At 522 miles for April, I’m well off the mark. Still, the process of failing has been interesting and not because I am unused to it: I fail all the time. But because I’ve never actually kept track of my cycling nor had any developed goals about it, even when I gave that half-ironman a spin. There was a good reason my friends called me “alloy man”!
Earlier in the spring I picked up a training journal and book by Joe Friel. I’ve slowly been picking my way through it and decided that I should keep a log. The problem was that I had no baseline and no way to even guess where to start.
This is what I found:
1. I am in terrible shape
2. My days have to be completely reorganized. Some days this is not feasible.
3. I would rather bike than work, but I have to have money.
4. 522 miles equals 42 hours of biking.
5. Many rides are shorter and slower than expected as I am doing lots of city cycling.
6. Not biking on the weekends is not an option.
7. Trying to maintain a relationship based on equality and kindness is very hard if I am really ‘training’.
Having a baseline miles goal has been helpful as I’ve been on my bike on days I probably would have slogged home and eaten a cheese sandwich. It’s the first time I’ve really thought about systematic bike training.
While I’m going to take this month to continue focusing on distance, I may try to add in a smattering of interval work or get a heart monitor and learn more about maximizing what time I have on the bike.
It has become more apparent that I have to pay more attention to eating the right food at the right time. And if I don’t start doing some sit-ups or something, my Dunkin’ Donut belly is going to bring me to ruin! My lower back is killing me!
Here’s my revised online training journal. I’m still trying to get daily photos on it. I’m thinking 750 miles this is probably more realistic given my schedule, the difficulty of getting to relaxing starting points for long decent rides out of the city after work, and the shape I am in.
At least I’ve got a better understanding of a training base. It can only get smarter.