Last weekend I chose to do a 34 mile hard ride, followed by a 30 minute brick run. Since it was 1 week out from race day (EagleMan) I wanted to complete one last race style test before starting to taper for the race.
I made a few changes to the bike in preparation for the race:-
- added a water bottle holder for between the aero-bars, for carrying nutrition (most likely EFS liquid shot)
- fitted 2 new tires with latex tubes
I purchased 2 Specialized S-Works Turbo 700/23c competition tires, and ordered some Michelin A1 AirComp latex tubes – 700x18c-20c. These tires have 220tpi casings and are a much lower rolling resistance than the standard Bontrager R1Plus that came with my bike
I have completed this ride twice now – here’s the statistics for each.
This is a huge difference/improvement. Only 2 weeks apart and a 5:30 faster time and a 1.2 mph increase in average speed. The lower rolling resistance of the new tires/tubes seem to have made a large difference. My fitness is probably better too, but that should only account for a 1-2 minute advantage. I am really happy with this result, especially with EagleMan within a week now.
If I look back to just 1 year ago, I was about to head into my 2nd knee surgery of the year, and had not been on my bike since October of the year before. Before then I struggled to average 18mph for any ride, even flat courses. To have come so far in a short time is really amazing, and something I need to remember if I ever get down about a performance.
I am still aiming for a minimum 20mph bike leg at EagleMan – it is likely that I will go faster, but this is my first long-course race and I want to be able to run strong.