I hope everyone is keeping safe and well and looking after those who may need additional help and support.
I have seen a lot of stuff recently on social media, I include strava in this, about people’s riding over the last month with all the good weather we have had and the current situation.
My thoughts on this are that personally, I am staying local, I am not going out for too long and not too far.
So how has the weather and perhaps the extra time that you have had impacted on your training and what does that mean you are able to do? My old coach used to tell me that volume was king. In a many ways, he was correct but we all don’t have the time to ride very easy for 5hrs every day. This is really where starva and social media become the issue.
When you go out do you have a plan or just ride at the same intensity every ride? In order to progress your fitness there is little point in riding at the same intensity every day all that will happen is that you will get used to riding at a certain intensity possibly over the same terrain. With the increased time available for some people this means they can get out for a number of hours every day. This could mean they are riding at an intensity that is neither hard nor easy but just at an intensity that means that they are constantly checking their average speed over the ride as that will look better on strava. (This is not a dig at strava I use it and like it).
Have a look at your riding (or get someone to look at your riding) and see which areas can be improved on. Do you get dropped by your mates when the roads start going uphill, or when the pace increases? Can you sprint, can you hold TT pace?
Look at mixing things up this month for a change and see what improvements come. My endurance rides have all be done in the small chainring on the flat at a cadence of 100rpm+. This is not a ride to show off to your mates on strava but it will develop good aerobic conditioning and you may be surprised how tough it is if you are used to riding at 80-90 RPM. Because I have chosen not to ride for multiple hours I have been working on long runs for endurance development as for less time I can get more bang for buck (although the recovery from this is longer). When you do want to go hard the go hard. Use intervals instead of just riding in the middle ground so your avg speed looks goods. Use the other time to try and recover, eat well and sleep well to allow for adequate recovery. When things return to normal are you going to be able to maintain the 20hrs riding a week? If not then fitness will drop off quickly.
Keep safe everyone and we will soon be back to riding together and enjoying a café stop in the sun.