The program for this week was a bit of a variation on the last couple of weeks, but not much. I was uncertain about attending this one - I'd had the runs all day and wasn't sure if a) I'd be able to sit in the car long enough and b) not embarrass myself during a hard effort! I ended up deciding to give it a try anyway, but I didn't feel well-prepared; though I wasn't as off as for session 3, mentally I had trouble getting in to the right mindset. I think that (specific issues like diarrhoea aside!) I need to make sure I get there at something more like 4pm, to give myself enough time to settle in to the training.
All that is to say that the first set of efforts, 30km/hr reaction powerjumps, didn't go that well. Certainly the first one was quite poor - I was in front, and felt like I was keeping an eye on Wayne okay, but when I jumped I didn't really go hard enough - though ironically my rear wheel was slipping for the first 2 or 3 pedal strokes, which did detract a little from what little power I was able to put down!
The next two efforts felt better, and I was closer than I had been - I actually had his wheel and pulled out to pass by the line on one effort, though I still finished a bike length back - but it wasn't until the windouts that I really clicked in. Because, I guess, one doesn't have much choice!
The windouts this week were a little different - rather than staying behind the bike, it pulled up the bank on the last turn to give us a 100m sprint to the line. So the numbers may not be absolutely comparable, but close enough.
The first effort, behind Carl, felt fairly good. Not 100%, and I still need to work on my skills at sitting behind the bike, but it certainly woke me up and got me more focussed. 58.9 @ 145 is a good result, though I don't know whether that was behind the bike, or if I held the speed, or how long for, or that sort of thing - garmin connect just doesn't give enough resolution, especially without GPS on.
The next effort behind Nathan wasn't so good - again I was finding it very difficult to sit the right distance behind the bike. Probably 5 times in the 4 laps behind the bike I nearly hit the roller. Yes, it's possible to hit the roller, and I wasn't so concerned about falling as simply about losing momentum! To that end, I tried to make sure I swung out rather than backpedalling too much. Still, I ended up spending too much time chasing rather than drafting and the max of 55.3 @ 135 tells the story there.
The third effort was better except for 1/100 of a second. I felt more comfortable behind Nathan this time, and we were down in the sprinters lane coming around turn three one lap before I was to be launched on the sprint, when in the blink of an eye I lost a moment of focus, swung up above the red and dropped the wheel. Gah! I was 2 metres back before I even noticed. I chased back on, and managed to be there to be launched away a lap later, but again the extra time in the wind told - 56.9 @ 140.
For the final effort of the evening I was determined to get everything right - focus, hanging on the wheel without losing any momentum, and launching my sprint at the right moment (watching the others helped with realising that the sprint should start before the motorbike peels away, not afterwards!) And I managed it I felt - though I was getting tired by that point. I threw everything in to the sprint that I could though, trying to hit that 60km/hr mark - 59.1 @ 145. Precisely the same as last week! Okay, one extra RPM. And rabbit tells me that the difference between 48x15 and 48x13 at 60km/hr is 20RPM. But history tells me that the difference for me between 48x15 and 48x13 might be closer to 30RPM - though there's not yet much evidence to go on.
Hmm. I feel like I'm getting stronger, bit by bit. But I feel like if anything I'm getting fatter - have to work on mental issues around diet and getting focussed. Getting that sprinter mindset. And, apparently, I'm stomping too much, not smooth enough in my pedalling. So rollers might be a good idea, though they're not cheap. Hmm. On the other hand, it's only a few weeks in, not quite yet time for too too much reflection because there's so little to go on yet.
Brief stats here.