COVID 2nd winter is coming

My usual calendar sees me hit the off season about now and build for an A race in late April. That never happened this year and I presume with a fair degree of certainty it won’t happen next year either. I doubt the vaccines will even be ready but if they are the logistics will still be a mess. Last year for want of any real challenge I just did a Stoopid long Strava Distance Badge in the summer. So while I am chucking lumps of Iron about in the garage for the next couple of weeks I was casting about for some targets: Challenges (or Resolutions, for our process oriented brethren) that may (or may not) be doable next summer that I can aim for as I pound the TACX to death over the next few months. I was just wondering if anyone else had any thoughts for themselves on this; now that we are all old hands at this nebulous but mindful (well we are certainly only in the now aren’t we?) training regime?

FWIW my first one is to go back to complying fully with the TR plans for the winter and see what actually happens. I noted that my compliance was a little shot over the last few years as I noodled about with outdoor riding then VR routes (and medical stuff) this year. So I think that has more than a little to do with my plateauing.

So anyone out there with targets to share? So the less imaginative of us can hijack your glory?

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Largely on the same page as you. Was in great shape when covid hit and the races all got cancelled, took out my frustration on Zwift racing and a bunch of epic rides including an Everest, a 160 miler and a bunch of centuries over the summer. Have gradually lost fitness due to lack of structure and goals/motivation, with winter weather now arriving I’m refocusing on structure, consistency and getting back into better habits off the bike (nutrition and strength work).

Consistency goals:

  • Average at least 10 hours/week on the bike until the clocks go forward again
  • 2 strength sessions/week
  • Max 2 days with alcohol/week

Actual targets:

  • Rapha Festive 500 challenge on Strava. Need something in the ~3 month timeframe to motivate me, and completing this aligns well with my goals of rebuilding aerobic base, being consistent and being relatively clean living at a time of year when bad habits can often creep in!
  • Hitting all of Chad’s level 3 strength targets. I’m not sure I’m a level 3 rider (I race crits but my podium finishes have come from breakaways or at least sprints from a whittled down group, I don’t tend to do well in bunch sprints) but I can hit most of the level 2 targets off the couch so need something to motivate me to keep up the strength work
  • Breaking 20 minutes for a 10 mile TT in the spring. Figure TTs are the most likely races to be running if social distancing measures are still in place, and the fitness needed to do well in a TT provides a good foundation for other forms of racing if or when they’re back on the calendar. Sub-20 should be achievable if I get my power back to where it was earlier this year and have the right route/conditions. And being able to put out that power while staying aero is going to require a good focus on strength, core and flexibility over the winter
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My goals are similar to those above, 10 hours a week on the bike, less drinking. Hoping for 325w ftp in the spring and to drop to 170lbs from 175 currently.

I don’t have any events lined up for next year but I have a bunch of 100 mile routes that I’m aiming to set PRs on, and hope to do back to back centuries. I was aiming for this last weekend but had some technical issues that got in the way.

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From which side are you aiming at this target…?

Not sure I could step up from my two glasses of a Saturday night… but I am willing to try.

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Yeah… I forgot that. I have a 75km loop I wanna hit and hold SS the whole way around… cool right gotta put that one on the calendar.

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Lol, I’m coming from the other side unfortunately!

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I have 1-2 a night, and some nights I drink nothing for days in a row. Could probably lose 5lbs from that alone but I’m not interested in stopping drinking all together

I went all in last winter with the goal of a good placing at Masters road Nats. Of course, I didn’t do a single race.

Covid-related school schedule changes (I’m now at school 6-4 instead of the usual 6-3:15) and the additional at-home work required for digital teaching weeks (we are going in two weeks in-person, one week remote cycles) have slashed last year’s 14-15 hours a week down to 8-10.

I’ve gone all rowing erg, except for some bike rides on weekends. I’ve decided on a goal of breaking 7min for 2k on the erg, and to ride just for the scenery. Next year will be next year.

That is a fair amount of useless calories alright… I had to dial back on that tempo years ago. Then the whole weekend went away as I got fed up riding off my hangover. Which I got for less and less drink. To the point were I could even feel the effects of a single glass the next day… Such a tragic waste of good Whiskey (with an E). I suppose I could train back up to it: DR, DipsoRoad program. Work on raising my Functional Threshold Pissed-up.

