Base training, where I build a foundation for harder training, is over. It began with a [failed] experiment with ChatGPT, resulted in some outstanding gains, and then life threw in a bunch of inconsistency to plateau progress.
The ChatGPT Failure
In the first week with my fancy AI generated plan, I came to the realization that the hours per day didn’t add up to the total hours per week. This thing was stupid. I bailed immediately.
The Backup Plan
I know how to build a base. A lot of Zone 2, some fun stuff to keep me interested, a long ride here and there, and just general consistency. This went swimmingly through March and April, where I saw some outstanding performance out of my legs, and my weight dropping steadily. We’re now mid-June you say? What about the last six weeks? Sick, death in the family, up down, up down. I’ve been trading one great week for one terrible one. My weight has stagnated as has my performance. I’m going to need consistency to go further.
The Ongoing Plan
Gravel racing doesn’t require a lot more than stamina and when in Vermont, climbing ability. That’s been my training already. I don’t need to do cadence work, I don’t need to practice sprints, I just need to get better at the riding I already do. So how to do that? Keep on doing it. My body has been quite clear that 10-12 hours of riding per week is my maximum, but I really really really hope to be able to add weight training to that as it’s not enough for what I want to achieve. I’ve always failed when attempting to incorporate it, but maybe this is the time? Maybe?
The plan is simple. Rest when I feel the need, 1-2 “tempo” rides in which I attack a Strava segment or two, 2 medium length Zone 2 (conversational, but with effort) rides, and 1 long one of ~3 hours. I also want to get down to the course on two separate occasions to scout it out. There are a couple of sections where I need to verify I have the right equipment.
I also need to get my diet in check. I attempted to count calories, but am lacking the motivation as compared to something like my big Leadville efforts. For now I’m going to try to not buy the stuff that will hurt me, and big time reduce liquid calories (beer and sweetened anything).