Thanks for the input! We have a lot of trash talkers in the area. So a few faster(use to be much much faster) guys told me two years ago that I was not one the same level and would pretty much never be. Someone can throw an elbow during a race, but nothing motivates me like someone else’s doubt. These guys pretty much take the winter off(or at least 3 months), so when I know they are sipping beer at the ski lodge I am sweating it out in my pain cave!
I am going to try some solid base work with a weekly hard VO2 workout. Steve Neal who was on some of the recent Flo podcasts seems to like to mix in a few hard higher intensity workout into his base plans. I know last winter when did TB to SSB it was hard to get back in the mindset of pain once build phase came!