Since the beginning of the year, I have been on a kick to really learn who I am. Not so much on a personality or emotional level but more in the terms of how my body works. For the past 29 years, I have been under the assumption that I didn't really need to know all the workings of my body as they have always just seemed to work. Now that I will be hitting the big 3-0 in a couple of months, I have really been trying to figure out what really works best for me when it comes to riding/training.
I first started by wearing a heart rate monitor during all of my snowy indoor riding sessions. There have been quite a few of them this year which I am sorta proud of as I hate to ride indoors. It ranks right up among the other things I hate, running and painting. All three suck equally! By doing so I have been able to prove the old estimate of 220-age=max wrong. That would put my max at 190. I been able to get it as high as 197 and I am sure I could get it up to 200 in a race situation if needed. Now I know the max hr isn't something to brag about but it is necessary for me to understand where my thresholds lie. These will be important for the longer races/record attempts I make in the future. The longer I can stay in my upper threshold without going above it the faster I will be. The next step is to get an accurate reading of my resting heart rate. So far that reading has been all over the map which means I wasn't really "resting".
While waiting for Jenn while she was at swim training the other night I did some searching around on the UMCA website for any new articles. It is a great place for information if you have never been to it. Well there was a two part article on recovery published not too long ago. The first part simplified the caloric intake necessary to remain strong on the bike and to stimulate faster recovery. Despite the article being written in English and the math simplified for us simpletons, it meant nothing to me as I had absolutely no idea how many calories I consume in one day. I have since made an account on Fitday.com and have been tracking everything I eat each day. I am on day two and can already tell you this experiment will not last long. But hopefully I can stick with it long enough to get an idea of just how many calories I take in on an average day. I eat pretty healthy these days but more importantly I am eating pretty consistently as well.
Hopefully, if I take all of this knowledge I am gaining and combine it with all the motivation I am still riding high on, I may just find out who I am. Now to go ride!