So, following up on my last submission, not a whole lot has changed.  Lucas is growing like a weed and cute as can be.  Brady too, is growing: nearly 1.5 inches since his birthday not standing 39 inches tall.  Brady's last day of day care was this past Friday and he will be home with Karrie and Lucas for the summer before starting up again.  He had been acting out and hitting us (never other people) for a month or so, but this seems to finally be coming to an end.  I feel for the kid as it has to be rough on him to suddenly have to share us with Lucas.  Having both boys all day, every day while I'm at work in an enormous effort for Karrie and she is working on finding activities to keep everyone occupied and happy.  I've been trying to get her to take some time for herself on a regular basis, be it the gym or some other outlet but I think she is a bit overwhelmed at the moment and sees that as something else she has to do, so it gets put off.

I decided that I need cycling to keep my sanity and have only autocrossed once so far this year; my current focus is to get in the best shape I can get into for cyclocross season.  To that end, I bought a power meter and last week I started the Time Crunched Cyclist (TCC) training program.  It is low volume (6 hours a week), high intensity training designed to boost your strength and endurance over a 11-12 week period, after which a 4-week "rest" block is needed before starting again.  To find the time to do this I ride the trainer in the basement during the week after the boys are asleep.  These sessions generally last 45-90 minutes and are where most of the interval training takes place.  The plan also prescribes two weekend rides which are mainly for endurance and can last 90-150 minutes.

The first week of the program called for rides on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday; Wednesday and Friday were rest days.  Monday was an endurance ride for 45 minutes while Tuesday and Thursday were to be endurance rides with some steady state intervals thrown in.  Monday and Tuesday went well but Thursday was a non-starter due to the tension bolt on my trainer stripping; I've ordered a replacement that should be here in time for this weeks training, although another cyclist in my area was kind enough to lend me his spare just in case.  Friday I rode into work with my co-worker Scott and we pushed pretty hard which kinda made up for my missed workout on Thursday.  I say "we pushed pretty hard" but in reality I think it was kinda of an easy ride for Scott.  This wasn't always the case on our commutes and on the way home, in the spot where I normally dropped him, he stuck to my wheel without much effort.  Karrie was agreeable to letting me ride early (7am) for a couple of hours on the weekend so Saturday I planned a ride from my neighborhood and put it out there to a local club looking for company; four people showed up and we had a great ride.  One of them returned on Sunday and we rode the route backwards for another really good ride; hopefully I can continue to get these weekend rides in as they are integral to the training plan.  Today I am feeling it in my legs, but it is a rest day so I should be good tomorrow.

Some data points from the first week:

  • Starting weight: 208 lbs
  • Starting Functional Threshold Power (FTP): 215 watts (estimated)
  • Starting TCC field test 8-minute power: 226 watts
  • Starting Functional Threshold Heart Rate (FTHR): 180 bpm (estimated)
  • Time ridden: 7 hours 52 minutes
  • Miles ridden: 119
  • Training Stress Score: 677
  • Peak power: 1344 watts (5s 1298 watts)
  • Best 1-minute: 427 watts
  • Best 5-minute: 273 watts

Since the tension bolt on the trainer was bad and I did feel some slipping (even though I didn't realize that's what it was until after the fact) and I did the field test and all my intervals on the trainer, it will be interesting to see if those numbers hold up.  I did feel initially that my FTP should be higher and thought perhaps the meter was reading low and I suppose the slippage could account for that but tomorrow I should know for sure.  If the numbers were off I'm not sure what to do.  Perhaps make an educated guess at adjusting them and continue on.  I'd hate to have to do the field test again because it would mean having to start the program again since it doesn't really fit into the schedule.

Anyhow, I plan to chronicle my efforts with this training program here, hopefully inspiring some other "time crunched" individuals to make time for themselves.