PBP 2015 Preparations

I’ve a grand plan to ride PBP again in 2015.  I’m still getting a fair amount of resistance from the wife, but I’ll cross bridges as I need to.   On the cycling side of things, I really want to cut down on my time to do these Rando events.  My hope would be to do a 90 hour start, and have the first night in Brest.  You could then get 6-8 hours of good sleep and be looking at a good 40 hours+ to get back.

What all this means is, I need to get faster.  I have 2 plans to decrease my event times.  1) Decrease weight and 2) Train better.

Decrease Weight
In 2011, I probably weighed about 230 lbs and my bike loaded down was probably 40-45 lbs.  In ’11, I worked my weight down to about 222-223 lbs, but being hit by a vehicle 4 weeks prior and not getting on the bike again until PBP started didn’t help.  My hope is to get back down to my “fighting” weight.  When I was 16, I weighed about 200 lbs,  but I’m really aiming for 190 lbs come 2015.  While 190 is still quite heavy for a cyclist, it would be a huge deal for me.  And whacking 40 lbs or 14.5% off my total PBP weight (me+bike+rando “stuff”) is a good start.  I hardly watched what I eat in 2011, so I am really focusing on calorie intake now.  Once the “honeymoon” period is over with the initial weight loss, I’ll really tune into my “macros” and training to get me the rest of the way.  On March 4th, I weighed 245 lbs (yikes!).  3 weeks later, I’ve dropped 10 lbs or so (probably a bit more), so as of today, I’m at 235 lbs.

The bike will be taking a haircut as well.  I find the front bag to be indispensable.  I like shedding layers on the fly, having an extra water bottle on hand and most importantly, snacks while riding.  We’ll see if the Berthoud makes the list, as it is quite heavy.  So, at least the Carradice Pendle w/ bagman rack will be off the 2015 list.  I’ll drop some tools, probably CO2, crank puller (which I didn’t need in the first place), chain tool etc.  I might look at having the canti posts removed and going to a “longreach” caliper brake.  And there are grams to “buy” by upgrading some components.  More to come, I have some “experiments” I am running on other bikes, so we’ll see how those come out.

Train Better
In 2011, I did all my training in Houston.  So, most rides started out just west of Houston.  At worst, I was in rolling hills.  Not “rolling” like France, much smaller.  We rarely pierced territory west of Austin, where the real “hills” are.  I’m now out of SLC and even my daily commute includes some 15% grades for a short time, as my house sits about 400′ vertical off the valley floor.  Combine that with not really training for speed.  I busted out a 400km ride in 2011 just under 19 hours, a 300 km in 14 hours (did it solo).  But, I rode with a big GPS unit and never really looked at my speed (computer didn’t report data, suspected to be because of Schmidt Hub).  Not to mention, I was kind of a masher and I want a higher cadence.  So, all of these things are on my list to work on.  Especially the climbing.

I spent last Saturday doing what I call “Eagle Loop” on my commuter/MTB. Up Eagleridge Dr, down Eaglewood.  Eagleridge is a nice training climb.  It is really 2 climbs, with the lower section having some 12% grades and a short flat area in the middle and then some 10% grades after that, total avg grade of 8.7%.  I did my fastest climb in 17:51 mins.  I would like to get my VAM above 1000.  Again, my weight will help and so will the training.

Screen shot 2013-03-24 at 9.41.22 PMhttp://app.strava.com/activities/45537441


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