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I was all set to do 1 or more of the European sportives next year, and I’m still going to train with the view that they may happen.

If they look unlikely come March, well, I’m buying a TT bike :rofl:

Beyond that, I’m just going to try to enjoy being fit, healthy, and enjoying the fresh air. I can be having a really crap ride and then think to myself about how lucky I am to have the time, money and health to spend a few hours riding around quite a pretty part of the world.

But I still want a proper 4w/kg FTP, not the inflated number my Tacx gave out!

Hate to be that guy but YOLO and I’m not one to put all my eggs in one basket but prefer a more balanced lifestyle. Most of the fastest guys in the area drink more than me anyway, and are older. I also indulge in other more natural things, so I’m definitely not maximizing my time off the bike but it keeps me stress free

If I have a big ride coming up I won’t drink the night before or maybe I’ll just have one if it’s a night out. Being able to go out for dinner with friends and not being embarrassingly drunk due to a low tolerance after a glass or two of wine is worth the empty calories to me, at least for now

Oh I am with you brother. I am by no means dry myself. I just sort of lost my capacity. The older I got the more it became an issue to ride and enjoy a drink or two… For me It did become a one or other deal most of the time. More power to your elbow if you can balance it…

Funny enough that’s not the issue for me at all. It’s just the cost of it the following days (<= the plural thing became the driving constraint): The piper kept asking for ever more pay for the same tune.

… As my old Gran used to say… “You can do anything you want… just not everything”.

I’m 32 so maybe that’s why I can handle it for now but the other guys I speak of are closer to 50 and can drop me like nothing (I’m no slouch at 310w and 4w/kg either).

My go-to nowadays is a gin and tonic, well, more like gin and tonics. Gin is relatively low calories I believe, as is tonic, but the sugar content is up there, as are carbs. Could think of a night of drinking as carb loading I suppose? :clown_face:

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Like so many people I got to my fittest cycling level during covid (260 FTP @ 3.8w/kg, started the year at 190 FTP) - but after all my events got cancelled and i moved house i had a cycling slump. So lost a lot of that fitness gain.

Recently joined a new club though and bought a new bike, so i am back on the wagon. Set myself some goals of entering the 300w club or getting above 4w/kg (which ever comes first). As i want to start racing next year.

I am also planning on doing eTape next year too, so ill need to get my climbing legs too. Apart from racing and etape thats all i have planned.

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I’m in a different spot, I stuck with the indoor training all year, maybe at the expense of having fun, but I try to find the joy in training. I did a couple of outdoor centuries, mainly to break things up and give myself a reward for working hard. Fitness is great, my FTP is at 295 (4.2 w/kg), I had a break in February and restarted training at 275, so not a bad year. Would love to see that go over 300 with a solid base block.

I guess the only goal I actually have is to try to do this century loop I like to do in 5hrs. It should be pretty easy if I can just raise my FTP a bit more just so my target power is in that 0.65 range where I don’t have to think very hard lol At the moment I’m assuming racing won’t be a thing so I’m trying not to think about it as a training target.

hmmm… We are stuck here on station and not returning to home port for Xmas. So that looks very interesting. Nice big fat block of Z2 before kicking off the base proper. All outdoor I presume?

Yup, all outdoor, so no cheating by doing Z2 TR workouts in a high gear in erg mode! Or even sitting on the TT bike on a flat route in Zwift. What I like is that at that time of year I don’t really have the option of throwing in a couple of epic rides to break the back of it - neither the weather, nor the short days, nor family commitments will really allow me to do that. So getting it done will mean doing a bunch of 2-3 hour rides which is exactly the kind of consistency and discipline I need at that time. Plus almost certainly the mental toughness of getting out there on some wet and windy days.

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Hell, Yes please…! Sold! I am in.

I am from Ireland originally; riding in sh!t weather is a universal initiation rite. It was your only option, even in summer… It will be like a trip down memory lane. Plus my FTP gets higher the crapper the weather gets…

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You’ll do that no problem. I used to be a member of the Sub7 group on the Concept2 forum. I think 6:42.x was my best. 2k normally around 6:50 - 7:10, below 6:50 and I knew I was in amazing shape.

The sub 18:30 5k is the brutal one, I reckon…