Last night the weather was so good in Ottawa that when I came home after work, I hauled the Ancient but Honourable Bianchi out of the basement and strapping on the heart rate monitor I rolled out at just after 6 pm. It was around 7C, which counts as "balmy" here, and it was sunny enough. The first stretch of road leading to the Aviation Parkway has gotten even worse over the winter, if that is possible: it has the worst collection of potholes and bad pavement anywhere in Ottawa, and possibly North America.
After heading north on the Aviation Parkway, I swung up the ramp onto the Eastern Parkway, passing the Aviation Museum where our time trials start. The asphalt is not too bad but after 2-3 kms becomes very good as it was only repaved a year ago. There were a few other cyclists out training but it was pretty quiet.
Here is what my Coach of Cruelty recommended as a 1 hour 15 minute training sequence:
Warmup for ~30 minutes by performing 3 spinups. Warmup is crucial for power workouts to prevent injury.
First spinup: 70 rpm to 110 rpm increasing cadence by 5 rpm each minute.
Second spinup: 70 rpm to 120 rpm increasing cadence by 5 rpm every 30 seconds.
Third spinup: 70 rpm to 130 rpm increasing cadence by 5 rpm every 30 seconds.
Finish rest of 30 minutes of warmup by spinning in easiest gear at 110 rpm.
Jumps: perform 3 sets of 8 jumps recovering 1 minute between jumps and 5 minutes between sets. Each jump is in an easy to moderate gear and consists of 12-15 complete pedal strokes. Half jumps out of the saddle, half in the saddle. Try for smooth, powerful, high cadence efforts. Try to make each jump more intense than the last, by increasing cadence or initial acceleration. If knee pain occurs, less the effort or stop.
Cooldown: spin at 100 rpm, easiest gear for 10 minutes.
The timing was ideal as I finished the cooldown and pulled back into my driveway at exactly 7:15 pm, just as the sun was setting with a spectacular red and purple glow. It was now much cooler, needless to say, but I felt a real sense of accomplishment with my training. When you have days like these, you have to grab them.