How Is Cycling Performance These Days?

Cycling is something that I have enjoyed all my life.  For three of my four college years, I didn’t even own a car, riding my bike just about everywhere I needed to go.   Even after college, cycling became an enjoyable, albeit, infrequent stress reliever. So when I started triathlon training back in 2007, cycling was my strongest event, allowing me to focus on running and swimming.

However, things have changed a bit over the past few months.  In fact, running is now on par with my cycling.  While this means that my running have improved greatly, cycling has not had the attention needed to grow as much as running has.

Let’s review the chart below, illustrating cycling workouts since I participated in the Carpinteria Triathlon on 9/27/09.

Cycling Performance Since 9/27/09
Cycling workouts since 9/27/09

My reaction to this chart is a little like, “what have I been doing?”  Note that each dot on the red average speed line represents a workout (you can see the lack of workouts in November, January).  Here are a few things that are pertinent to this post:

  1. I finished the 2009 season strong, but dropped the ball on base cycling training throughout the fall/winter.
  2. Starting up again in December, distance was 50% higher than before.  Where is the build phase?
  3. While cycling distance has doubled, average speed and heart metrics are not too crazy, which means I am in better shape than I was before.

So how is my performance these days?  Ok, but not great.  Coming up on March 21st is the UCSB Triathlon which consists of a 0.5 mile ocean swim, a 16 mile bike, and a 10k run.  This will be my largest triathlon event yet and I am not feeling great about it and the chart above is partially why.   Time to get my act together and start training like a triathlete; not a runner; not a swimmer.

Going forward, workouts need to include at least one long cycling workout, two run workouts, three swim workouts (ocean) and whatever strength workouts I can fit in between.  My gut reaction to this is, “Geez…  that is a lot! When do I get to sleep, work, and live life?”  I guess the answer lies in, “how bad do I want this?”

When was the last time you found yourself frustrated with your training?  How often do you find scheduling/time constraints impact your training?