Time Trialling into a Headwind

i rode the inter-club 10 on the graveyard (u7b) last night. it went well, stu dodd won, but i took second and wasn’t hugely far behind. he managed a 20.58 and i rode a 22.11. it’s a big gap, although stu dodd is super-fast, managing a long 18 on the u47 recently and he came 5th behind bradley wiggins in the national 10 a month ago. so i’m very happy with the result. he was a ringer too, riding for dursley. at least he wasn’t riding thomas lovkist’s bike, which he did last year.

so anyway, it was mega windy. when it’s a bit windy i ignore it, either hammer it out to the turn and grovel back, or the reverse. this time i rode tentatively to the turn, but still managed a 30mph average, trying to save a bit because i knew it would be a real struggle home. the u7b is pretty lumpy too, lots of annoying drags, it’s what you might call an ‘honest’ course. on the return i scraped 24.7mph, a full 2 minutes slower. it’s going to be hard riding into the wind, whatever happens; i find the best way is to pick a big gear and ride on the rivet.

it was interesting to ride a 10 after the hillclimb and the 50 of recent days. i have a sort of interior monologue when i’m riding, and today i was thinking about this in more depth, because it’s given me the clue to my pacing strategy for a ten, and it’s quite simple: am i riding as fast as i can possibly go?

jeff jones commented that your heart rate needs to steadily increase thoughout the effort. he has a point, and he certainly both knows a lot more than me and is considerably quicker. joe friel also knows his onions. in a ten, i start a tiny bit conservatively, this lasts for about a minute, then i’m up to speed and i pretty much floor it, holding it at around 92% for the duration. it’s hard work.

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