As mentioned in a previous post, this was my first week of the season spent focusing on VO2MAX. This is definitely a weakness of mine. The only reason I do not spend a great deal of time working on improving it is because it is far removed from the races I plan on doing i.e. half-ironmans. The VO2MAX zone starts at 407w for me. If at any time during a half-ironman bike I see anything in the 400s, this is reason to be alarmed. That being said, if you have a high V02MAX it is possible that high TEMPO wattages will not feel as painful. A friend put it into perspective for me. He said, who do you think has a batter shot at running 1:12 for half-marathon off the bike? A person who has run a 1:10 half-marathon fresh, or a person who has run a 1:04 half-marathon fresh? Of course, there are many variables that will effect the outcome, but you get the picture. The larger the spread between the two numbers, the “easier” it will be to run the time. Based solely on data, one would predict the 1:04 half-marathoner has a better shot than the 1:10 half-marathoner. With that logic in mind, I have embarked on a three week focus on VO2MAX. Here is what the week looked like for me:
- Tuesday November 5th: 45 minute bike @ Easy
- Wednesday November 6th: 10 x 2 minutes @430w with 2 minutes recovery (65 minutes total)
- Thursday November 7th: 45 minute bike @ Easy
- Friday November 8th: OFF
- Saturday November 9th: OFF
- Sunday November 10th: 75 minute bike @ Easy
- Monday November 11th: 3 x (3 minutes @415w with 3 minutes recovery to 5 minutes @365w with 2 minutes recovery) (62 minutes total)
The total time spent on the bike was 292 minutes. Last week I had a minor illness, so I only spent 177 minutes on the bike, so this is a 65% increase from last week. Two weeks ago, I spent 257 minutes on the bike; thus, it was only a 14% increase in time from my mileage two weeks ago. My intention was to spend 165 minutes at ENDURANCE, 15 minutes at LACTATE THRESHOLD, 29 minutes at VO2MAX, and the remaining time at ACTIVE RECOVERY, which would be 83 minutes.
The actual time I spent in ACTIVE RECOVERY was 83 minutes and 12 seconds. The actual time I spent in ENDURANCE was 163 minutes and 17 seconds. I also spent 1 minute 37 seconds in TEMPO. The actual time I spent in LACTATE THRESHOLD was 16 minutes and 18 seconds. The actual time I spent in VO2MAX was 27 minutes and 39 seconds. I also spent 1 second in ANAEROBIC CAPACITY. Here is what I just said in pictorial form (ideal followed by actual):
As you can see, the charts are virtually indistinguishable. I will say, that I am cheating a bit. I do not start the timer on my easy rides until I have accelerated the wattage up into the ENDURANCE zone. Regardless, I am getting a lot better at / becoming more aware of the time I am spending in the various zones during a workout. All in all the week went quite well. I hit all the workouts I planned on the days I planned them. Next week I have planned for the workouts to be a bit more challenging. I still have yet to “Walk through the door and puke!” so perhaps next week this dream will be attained.