So, despite only being November 2007 the preparations for 2008 starts now, and what better way than to start a new fresh log. Not to mention avoiding the embarrassment of it's unupdated state
Last years season involved both up's and down's, mostly up fortunately, but still there were some quirks I never really got my head around. So for this season I've taken the step to getting a training schedule from a professional coach. This involves doing a ramp test (on a test bike, increasing the power every three minutes) and taking blood tests to establish lactate levels throughout, and then gatting a training schedule based on the results of this test, my previous training and racing background, my racing goals and the time I have for training. Several of my cycling friends has used this company before, and getting great results from it, and the guy running it has competed at elite level for nine years, so I trust them to know their stuff.
The test was really interesting, not to much taking it, but rather seeing the results and hearing what could be deduced from the results. Apparently I have great endurance, but when power increases the lactate levels rasises quite quickly (ie going slow for a long time is no problem, but when the speed picks up I'm lost). So instead of the usual winter riding scheme with long distance rides with low heart rate, I'm going to focus on increasing my VO2max. Which means that my schedule doesn't include any slow long distance rides now during the winter, only high intensity long rides (75-85% of HRmax), and loads of shorter hard workouts on my trainer.
If I would have read about this in a book by some unknown guy I'd have been a bit sceptic, but this guy really knows his stuff and have results to prove it. This training philosophy has gotten a lot of buzz within cross country skiing recently, a sport which is quite similar to MTB racing.
Also, looking at some of my friends who's also done the same test, they have sometimes a completely different schedule than me because of their different test result, which of course looks promising since it's not just a book shelf solution but really a personalised schedule based on me, my results and my goals.
So, I'll try to be a bit more thorough in updating my log now, posting what I do throughout the training year.