This Monday marks the start of week 10 “get-back-in-shape-to race” training schedule. By the end of Sundays long ride, I will have logged 100 hours between time on the bike. I have noticed an increase in overall fitness, muscle mass and power output; I can spend more time in Zone 3 and my climbing is steadily improving. March Chris Bloome should tear apart January Chris Bloome. Race season starts next week.
The New York racing calender kicks off with the Metropolitan Cycling Association’s Spring Series. This 9 week race series has 12 races at 4 different venues in the city. The series contains a race at the southern end of Brooklyn at the notoriously windy Floyd Bennett Field and Finishes with a time trial through the notoriously hilly Palisades Interstate Park.
For those who like to avoid “training races” and instead focus on the local monuments, all eyes are on Grants Thomb Criterium. Raced on a short course around its name sake, this 25-60 minute race (depending on the field) tests riders handling skills and relies heavily on a riders ability to sprint and carry speed through technical sections. Crits are not for the faint of heart.
While power numbers and heart rate and Strava segments might tell a rider a lot, none of this makes that rider fast. Rarely in cycling does the strongest guy win, and if a weak guy with a great sprint makes in to the line, watch out. Sometimes things like confidence or dumb luck carry more weight than they should, and a poorly timed flat or cross of wheels can erase months of fitness. While I am not in the kind of shape I would like to be coming into the first week of race season, I am excited to see how it goes.
Expect some race recaps.