With my legs feeling yesterday’s Stage 1, I was a bit worried about Stage 2. I kept reading on the Tour’s Facebook page how much everyone around the world was suffering. I guess that’s the whole point of this thing, though.
Stage 2 had us doing “Blender” – The Sufferfest’s second longest video at 1 hour, 44 minutes, and 27 seconds. That’s right. Nearly 2 hours on the trainer. For those of you who have never had the “pleasure” of joining us for the Super Century, that might seem like a ridiculously long time to sit on the damn trainer and ride inside. And you’d be right.
But “Blender” was great, and the time really seemed to fly by. Sort of, anyway. I forgot to start my TrainerRoad app, so we had to pause the video and wait for the app to catch up. That just meant we got about 5 minutes of bonus warm up spinning.
After the warm up, we got right into the work, and the first 10-minute threshold interval followed by a short recovery and then a VO2 Max interval hurt so good. I looked at the clock and couldn’t believe we still had an hour and twenty minutes left. But then I soon found myself sort of getting into a groove.
My target numbers on TrainerRoad based off my FTP test were pretty much spot on for this first round of intervals. I managed to stay close or slightly above the recommended power level, but it hurt. And I suffered.
The next thing I knew, we were through the first set of longer intervals and ready to start the second set of shorter, power intervals, working on VO2 and anaerobic capacity, and we were over halfway through the video.
The power numbers on TrainerRoad were too easy for these shorter, higher intensity intervals, so I just pushed harder and went by Rated Perceived Exertion (RPE) instead of the power numbers. I ended up with a much higher power output for these intervals than TrainerRoad recommended (that’s why the yellow line is much higher that the blue in the photo above).
I’m not sure what to make of that. That could mean I’m better at sprinting than riding at or just below threshold. Or maybe I need to retest my FTP. But then that might make the longer, threshold intervals too difficult.
So, I’ll just finish the tour with the FTP I’m currently using and retest after the Tour is over. And if anything seems too easy, like the anaerobic intervals did, I’ll just push myself harder.
After the anaerobic intervals, we had 3 more threshold intervals. These were tough since our legs were already fried. But we managed to finish, and we were both disgustingly sweaty – literally dripping onto the floor and without a dry spot on our bodies. It was fantastic.
After the cooldown, we hopped off our bikes, gave a few fist-bumps, and basked in our suffering. It was a really great ride with some awesome footage of road racing, mountain biking, cyclocross, and even some fat bike snow riding.
After saying bye to Robby, I headed upstairs where my incredible wife had a steaming bowl of homemade Pizza Soup waiting for me. It was just what I needed after a hard ride. Big thanks to the Mrs.
For the next few days, Robby and I will be completing each stage on our own since our schedules won’t match up until Friday. Then we will reunite and finish this thing together.
Tomorrow brings the first Sufferfest video I’ve ever done: Fight Club. Stay tuned…
(Update: Stage 3 is done)