Saturday, November 17, 2012

Set up for camp....

... will be key to maintaining and maybe even build some fitness to stay competitive next year  while also remaining in my current position at work which require me to spend the majority of my week up north living out of camp.
I enjoy challenges both in my career and athletic life, hence when the new work challenge was presented I had a hard time turning it down even though I knew it would require a big adjustment in my life as I knew it then.
My rotation started in July and since we were already well into the season I experimented with not doing anything while up north and putting in my required hours when back for the weekend. This seem to be working not too bad as most of the riding and training during the season is shorter and with some intensity. The week up north was 4 days of rest, more than I would ever put in normally, but I also started doing more on the weekend. With that the short intensity workouts that I usually would do during the week became really non existent, the quality of the first ride when back was poor and the last ride Sunday was poor as I was tired by then. By now I have accepted that the hours of training I used to put in, only work when I spread them out through the 7 days. 
So with that I started working on a plan to get a few hours in while up north. With very limited time as I leave camp 550 am and back to my room at 730 pm, using every minute of the spare time is key. So being dependent on the bike or gear in the gym didn’t seem like a great option, beside the fact I’m not very motivated in the first place to do gym work. If I have my bike by my bed, it is as efficient as it can be and it'll be there to remind of how tired and terrible I feel when I don't do anything! So worked with the logistics folks to get the ok to bring my gear (if I’m too noisy they will move me closer to the laundry, I can live with that). Looked into various trainers with the sound in mind, but also thought I should add some fun to it, so I ended up with the Tacx I-Genius.
My home town.... some great apple juice made to the left.
Note that not just any computer could make the fun happen with this trainer (the virtual side of the software). I had to update my many years of absent in the techy world. Quickly learned that there is no such thing as mobile gamer set up, and for the software to run all bells and whistles it need a gamer laptop (graphics card requirement). But when all said and done, I'm impressed with my first test of the trainer, computer and software. Still have lots to learn before I will get the full use of the TTS4 software, and need more movies as the software only comes with a demo. The coolest part though, is the GPS ride feature. Not only can you upload any of your own or your friends rides and re-experience the ride, but you can create your own GPS rides by clicking the route in Google Earth. The "break" unit will know the grade and gradually adjust to it, both up hill and down hill. Pretty smooth. And the coolest part, if your ride is on the road, you can view it in street view and I was impressed with the quick update of photos. It's like riding through a movie. My firs trial was through my home town and how fun to ride passed my old grade school, gas station I used to get a treat from, my news paper route etc. I've still left to see how this will work with the internet connection in camp which can be spotty at times. So from having spent very limited time on a trainer (maybe 2-3 rides the last year) I'll now be a on one for a few hours each week. Hopefully I've set it up for success!
Happy Riding!

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