Thursday, February 5, 2009

Winter Training 2009

After a seriously lackluster 2008 racing season in which, instead of reaching my racing weight, I gained 10 pounds instead, I have re-committed myself to my training for 2009. A promotion at work, moving into a new home, and lots and lots of family obligations that I allowed to dictate my life led to limited time in the saddle and poor showings at the few races in which I did participate.

I spent a lot of energy last year bitching that I didn’t have the time I used to have for training. Prior to my promotion, my work schedule was 2:45pm to 11:45pm which left a lot of time in the mornings for training. 3 and 4 hour training rides all winter long made me a better racer in the spring and early summer. Now, with a 6am to 3pm schedule, several things have changed. There are fewer daylight hours for training outside. If I do get out to ride after work, it’s during rush hour, meaning there are a lot of cars on the road and drivers are at their most aggressive – not good news for a cyclist. Lastly, being promoted means more work to do at work and more focus required for doing so – meaning when I get off work, I’m pooped and all I really want to do is sit on the couch with a glass of wine and catch up on my TIVO. But, that was last year.

This year I have come to terms with my availability of training hours. So, instead of sitting around bitching about it and getting fat, I’ve developed a training program to fit my schedule. It requires more time indoors on the trainer during the week, which can be boring as hell, but gets me out on the road with my buddies on the weekends. I’ve purchased numerous Spinervals videos to help with the monotony of the trainer. I’ve also committed myself to being there for my family without completely ignoring my training. For instance, one week into my training, my mother fell and broke her leg requiring me to split time between Charlotte and Raleigh. I have found rides in the Raleigh area and have also brought my trainer to my parent’s house so that I don’t have an excuse not to ride.

The result so far – it hasn’t been perfect. Life still gets in the way of training. It always will. But, I’ve found a way to stick with it; well, through January so far. The pounds aren’t dropping like they did a couple years ago, but they are dropping. 4.5 pounds lost in January. February awaits. As does race season. Who knows, maybe taking it a little slower right now will allow me to race longer in the season without getting burnt out.

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