Old 10-04-19, 06:08 AM
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DaveLeeNC
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Location: Pinehurst, NC, US
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I just did some comparative data analysis mostly because I am a numbers guy. My primary comparison was against the 'Tour de Moore' century ride that I did as a training ride here in NC on Labor Day. And the first roughly two-thirds of it was hard just like Six Gap (but in a different way).

The TdM is over rolling terrain and about 4500' of climbing, but NOTHING of any length. I ended up riding in a small group that pretty quickly shrank to 3 people. The other 2 were younger/stronger than me (I hit 70 next month), but one of the guys (Ironman triathlete who started his life as a roadie) was exceptionally strong and did a bit over half of the pulling. Given that bit of relief, I could do my share of the work but had one problem. They REALLY went after all the short uphills on the ride. Except for that it was not hard. But by the time we hit the 66 mile aid, I was toast because of all those 'attacks'. So I told them to just ride on without me and I solo'ed it in (at an easier pace). Quite frankly after those 66 miles, I was not obviously in worse shape than I was after the top of Hogpen (but without hints of leg cramps).

I wondered how it might compare to my ride to the top of Hogpen. They were different for sure, but it was not obvious to me that one was easier. OTOH, one caused severe cramping problems and the TdM Century did not. So what I compared was the pedaling time to the top of Hogpen against the same pedaling time in the Tour de Moore which would have been all the riding with the 3some plus another close to an hour of relatively easy solo pedaling. I compared the power ranges (less than 180W, 180-200, 200-220, 220-240,higher than 240). I also compared the torque applied to the pedals. In this case I just divided power by the cadence, which yields a number that is directly proportional to torque. The two comparisons are of the same amount of pedaling time (Six Gap had a LOT more rest time at more rest stops). I also added the 46 minutes of pedaling time up Hogpen Gap as a third point of comparison.

When all is said and done it seems pretty obvious that the Six Gap ride was a bigger effort from either a torque or power perspective (vs the Tour de Moore). The big efforts on the risers in the TdM show up but net Tdm was a much easier effort.

My final conclusion is that my training had much too little 'long, extended, steady efforts' (which are hard to execute on the rolling terrain around here). I did some hard 5 minute hill repeats at 115 to 125% of ftp. And a few extended long/steady efforts indoors. But most of my hard training was 45 minute to 60 minute 'fartlek rides'. These went as high as 235 average watts (NP around 250). My sense of things is that these well prepared me for a TdM type ride, but did not prepare me properly for the Six Gap ride.

And what is really discouraging is that four years ago (on roughly the same level of training) I rode a solo century at 230 average watts (in cool weather and rolling terrain). This was 20.1 mph speed which included two extremely brief pit stops. Oh well.

dave
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