Friday, March 20, 2009

break a commandment and .....

Train moderately and train consistently are two of Joe Friel's "training commandments". As Joe has been a mentor of mine...both as an athlete through his books and methodology and as a coach as part of his Ultrafit Associates group for 7 years you would think that I would know better than to break one of these rules. Well I did...and now I am sick.
Cara had been sick for almost a week and I was holding it off well. After last weekend I was a bit disappointed in myself that I faded after about 5 hours of racing (even considering my mishaps). This week the weather has been nice and I had two days with no appointments scheduled, so I decided to get a couple of killer rides in. On tuesday I did the ride above. Out to Hot Springs from Black Mountain going over Doggett Mountain on the way out. 121 miles in just under 7 hours of ride time. I was very conservative with my pace and actually felt really good. I limited my power to just 70-80% of FTP on the longer climbs and this worked well to keep me comfortable...until about 10 miles to go. At mile 110 with home just about 30 minutes away I fell apart and struggled in. No worries...I still didn't feel too bad, but I think I pushed the limit a bit too far for what I was ready for right now.
I started to feel like I was getting sick, but denied it and set off for a 4 hour off road ride on wednesday. I rode up through montreat, down rattlesnake, did kitsuma, then on the road through old fort, up curtis creek to jarrett creek, over star gap , down lower heart break and up mill creek to get home. Stephen Janes has some good photos of the fire damage from last week around lower heartbreak here:
As soon as I got on the long climb up jarrett creek I lost all my energy and knew I had gotten in too deep. I crawled along knowing I was digging myself deeper into illness, but there were no shortcuts home from there. I got home and I was sick. I think it is just a nasty head cold, but the bottom line is I have not been able to ride for a couple of days...and probably won't be able to do any real training for a few more days...and if I do race on sunday, I will really just be riding without being able to push it much.
So there is a lesson here...and I have learned it before...I guess I just have to make the mistake and re-learn it every few years. If you push the envelope too much and go far above what would be considered "moderate" in training, you get sick...or worse yet, injured. This causes you to break the other commandment of training consistently...if you are sick or injured and can't train, consistency goes out the window...and you lose fitness. SO I am not saying that athletes should not train really HARD when appropriate....or even for very long durations when trying to prepare for endurance events (like I am this season), but care needs to be taken to ride within certain limits in order to stay healthy and injury free. Playing around on that fine line is ok....but take a big leap over the line on a particular day and there will usually be less than beneficial consequences.
Instead of doing an extreme ride on tuesday , I should have scaled it back a little and done 3 more moderate endurance days in a row. This more than likely would have left me to train and race the rest of the week and would still have caused a significant training adaptation.....


Cogburner said...

Very few people would call 4 hours on Kitsuma, Star Gap, and Curtis Creek an "easy off-road ride"!

Despite you getting sick, I am still very impressed.

My name is Stephen said...

Thanks for the reminder, get well soon

Aaron Trent said...

Get well soon!

Will you be racing Para Track Nats this year?