Friday, December 31, 2010

My Plans for Tonight - New Year's Eve

I just received this email from the host of the party we plan to attend tonight. I am so glad that things are planned well! 


amigos!

we are so happy that you can all make it this evening!  the schedule for tonights festivities are as follows:
  • 7PM - arrive at [...] and relax with appies and vino in front of the fire
  • 8PM - commencing of the final raclette of 2010 and the savouring of the cheeses
  • 9PM - commencing of the final regret of overindulgence of the cheeses for 2010
  • 10PM - discussion of new year's resolutions and fond rememberances of 2010
  • 11PM - realization that we have one more hour of overindulgence before resolutions begin
  • 12PM - commencing of 2011 and mandatory playing of auld lang syne
  • 1PM and beyond - celebrate new year's eve in other time zones and party like it's 2010!
we will have plenty of food and wine, but please feel free to bring your favourite beverage of choice to ring in the new year.


 [...] 

And surely ye’ll be your pint-stoup !
 and surely I’ll be mine !
And we’ll tak a cup o’ kindness yet,
 for auld lang syne.

see you all tonight!

---

Please note the following correction:  The final time on the schedule should read "1AM" - not "1PM".  Please do not bring your pajamas (unless for comedic effect only)!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Functional Threshold Power Test @ Home

So I was keen to see how my own performed Functional Threshold Power (FTP) test (based on the Training and Racing with a Power Meter book) would stack up against the one done at Peak Performance. Granted, the conditions are not even remotely the same with just being in the middle of the holidays, only two weeks sine the Peak test, having done my strength training in the morning, and coming from a long swim and strong run the day prior -- and the results show it. But nonetheless, interesting to see the results. 

This is the protocol: 
20 min warm-up
3 x 1 min at 100+ rpm with 1 min recovery
5 min recovery
5 min go-like-stink-balls-to-the-wall-all-out-effort
10 min recovery 
20 min strong TT pace
10 min recovery / cool-down

Taking the average power from the 20 min (250W) and subtracting 5% = 237.5W 
Let's be nice and call it 240W is my FTP based on this test. 

And yes, I *think* I could have gone a little harder in the TT part but one gear harder (where I started the segment) and I would have really ground it and was not sure I could have kept it for the duration. So I geared down and upped the cadence (avg 93 rpm). Wish I had a gear in between... 

Here now are the actual results: 


Level

% of FTP

Power (W)

Peak Result
Typical 
Interval Dur.
1 – Active Recovery
< 55
1 - 132
1 - 180
N/A
2 – Endurance
56 – 75
133 - 180
181 - 230
N/A
3 – Tempo
76 – 90
181 - 216
231 - 260
N/A
4 – Lactate Threshold
91 - 105
217 - 252
261 - 280
8 – 30 min
5 – VO2 Max
106 - 120
253 - 288
281 - 305
3 – 8 min
6 – Anaerobic Capacity
121 - 150
289 - 360
306 - 320
30 sec – 3 min
7 – Neuromuscular Pwr
N/A
N/A
N/A
< 30 sec


Peak is much higher in the FTP: 270 vs 240 watts. But interestingly, the 5 min all-out effort generated 337W average which is inline with the level 6 of this test but way higher than Peak's. 

I guess I'll really have to perform the "Fatigue Profile Test" to make sense of this kind of distribution :-)

(still don't know how to share the TrainingPeaks data - or whether this is possible)

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Peak Center Bike Blood-Lactate and VO2max Test... Aborted

I had a 10:00 AM appointment at the Peak Centre for Performance today for a Blood-Lactate and VO2max test on my new Cervelo P2. 


When I tried to put my rear wheel into the bike at Peak I was simply not able to get it in. And I know now how to do it unlike when I first took the bike home! 


What happened was that the slightly too short (got a longer stem) break cables pulled in an odd way on the rear break while the handlebar was turned in the car. This resulted in the breaks being stuck in a too tight position not letting the wheel in. We managed to finagle the brakes open and the wheel in. 


I know I had to go to SpeedTheory afterwards to get this all adjusted. Then we got everything set up and the warm up for the test started. He (the dude administering the test - I forgot his name) had me warming up at 170 watts and it felt super hard -- obviously I was worried. When he did the second calibration he noticed that something was off... so he checked the breaks and sure enough they were rubbing. So we calibrated again and he asked me to warm up a few more minutes at 170 watts. 


Now it felt quite easy and right. So the test started and all was well through 170w, 200w, 230, 260w, and into 290w. With about a minute into 290w I all of a sudden I could not keep my customary 90 rpm any longer -- not even 80 rpm. The dude kept encouraging me to keep up the cadence but I felt like I completely blew up. Eventually I tried telling him -- with the VO2max mouthpiece in my face -- that he needs to check the break and eventually he did understand me. Break was fine he said... but then realized that the wheel was rubbing on the frame. WTF!!?? 


Somehow the retaining screw must have gotten out of whack and when I started putting a little harder effort in the wheel shifted and started rubbing. Of course we needed to abort and the results are pretty much useless as we can not say with certainty when the rubbing started. 


New appointment for made for Monday evening and off I was to SpeedTheory to have them have a look at the whole thing. 


At SpeedTheory I met up with Jeremy who was able to help me out right away and made sure that (a) the retaining screws are placed correctly, (b) there is nothing wrong with the wheel, tire, or frame where it was rubbing, and (c) fixed up the break cable to give it a bit more length so it won't pull in the car. Great service and awesome job as is customary at SpeedTheory! 


So now I have to be fairly good all weekend to be fresh for another go at it on Monday. 


Here is the Garmin readout for the go while I was on: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/59398860
The cadence is all off as it got confused with the second magnet they put on for the CompuTrainer.