Saturday, November 29, 2008

Thank you

OK, it's the morning after my benefit - which was a really fun night of racing and a humbling experience as a I watched people open their wallets to bid for the items generously donated for auction.

Something between $5000-$6000 was raised (after venue hire expenses were paid), which was really amazing. I won't know the exact amount until all the various remnants of bid money and entry fees appear.

There was also the small matter of my 500m time trial to see how much I could improve on the time I set back in August.

My time:
28-Nov-08: 41.9 seconds
08-Aug-08: 46.5 seconds

an improvement of 4.6 seconds in 3.5 months. :D

Power peaked at 1122 watts, with a 10-sec power of 1063 watts.

Cadence reached 122 rpm, which on the 50x15 (90") gear equates to a top speed ~ 51kph. (I didn't have a wheel speed sensor operating).

Earlier in warm up I did a test 1/2 lap fly and managed a top speed ~ 58kph (141 rpm in 49x15 (88") gear).

As PeterB said, OK, now to break 40. Thanks Pete LOL

When I get some pictures, I'll be sure to post a few up.

The money will all go to helping me fund prosthetic equipment dedicated for cycling. Once I have final details of monies I'll post on the blog and keep a running tally of where it goes. I'm not sure how long before I actually get a dedicated leg made up. Once my prosthetics specialist is happy that my hip has sufficient strength to re-align the leg (currently my "foot" is laterally offset by ~ 25mm), then that'll be the time to do it. All I can really say is it'll be sometime in 2009 I expect. In the meantime, I have other less sexy but essential items like leg liners and socks to purchase so I can continue to enjoy training and competition.

Once again a huge thanks to everyone involved in putting it all together:

- the volunteers on the night (Fred & Helen Vella, Chris Greaves our video man, Mike O'Reilly, Peter McCrystal, Samantha Kosky and others judging and organising - how does one get all the names!!, Ray on first aid, the triple-bunger photography team of Ernie Smith, David Lane and Chris Belyea, Sean Eadie on the derny, UCI Commissaire Peter Tomlinson, and Rik Fulcher who teamed with Paul Craft for the best commentary and auctioneers team one could hope for)

- the staff and management of Dunc Gray Velodrome and Bankstown Sports Club/Handlebar Tavern for the venues and catering

- Cycling Australia and Cycling NSW for their support

- the very generous sponsors who donated some tremendous prizes ranging from wine, to books, software, two sets of wheels, a day's hire of DGV with coaching by Gary Sutton, signed jerseys especially for the occasion from Stuart O'Grady, Anna Meares and Sean Eadie amongst lots of other items

- all the riders who I'm sure had a blast

- everyone who came along to enjoy the night and who spent their hard earned after tax dollars

- others behind the scenes supporting me along the way, including all my friends, work colleagues, blog readers and forum buddies around the world, the specialists helping me with the prosthetic equipment, current and former club mates, my coaching clients, fellow amputee cyclists who have encouraged me along the way, Steve Hogg for his support in helping me to be able to pedal, and especially my family and coach Ric Stern.

- and a special thanks to Paul Craft for making it happen. You're a legend dude!

Thank you to everyone, sorry if I missed a name. :oops:

If motivation to keep on motoring ever wanes, I'll be sure to remember this night.

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Thursday, November 13, 2008

CTL = Fitness


It's been a little while since last post. Forgive me, busy days lately.

So a quick update. My training continues and my leg is holding up OK. A little while back I talked about the "Thin Blue Line". Here is the lastest version:

As you can see, the blue line continue to move onwards and upwards at a steady rate. To keep that line rising, you have to train a bit more and/or a bit harder than you did the previous week. It's relentless like that. Back off the effort and the blue line starts heading south again.

Training now comprises a variety of workouts including basic core endurance work, some focussed tempo and time trial pace efforts, and some lactate tolerance work thrown into the mix to give me a bit of a boost for when I attempt that 500m TT in a couple of weeks from now. I am riding 5-days a week now and doing the occasional race.

Last weekend I raced a local criterium at Heffron Park. I rolled over the line for 3rd, although my attempt to sprint for a win never eventuated as a couple of guys next to me crashed and so I pulled out of the effort to ensure they were the only ones to hit the deck. What my training has lacked has been some time at the track to do some sprint and start practice. Getting time for the track has been a bit tricky lately. I'll need a couple of sessions before doing my TT.

So, back to the blue line (Chronic Training Load). As shown in the chart above, my CTL has now reached the 50 TSS/day mark. And today marks exactly 5-months since I first put my bike on a trainer and tentatively pedalled for 15-minutes. So it's not a stellar ramp rate in training load (roughly 2 to 2.5 points/week) by any measure but being a CTL "hare" is not smart training anyway. It is a prudent and manageable increase in the training workload.

One of the "old" power training sayings is:

CTL = Fitness

Well it's a pretty broad statement but I thought I'd give an example of what it means.

Under the chart above (the one with the blue line) is another chart covering the same time period. This one shows my best 60-min power in each 4-week block. The orange and blue columns show my best 60-min power expressed as Normalised Power and Average Power respectively. As you can see, as the CTL blue line rises, so has my 1-hour power.

Simple really. Train more, get fitter. It will keep doing that for some time. Until it doesn't of course! But that's another story.

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