Wednesday, February 11, 2009
Commute Reconnaissance and Training Notes
Well, I finally have a rest week this week. Hooray for that! The great part about that is I don't have much structure and shorter morning rides, so I can go out and explore new ways of connecting Sunnyvale with Menlo Park (really Atherton).
Today, I decided to explore the new Mountain View Bike Boulevard. I've been pretty happy with the northern part of the route (Bryant through Palo Alto, over the bridge, left on Willow, right on Laurel, left on Encinal to campus). But, there have been many variants on the south end of the route (cross 101 immediately and use Middlefield or Evelyn) or take Moffett Park/Manilla up to Middlefield or continue on Fairchild to Moffett Blvd. to Central? All of these leading eventually back to Bryant street.
Today, I headed across Moffett Park/Manilla to Ellis to Fairchild to a left on Moffett Blvd. and then right on Montecito (the new Mountain View Bike Boulevard), which dropped me off nicely behind the old Mayfield Mall. That made for easy connection with the Bryant bicycle route to the north. Overall, it was a good, quiet route. It has some nice signage (5 minutes to Rengstorff, 10 minutes to San Antonio - assuming a 10mph average, I think). It is not as well calmed as the Bryant section south of downtown Palo Alto, but about as well calmed as the northern section of the Bryant route. There were a few more stop signs than I would have liked. The only bad part of the route was a veer left on Jane St., which had no controls, so it was unclear who had the right of way (needless to say, I did not assume right of way with speeding vehicles heading to nearby Monta Loma school). Once past the school, all was well with the world again. The route was a bit longer than the straight Middlefield shot, meaning a slightly longer riding time. However, the riding time vs. running time was much better, with only about 5 minutes lost to stopping, as opposed to the usual 10 minutes lost on the Middlefield/Bryant route.
Well, I've just come through my second build of the season. I'm getting pretty close to being ready to race. Unfortunately, this build started off about 2 days early after only 5 days of recovery. And, it started with 3 days of training camp, which put me into pain city right off the bat. I was happy that my body lasted as long as it did. I finally hit the wall on Sunday after 3 weeks of really high quality, progressive training. I had planned to ride 3.5 hours on Sunday, and after 1 hour, it was clear that was not going to happen. I limped back home and spent the last two hours of my workout sleeping. I followed that up with 9 hours of sleep on Sunday night and 10 hours of sleep on Monday night. Today, I finally feel human again. My legs are coming back. I am going to be really strong going into my last build before racing commences. Yay!
On another note, I've taken up Sabine's "100 Pushup" challenge. Oh my! I did the "test" and could only do 3 pushups. I felt a little better last night when one of my non-cycling/pilates-doing girlfriends could only complete 2. So, yesterday, I did the first "workout", which was 5 sets (2-3-2-2-3). Yikes. That was hard. Today, my chest and back are super-yeeeouch. This is either going to help my with my TT and sprinting, or it's going to broaden my already broad shoulders and increase my frontal mass. Time will tell. If nothing else, it should increase my core strength and pain tolerance, which are never bad.