The Art of Roadie Hunting
I am having a blast training these days. Now that Critical Power is in another country, I can't tinker with it, so all I have to do is train my ass off.
My super long ride is up to 10 hours - a nice ride from Banff to Radium and back. I saw two black bears and one moose. One of the bears was laying back on a hill beside the road scratching his tummy and getting a sun tan. The second bear surprised me. I was stopped at the side of the road fishing around in my pack for something and a guy from a motor home ran up to me and told me to watch out for the bear behind me. It was a black bear sitting in the grass about 40 feet from me minding his own and eating dandelions.
I am running my training week like so:
1. One ultra long slow ride every TWO weeks increasing the duration by 2 hours each ride. It is currently at 10 hours. Intensity is averaging 150 to 160 watts.
2. One long FAST ride every TWO weeks (alternating with the ultra long slow ride). Distance is about 100 miles and intensity is between 180 and 200 watts.
3. One Lactate Threshold (tempo) ride each week of 2 hours duration consisting of 3 x 20 minute intervals at 240 watts.
4. Two to three fat burning sessions per week of 2 hour duration. Intensity at around 150 watts.
5. Two one-hour recovery sessions per week at 100 watts.
During yesterdays tempo intervals, I was having some fun playing with the roadies, so I thought I would put some of my ideas down on paper (or in pixels as the case may be). I need to make a video podcast of this! It would be hilarious! A pivoting video camera would work perfectly - I'll do some thinking...
Roadie hunting on a sunny Saturday afternoon can be loads of fun for the whole family. Follow these rules, and you can squeeze way more fun out of each kill. So mount up your lowracer and lets go find some roadies!
A. THE SNEAK ATTACK
This approach works best if you are approaching a small peloton of road riders. Look for matching team jerseys and some chit-chat among them for the absolute best effect. WARNING: Cancel the sneak attack if you see aerobars on the bikes. Aerobars mean they are friendly triathletes and your aggression will have no effect. Abort the attack, and instead, enjoy some friendly conversation as they will probably have questions about your lowracer.
1. Approach quietly from behind.
2. When you reach their rear wheels, shout "To your LEFT!" and then pass them *slowly* on the left hand side. Your bravado is intended to aggravate the roadies. Your slow pass should indicate that you are working pretty hard. Exaggerated heavy breathing and pumping motion is a nice touch.
NOTE: You MUST use a rear-view mirror for this technique! This is important for two reasons: First, a mirror is clearly a sensible safety feature, and one that a serious roadie would never, ever put on his bike. It will be viewed by the roadies as the mark of a purely recreational "Sam six-pack" on a funny "encumbent" bike. Second, for the maximum effect and satisfaction you'll enjoy from using this technique, you need to be able to see the pack after you have taken the lead.
3. Once you have passed the group, DO NOT get too far ahead of them. You must slow a bit and let them sense your feigned 'struggle' at matching their superior pace. If they want to chase you, and believe me they will, you will see the lead guy get up off his saddle and look back to the other riders.
4. When they start to catch your rear wheel, increase the pace slightly. The idea is to continue to increase the pace such that they are always working a little harder at catching your rear wheel.
5. When it is clear that they can no longer stay on your wheel, put the hammer down. Ramp up your power to the high 200's, low 300 watts area and watch the devastation in your wake. For maximum destruction, the roadies must be tiny specs in your rear view mirror in less that one minute, and you must be out of visual sight within 2 minutes max.
B. "FUNNY BIKE" BAIT
In this technique, you wait for the roadies to find you rather than the other way around.
1. Ride very slowly and wobble from one side of the shoulder to the other. You can sing along with your music or eat a baloney sandwich.
2. Watch your rear view mirror and wait until a roadie approaches from behind.
3. Let him pass you. Make sure you say "Hi there! Nice day for a bike ride". If he replies, it will be short, but he will probably ignore you. If the roadie greets you first, then you might want to consider canceling the hunt. This rarely ever happens though, so don't worry.
OPTIONAL FULL DEPLOY: Don't say anything to the roadie when he passes. If he says nothing at all to you, and looks to his left as he passes you to avoid any kind of eye contact with you or your funny contraption, then you can FULLY DEPLOY on him. As soon as he pulls in front of you, pass him and unleash. Drop him as fast as humanly possible. We are going for full-out humiliation here, so don't hold back. If you choose to exhibit the finger as you blow by, be sure that you can fulfill on your intentions.
4. Lead for a while and then let him take the lead. This will certainly annoy the roadie. The thought that he is running a little duet pace-line with a recumbent bike will sicken him, and he will surely pick up the pace in order to drop you and show his superiority.
5. Continue the cat and mouse chase until speeds have reached his maximum. Then pull up beside him and say "You want to go? Let's go!" And then leave him for good. If you can, 250 to 300 watts for the next 20 minutes should give you enough time to be crumpling the wrapper of your subway sandwich by the time he arrives at the strip mall.
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