Liz Randall's Cycling Blog - a life behind bars

"With ordinary talents and extraordinary perseverance, all things are attainable"

Saturday, 17 March 2007

The first test at the velodrome


For about a year I've been thinking about the One Hour Record and whether I should try for it or not. I've done alot of research and read Michael Hutchinson's book. But what really has decided me is that I'm 62 and despite the fact that there are quite a few older women track racers here in Oz and we could possibly get a 55+ age class for the Worlds...there is only a 50+. So, knowing that there are a pair of 50yr old Aussie pursuiters I can't possibly beat..I have to look elsewhere for a challenge.

Last Sunday I decided to try for a 20minute test to see what sort of speed I could comfortably maintain. I opted to ride a 49/14 gear combo, which is a bit bigger than my normal Pursuit gearing of 52/15. After I settled down and rode for what felt like along time I looked at my watch and discovered I'd only done 3 minutes! I carried on for a bit longer but boredom and discomfort stopped me after 7.5 minutes. Hmmm. Back to the drawing board. Did I go too fast or was I just not prepared for the mental aspect of the trial.

I went away and thought about it and on Friday, when I had a day off work I returned with a different plan. Co-incidentally during the week a friend who is a Sport Psychologist rang asking me for some professional advice, so I did a contra and asked her for ideas on defeating the boredom.

Take 2 fix the boredom I was plugged into my ipod. Then I set my count down stop watch for 23 seconds x 40 and kept the same gear..49/14. The watch will bip bip every 23 seconds so I can see how close I was to the start/finish line each time it bips.. 23 sec laps will give me 39.1km total for the hour.

Well that failed. Changed gear as my legs felt tired..put on 52/15..a very familiar gear for me.

Take 3
Set watch to 25 secs...too easy and 25sec laps would only give me 36km..less than I'd like.

Take 4
Keep the same gear and changed to 24s laps which will give me 37.5km..still too easy but now closer to success at my current state of fitness and fatigue (hard training leading up to Masters Nats in 10 days time). Finish and a l-o-n-g warm down with a friend who'd turned up. The concrete around the track was very needs a good sweep before the official Masters' training next weekend.

A successful day of trials. Now to address my position on the bike and will my Colnago do the job? Its not an aero bike and the "Blue" one I'm drooling over is pretty much the same geometry but with aero tubing. I'll have to check out its weight vv the Colnago as with my diminishing powers I'm into weight saving. I certainly can't maintain the current position for an hour..its set up for a 2min+ effort not 60 mins!!

While in the velodrome I discovered that someone was selling a pair of Ghiblis at a really good price....but I'd missed them by an hour. SOB! SOB!


Yeah! my coach fixed in the post, questionnaire completed and first 20 minutes effort along Beach road on the road bike using Powertap is winging its way to her using CyclingPeaks WKO+ software. I will attempt to include it later. Normalised power for the effort is 202 watts