Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Bike Progress

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

The course that I chose was a challenging out/back with a lot of hills, for the 33.3 miles there is a total of 2,400 feet of climbing, see the elevation profile below.

I have completed this ride twice now – here’s the statistics for each.


Total Time

Avg Speed

Avg HR

Max HR

Max Speed

22-May 1:45:09 20.1mph 141 160 36.8
5-Jun 1:39:39 18.9mph 140 158 38.3

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.

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