Tuesday, May 03, 2011
My training plan for March is essentially the same as April, however, I'm now ramping up the miles from 250 last month to 350 this month. Thus, I plan to take a 30 mile ride today, focusing on building strength. Specifically, I'll be doing 4 minute intervals, with two minutes of recovery, where I push the biggest gear I can at a minimum cadence of 90 rpm. If I go up a brief rise or something it's acceptable to let the cadence dip down to around 85 but only if that lasts for 30 seconds or less.
Speed = strength + cadence. The faster you can spin a bigger gear, the faster you will go! So, that's what today's workout is all about, I'll write tomorrow to let you know how it goes.
Have a great day, Lord have mercy on us.
Monday, May 02, 2011
I blogged this morning about the death of Osama bin Laden. Here's the link if you want to check out my blog and here's the text if you don't.
I've been praying for Osama bin Laden for nearly ten years now. Even as I write I'm remembering several prayer meetings wherein we pleaded with the Lord to reveal himself to this man. Don't get me wrong, I abhor the life he lived and I grieve at what he's done. I, like most Americans, was outraged on 9/11/01 and wanted him to pay for his actions with his life. And yet, as I processed my feelings with the Lord I came to see that my sin is also great and that bin Laden, like me, was in need of a Savior. So I began to pray for him and hope against hope that Christ would win glory for himself by pouring his mercy upon him.
I didn't hear the news until this morning. Part of me doubted it was true. Part of me rejoiced that justice has been done. Part of me grieved that a lost soul could no longer be saved and is now in hell where he will grieve and gnash his teeth forever.
Whatever your reaction to his death, be careful not to rejoice too much, and be sure to search your own soul. Consider the words of Jesus from Luke 13:1-9.
"There were some present at that very time who told him [Jesus] about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And he answered them, 'Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.'
"And he told this parable: 'A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came seeking fruit on it and found none. And he said to the vinedresser, "Look, for three years now I have come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and I find none. Cut it down. Why should it use up the ground?" And he answered him, "Sir, let it alone this year also, until I dig around it and put on manure. Then if it should bear fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down."'"
Sunday, May 01, 2011
A good friend of mine, from many years ago, died today. I loved him and I will miss him. His passing serves as a powerful reminder that what the Bible says is true: life is a vapor, it's a blade of grass, it's here today, gone tomorrow.
The fleeting joys of this world, no matter how intense and satisfying, are just that--fleeting. I would rather live for the eternal joy of knowing Jesus Christ for he is the way, the truth, and the life both in this life and the one to come.
So long, old pal, I'll miss you.
Saturday, April 30, 2011
It was very windy yesterday in the Twin Cities, 20-25 mph from the SE. Knowing that resistance builds strength and character, I decided to take a 17.3 mile ride, the first half of which was straight into the wind, the second half of which was with the wind--just the way I like it, get the hard work over and then fly home!
This course is very hilly so my personal best was an average of 18.2 mph and I wanted to beat that yesterday. I doubted that I could do it with conditions like that but I decided to try anyway. So I thought about my strategy for riding into the wind and came up with a simple but very helpful statement:
Into the wind, keep the cadence high and the body low. I said it to myself 100 times yesterday: cadence high, body low.
By maintaining a cadence of 95-100 and staying in the drops as much as possible, I was able to average 15.9 mph into that wind which is very good for me. In previous years I would have been closer to 14.5. And then I turned around, felt the wind at my back, hit the gas, and picked up 2.4 mph for a final average speed of 18.3--yes, I beat my record!
And several times I hit speeds of 30-37 mph on relatively flat ground--the wind was blowing that hard and I was working that hard! Oh what fun.
Anyhow, beating the record was good, coming up with a new saying for riding into the wind was better: cadence high, body low.
Hope you have a great day.
Thursday, April 28, 2011
After completing the "CP25K" program I decided to cycle through it again, this time to work on speed. But every time I tried adding intervals to my jogs I felt like I was going to die! I would complete one, usually, and then just have to coast in the rest of the way.
But yesterday I was able to complete six intervals, the last of which I did at a much higher pace than normal. I didn't exactly sprint but I ran quite a bit faster than I normally do. Oh, I can't tell you how good that felt.
The reason I was able to do this time, I think, is that I only slightly increased my speed for the intervals rather than bursting ahead. I figure that I should master small things first and then move on to big things later. I can see that this philosophy is going to work and I'm very excited about it!
So I went home and put together a plan for completing a 5K at 6.0 or so mph, that is, in sub-30 minutes. It will take me 6-8 weeks but I'll do it. After I broken the 30 min barrier I will probably focus on speed and technique for a while longer and then go for a 10k and who knows what. I figure that, like cycling, I should develop speed and technique first and then distance later.
Oh, I'm so pumped! And what's more, my first official 5K takes place Saturday. Hopefully I'll be able to kill it!
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