Monday, June 9, 2008

Not sure what to think.

I've had 48 hours to digest the Deer Valley race and I'm still not sure what to think about it. The facts:

  • It was cold, crazy cold for June which my skinny ass is not a big fan of.

  • I spent my entire warm-up time thinking of reasons to go back into the heated lodge.

  • I rode the 1st seven mile lap in 45 mins and the 2nd four mile half lap in 37 mins. Seems like a big drop off in lap 2.

  • The max HR I've ever recorded was 179 at a roadie TT. During MTB races my HR hangs out in the low to mid 160's. Max HR up the starting climb was only 168 yet my legs felt weak and I was huffing like a freight train.

  • I enter each race without a real goal other than riding fast. I'm very goal oriented yet I can't come up with a realistic goal for most races. The only race I had a goal at was 5 Mile Pass (sub 2 hr time) and that was my best race. Since then I haven't had time goals since the courses are new to me. I also doesn't work to have a goal of trying to beat a specific person because the regulars in my category are either way faster or slower than me. I had a lot of relative success at the Solitude series last year because there was one guy who raced every week who was just a bit faster then me and another who was a bit slower. A carrot and a stick almost every race.

  • I was 11th out of 14th but only 10 mins back from first which doesn't seem too bad for a guy with a total racing career consisting of four beginner races, three sport races and five mid-week races. I also don't have any kind of a training plan other than lift weights in winter and ride as much as possible in the summer.

  • I've been very unhappy that the last two races have been shortened. My best sections (middle grade climbs) were removed from the 2nd laps of both races and even though my 2nd laps are a lot slower for some reason I feel better on them.

  • I probably need to get a better warmup in but between stretching, eating, the early ass start times and being coach/trainer/physician/mechanic to team Hypio's real racer it never seems to happen.

That's a lot to think about but I have until Snowbird in July to try to figure some of it out. In the meantime I'll be surfing the net and picking peoples brains for ideas. I'm also open to any words of wisdom (or criticism) from people in the blogosphere who read this.

Rhonda has been bouncing back and forth for the last month or so about moving from the 35+ to the sport categorie. She wanted to race the longer distance but was worried about getting her teeth kicked in and was quite honestly enjoying the podiums she was getting in 35+. She was going to make the move in Draper but decided to wait when they shortened the race. They shortened the DV race as well but since she might not be able to race Icup again till Evanston she decided to make the move. The worry of getting her teeth kicked in proved unfounded. She added to her large stack of ribbons by finishing 6th. She climbed pretty well but the unfamiliar wet conditions slowed her down on the DH or she might have done even better. Next race for her is the Super D at the MTB nationals back in Deer Valley in a few weeks

Rhonda reaches down to turn her weapon to "full auto" for the descent.


UtRider said...

Sport is tough, especially in our 30-34 and 35-39 categories. I have 3 Beginner races and 3 Sport races, plus 1 mid-week race, under my belt and am still totally clueless. Those dudes are just crazy strong and fast. I could fake it in Beginner, getting by on fitness more than skill, but that's not possible in Sport.

One thing that does help me is to pre-ride. In fact, the more I pre-ride the better I tend to do. The only real example of this is Draper which I missed this year due to illness. However, I did pre-ride the course with Warren the week before the race and he ended up crashing on the Clark's dh trying to stay with me. That's not to say he isn't good on the dh, just that when I can practice more than the others in my group, it allows me to compete where I'd normally be losing lots of time. Unfortunately it's not really practical to pre-ride (at least not multiple times) many of the courses given time & distance contraints.

I'm really looking forward to the Solitude series.

StupidBike said...

The more you race, the better you get. Period.

Fitness, Skills, Preparation, strategy.

You can read about them, but experience builds results.

That and a small bit of EPO

29er said...

Way to go Rhonda- you speedy sport you! Good luck at the Super D.


Rhonda said...

Hey Jolene! thanks, but I dont know about speedy! When are you going to join me? I need my peeps up here :)
We need to get together for a ride sometime.