Thursday, May 24, 2012

Hammering On Thor’s Day

I haven’t had a lot to say since the WORS race at Rhinelander on Sunday.  When I “went to press” with my race report I didn’t yet have any photos, so here’s one that shows me accelerating away from the starting line:

And they're off! Thanks to Michele Norman (wife of John Norman, racer #4021) for the picture.
On Monday I stayed away from my bikes and caught up on a lot of work around my yard.  It was a rest day for the Giro d’Italia too, and thus a very rare day off for me as both a cyclist and a cycling fan.  On Tuesday I did another criterium practice and again it was a great way to do intervals without the drudgery of counting minutes.  On Wednesday I played softball but the results were disappointing: after an Opening Day victory back on May 2, my team has lost three straight.

Today I went back to the Thursday evening group ride for the first time in a couple of weeks and finished with 37 miles at almost a 20 mph average.  The wind was howling out of the south, so the group of five worked together to set a strong pace down to the covered bridge near Cedarburg.  I didn’t start particularly well—I usually don’t—but I hung in there and my legs came around.  We didn’t follow the Covered Bridge Ride route with which so many local riders are familiar, and when a couple of the Team Extreme boys decided to go harder I was one of the three who couldn’t match their pace.  I tried, and for several miles I dangled in No Man’s Land, but eventually I sat up and finished the ride with the grupetto.

Tomorrow I plan to ride the 29er at New Fane.  I don’t think there’s such a thing as too much practice on singletrack, at least not for a novice mountain bike racer.  The weekend likely will be a time for long endurance rides … except for Memorial Day itself.  On Monday morning I plan to compete in an unsanctioned time trial, a good opportunity to put even more intensity into my training.  It also will be a good opportunity to compare my current fitness level to last year’s, as the TT will run on the same course that I raced last July.  The 19.3-mile course should take me nearly an hour to complete.  So, in terms of duration and intensity, the TT should be a good tune-up for my 12-mile WORS race at Wausau on June 3.

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