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2014 Texas State Time Trial (Team) - Cycle

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Hempstead, Texas
United States
82F / 28C
Total Time = 1h 06m 1s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group = Cat 4 Women
Age Group Rank = 2/3
Pre-race routine:

Drove up into Houston to pick up Morgan and then headed north to Hempstead. No sections of the freeway were closed on the way up this morning, so it was smooth sailing (unlike yesterday). Parked, found Diana and Marsha, and unpacked the bikes and trainers.

I ate half a bagel with peanut butter a couple hours before the race and a banana about an hour before; drank a full bottle of water and threw one on my bike for the race as well.
Event warmup:

My warm-up for the ITT worked well yesterday, so I decided to do something similar today, but since I was planning on above-threshold intervals, I did sprints instead of threshold intervals for my pick-ups.

10' easy to moderate spinning, 5x15" sprints to ~280W on 45" recovery, 5' easy spinning....had a nice puddle of sweat on the ground in front of me (more than a few people commented that I looked sufficiently warmed up....I'm a sweater, what can I say?!?!).

Regrouped the team at the start line about 10' prior to starting. One of the race officials came over to let us know that two of us (including me...) were in violation of the rules in that we were wearing sleeveless jerseys. Apparently UCI's stance on sleeveless has changed for individual events ("where the potential for crashing is less"....because a sleeved jersey is going to do so much for you!), but not for team events. He said he'd let us ride and would record our time officially since we'd been told yesterday that sleeveless was acceptable, but wanted to let us know for the future. Very nice of him.
  • 1h 06m 1s
  • 40 kms
  • 36.35 km/hr

After yesterday's ITT, my legs felt awesome today. Honestly, I kind of figured they would....they seem to recover well off hard (but short) rides, so I was looking forward to a good day. I let the ladies know that my plan was to do ~3 minute pulls around 215W; I knew I was the strongest on the team, so I was hoping I could put in some good work, recover for a few minutes, and then get some more good work in....figured it'd be very similar to VO2 interval rides.

The official counted us down from 5 seconds and we were off. Diana led us out, followed by Marsha (both of them on road bikes), then me, and finally Morgan (both Morgan and I were on tri bikes....she's used to drafting off me and dealing with my crap draft, so we figured that would be the smartest order). My first 3' interval felt great....I knew I could do it many times throughout the 40k and recover fine.

We rotated through and when we got to my second pull, we were coming up on the team in front of us (they started us two minutes apart). I pulled us past them about 2:45 into my interval and decided I'd go 3:30 just to make sure we put a decent gap on them before moving back over and potentially getting in their way.

After rotating through one more time, when Marsha was coming off the front, she said to me, "Ease into it a bit more this time....I'm falling off", so when I was told she was back on, I slowly eased up to my 215W and about two minutes later, I heard Morgan and Diana call out that Marsha was off the back, so I let up (plan was to finish as a team) and rotated early.

We rotated through one more time before the turnaround and since I knew Marsha was having problems staying on, I opted to hold 180W and do a 5' interval instead....we hit the u-turn, so I let up for that, and once we regrouped, I settled back into my pace. At this point, the team behind us caught up and passed us.....I HATE getting passed (so does Morgan!), especially when it's a pace that I could have maintained, but since I didn't want to be the jerk who ruined the team's plan to finish together, I held back.

We rotated through one more time and I settled into 180W for another 5' interval and at the end, as I was rotating to the back, I was told, "Marsha dropped off the back, she told us to go!"

So then my plan changed once again to 3' @ 215W intervals....we had no chance of catching the team in front of us, but that didn't mean I wasn't going to try! I got in two more 3' intervals, and then the plan was that Morgan would sprint it out at the end and I'd just try to do what I could to latch on....I rotated a bit early for a sprint finish and Morgan was already pretty spent -- somehow, I recovered from my interval immediately (probably knowing that we were 1000m out gave me that last little bit!) and we rotated through quickly and I pulled us in to the finish.

I didn't feel quite as spent as I did yesterday, but I knew I'd put in some decent work. I was pleased with my effort and changing my plan to what (I thought) would be more manageable for the rest of the team.
What would you do differently?:

This was my first TTT and I was grateful to be invited to be on a team, so I wouldn't change too much about this race. I know they wanted to finish together, so I do feel bad about dropping Marsha, but at the same time, race strategy says you should be ready to drop the weakest rider when they are no longer providing any benefit, so I don't feel all that bad.

For the next TTT, I'd like to get some of my strong female triathlete friends together and make up a team -- Morgan, Gwen, and I could have a very strong team....the seed has been planted in all of our brains :)
Post race
Warm down:

I wasn't quite as spent at the end or today's race as I was yesterday, but still rode easy for a few minutes before heading back to my car to eat the rest of my bagel and drink a couple bottles of water.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

First TTT ever, minimal training with the entire team, teammates of widely varying strengths, differences in opinion on race strategy. Great learning experience that I'll be able to put to use in the future

Event comments:

NWCC did a better job organizing things and getting results posted today than they did yesterday....still not overly impressed with them, but at least they seemed to have gotten their shit together for today's race

Last updated: 2014-06-05 12:00 AM
01:06:01 | 40 kms | 36.35 km/hr
Age Group: 2/3
Overall: 3/
Performance: Average
Wind: Some
Road: Smooth Dry Cadence: 88
Turns: Cornering:
Gear changes: Good Hills:
Race pace: Comfortable Drinks: Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? No
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities: Below average
Race evaluation [1-5] 2

2014-06-08 8:17 PM

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Houston, Texas
Subject: 2014 Texas State Time Trial (Team)

2014-06-09 1:45 PM
in reply to: #5009118

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PEI, Canada
Subject: RE: 2014 Texas State Time Trial (Team)

Great report, that sounds like so much fun!  Congrats!

2014-06-11 11:31 AM
in reply to: #5009118

Northern IL
Subject: RE: 2014 Texas State Time Trial (Team)

Good job Nicole! Like how you still used the carrot late even though you wouldn't get it.

2014-06-16 8:21 AM
in reply to: #5009118

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Austin, Texas
Subject: RE: 2014 Texas State Time Trial (Team)

Wow - nice race!

Always wondered what one of these would be like, so thanks for the RR.  

Congrats on some terrific riding!


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How do you determine VO2 max for cycling? I have my HR zones from a time trial, but don't know how to get VO2 max out of that.