, I've recently become the partial owner of a motorcycle. I say partial, and actually I own no part of the machine, but my father bought one under the pretense that I'd ride it too. I think he just needed to convince himself that he wasn't just spending the money on himself alone. Regardless, I now have access to a two-wheeled rocket ship. And I've been accessing it regularly.

In extensive travels on said motorcycle, I've been on the receiving end of numerous "motorcycle waves". I would imagine that many of you have seen this before, and it looks similar to how a cyclist would point out a pothole to the group during a ride, only you throw out a couple of fingers in a really awesome, swag-filled manner.

I've received this wave from everyone from overweight scooter riders, to women on Harley's. I can probably count on one hand the number times I been the first to throw the motorcycle wave while passing another rider. And believe me, I'm a trigger-happy waver. I find it unbelievable that the average/ majority of motorcyclists are in fact cooler, nicer, more outgoing and less self conscious than the average cyclist.  I mean, these guys are running around with tattoo's, piercings, and black leather and we're wearing fruity, colored leotards, yet we're the ones acting tough and "bad ass"...

Seriously people, if Joe Motorcyclist can wave every time, surely we as cyclists can get our heads out of our asses and wave to someone who at least enjoys the same hobby as you do! Please don't race face me, as I'm obviously very sensitive about it.

OK, on to the Joe Martin Stage Race.

I'm not going to go to the trouble of giving you every detail from the week, but in short: I struggled. I'm not exactly surprised to have had a rough week, but it doesn't necessarily make it any easier to stomach.

The reason I'm not surprised to have had a rough time, is that I haven't been able to do any real training in almost 6 weeks. According to the doctor, I ran my immune system down a bit too much with my training and weakened it to the point that it couldn't keep the symptoms of mono at bay (the virus is always present once you've had mono, but your immune system develops the anti-bodies to keep the symptoms suppressed). So basically I was dealing with similar symptoms to the first time I had mono, but just a bit lighter this time around.

This was frustrating to say the least, but I do feel like I'm recovering well, I'm just not very fit because of the lack of training.

Here is a graph of my training load from January- April.

As you can see there are two distinct build periods, then the training just falls off the map. The only weeks where I've had over 10 or so hours are the ones where I've had a longer race or races. Like I said, the good news is that I'm getting closer to normal, but I've just still got to be careful for a bit longer.

Joe Martin was definitely a great block of training, I just ended up suffering quite a lot more than I had anticipated. Just ask anyone who was driving a car in the caravan last week, they saw lots of me, and I had the pain face on nearly full time. Supposedly suffering + rest = form.

Thanks for reading.